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Territorial expansion was the main cause of the civil war. To what extent do you agree with this statement?

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  • Essay length: 772 words
  • Submitted: 01/12/2008
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International Baccalaureate History

The first 200 words of this essay...

Jennifer Felipe

IB Contemporary History

Topic: Territorial expansion was the main cause of the civil war. To what extent do you agree with this statement?

The civil war is associated with southern succession, slavery, and the Republican Party, all factors which this dispute entailed. The initiation for such conflict though, lies in the territorial expansion that Americans believed was destined for the United States at the time. Territorial expansion pinned Americans against one another when debating whether the new states should be slaves states or not, questioned the power the Federal government had in comparison to states' rights, and put at risk the unity of the U.S.A as a nation. With a vast majority of land acquired through agreements such as the Louisiana Purchase it was difficult to decide whether slavery should spread further west, not do so, or be equally distributed. How this was going to take place led to a long and costly conflict known as the American Civil War. I strongly agree that territorial expansion was the main spark that ignited the civil war.

As the U.S expanded west, conflicts over slavery grew more bitter and Americans began to identify

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