In the work, of history done by eminent historians such as Charles and Mary beard refers to civil war as the second revolution of America. However, this naming happened after reconstruction and full recovery of the country from the unfortunate moment in the American history. The war was followed by reconstruction of various structures and monuments. Another notable thing that occurred at this time was redistribution of power between the states and the federal governments.
Disunity was a principal cause of the American civil war. The American society had disunity at different levels, which worked to weaken the fabric of the nation. Disparity was one of the major causes of disunity that resulted to war. The southern states practiced plantation farming. The southern states cultivated cotton in plantation farming. At that time, there was a combination of factors that favored large demand for cheap labor.
Slaves provided cheap labor to these cotton farms. On the other hand, the northern states were more industrialized. People had evolved together as a society, and there were no classes in their society. This disparity in attitude was a catalyst to disagreement between the northern and the southern states(Berkin, 2003). The southern states viewed slaves as the only source of labor that could help then develop. On the other hand, the northern states had a divergent view from this, and this led to disagreements.
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Another disunity observed is the disagreement between the two groups; regarding the powers held by the states as well as the power of the federal government. One side of this divide pushed for more powers for the states while the other side wanted the federal government be given more power(McPherson, 1998). It was observed that the initial government around the time of civil war was brought together under “the articles of confederation”.
There was a loose centralized government that was formed by the thirteen states. When crises came, the members of this group came together and drafted the American constitution. This document was viewed by the other members across the divide as encroaching on the right of states. This document was nullified. The nullification of this document due to disagreements on the powers of the states, as well as the federal government, led to secession.
Another issue that featured prominently in bringing about crisis in America was the issue of slaves. America gained land at a higher rate in 1820 than it did before. The increment partly occurred due to purchase of land at Louisiana. The Mexican war was another factor that brought an increase in American land. The increment brought about a disagreement. States did not agree on whether the newly acquired states were free or slave states. The disunion grew further as a result of a compromise that was passed in around 1820 prohibiting slavery of the land obtained from Louisiana Purchase. The disunion around this issue contributed enormously to the civil war.
In the run-up to the civil war, the northern states had begun to become more polarized around slavery. Most of the people in the north were against slavery. There arose a group of people who were termed as abolitionists who were against slavery and the slaveholders. There were developments that pushed this division wider apart. Some of these factors included the fugitive slave act that was passed around this time(Crane & Binder, 1982).
The slaveholders and other supporters of slavery had seen the government pass many laws that were slowly and systematically phasing out slavery. The final thing that worsened the condition was the election of Abraham Lincoln to become the president. The slaveholders, as well as the slave states, could not take that. States such as Carolina declared secession immediately after Lincoln’s election. This state held a belief that they could not develop without slaves, and the election of a president, who was perceived as being anti-slavery, led to disunion between some states from the federal government.
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