Drifting towards dissunion

Movement toward war
Harriet Beecher Stowe
• Uncle Tom’s Cabin
• Written as a response to the Fugitive Slave
• Energized Northern sympathies for the
plight of the slaves.
• Huge influence on the outcome of the war.
Hinton R. Helper
• The Impending Crisis of the South
• Viewed slavery as hurting nonslaveholding
• Added fuel to the fire.
John Brown
• Fanatical abolitionist
Sumner-Brooks Fight
• Senator/Representative.
Sumner-Mass. Brooks-SC.
• Sumner was an abolitionist who made
disparaging remarks about Senator Butler of
South Carolina.
• Brooks responds by beating him with a cane
in the middle of the Senate.
Bleeding Kansas
• Failure of popular sovereignty.
• Groups vied for control of the state.
• New England Emigrant Aid Company. Sent
abolitionists to Kansas to thwart the
• First territorial legislature. “border
ruffians” from Missouri. Bloodshed,
separate gov’ts, etc.
Lecompton Constitution
• Attempt by Southern sympathizers to
permanently establish slavery in Kansas.
• Supported by President Buchanan.
• Opposed by Stephen Douglas. Fought for
true popular sovereignty.
• This episode resulting into the split of the
democratic party.
Dred Scott
• Supreme Court decision.
March 1857.
• Did residency in a free state give Scott the
right to his freedom?
• Slaves had no rights under the Constitution.
• Slaves were property and could be taken
into any territory.
• Congress had no power to ban slavery in the
Things add up
• Missouri Compromise was unconstitutional.
• Territorial legislatures were themselves
powerless to ban slavery. Rights of
personal property guaranteed by the 5th
Amendment take precedence.
Election of 1856