Republicans Challenge Slavery

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1 Republicans Challenge Slavery

2 The Compromise of 1850 didn t end the debate over slavery in the U. S. It was again a key issue as Americans chose their president in Franklin Pierce Democrat Winfield Scott Whig John Hale Free Soil

3

4 Franklin Pierce of New Hampshire Our 14 th President He was a northerner, but he sympathized with the South over the slavery issue. He lost his popularity in the north after supporting the Kansas-Nebraska Act.

5 The Pierces faced many tragedies. Their oldest child only lived 3 days. Their second little boy died at age 4 from Typhus, and their third boy died at age 11, just two months before his dad took the oath of office to become President. Sadly, he was decapitated in a train accident. First Lady Jane Appleton Pierce

6 The Kansas-Nebraska Act Americans had hoped the Compromise of 1850 would end the debate over slavery in the western territories. It did not. However, more problems arose when the issue of setting up a government for Nebraska was discussed. Nebraska was a huge region that went from Texas to Canada.

7 Stephen Douglas, a Senator from Illinois, knew Southerners did not want to add another free state into the union. He proposed dividing the region into two territories called Nebraska and Kansas. Settlers in each territory would decide the issue of slavery using popular sovereignty.

8

9 Undoing the Missouri Compromise Some said this was fair because it was to be used in Utah and New Mexico. Others said it was bad because the Missouri Compromise had already banned slavery there. Southerners were in favor of it, because they hoped Kansas would become a slave state. Franklin Pierce, the Democratic president, supported the act, and it passed becoming a law.

10 Northerners Were Furious Some northerners were outraged that slavery could now possibly move into areas where it had been banned for more than 30 years. They protested by testing the Fugitive Slave Law. In some cities like Boston, they tried to prevent slave catchers from taking runaway slaves back to the South.

11 Posters Protesting Slave Catching

12 In the mid-1850 s pro-slavery and anti-slavery forces battled for control of Kansas. One observer described an election day in Kansas: On the morning of the election, before the polls were opened, some 300 or 400 Missourians and others were collected in the yard where the election was to be held, armed with bowie-knives, revolvers, and clubs. They said they came to vote, and whip the Yankees, and would vote without being sworn. Some said they came to fight, and wanted one.

13 Kansas Explodes in Violence Anti and pro-slavery people rushed into the Kansas Territory. Many came for the cheap, available land. Pro-slavery forces wanted to make sure the anti-slavery people did not control Kansas. Border Ruffians rode in from Missouri.

14 Border Ruffians were trouble-makers from Missouri who tried to make sure the territory became slave holding. To this day, there still is a big rivalry between the two states.

15 In 1855, hundreds of Border Ruffians voted illegally and elected a pro-slavery legislature. They passed laws that supported slavery. One gave the death penalty to people who helped slaves escape. Anti-slavery forces refused to accept these laws and elected their own legislature.

16 Bleeding Kansas In 1856, pro-slavery forces raided the town of Lawrence, an anti-slavery stronghold. They destroyed homes and smashed a newspaper press. John Brown, an abolitionist, his four sons, and two other men went to a town called Pottawatomie Creek. They drug 5 men out of their beds and murdered them.

17 John Brown A famous abolitionist

18 By late in the year 1856, there had been more than 200 people killed in the violence. Newspapers started referring to Kansas as Bleeding Kansas.

19 Senator Charles Sumner of Massachusetts was critical of the situation, and also criticized another senator from South Carolina named Andrew Butler. Bloodshed in the Senate Butler s nephew, Congressman Preston Brooks, marched into the Senate and beat Senator Sumner with a cane until he fell bloody and unconscious.

20 Charles Sumner, Andrew Butler, and Preston Brooks

21 To show support for Congressman Brooks, hundreds of Southerners sent him canes! With congress in such an uproar, many people thought the Supreme Court could help settle the slavery issue and hopefully restore peace. The Supreme Court ended up causing even more contention between the North and the South.

22 The Dred Scott Decision Dred Scott, a slave, had lived with his owner for many years in Missouri.

23 Later, he lived in Illinois and Wisconsin where slavery was not allowed. After going back to Missouri, Dred s owner died, but he was still owned by the master s widow. Anti-slavery lawyers helped him file a lawsuit. They argued that because he had lived in free territories where slavery was not permitted, he should be a free man.

24 Eventually, Dred Scott s case went all the way to the Supreme Court. The Court s ruling shocked many Americans. First, they said Scott should never have been able to sue, because as a black, he was not a citizen. Second, they agreed that slaves were property.

25 The Court didn t stop there. They went on to say that Congress did not have the authority to outlaw slavery anywhere. Many Southerners were overjoyed. For years they had considered slaves to be property, and wanted slavery to be allowed everywhere. Many northerners were shocked and upset. Tensions become even greater.

26 By the mid-1850 s, people who opposed slavery were looking for a strong political voice. Free Soilers, Democrats, and Whigs met in cities across the North. In 1854, the Republican party was formed in Michigan. The party grew quickly, and by 1856, was ready to challenge the older political parties for power.

27 Some people argue that the political party started in Wisconsin. Along with the older Democrat party, it dominates modern U. S. politics.

28 The Republican Party At first, the party was founded to stop the spread of slavery. However, some Republicans were abolitionists. In the 1856 presidential election, they selected the frontiersman John C. Fremont as their candidate. He didn t have a lot of experience, but he opposed the spread of slavery.

29 James Buchanan, John C. Fremont, and Millard Fillmore

30 Republicans marched through the streets singing Fremont s campaign song: Arise, arise ye brave! And let our war-cry be, Free speech, free press, free soil, free men, Fremont and victory! At this time the Whig party was extremely weak and about to die out. Fremont s main opponent was Democrat James Buchanan.

31 The American-Know Nothing-Whig group was basically a movement that was nativist, and anti-irish and German. It didn t last long.

32 Buchanan was a northerner from Pennsylvania, but he sympathized with the southern position on slavery. Supported by most southerners and many northerners, Buchanan won the election to become our 15 th president. However, the Republicans did well for a new party. Southerners were worried about the success of this anti-slavery party.

33 Abraham Lincoln of Illinois The Republicans next big challenge came in Republican Abe Lincoln was challenging the Democrat Stephen Douglas for his seat in the Senate. This election captured the attention of the whole nation because many people thought Stephen Douglas would run for president in 1860.

34 Lincoln was born in the backcountry of Kentucky. Later, he moved to Indiana and spent most of his life in Illinois.

35 He lost his mother at an early age, and his father re-married. As a child, Lincoln spent only a year in school. Abe would borrow books from neighbors, and he taught himself to read, and spent hours reading by firelight.

36 After Lincoln left home, he opened a store in Illinois. There he studied law, and launched a career in politics. He served 8 years in the state legislature, and then one term in Congress. Bitterly opposed to 1854 s Kansas-Nebraska Act, he decided to run for the Senate in 1858.

37 People in Illinois knew and liked him. To them, he was just folks a person who enjoyed picnics, wrestling contests, and other favorite pastimes. They admired his honesty, wit, and plainspoken manner. Once he replied, There are always some fleas a dog can t reach, when someone complained they couldn t understand one of his speeches.

38 Lincoln kicked off his campaign at the Old Illinois Capitol Building in Springfield on June 16, It was here he spoke his famous words about a house divided against itself.

39 The Lincoln-Douglas Campaign Stephen Douglas was known as the Little Giant because he stood only 5 feet tall. However, he had a powerful presence, and was a good speaker.

40 On the train he used to campaign, a flat car carried a cannon. When the campaign got close to a town, young men in uniform would fire the cannon. People from miles around knew that Senator Douglas was coming to town. Politics and campaigning were a great form of entertainment to people in the mid 19 th century.

41 Lincoln knew that on his own, he would never draw as big of crowds that Douglas did. To solve this problem, he sometimes followed Douglas around on the same train and gave his own speeches. To get even more attention, Lincoln challenged Douglas to a series of very famous debates throughout the campaign.

42

43 The Lincoln-Douglas Debates During the campaign, the candidates held 7 different debates to discuss the current issues. In one debate, before 10,000 people, Douglas accused Lincoln of being a hot-headed abolitionist who wanted blacks and whites to be equals and socialize. He warned that trying to totally end slavery would lead to war.

44 Lincoln stood 6 4, while Douglas stood at 5.

45 He believed that popular sovereignty was the best way to decide the slavery issue. Although he personally disliked slavery, he didn t care which way people voted. Lincoln replied that if slavery was wrong, it could not be ignored, and if it was evil, it should be kept out of the territories. Like many whites at the time, he didn t believe in total equality. He did believe that:

46 There is no reason in the world why the negro is not entitled to all the natural rights [listed] in the Declaration of Independence, the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. I hold that he is as much entitled to these as the white man In the right to eat the bread which his own hand earns, he is my equal and the equal of Judge Douglas, and the equal of every living man.

47 The Results In those days, state legislatures picked a state s senators. For weeks, newspapers reprinted their speeches. Many northerners started to agree with Lincoln. Lincoln narrowly lost the election, but gained national fame. This would not be the last time the two would run against each other.

48 Why did Abraham Lincoln grow a beard two years later? Here is a possible explanation why: why-did-lincoln-grow-a-beard-

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