Northerners and Southerners Essay

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While both Northerners and Southerners believed they were fighting against oppression and authoritarianism, the irreconcilable differences they had over taxes and tariffs, the attack on Fort Sumter, the battle of John Brown, the abolitionist movement, and the election of Abraham Lincoln were more responsible for the Civil War's eventual extinction than slavery. A student studying the history of the United States of America is advised to peruse the book. It is the course text and guidebook, and it vividly documents every event that constitutes U.S. history. Chapter 15, specifically, records the events beginning in 1860 that led to the American Civil War which raged from 1861 to 1865. It discusses the causes, effects, the war itself, and the consequences which still influence the current state of affairs.

The textbook asserts that the Lincoln election sparked fury and agitated the Southerners. The talks about secession of the South began as there were ideological differences between the two regions (U.S. History Text Book 420). The author suggests that there were other reasons that caused a rift between the Northerners and the Southerners. They had previously engaged in rhetoric and agitation was contributing to the hostility that existed between the two states due to the economic differences between the agrarian South and the industrial North. The election of Abraham Lincoln and the abolitionist movement also contributed on their own merits to the war that erupted (U.S. History Text Book 421). The institution of slavery was just one of the elements which the Northerners and Southerners couldn’t agree on. However, it must not be construed to mean or to reflect that slavery was the primary cause of the Civil War.

Kingseed, Cole Christian. The American Civil War. Westport, Connecticut: Greenwood Publishing Group, 2004. 26 October 2017.

Cole Christian Kingseed is an American military officer, history educator, and a member of the Society of Historians of American Foreign Relations, Naval Institute (Cole Christian Kingseed 1). He obtained a bachelor’s degree from The University of Dayton and a Master of Arts degree from Ohio State University. He also has a doctorate from Ohio State University. Kingseed has had a career in the military starting as a Second Lieutenant in The United States Army, eventually retiring as a Colonel. Kingseed has authored and co-authored several books, including; Eisenhower and The Suez Crisis of 1956 (Cole Christian Kingseed 1).

In his book, The American Civil War, Cole Christian Kingseed describes the Civil War as the worst form of a bloodbath to ever occur in American history. Although Americans still owe their freedom to it, it was an event that saw America lose multitudes of its citizens (Kingseed 89). The author, however, attributes the cause of the war to numerous factors together with the issue of slavery as events that led to the breakout of the Civil War. The author acknowledges social, economic, and political factors contributed to the Civil War (Kingseed 11). The South was a highly agrarian economy that depended so much on the slave trade, and was in favor of low tariffs – it rejected direct taxation. On the other hand, the North was a manufacturing society that wanted slavery abolished, favored high tariffs to protect their industries, and was a proponent of direct taxation (Kingseed 122).

Cooper, William J. We Have the War upon Us: The Onset of the Civil War, November 1860 - April 1861. Knopf, 2012. 27 October 2017.

William J. Cooper is an accomplished professor of history at Louisiana State University. He was also the president of the Southern Historical Association. He has a doctorate from John Hopkins University and has served as a member of LSU since 1980. His works include; The Conservative Regime: South Carolina, 1877-1890, The South and the Politics of Slavery, and 1816-1856 among many others.

In his work, William J. Cooper demonstrates what happened during the period between Abraham Lincoln’s election in November 1860 and the attack that took place at Fort Sumter in 1861 (Cooper 235 -240). The author describes all the efforts made to avoid or somewhat impede the secession of the South and ultimately the Civil War. The author draws attention to the decisions of men which resulted in the imminent breakout of the Civil War. For instance, following the election of Abraham Lincoln, the fire-eaters of the south reacted by urging all the slave states to exit the union. Senator Robert Toombs of Georgia asserted “nothing but ruin will follow delay” Davis from the south, however, suggested a wait and saw stance (Cooper 76). Finally, after Lincoln refused to let loose his stance on the expansion of slavery, then the south seceded. The author argues that if only Lincoln were more accommodative of the South's cultural practices, there could be no war as Lincoln was the problem and not the slaves nor their masters (Cooper 76). Furthermore, Cooper discusses that Lincoln’s response to the attack on Fort Sumter contributed to the war outbreak, by calling out troops instead of calling “the last opportunity, even requirement, for Americans to turn from employing arms to searching a peaceful solution (Cooper 270).” The Northerners wanted to protect their manufacturing industry and high tariffs, while the Southerners were firmly safeguarding agriculture together with paying low taxes.

Blight, David W. Race, and Reunion: The Civil War in American Memory. Cambridge: The Belknap Press of Havard University Press, 2001. 27 October 2017.

David W. Blight is an American history professor at Yale University. He joined the faculty in January of 2003 after teaching at Amherst College for thirteen years. After David Brion Davis retired, Blight became the director of Gilder Lehrman Center for the study of Slavery, Resistance, and Abolition at Yale University. Furthermore, he once served as a professor of American History at Cambridge University. Blight has authored and co-authored several books that have received various awards and accolades. Some of his notable works include My Bondage and My Freedom, Robert Penn Warren’s Who Speaks for the Negroes and Race and reunion among other tasks.

In his book Race and Reunion, Blight brings out the contrast in what the war meant to different people. The industrial Northerners, who were the “emancipationists,” held the belief that the war resulted in the republic’s rebirth as a state of freedom and equality whereas the agriculturalist Southerners, who were “pro-reconciliation,” asserted that the war resulted in a state of self-governance. In the end, the two could not coexist (Blight 257). The author acknowledges the conflict of ideas caused by ideological differences that transcend slavery between the Northerners and the Southerners including economic differences over industrialization and agriculture, tariffs and taxes, the election of Abraham Lincoln, and the attack on Fort Sumter.

Works Cited

Blight, David W. Race, and Reunion: The Civil War in American Memory. Cambridge: The Belknap Press of Havard University Press, 2001. 27 October 2017. .

Cole Christian Kingseed. n.d. 26 October 2017. .

Cooper, William J. We Have the War upon Us: The Onset of the Civil War, November 1860 - April 1861. Knopf, 2012. 27 October 2017. .

Kingseed, Cole Christian. The American Civil War. Westport, Connecticut: Greenwood Publishing Group, 2004. 26 October 2017. .

U.S. History Text Book. "The Civil War, 1860 - 1865." Openstax. U.S. History. Houston, Texas: Rice University, 2016. 419 -440.

July 07, 2023

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