What Forces and Historical Trends Throughout American History Led to the Civil War, and How Did Those Forces Shape Reconstruction?
Southerners generally wanted to maintain and even expand the institution. Thus, slavery became the focal point of a political crisis.
States’ Rights refers To the struggle between the federal government and individual states over political power. In the Civil War era, this struggle focused heavily on the institution of slavery and whether the federal government had the right to regulate or even abolish slavery within an individual state. The sides of this debate were largely drawn between northern and southern states, thus widened the growing divide within the nation.
Amongst the slave states, some of them seceded in forming the Confederate States of America in 1861. This brought about American Civil War, which was from 1861 to 1865.
The laws were in place, and though they didn’t always work, some people felt that was enough, they had done their jobs.
Eric Foner, The Fiery Trial: Abraham Lincoln and American Slavery (New York: W.W. Norton, 2010), 74
The History Channel, “American Civil War,” History.com.
Martin Kelly, “Top Five Causes of the Civil War: Leading up to Secession and the Civil War,” About.com.
Martin Kelly, “Overview of the American Civil War-Secession,” About.com.