Sectionalism In The 1800s Essay

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The 1800s was a trying time for our developing union; from the war on slavery to the birth of the Underground Railroad, it was a period of growth. In addition, several states were admitted to the union- California, Maine, and Missouri to name a few. With all this growth will inevitably come struggles; sectionalism to be exact. Sectionalism occurs when a group/region is so focused on their own agenda, they neglect national issues in the process. Southerners were so fixed on maintaining slavery, while Northerners fought so harshly to abolish it. Focused on the war on slavery, the two sides failed to realize larger issues in the Union such as the women’s suffrage movement and education reform. Events such as the passage of the Fugitive Slave …show more content…

These laws put freedmen in compromising situations; the law obligated Northerners to aid in the capture of all slaves, even freedmen. If any Northerner harbored a Negro or assisted them in their escape, they would be fully prosecuted. With Negroes denied a fair trial, they’re capture and sale was imminent. In order to cut down on this, the Underground Railroad; a secret channel leading slaves to freedom, were forced to stay on top of their game. Now more than ever, white Northerners joined the fight against slavery, angering the South. White support in the North caused further tension, contributing to sectionalism. Although whites were offered rewards ranging from $5-$10, it didn’t sway their opinions about the law. Wisconsin and Vermont passed laws designed to evade the Fugitive Slave Law. Whites harbored slaves and helped them flee to Canada. The Fugitive Slave Laws contributed to sectionalism and in addition, inspired authors to document slave …show more content…

Translated into countless languages, Uncle Tom’s Cabin flew off shelves and became a worldwide read. After the passing of the Fugitive Slave Law, an outraged Stowe set out to share the tales in hopes of alerting the North. Uncle Tom’s Cabin highlighted the cruel treatment of slaves; ranging from beatings to children being snatched from their mother’s arms. The publication of Uncle Tom’s Cabin fanned the flames of the North- South conflict, contributing to sectionalism. As a result, the amount of Northern abolitionists multiplied. Northerners refused to abide by the Fugitive Slave Laws, fighting harder for Negroes. This attitude rubbed off on the youth; pushing them to fight in the Civil War. On the other hand, Southerners were livid. According to Southerners, the events of Uncle Tom’s Cabin were fabricated. Several Southerners wrote responses to the novel, arguing Stowe never visited the south so her information is false. In addition, the British refused to join the South in the war due to the publication of the book. Uncle Tom’s Cabin greatly influenced sectionalism, it created Northern abolitionists and further angered the south. The Missouri Compromise yielded the same

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