Westward Expansion Of Slavery

1529 Words7 Pages
Abstract
Slavery provided America with a wide range of labor, and fortune. Ideals from Christianity, and Revolution forced many to grapple with the idea of ending it. Throughout the antebellum era politicians debated the merits allowing the people of territories themselves to decide whether slavery would be prohibited or permitted. This solution created a host of problems. From the establishment of the Northwest and Southwest territories, to the Louisiana Purchase, the annexation of Texas, the acquisition of the Mexican Cession, and finally the debate over Kansas and Nebraska, the extension of slavery confounded politicians.

To many nineteenth century Americans, the expansion of slavery into Western territories caused a great deal
…show more content…
The infamous question of whether the territory would be slave or free emerged again. At the end of the Mexican War new lands west of Texas were yielded to the United States, and the debate over the westward expansion of slavery was revived. Representative David Wilmot of Pennsylvania introduced a possible solution to the problem in 1846. Wilmot’s proviso suggested that slavery should be prohibited in any territories acquired from Mexico. Northern politicians quickly backed Wilmot’s amendment. However, southern politicians felt such an act was unconstitutional and blocked the passage of the Wilmot Proviso. Wilmot’s proviso never passed and the issue of slavery in westward territories remained a topic of heated…show more content…
He guided his country through the most devastating experience in its national history, the ultimate strife from westward expansion the Civil War. Lincoln's victory in that election thus changed the racial future of the United States. The westward expansion of slavery was one of the most dynamic economic and social processes going on in this country” (Foner, E). Political deals, such as the Missouri Compromise in 1820, Compromise of 1850, Supreme Court rulings, and the Dred Scott decision in 1857, divided the country drastically. These divisions went far beyond cotton and economics. A country continuously divided on this major issue could not have survived.
The fight over the expansion of slavery into the territories is a persistent problem in antebellum history. This problem caused strife between North and South lasting decades. Progress, greed, racism, and economic gain are the causes of much bloodshed and almost the complete destruction of a nation. Liberty is the sole reason for years of debates and compromises; two sides (North and South) with a different interpretations and a way of life. For Southerners liberty meant the right to own slaves and for slaves and most Northerners liberty meant ending
Open Document