Uncle Toms Cabin Thesis

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From 1845-1861, Northerners greatest worries regarding the growth of “slave power” were due in part to the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, Election of 1852 and the Kansas-Nebraska Act. In February of 1848, both the United States and Mexico signed the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo (Norton, 347). This treaty gave the United States California, New Mexico and present day Nevada, Utah, Arizona, parts of Colorado, and Wyoming (Norton, 347). The acquisition of such a vast amount of land increased Northern fear of slavery expansion. The northerners believed that President Polk had started the war with Mexico for the sole purpose of acquiring vast, new slave territory. The northerners were fearful of slave expansion because they believed that Slave labor…show more content…
Harriett Beecher Stowe wrote the controversial novel called “Uncle Toms Cabin”, which depicted the humanity and suffering of the slaves (Norton, 352). The story of a mother dashing to freedom with a child across the frozen Ohio River aroused sympathy from millions of northerners (Norton, 352). The novel went on to sell over 1 million copies by mid-1853, which worried southerners who believed it could threaten their rights. The book caused widespread anger from the northerners towards the southerners, which led to southerners to fear that nearby areas could outlaw slavery and become bases for abolitionism that would then spread into their slave states and abolish slavery. On October 16, 1859, John Brown led a small mixed race group to attack the federal arsenal at Harpers Ferry, Virginia in the hopes of triggering a slave rebellion (Norton, 361). Southerners were outraged to learn that prominent northern abolitionists had financially backed John Brown. This increased southern fear that the northern abolitionists could attempt greater revolutionary acts in an attempt to start a slave rebellion. The southerners feared Abraham Lincoln being elected in 1860 due in part to the Republican Party’s opposition to slavery extension
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