An examination of the causes of civil war in america

Yeats wrote his short poem immediately following the catastrophe of World War I, but his thesis of a great, cataclysmic event is universal and timeless. It is probably safe to say that the original impetus of the Civil War was set in motion when a Dutch trader offloaded a cargo of African slaves at Jamestown, Va.

An examination of the causes of civil war in america

The History Learning Site, 25 Mar Causes of the American Civil War A common assumption to explain the cause of the American Civil War was that the North was no longer willing to tolerate slavery as being part of the fabric of US society and that the political power brokers in Washington were planning to abolish slavery throughout the Union.

Therefore for many people slavery is the key issue to explain the causes of the American Civil War. By America could not be seen as being a homogenous society. Clearly defined areas could be identified that had different outlooks and different values. This was later to be seen in the North versus South divide that created the two sides in the war.

The area relied on exports to markets in Western Europe and the class structure that could be found in the UK, for example, was mimicked in the southern states. Social advancement was possible but invariably it was done within the senior families of a state, who were the economic, political and legal brokers of their state on behalf of the people in that state.

Within this structure was the wealth that these families had accrued. It cannot be denied that a huge part of this wealth came from the fact that the plantation owners oriented the work on their plantations around slave labour.

An examination of the causes of civil war in america

As abhorrent as it may be to those in the C21st, slavery was simply seen as part of the southern way of life. When the dark clouds of war gathered inmany in the South saw their very way of life being threatened.

Part of that was slavery but it was not the only part. The North was almost in complete contrast to the South. In the lead up to Aprilthe North was industrialising at a very fast rate.

Entrepreneurs were accepted and, in fact, were seen as being vital to the further industrial development of America. You did not have to stay in your social place and social mobility was common. For example, Samuel Colt was born in Connecticut into a relatively poor background.

Whether he could have done this in the South is a moot topic. Cornelius Vanderbilt is another example.

Civil War - HISTORY

Whether a man who came from the Netherlands could have forced his way into the social hierarchy of the South is again a question open to debate. The North was also a cosmopolitan mixture of nationalities and religions — far more so than the South. There can be little doubt that there were important groups in the North that were anti-slavery and wanted its abolition throughout the Union.

While they had their freedom and were paid, their lifestyle was at best very harsh. While the two sides that made up the American Civil War were apart in many areas, it became worse when the perception in the South was that the North would try to impose its values on the South.

InSouth Carolina passed an act that declared that Federal tariff legislation of and could not be enforced onto states and that after February 1st the tariffs would not be recognised in the state. Congress pushed through the Force Bill that enabled the President to use military force to bring any state into line with regards to implementing Federal law.


On this occasion the threat of military force worked. People in South Carolina vowed, however, it would be the last time. It was now that slavery became mixed up with state rights — just how much power a state had compared to federal authority. State rights became intermingled with slavery.

The key issue was whether slavery would be allowed in the newly created states that were joining the Union. Kansas was officially opened to settlement in and there was a rush to settle in the state between those who supported slavery and those who opposed it.

However on January 29thKansas was admitted to the Union as a slave-free state. Many in the traditional slave states saw this as the first step towards abolishing slavery throughout the Union and thus the destruction of the southern way of life.

When South Carolina seceded from the Union on December 20ththe first state to do so, it was a sign that the state no longer felt part of the United States of America and that America as an entity was being dominated by a federal government ensconced in the views of the North.

Whether this was true or not, is not relevant as it was felt to be true by many South Carolinians. The secession of South Carolina pushed other southern states into doing the same. With such a background of distrust between most southern states and the government in Washington, it only needed one incident to set off a civil war and that occurred at Fort Sumter in April Oct 15,  · Watch video · The Civil War in the United States began in , after decades of simmering tensions between northern and southern states .

The American civil war: causes and conflicts Essay Words 7 Pages The American Civil War, which began in to , has gone down in history as the one of the most significant events to have ever occurred in the United States of America, thus far.

Origins of the American Civil War. Jump to navigation Jump to search The Battle of Fort Sumter was a Confederate attack on a U.S. fort in South Carolina in April It was the opening battle of the war.

There were many causes of the Civil War, but the religious conflict, almost unimaginable in modern America, cut very deep at the time. “Evidence that the Civil War was NOT a war for freedom,” and “Reasons why the Civil War was NOT a war for freedom,” and repeat the process.

The Essay Preparation Guide (CW) provides detailed examples of the answers for each chart. In this lesson, we will examine the American Civil War.

We will explore the causes leading to the outbreak of war, examine key battles and. The Civil War is the central event in America's historical consciousness. While the Revolution of created the United States, the Civil War of determined what kind of nation it would be.

American Civil War - Wikipedia