Causes of the Civil War

Topics: Slavery in the United States, American Civil War, Origins of the American Civil War Pages: 2 (461 words) Published: December 17, 2012
Many historians today believe that the American Civil War could've been avoided. They believed that if better leaders were elected, the division between the North and South could have been prevented. The views on democracy from America could have resolved disputes as well. Others say the war could have been avoided, but a major conflict was bound to happen. Some of the events that led up to the Civil War include the Mexican-American War, the dispute over the 36o30' line, and the Fugitive Slave Act.

The Missouri Compromise affected the start of the Civil War for different reasons. The major reason was that it divided where slavery was legal or not at a line, known as the 36o30’ line, 36th parallel, or the Mason Dixon line. When Missouri entered as a slave state, Maine entered as a free state. The 36th parallel separated the North from the South, making the North all free states, and the South all slave states. The North and South basically became their own separate countries, but ruled by the same government. Many people wanted to break away from their slave state, and move to a free state, which caused the outbreak of the Civil War.

The Mexican-American War influenced the Civil War in many ways. At the end of the Mexican War, America was given western territories. The problem with the new territories was debating over which states would be free and which would be slave. To deal with this, Congress passed the Compromise of 1850 which basically made California free and allowed the people to pick in Utah and New Mexico. When people are allowed to vote on the way they are governed, it is known as popular sovereignty. Of course many states grew angry because some of them wished to be either a free state when they were already a slave state or vice versa, which caused more tension.

The Fugitive Slave Act also affected the cause of the Civil War. The Fugitive Slave Act states that all citizens must help return slaves to their owners. If citizens...
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