Compromise of 1850 and Mexican War

Topics: Compromise of 1850, American Civil War, Slavery in the United States Pages: 3 (1003 words) Published: March 16, 2011
Political compromise in the later years of the Ante-Bellum Period, specifically from 1820-1861, are crucial when speaking in terms of causes of the Civil War. Though the government and politics of such tried fiercly to reduce sectionalist tensions, in the end they were unsuccessful. Out of all the reasons- political and not- the four things within those years that strike most as failures of the government are the Missouri Compromise of 1820, the Wilmot Proviso of 1848, the Kansas-Nebraska Act of 1854, and the Presidential Election of 1860.

The Missouri Compromise is transparently the catalyst for all other issues that had risen. In 1820, Washington decided on “a bundle of three compromises” led by Henry Clay. The primary of the three was that no longer could slave states be addmitted into the Union above the 36°30' latitude line. The line is Missouri's southern border. The other two compromises are basically the terms of the 36°30' rule: No slave state above, and only slave states below it. Neither North nor South was completely satisfied; nevertheless, they both gained some. It was a weak beginning to abolition, and it did ease slight tension. On the other hand, the extremists on either side were definitely not happy because one side had not truly lost. The institution of slavery was necessary and practically sacred to Southerners. The land in the Southwest was also viewed by many plantation owners as unusable because the soil wasn't good for cotton. It was a gain ultimately for the North, for it limited the spread of slavery to any newly acquired territories(from the Mexican War and Oregon Territories). Some political compromise was made, but it was brittle in that it would fall to pieces in the next 34 years.

Along with a bill that would hopefully end the Mexican War, the Wilmot Proviso added something to the table. Under James K. Polk and at the near end of the Mexican War, David Wilmot put his word in that footing a bill to bring peace is...
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