Wilmot Proviso

Topics: American Civil War, Slavery in the United States, Slavery Pages: 3 (1220 words) Published: December 9, 2010
Wilmot Proviso

It could be said that the American Civil War was brought on by Americans need to expand its territories and the one sided Mexican War. The whole debate or controversy over this expansion was David Wilmot’s (and his squad of backers: Hamlin, Brinkerhoff, and King) trying to implement the Wilmot Proviso into the funding for the Mexican territories we acquired. The proviso actually fueled the debate over slavery into the newly acquired territories by trying to make the territories slave free acquisitions. The Wilmot Proviso was a simply desire to make newly acquired territories free from slavery. As pointed out in the opening of this discussion however, banning slavery in these territories was a mute point in the fore front. So what impact did the Wilmot Proviso have on the debate over slavery in America? It actually seemed to create a debate were one did not actually exist. The debate or desire to ban slavery was created by Democratic House members (anti-slavery members) who were afraid that the Whig party would spin the War with Mexico into their desire to expand slavery. [1] So the very party that supported slavery issues had the desire to ban slavery in the new territories anyway. Although these few anti-slavery Democrats did not represent the whole, the desire was there and they wanted the territories to be free. Given, this move was to keep the Whig party from making the accusations that the Democrats were moving to expand the real estate for slavery. McPherson, Battle Cry of Freedom: The Civil War Era, even points out that Congressman from the northern states tried to enact a proviso banning from the territories acquired by a war in which two-thirds of the volunteer soldiers had come from slave states. General Taylor was a slaveholder but opposed the expansion of slavery when he became president. [2] McPherson examines the irony of this fact as well as many other ironies that were to do with the Mexican War and the Civil...
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