Pre-Civil War


The Wilmot Proviso


David Wilmot provised the Wilmot Proviso which prohibited slavery from expanding to the new territories.

Rise of abolition and restriction

1846 - 1860

With the slavery issue on the rise, abolition and restriction movements are on the rise in the Northeast. The question is that will slavery should be restricted from the new territories, be allowed in the new territories or be outlawed completely in America. The issue grew over the years and people of the northeast realized that slavery should be abolished completely in the US.

Election of 1848


With another election on its way, three new candidates entered for the election. War hero Zachary Taylor of the Whig Party, Lewis Cass of the Democratic Party and Martin Van Buren of the Free Soil Party. Taylor wins the election in a landslide due to the fact Buren pulled away votes from the Democrats.

Compromise of 1850


A four-step compromise which admitted California as a free state, allowed the residents of New Mexico and Utah territories to decide the slavery issue themselves. It also ended slave trade in the District of Columbia. The law also included the Fugitive Slave Act, which slave owners could come to the north and take runaway slaves.

Bleeding Kansas


Violence between pro and anti slavery forces in the Kansas Territory.

Rise of two new parties.


During the summer of 1854, two new parties came to rise. The Know-Nothing Party and the Republican Party. The know-nothings were a group of people that were anti-catholic and anti-immigrants. They hated the Catholics and immigrants believing that there will be no peace in the country until the Catholics are exterminated. The Republican party was formed from a group of anti-slavery Whigs and Democrats. The Republican Party is the same party we see today.

Kansas-Nebraska Act


Law that passed that created Kansas and Nebraska Territories and leaving the question of slavery open to residents. It also repealed the Missouri Compromise.

The Lecompton Constitution


Pro-slavery draft written in 1857 by Kansas territorial delegates under questionable circumstances. It was decisively defeated by Congress.

The Dred Scott case


Supreme Court ruling, in a lawsuit brought by Dred Scott, a slave demanding his freedom based on his residence in a free state and a free territory with his master, that slaves could not be US citizens and that Congress had no jurisdiction over slavery in the territories.

Election of 1860


With slavery and states rights issue grows, a new presidential election starts. The election was between Abraham Lincoln of the Republicans, John C. Breckinridge of the Southern Democrats, John Bell of the Constitutional Union and Stephen A. Douglas of Northern Democrats. Lincoln won the election due to the split of the Democratic Party which cut the votes in favor of the Republicans.