hist 1301 chapter 14 notes

hist 1301 chapter 14 notes - CHAPTER 14 THE POLITICS OF...

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CHAPTER 14: THE POLITICS OF SECTIONALISM 1846—1861 I. SLAVERY IN THE TERRITORIES A. Introduction 1. From the late 1840s until 1861, northern and southern leaders attempted to fashion a solution to the problem of slavery in the territories. Four proposals included: a. Outright exclusion b. Extension of the Missouri Compromise line to the Pacific c. Popular sovereignty, allowing the residents of a territory to decide the issue d. Protection of the property of slaveholders (meaning their right to own slaves) even if few lives in the territory B. The Wilmot Proviso 1. In August 1846, David Wilmot, a Pennsylvania Democrat, offered an amendment to an appropriations bill, called the Wilmot Proviso , for the Mexican War. 2. Northern lawmakers, a majority in the House of Representatives (because the northern states had a larger population than the southern states), passed more than 50 versions of the proviso between 1846 and 1850. In the Senate, however, where each state had equal representation, the proviso was consistently rejected and never became law. C. The Election of 1848 1. Both Democrats and Whigs wanted to avoid identification with either side of the Wilmot Proviso controversy, and they selected their 1848 presidential candidates accordingly. a. The Democrats nominated Michigan senator Lewis Cass. In 1847, he suggested that territorial residents, not Congress, should decide slavery’s fate. This solution, popular sovereignty , had a do-it-yourself charm: Keep the politicians out of it, and let the people decide. b. The Whigs were silent on the slavery issue. Reverting to their winning 1840 formula of nominating a war hero, they selected General Zachary Taylor of Mexican War fame. c. Taylor’s background disturbed many antislavery northern Whigs. These Conscience Whigs, along with remnants of the old Liberty Party and a scattering of northern Democrats, bolted their parties and formed the Free-Soil Party. The name reflected the party’s vow to keep the territories free. They nominated former president Martin Van Buren. 2. Taylor was elected, giving the nation its first president from the Lower South. D. The Gold Rush 1. John Sutter, a Swiss immigrant, contracted with James Marshall in late 1847 to build a sawmill on his property at the junction of the American and Sacramento rivers in central California. Brannan would become the wealthiest man in California, provisioning miners and staking claims. 2. Through 1849 and 1850, more than 100,000 hopefuls flooded into California naming settlements of Hangtown, Gouge Eye, and Whiskeytown. 3. Young Levi Strauss experimented with trousers made of canvas that miners particularly favored; two brothers, Henry Welles and William Fargo, offered banking, transportation, and mail services for the newcomers.
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4. The rush also attracted Chinese, Chileans, Mexicans, Irish, Germans, and Turks. E.
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This note was uploaded on 01/05/2009 for the course HIST 1301 taught by Professor Brown during the Spring '08 term at Texas A&M.

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hist 1301 chapter 14 notes - CHAPTER 14 THE POLITICS OF...

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