Slavery has been around since before the Roman Empire. It was a lucrative business at the time, and for the most part, an important status elevator in society. When The United States won independence, this was also the case. Some of our greatest leaders were all slave owners. This list included people such as George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and Benjamin Franklin. Therefore, since it was such a common practice in our country, as well as other countries throughout the world, it is fair to state that slavery was the driving force behind the events, which took place prior to the Civil War Era and also was the mantra during The Civil War when Abraham Lincoln announced The Emancipation Proclamation.
The Pre-Civil War era was a period of time in which The United States experienced much change as a nation. This transformation that the country was going through at this time, was the catalyst for the start of the Civil War. During this time period, slavery was part of the American way of life. However, this period also brought forward a group of reformers who wanted to change many aspects of the American society and way of life. These reformers believed in reducing drinking, extending rights to women, creating public schools, educating the deaf, and blind, and most importantly, abolishing slavery. Many of these reformers came from the north, since the north represented, a more urban landscape, and also more of the population. These voices and actions were gaining traction during this time and many people were being converted and started to support these ideas. American society was slowly changing.
Concurrently, the United States also was expanding into the west and southwest. Texas was annexed as well as Oregon County partitioned from Great Britain. Additionally, California, parts of Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, New Mexico, and Nevada were won during the Mexican War. The southern part of Arizona was also purchased from Mexico during this time. These transactions led to complicated decisions with strong emotional feelings and opinions. The most important factor to be decided was which territory would be free and which would have slaves.
When Abraham Lincoln became President, he opposed to expansion of slavery into the new western territories. This action by Lincoln, led to seven states in the lower south to secede form the union. These states established The Confederate States of America. Matters quickly escalated when South Carolina fired at the US installation at Charleston Harbor, which led to Lincoln declaring an insurrection had occurred in the south
After Lincoln declared an insurrection in the south the relationship between the northern states and the southern states drastically changed. The north was loyal to the Federal Government and Lincoln, where as the southern states, were seceding from the union at an alarming rate. . As the war went on between the north and south, Lincoln later announced The Emancipation Proclamation, which was designed to abolish slavery, but also, assist in arming the north with more fighters (black slaves) against the south. The war, which was originally started to keep the country as a whole, became recognized as a war to free the slaves. The Southern States under the direction of Robert E Lee fought off Union attempts to take over some of their capital cities. But not all of their attempts were victorious. Robert E Lee tried to get European powers to assist the south against the north, however these European countries wanted no involvement, and mostly stayed out of it. The American Civil War was the largest military conflict in the Western world between the Napoleonic Wars and World War I. It cost 600,000 American lives, more than in World War I and World War II combined.
The Reconstruction Era took place after the Civil War, and went on for twelve years.
The United States was shifting in ideology and