The Founding Brothers Summary

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In chapter three of the Founding Brothers by Joseph J. Ellis, there was a large public debate about slavery. This debate challenged the very way of life in the United States. This debate eventually led to abolition of not only the slave trade, but of slavery all together. It was the arrogant behavior of James Madison and a united effort made by abolitionists that supported the big push against the proslavery constituents. Unfortunately, it came down to a four-year war that finally brought about the abolition of slavery all together. The debate was between the petitioners of slavery and the constitution. The petitioners tried to win over the judges with the use of fear. They tried to explain to the judges that at some point, the enslaved would stand up for themselves. Either the judges can be saviors or oppressors. Proslavery memebers of the constitution didn't just back down though. They reiterated to people that the bible, America's most sacred text, was proslavery. James Madison was the one who started the whole process. During a simple congress meeting, two Quaker delegates petitioned against the slave trade. James Madison thought that if the Quaker petition was heard and sent to a committee, it would quickly be turned down. "No notice would it be taken it out of doors" (Ellis …show more content…
The civil war, which lasted from 1861-1865, took a great toll on America. Its result was the north winning and the emancipation of slavery. "Lincoln "freed" the slaves only where he had no power — inside the Confederacy" (Wiener). The declaration of independence put the finalizing touches on the freedom of the enslaved peoples. Even though there was freedom in the end, it was a great struggle to get to that outcome. "Rutledge, although opposed to independence, was selected to sit on the important War and Ordinance Committee where he did his best to delay the vote for independence"