US History 1st Semester Final Sierra Beyer Essay

Submitted By sierrab1998
Words: 982
Pages: 4

What Caused the Civil War?

The controversies that sparked the Civil War had been in view since the United States
was born. The three most extrusive causes of the Civil war were, the concern of slavery, because
Southerners though it was a necessary evil and the north did not think it was necessary.
Southerners were also claiming to be unreasonably treated through unfair taxation, states’ rights,
and once again, the issue of slavery, and the final spark was John Brown’s raid, this was the
moment when the Southerners realized they were not to trust anyone, not even their own skin
color.
The first matter of Contention was the concern of slavery. The South was very dependant
on slavery, as much as 88% of the southern population was slaves while only 12% of the North
was slaves (Doc.2) Along with feeling superior to them, another considerable reason the south
wanted slave labor was because of the excessive amount of cotton they were producing. The
North, although was much more industrialized so they did not want or have the need for slave
labor. Some Southerners not only thought slavery was a necessary evil but that it was for the
greater good of the slaves. Some claimed that slaves were the “...freest people…” claiming that
they had good work hours, weather and the women and children scarcely did hard work (Doc.5)
While this may have been true for certain slave owners in the south, more often they did hard
work and the children were beaten if they complained or were lazy. This helped spark the Civil
War because the North did not believe that the continuation of slavery was necessary for the
progression of the United States while the south thought it for the greater good, so this was a
fairly high point of contention.
Another cause of the civil war was the Southerners thought they were being treated
“below the belt”, first through unfair taxation, the economy of the North was very different from
the south(Doc. 2) while extremely large cotton plantations were being born in the south, factories
were being built in the North. Owing to this fact, Northern politicians were able to pass
extremely excessive tariffs on imported goods from foreign places such as Europe, so the South
was forced to depend on the North even more(Doc.3), The southerners felt cheated and this
caused tensions to rise much more. The south believed that because of this, individual states had
the right to annul any law the Government would try to pass, and should have the right to secede
from the United States. The northerners thought that giving these individual states these rights
would weaken the foundation of this country, more so than it already was, so this was also a
brewing issue. Slavery, once again was a huge point of tension between the North and the South
to begin with, the fathers of the constitution did not even mention the word slavery in fear that
the more southern states would not join the new government. Pride and fear of both sides was
also a big turning point, for example the fight between Preston Brooks, confederate and Charles
Sumner showed the differences in the ways they chose to attack people. Sumners used a pen as
depicted in the illustration of the altercation and Brooks, a confederate chose to bash Sumners

head in with his cane after Sumners insulted another senator(Doc.8). They were what seemed
like many smaller issues that ended up erupting into the Civil War.
The third and very final thing that sparked the Civil war which happened two years after
this was John Brown’s raid. While there were other rebellions before the civil war this was the
first substantial one because it was led not by a…