The American civil war was a war fought between 1861 and 1865 by the union and the Confederate States of America which is made up of states that had seceded from the Union. The union is composed of the northern states while the Confederate mostly comprised the southern state (Jones 678). Though it had a lot of negative impacts, the war had positive effects and as such it remains a significant part of the American history. Below the issues that led to the start of the civil war, the role played by Abraham Lincoln the then president of the United States and also why the civil war had a lot of impact on the history of the United States have been explained.
The North was an industrial centre industrializing at a very fast rate and, in that case, entrepreneurs were encouraged a lot. No one was in a particular fixed social class, and all you needed to do was work hard and improve your status of living. A lot of entrepreneurs preferred to move to the north where any social classes did not constrain them. Samuel Colt and Cornelius Vanderbilt are examples of people who died rich though they had a poor background initially just because they invested in the north. The success of the North also depended on cheap labor, so they were not all for the idea of abolition of slavery. However, a small group in the North wanted slavery to be abolished. The civil war started since those in the south believed that the North wanted to end slavery and that they wanted it ended in the south too.
The South grew cotton and tobacco in the plantations and sold their produce to the western part of Europe. Those in the south adopted the class structure in the United Kingdom. In the south the owners of the plantation were referred to as the king by those working on the plantations. Those working for the Kings accepted their status in the society as those at the bottom of the hierarchy which could be subjected to slavery. The Kings were involved in politics on behalf of the other people. For such a system to survive slavery had to be practiced so that the low wages could make the common people respect the structure and the king. The kings in the south feared that abolition of slavery could bring an end to the power they had over people.
In 1828, a tariff was passed by the federal government but according to the Southern states this tariff only benefited the northern states. The vice president of South Carolina John c Calhoun decided to nullify the law believing that the state had the right to do so since the federal government existed at to promote the interest of individual states and, in this case, the southern interests were not promoted (Kennedy, David, Lizabeth, and Mel Piehl 318). In 1832, another tariff bill was presented before Congress and it did not favor the states of the south to so the tariff was nullified by South Carolina and The South Carolina Ordinance of Nullification enacted it into law. The federal government reacted harshly to this by using military force to enact this tariff after a law was passed allowing the president to use military power to force states to follow the federal laws. Even though it worked in South Carolina, it left behind a bitter state.
After the federal governments conflict with South, Carolina states started wondering how much powers they had. They believed that slavery would be abolished by the federal government and with the force bill passed they would have to comply. After Kansas was admitted to the Union as a state that did not support slavery the states became so sure slavery would be abolished.
Most people in South Carolina and the southern states too felt that their interests were no longer catered for in the union. They believed that the union acted mostly in favour of the northern views and therefore on 20th December 1860 it seceded from the union (Velm 1850). Most states in the south followed the trend and receded too, and the tension was so high that a civil war could have started for a subtle reason now.
Abraham Lincoln, the republican presidential candidate, ran for office in the 1960 elections. With the support of the many Republicans in the northern states, he won the elections, and his inauguration was on March 4th 1861. In his inaugural speech, Lincoln told the southern states that, he had no intention of interfering with the institutions of slavery in the United States either directly or indirectly. Early the same year on February 1861 South Carolina, Mississippi, Florida, Alabama , Georgia and Louisiana after seceding from the Union following the election of Abraham Lincoln formed the Confederate and, later on, Texas joined. The president of the Confederate was Jefferson Davis from Mississippi (Kennedy, David, Lizabeth, and Mel Piehl 323). Later on, more states seceded from the Union and joined the Confederate that only lasted from 1861 to 1865. On April 12th, 1861 the Confederate attacked Fort Sumter, and it was then that the two groups started the civil war that the Confederates ended up losing.
Being the president and the commander in chief of the armed forces of the United States during the civil war, Abraham Lincolns decisions would significantly determine the fate of the union and his mission was to ensure that the civil war would eventually strengthen the union and even bring back the Confederate states to join the union and to achieve this he did undertake a lot of notable actions some of which are listed below.
Abraham Lincoln ensured that Maryland, Delaware, Missouri and Kentucky, which were slave states that opposed recession, were members of the union. In Maryland some officials opposed the rule of Lincoln and they started riots and destroyed property and transport means for railway lines to hinder the movement of the Union military members to the south. Lincoln decided to establish martial law and also arrested some officials from Maryland without trial. Missouri voted to remain part of the union but Claiborne f Jackson a supporter of the Confederate state and his group of a militia opposed Lincolns rule, and the federal state army attacked him and his group. The state remained part of the union. As for Kentucky, it remained neutral at all times until when the Confederate attacked it (Velm 1852). It announced that it was a member of the union and a group of Confederate supporters in Kentucky with their governor were attacked by the federal army and fled.
Abraham Lincoln enacted the Emancipation proclamation. He had issued a warning to the Confederate states to end their rebellion, or they would be emancipated, but none of the states conceded. It was then that Lincoln enacted the proclamation to all the states under rebellion as a war measure. The slaves in the south would flee from the south through federal troops, and once they were in the north they were free and their freedom was legally recognized. Among those freed slaves, those who met the qualifications would be recruited in the United States force, and they would receive a pay too. This was a move by Lincoln as the president exercising his powers as the commander in chief and so he did not involve Congress. Even despite the lack of consultation, there was no member of the Congress or anyone else who challenged this emancipation proclamation in the courts. So far the mission of this civil war was to ensure that the union remained intact but with the enactment of that emancipation proclamation the eradication of slavery became another mission of this civil war.
Though it happened many years ago the civil war has a significant impact on the history of the United States this is because of the many effects it had that affect todays society and the inventions made then that have been developed to benefit the world today. Some of the effects it had are discussed below.
The civil war resulted in the invention of sophisticated war machinery which have been developed with time and contributed significantly to making todays United States Army an adamant, feared and respected army in the world (Chambers 138). The duration between 1961 and 1965 when the war took place was a time when quick inventions were made since each group wanted to win this war. Balloon Corps, coffee mill guns and the telegraph were developed during the war. The Telegraph especially was crucial in communication since at the time it was fast and secure. The telegraphs led to inventions of telephones and more inventions to the internet we have today that allows us to communicate so quickly.
Technology in the United States has developed across all sectors of the economy due to the inventions that were made during the civil war by the Confederate states and many investors after the abolition of slavery. Since the South depended mainly on human labor in their production process and the agricultural sector, the abolition of slavery was a major blow towards them and since they needed an alternative way to produce, they started focusing on capital based production (Chambers 140). While the south made new inventions, the north also came up with different designs to keep up with the Confederate states. Today the high technology applied has been of help to the United States and many other countries in the world.
There was the abolishment of slavery and to date the United States is a home of people from different races. Abraham Lincoln hated slavery but when he was elected president he took his time before abolishing it in America (Chambers 141). This was because of the following three reasons; him being the head of the federal government he had no constitutional right to abolish it since the states that were members of the union had not agreed to it when signing the contract and it would be wrong to abolish it now. Second, Lincoln thought that the abolition of slavery should occur gradually since abolishing it would leave the inexperienced slaves with a lot of problems and the state as well. He wanted the government to get a place first to resettle the slaves most preferably in areas where there were other people with the same skin color so that they would be happy and more comfortable. Lastly, Lincoln also believed that slavery was not right at all, and, therefore, it would correct itself eventually.
Abraham Lincoln believed that soon enough out of its failures it would fail so it was better to let time decide. He turned down several emancipation orders believing that they were too soon, and so they would abolish slavery and also break up the union that was not what they wanted. When he finally issued the Emancipation proclamation, he said that he did it for two reasons. First was that it was fair for the Negroes living in America who were approximately six million (Selcer 226). Second he said that abolishing slavery on the confederate would make the slave move to the north and become free citizens and since the South depended on their labor especially helping the military forces it would be weakened giving the north an upper hand in this war. On 31st January 1865, the 13th amendment to the Constitution freed all the Negroes an act only the civil war helped accomplish.
The civil war also gave freedom and equal rights to everyone living in the United State .no one according to the amendments of the constitution after the civil war is to be discriminated based on race, color or even gender. The three main amendments in the reconstruction era were the 13th amendment, 14th amendment and the 15th amendment. The 13th amendment said that no slavery or involuntary servitude should take place except in a case where its a punishment for a crime committed (Selcer 237). The 14th amendment said that everyone born in the United States or naturalized is a citizen of the United States and the respective state. The 15th Amendment gave voting rights to everyone irrespective of their color, race or even gend...
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