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Wilmot's Proviso and the Kansas-Nebraska Act - Assignment Example

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Wilmot’s Proviso (1846) and the Kansas-Nebraska Act (1854) are believed to have contributed heavily to the Civil War. This paper contains a comparative analysis of these two causes and their…
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Wilmots Proviso and the Kansas-Nebraska Act
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Running Head: Wilmot’s Proviso and the Kansas-Nebraska Act Wilmot’s Proviso and the Kansas-Nebraska Act as causative factors for the Civil War Customer Name
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Abstract
This paper explores the causative factors of the Civil War that occurred in 1861-1865. Wilmot’s Proviso (1846) and the Kansas-Nebraska Act (1854) are believed to have contributed heavily to the Civil War. This paper contains a comparative analysis of these two causes and their impacts on the people of the newly ceded territories. The aftermath of both Wilmot’s Proviso bill and Kansas-Nebraska Act has shown that both contributed heavily to the Civil War.
Wilmot’s Proviso and the Kansas-Nebraska Act as causative factors for the Civil War
The Civil War that erupted in USA in 1861-1865 recorded horrendous loss of lives and innumerable contributing factors. Two of these factors were the Wilmot’s Proviso of 1846 and Kansas-Nebraska Act of 1854. Both the Wilmot’s Proviso amendment to the bill and the Kansas-Nebraska Act addressed the issue of slavery in the newly ceded territories to America. Wilmot’s Proviso proved to be anti-slavery while the Kansas Nebraska Act was established as pro-slavery in nature.
Wilmot’s Proviso condemned slavery and claimed that “neither slavery nor involuntary servitude shall ever exist” (ushistory.org). This amendment was heartily accepted by the people of northern anti-slavery territories whereas the southern pro-slavery activists strongly opposed it. This resulted in clashes between individuals united by the country flag but divided by geographic demarcation. Wilmot’s proviso was approved by the House of Representatives number of times, but was never passed in Senate and hence never enjoyed the status of a law. Though history does not record loss of lives on this account, it nevertheless was the start of a bitter enmity among the people of USA and a breeding point for the Civil War.
On the other hand, Kansas-Nebraska Act proposed that people should be free to decide whether slavery should be practiced in their territories or not. This Act was particularly famous amongst the southern pro-slavery masses and infuriated the northern anti-slavery population. After this Act was passed, people heavily migrated to Kansas to influence the forthcoming elections. This resulted in scuffles all over Kansas causing bloodshed.
This brought the pro-slavery and anti-slavery activists in combat on many notions, rejecting the results of the elections on bases of rigging. Federal troops were called in to stop the violence and establish peace while the pro-slavery legislatures were dispersed. Even so, the next few elections were discarded on same charges. These political power games continued till the Civil War was declared in the region.
Though both Wilmot’s Proviso and Kansas Nebraska Act can be attributed for the Civil War of 1861, combats and loss of lives occurred after the Kansas Nebraska Act. For this reason, Kansas was then referred to as the “bleeding Kansas” (The History Place, 1996). Issues regarding slavery bred the enmity between northern and southern America to the extent of nation’s separation.
References
ushistory.org. n.d. Wilmot’s Proviso. Retrieved from http://www.ushistory.org/us/30a.asp
The History Place. (1996). The Kansas Nebraska Act. Retrieved from http://www.historyplace.com/lincoln/kansas.htm Read More
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