Migration west brought South and North into conflict over slavery. Earlier compromises between the sections had succeeded because slavery had been a relatively minor issue; major differences usually revolved around culture, economics, and the balance of power. However, by the 1840s, slavery and its expansion became a central, pivotal issue. While the "Young America" movement and nativism damaged the party system as it then existed, the slavery question rent the parties irreparably along sectional lines; North and South became polarized. The Compromise of 1850, the Kansas-Nebraska Act, "Bleeding Kansas," popular literature, and John Brown's raid all inflamed sentiments on both sides until finally six southern states chose to secede from the Union and form the Confederate States of America in 1861. The Civil War began in April of that year.
The Civil War by edward hagenlocher
Word Count: 130