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Northern arguments

Discussion in 'Civil War History - Secession and Politics' started by jgoodguy, Oct 19, 2016.

  1. Kenneth Almquist

    Kenneth Almquist Corporal

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    I haven't read any of McPherson's books so I don't know exactly where he is coming from, but there is no contradiction between secession and “maintaining its dominance of the Federal Government, by means of military aggression.” To the contrary, states in the Union are not permitted to engage in military aggression, so secession would seem like a logical first step in a program of dominating the Federal Government via military aggression.

    In his first inaugural address, Lincoln told the Confederates that, “The government will not assail you. You can have no conflict, without being yourselves the aggressors.” The Confederates could probably have maintained de facto independence indefinitely, sort of like Transnistria. But if the Confederates wanted anything more than to be left alone--if they wanted the territories, the return of fugitive slaves, diplomatic recognition, and perhaps the Washington, D.C. for the Confederate capital--they would have to defeat the United States military and demand these things in exchange for peace.
     
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  3. OpnCoronet

    OpnCoronet Major

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    I can agree with this. But, in this particular case, I think it would be more precise to believe Lincoln was unsure as to the real intent of the series of declarations of secession from the deep south.

    In any case though, the letter itself, I believe, shows clearly enough, that secession itself would be unacceptable, if it was not a political ploy to wring further concessions from the gov't.

    In his Inaugural Address, Lincoln discussed what concessions he was willing to make, to allay the fears of those already claiming(and those threatening)secession.(it was not much)
     
  4. thomas aagaard

    thomas aagaard 2nd Lieutenant

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    I agree.
    Also I think it rather logical that he might have been unsure in early January... but not so by the time he became a president.

    One or two states out of the union... that can still be solved. But when more leave and make a new confederation... Much harder.
     
  5. jgoodguy

    jgoodguy Brigadier General Moderator Forum Host

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    One thing for sure, it had not happened before.
     
  6. jgoodguy

    jgoodguy Brigadier General Moderator Forum Host

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    The path forward is not clear by any means. Davis simplified the situation by attacking.
     
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  7. OpnCoronet

    OpnCoronet Major

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    Very true. What Lincoln the private citizen might think the best(or ideal) policy to be followed in solving the problem of secession(and expansion of slavery) might not be feasible as President, within the constraints of what would be allowable, under the Constitution and its laws.
     
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  8. Arwen

    Arwen Private

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    Because of this recommendation I recently purchased The Slave Power. I've just began reading it and am enjoying it so far. Just wanted to say thank you.
     
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  9. rpkennedy

    rpkennedy Major

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    You are welcome.

    Ryan
     
  10. CW Buff

    CW Buff Sergeant

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    Referring back to Ryan's original post:

    Does Richard address anything along the lines of Northern sentiment towards slavery (the sentiment that changed c1830-1860)? For instance, didn't Northern pro-slavery Democratic presidents not just collaborate, but participate in the use of political patronage in support of slavery (in the end, against members of their own party that tolerated, but would not support slavery, at least not above all other considerations)? In addressing the Slave Power, it would seem necessary to address what changed, i.e. how did it eventually fail. I kind of reject the theory that Northern slavery proponents were taken for a ride against their will. They willingly and actively participated, and it seems a fundamental change in underlying sentiment in the North was the factor that gradually whittled away at that participation.

    Just a thought.

    Thx, Paul
     
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  11. mobile_96

    mobile_96 First Sergeant

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    Maybe due to pressure by large numbers of recent immigrants, in the previous 5 or so years?
     
  12. CW Buff

    CW Buff Sergeant

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    I wasn't asking about the particulars of the change in sentiment, just noting there was one, and that it was the underlying force that ended tolerance toward the expansion of slavery.

    But your idea is absolutely one of the forces that brought on that change in sentiment. As I think free soilism had a lot to do with that sentiment, it would also be interesting to know how much westward migration was by recent immigrants as opposed to "natives" (in quotes to denote the less native/white kind). Of course, in either case, the sentiment was much more widespread than just immigrants, and very complicated and multi-faceted.
     
  13. rpkennedy

    rpkennedy Major

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    I'll be honest when I say that I really don't recall. I would have to look it up and see if he addresses that issue.

    Ryan
     
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  14. CW Buff

    CW Buff Sergeant

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    Thanks anyway. Maybe @Arwen has gotten into it far enough to tell. Can't really tell from what's available for preview on Amazon.

    Thx
     
  15. rpkennedy

    rpkennedy Major

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    If I have time this evening, I'll browse through the book.

    Ryan
     
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  16. rpkennedy

    rpkennedy Major

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    I had a chance to scan the book briefly and Richard does touch on the ideological shift in the North. He notes that before the 1840s, New England and New York Democrats were reliable doughfaces but that partnership eroded due to the rise of the anti-slavery societies in those states over time. By the late 1840s, these former allies had become, generally, adversaries due to the anti-slavery convictions of their constituents.

    This book deals mostly with the politics and political leaders so he doesn't discuss it extensively except in one chapter when he's looking at the collapse of the doughfaces in certain parts of the North.

    Ryan
     
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  17. uaskme

    uaskme Sergeant

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    Thx[/QUOTE]
    The "Appeal to the Independent Democrats" contained several suggestive features. It furnished a point of departure for a new political movement, and called to leadership in it a party that stood on the Free Soil Platform of 1848. It utilized the strategy of attacking the repeal of the Missouri Compromise as a breach of compact. When a major party began to form on the issue that there be no further extension of Slavery, they could ask no better vantage point for their radical departure than that they could not compromise, for, they could argue, true to its nature, slavery could not keep faith. In declaring that the Missouri Compromise was constitutional and that the legislation of 1850 did not affect its status, the "Appeal" laid the corner stone for a long drawn technical argument that followed. From The Early History of the Republican Party by Crandall pp19

    No Compromise on the extension of Slavery was an Original Plank in the Republican Partys Founding. Lincoln didnt have that option Politically and it was never offered during the crisis. It would of been Political Suicide for him to do so.
     
    Last edited: Mar 8, 2017
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  18. OpnCoronet

    OpnCoronet Major

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    The "Appeal to the Independent Democrats" contained several suggestive features. It furnished a point of departure for a new political movement, and called to leadership in it a party that stood on the Free Soil Platform of 1848. It utilized the strategy of attacking the repeal of the Missouri Compromise as a breach of compact. When a major party began to form on the issue that there be no further extension of Slavery, they could ask no better vantage point for their radical departure than that they could not compromise, for, they could argue, true to its nature, slavery could not keep faith. In declaring that the Missouri Compromise was constitutional and that the legislation of 1850 did not affect its status, the "Appeal" laid the corner stone for a long drawn technical argument that followed. From The Early History of the Republican Party by Crandall pp19
    No Compromise on the extension of Slavery was an Original Plank in the Republican Partys Founding. Lincoln didnt have that option Politically and it was never offered during the crisis. It would of been Political Suicide for him to do so.[/QUOTE]





    I think, you have explained why the southern leadership of the Democratic Party, required Douglas to specifically overthrow the Compromise of 1820, in return for their support of his Kansas-Nebraska Bill.
     
  19. CSA Today

    CSA Today Colonel

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    McPherson is a pro- Northern Polemicist.
     
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  20. ivanj05

    ivanj05 First Sergeant

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    Empty invective, offered because you cannot refute the point made with facts and evidence.
     
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  21. CW Buff

    CW Buff Sergeant

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    This came to my attention so late, upon seeing someone else respond to it recently.

    Either I'm missing something (always a possibility, pobody's nerfect :D), or you are. It seems to me the passage you're addressing was written by the authors/contributors of the "States' Rights" article @jgoodguy linked. And they were summarizing Sinha and Richards (two separate works), not McPherson (who only got the one-sentence blurb at the beginning of the "Northern arguments" section). I don't know what Sinha and Richards actually say (the authors/contributors are not quoting either of them, but summarizing these two works together), but I'd suggest that leaving one federal government, that you've lost control of, and starting another, your own, is a means of controlling the federal government (the one you subscribe to).
     

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