Why Should The Confederacy Have Succeeded To Gain Independence?

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unionblue

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To All,

I have often seen on this forum a desire by some of our members, a regret even, that the Confederacy should have succeeded in it's rebellion to become a separate nation.

My question is, Should the Confederacy have succeeded in becoming a new nation? What would it have offered the world in becoming such? What positive good would having such a nation have on the world at the time? What negatives would it carry?

Your input, please.

Sincerely,
Unionblue
 

BarryR

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I'm afraid it would have taken less than one year perhaps, the suceed States would suceed again. If they weren't a border state with the North, bigger problems...It would not or could not work...Texas of course would be the Republic of Texas !!!
 
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Greywolf

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To All,

I have often seen on this forum a desire by some of our members, a regret even, that the Confederacy should have succeeded in it's rebellion to become a separate nation.

My question is, Should the Confederacy have succeeded in becoming a new nation? What would it have offered the world in becoming such? What positive good would having such a nation have on the world at the time? What negatives would it carry?

Your input, please.

Sincerely,
Unionblue
This member has no regrets, I'm here because I love history and it's a fascinating period in American history. As well as my entire family history in America at least, is rooted in NC and Virginia. I cannot answer if it should have succeeded or not.
Unlike many on here who toe the company line regardless of any arguments that have at least some merit or validity, I personally entertain opposing views unless they are completely ridiculous. There are two sides to every story and experience has taught me of the truth in that.
I believe had the csa succeeded eventually they would have become a country similar to many others.....over time.
Obviously at first it would have similarities with some of the south American countries regarding the practice of slavery. Just as Brazil did, eventually it would have gone away in the csa. Now what remained after that as far as progress towards equality, etc. I dont know that anyone can say with 100% certainty. It is likely the csa and US would be allies but it is also likely that the two separately would not be as strong as if the two had remained one whole.
My feeling overall is what we have as a whole nation is better than what we would have had apart. Even though I have problems with the ultra nationalist country that we have now.
 
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major bill

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Why would an independent CSA and the Union be allies? They may have become allies or just as well have fought several wars. The may we have backed opposite sides in any regional or world war.

My view is that if the CSA had became a successful nation in 1861, the main issues it had with the North would have at best been eased for a very short time. I have difficulties seeing how the CSA and the US could have solved their differences on a number of subjects.
 

huskerblitz

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I'm not sure why the US and an independent CSA would NOT be allies. People of similar history and heritage, same language, same religions, same capitalistic goals...I fail to see how the US and CSA would not have a shared experience as the US and Canada does today. Sure, land west of both nations (1865 era) could potentially have caused issues, but I don't see anything else that would be a major obstacle. Maybe use of the Mississippi River? Even then I think negotiations would have solved that. It would have been in the interests of both countries economically to get along well.
 

wbull1

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Given the problems the CSA central government had trying to get cooperation from the individual states, while the states had a common enemy and a war to fight, I believe it would have quickly splintered into different governments. Having the extension and protection of slavery as the central reason for its existence, (or one central reason; we can argue about that elsewhere) that institution would have continued in one form or another for a very long time.
 
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Rusk County Avengers

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Interesting.

While I've always more or less sided with the Confederacy I've felt the CSA winning Independence might have been a bad thing, mainly because of the role in world history the USA as a whole has played, and how different and bad historical happenings like WW1 and WW2 being brought to our shore by a USA and CSA who would in all likelihood not like or get along with each other.

But as for positive good in an Independent CSA? I think there is some good. For one on such matters when a right to self-determination wins I can't call it a bad thing hundred percent. The best good thing would have the ability for us nowadays to see if the Confederate form of Government would have succeeded and even worked long term! Which on its own would have been great for studying.

As for the another possibility on good, maybe the slavery issue would have solved itself through economics, (I believe I espoused my views in another thread like this one and you @unionblue read it and found it interesting so I won't re-hash it), and the South being freed of things like the abolitionist movement would have been free to solve it with no one to tell them how. Such sentiment I've seen in more than a few Confederate memoirs and diaries. Would that have translated to equality? Probably not, at least not right away. I can't recall exactly where in "Three Months in the Southern States" I read it, and can't seem to find it offhand, but I recall reading where someone told Fremantle that if the North had left things alone slavery would have already died, can't recall it and I will find it, but that right there along with me finding so many other similar wartime references by lowly Confederates over the years should be a clue that there was a chance slavery could die by Southern hands. But my philosophy is that would have been the correct way for slavery to end naturally rather than the way it did, imagine the possibilities of that through Confederate victory, no Reconstruction era violence, no burned plantations and destroyed livelihoods to enrage someone and his friends who lost everything to hate the rest of their lives in bitterness, taking it out on former slaves, and no suffrage of any kind forced down anyone's throat, which has always been a recipe for bitterness and hard feelings to flourish overall in America.

It would have been a difficult road, but I feel it was possible. Economics, the rest of the civilized world shunning it, the possibility of cheap labor being more efficient, competition with free labor in a competing country like the US, along with cotton being exported to Europe more cheaply from Egypt and India, would have in all likelihood driven the Confederacy to emancipation and it done in a way where it didn't cause a great catechism in society and divide it. Of course slavery was enshrined in the Confederate Constitution, but as I've discussed elsewhere in another "What if" thread I feel the CSA would have split into a Civil War of its own, perhaps before the end of the 1870's, but I think that would have opened up the Confederate Constitution to some major amendments to make sure that didn't happen again, and whos to say slavery wouldn't have ended up on the chopping block or a possibility for it to end up there sometime in the future. To me the march of time would have brought slavery's death before 1900, perhaps before the end of the 1880's. Again that doesn't always translate to equality but when such things end peacefully, things like equality will always follow within a generation or two. Such a way for it to end would have been good as I feel the whole concept of racial violence would have been avoided.

As for anything else good? I'm at a loss. I expect the CSA would have stuck together even after a true blue civil war, and I see no possibilities of amicable USA and CSA relations in fact instances like a "Confederate Civil War" before the end of the 1800's would not be conductive to good relations as no one can tell me that the USA wouldn't pass up such an opportunity and get involved, and who could blame them. The effects of a successful Confederate war effort would galvanize many a Northerner to look down on the CSA and vice versa for a very long time, it sure did in reality with a Confederate defeat, and even exists to this day to some extent. Why would that have changed?

But that's me.
 

major bill

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I'm not sure why the US and an independent CSA would NOT be allies. People of similar history and heritage, same language, same religions, same capitalistic goals...I fail to see how the US and CSA would not have a shared experience as the US and Canada does today. Sure, land west of both nations (1865 era) could potentially have caused issues, but I don't see anything else that would be a major obstacle. Maybe use of the Mississippi River? Even then I think negotiations would have solved that. It would have been in the interests of both countries economically to get along well.
Expansion of slavery was a major issue. Without a navy the easiest and least costly way to expand slavery would be in the Western territories and a few Union States. Send armed supporters to Illinois and take over the state by force of arms, then the new government secede. Many people believe the President can not legally send the US Army to a state to help put down an attempted secession. Other than armed resistance, what option would the US have but to recognize the secession of Illinois?
 

huskerblitz

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Expansion of slavery was a major issue. Without a navy the easiest and least costly way to expand slavery would be in the Western territories and a few Union States. Send armed supporters to Illinois and take over the state by force of arms, then the new government secede. Many people believe the President can not legally send the US Army to a state to help put down an attempted secession. Other than armed resistance, what option would the US have but to recognize the secession of Illinois?
What makes you think the CSA would invade established states like Illinois? I don't see that as even hypothetically possible. Dispute over territories? Maybe, but then again it would also depend on what the terms of the treaty between the US and CSA would have entailed.
 
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leftyhunter

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To All,

I have often seen on this forum a desire by some of our members, a regret even, that the Confederacy should have succeeded in it's rebellion to become a separate nation.

My question is, Should the Confederacy have succeeded in becoming a new nation? What would it have offered the world in becoming such? What positive good would having such a nation have on the world at the time? What negatives would it carry?

Your input, please.

Sincerely,
Unionblue
The history of South Africa up until the end of Apartheid is the closet history of a Nation that was closest to the Confederacy in terms of ideology. Not sure that's a positive.
Leftyhunter
 

leftyhunter

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To All,

I have often seen on this forum a desire by some of our members, a regret even, that the Confederacy should have succeeded in it's rebellion to become a separate nation.

My question is, Should the Confederacy have succeeded in becoming a new nation? What would it have offered the world in becoming such? What positive good would having such a nation have on the world at the time? What negatives would it carry?

Your input, please.

Sincerely,
Unionblue
South Africa was able to broaden their economy from agricultural to mineral extraction to an advanced defense manufacturing sector. South Africa was producing Ford motor vehicles by the latter part of the 1920s. The South should be able to do the same.
Leftyhunter
 

S-O-U-T-H

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It seems as if an unseen hand guided the setting of the boundaries of the Virginia and Plymouth Companies which were separated by the 40 deg parallel (varied 38-41 degrees at times). If the CSA had gained her independence two nations would be separated "almost" (some states crossed over the line) on this line (somehow they knew back in the 1600s). I think these two regions should have never been in the same union together in the first place because they had different issues (tariffs, slavery, etc) to deal with that had different time tables and tactics to deal with their unique situations. However, if they had of separated into two nations in the 1860's that would have been a relief for all and these two nations would be strong allies along with Canada today.
 
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major bill

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What makes you think the CSA would invade established states like Illinois? I don't see that as even hypothetically possible. Dispute over territories? Maybe, but then again it would also depend on what the terms of the treaty between the US and CSA would have entailed.
There are pre Ciivl War examples of filibustering to expand slavery. There were Southern supporters in southern Illinois that would help make filibustering in Illinois easier.
 

Rusk County Avengers

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The history of South Africa up until the end of Apartheid is the closet history of a Nation that was closest to the Confederacy in terms of ideology. Not sure that's a positive.
Leftyhunter
With respect, I don't think South Africa is a good comparison. In any way, shape, or form.

South Africa, and it Apartheid era is very wildly different from the American South. The two are separated by many different factors. Climate, culture, to a big extent language, surroundings, history, demographics, economics, form of government, and more than a few other differences.

Different lands shape different peoples, as do different cultures, governments, and especially economics.

Different conditions, merit different solutions, different solutions, merits different outcomes.

There is absolutely no similarity between the mid 19th Century American South and its people with mid to late 20th Century South Africa and its peoples during Apartheid. The ideology between the two has no similarities when you look at individual people, even some of the fire-brand Slavery lovers in the Confederate Government there is no similarity.

When looked at in the most basic sense it looks so, but when one looks into it in even the smallest amount of detail it becomes obvious there is no similarity at all. So not a good comparison, in fact I think the closest thing to a clue of what might of been is to look at the United States in the same era as an independent Confederate States would have been born into. Another good indicator of what may have been may be the direction economically the South was going before the War.

To be honest, and again with respect, the comparison is actually kind of offensive.
 
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leftyhunter

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With respect, I don't think South Africa is a good comparison. In any way, shape, or form.

South Africa, and it Apartheid era is very wildly different from the American South. The two are separated by many different factors. Climate, culture, to a big extent language, surroundings, history, demographics, economics, form of government, and more than a few other differences.

Different lands shape different peoples, as do different cultures, governments, and especially economics.

Different conditions, merit different solutions, different solutions, merits different outcomes.

There is absolutely no similarity between the mid 19th Century American South and its people with mid to late 20th Century South Africa and its peoples during Apartheid. The ideology between the two has no similarities when you look at individual people, even some of the fire-brand Slavery lovers in the Confederate Government there is no similarity.

When looked at in the most basic sense it looks so, but when one looks into it in even the smallest amount of detail it becomes obvious there is no similarity at all. So not a good comparison, in fact I think the closest thing to a clue of what might of been is to look at the United States in the same era as an independent Confederate States would have been born into. Another good indicator of what may have been may be the direction economically the South was going before the War.

To be honest, and again with respect, the comparison is actually kind of offensive.
1.Dominated by white Northern European Protestants.
2. Strict de jure Apartheid.
3. Strong military culture.
4.An economy dependent of cheap labor
Not understanding why South Africa is not as close to an analogy to the Confederacy as we can get.
Leftyhunter
 

Rusk County Avengers

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1.Dominated by white Northern European Protestants.
2. Strict de jure Apartheid.
3. Strong military culture.
4.An economy dependent of cheap labor
Not understanding why South Africa is not as close to an analogy to the Confederacy as we can get.
Leftyhunter
Several misconceptions here. Here are the true Southern motivations and views in comparison to your suggestion.

1. Dominated by a wealthy ruling class, (rich slave owners).
2. Weak military culture. (back then all Americans distrusted strong militaries, which is why outside of officers most of the military was foreign, and contrary to popular belief militias were mostly undermanned and or forgotten by their respective State Governments outside of small groups more comparable to drill teams)
3. An economy dominated by slave labor for exports mostly, and dependent on imports from abroad.
4. And finally very limited government, in some minds above all else.

Personally those four reasons I mentioned is why I fully believe the Confederacy would have ended up in a civil war. The war for independence shattered the power of the ruling class in reality, and I see no reason why it wouldn't have in a "what if" the blockade killed exprts of cotton and Europe discovered other cheaper sources in Egypt and India, and it never recovered. That would have no doubt killed the fledgling CSA's economy, and a civil war to be rid of the slave owning aristocracy and their narrow view would have followed, changing 1. and 3.'s dynamic. White supremacism only appears pre-war in the writings of slave owning fanatics as a motive, with individuals outside of that, its just a fact of life, in essence as long as it didn't effect their livelihood, which it did during Reconstruction and should have been handled differently, the vast majority, could care less of white supremacy.
 
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uaskme

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Republicans called Coolies Slaves. They were in labor contracts like hirelings in the North and X Slaves. On some accounts the Republicans were right. All were less than Free. It was well into the next Century that racially and economically many of these people got Freedom. Whether in the North or South. Native Americans, many of which have never gotten Freedom or a just hearing of their History! Jim Crow happened North as well as South. So much for the Yankee Deniers?

I don’t want to go back in History, and I’m not a Neo Con anything. However I think what actually happened is Important, and I don’t care who gets upset about disclosing what actually happened and Why.

As to Why should Confederates of gotten Independence. What a silly Question. It’s not relevant.
 

Tin cup

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Several misconceptions here. Here are the true Southern motivations and views in comparison to your suggestion.

1. Dominated by a wealthy ruling class, (rich slave owners).
2. Weak military culture. (back then all Americans distrusted strong militaries, which is why outside of officers most of the military was foreign, and contrary to popular belief militias were mostly undermanned and or forgotten by their respective State Governments outside of small groups more comparable to drill teams)
3. An economy dominated by slave labor for exports mostly, and dependent on imports from abroad.
4. And finally very limited government, in some minds above all else.

Personally those four reasons I mentioned is why I fully believe the Confederacy would have ended up in a civil war. The war for independence shattered the power of the ruling class in reality, and I see no reason why it wouldn't have in a "what if" the blockade killed exprts of cotton and Europe discovered other cheaper sources in Egypt and India, and it never recovered. That would have no doubt killed the fledgling CSA's economy, and a civil war to be rid of the slave owning aristocracy and their narrow view would have followed, changing 1. and 3.'s dynamic. White supremacism only appears pre-war in the writings of slave owning fanatics as a motive, with individuals outside of that, its just a fact of life, in essence as long as it didn't effect their livelihood, which it did during Reconstruction and should have been handled differently, the vast majority, could care less of white supremacy.
Your last statement is wrong, the actions of the Southerners before, during, and LONG after the war were mostly about white supremacy! They didn't want the blacks equal to them in any way.

Kevin Dally
 
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