Secession and War

American History before 1877

Secession Crisis

  Election: November 6, 1860

          Lincoln wins without a single Southern state

                  Not even on the ballot in 11 Southern states

  1860 census: North +41%, South +27%

  South Carolina secedes, December 20, 1860

  Divided cabinet paralyzes Buchanan

          Condemns Northern troublemakers; secession illegal

  Crittenden Compromise

          Extend 36°30" Missouri Compromise line to Pacific

          Slavery protected where it is

          Lincoln opposes

Cotton states secede

  Union holds Fort Sumter in Charleston harbor

          Buchanan sends secret ship to reinforce

          Rumors: Buchanan sending invasion force

  Reinforcement of Ft. Sumter prevented, Jan. 11

  Jan. 9-Feb. 1: Mississippi, Florida, Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, Texas secede & seize federal property

  Feb. 7: Constitution of the Confederate States of America

          President: one 6-year term

          Constitutional protection for slavery

          No internal improvements; no tariffs

          Convention chooses Jefferson Davis as President

Lincoln’s Inauguration

  Long trip to Washington

          Reports of assassination plot; sneaks through Baltimore

  A plea for peace: the First Inaugural Address, March 4, 1861

     In your hands, my dissatisfied fellow-countrymen, and not in mine, is the momentous issue of civil war. The Government will not assail you. You can have no conflict without being yourselves the aggressors. You have no oath registered in heaven to destroy the Government, while I shall have the most solemn one to “preserve, protect, and defend it.”

     I am loath to close. We are not enemies, but friends. We must not be enemies. Though passion may have strained it must not break our bonds of affection. The mystic chords of memory, stretching from every battlefield and patriot grave to every living heart and hearthstone all over this broad land, will yet swell the chorus of the Union, when again touched, as surely they will be, by the better angels of our nature.

Firm, but not aggressive

  Delicate task: holding on to 8 other slave states

  Public non-military resupply ship to Fort Sumter

  April 4: Virginia votes against secession!

  Pressure on Confederate government

  April 12: Confederacy attacks Fort Sumter

  Lincoln calls for 75,000 volunteers for 3 months

          Perhaps a million volunteer

  Virginia, North Carolina, Tennessee, and Arkansas secede

  The Civil War begins