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- Take a look at factors that contributed to the tension over slavery in the 1850s.
- Describe the causes and effects of Bloody Kansas.
- Discuss the Supreme Court decision in Dred Scott v. Sanford.
- Learn about John Brown's raid at Harpers Ferry.
- Understand the significance of the Lincoln-Douglas debates of 1858.
- Discuss Lincoln's election and the secession of the South.
- Learn about the Battle of Fort Sumter and the start of the Civil War.
1. Uncle Tom's Cabin and Tension Over Slavery in the 1850s
In the 1850s, Harriet Beecher Stowe's novel, 'Uncle Tom's Cabin,' detailed the injustices of slavery. Learn how this book, along with the Missouri Compromise and the Fugitive Slave Act, helped spur the United States into Civil War and the end of slavery on U.S. soil.
2. Bloody Kansas: Causes, Effects and Summary of Events
The term 'Bleeding Kansas' refers to the violence surrounding the issue of slavery in the Kansas territory. Learn about the tension between slave states and free states, the Kansas-Nebraska Act, who Charles Sumner was, and the cause and effects of Bloody Kansas.
3. Dred Scott v. Sanford and President Buchanan
In the court case Dred Scott v. Sanford, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that blacks (free or slaves) were not citizens and had no constitutional rights. Learn about the Dred Scott decision, President James Buchanan, and how these events led a divided America to the brink of the Civil War.
4. John Brown's Raid at Harpers Ferry: Fighting Slavery
John Brown was an abolitionist who led an attack on Harpers Ferry, Virginia. Explore how the division between the North and the South and the election of Abraham Lincoln caused rumors of war, and discover John Brown's role in the fight against slavery.
5. The Lincoln-Douglas Debates of 1858: Summary & Significance
In 1858, Abraham Lincoln and Stephen A. Douglas competed for a U.S. Senate seat and met for a series of seven debates. Learn who Lincoln and Douglas were, and explore the issues they discussed in their debates. Understand why these debates were significant and review Lincoln's House Divided Speech.
6. Lincoln's Election, Southern Secession & the New Confederacy
Four political parties contended for the presidency during the 1860 Presidential election. Abraham Lincoln won the election with 40% of the popular vote and became the 16th President of America. Learn about the 1860 Presidential election and the events that led to the formation of the Confederate States of America.
7. The Battle of Fort Sumter & the Start of the Civil War
The Civil War was triggered when South Carolina's militia attacked Fort Sumter. Learn about the crisis at Fort Sumter, explore the Battle of Fort Sumter, including Fort Sumter's fall, and understand how this became the start of the Civil War.
8. Fugitive Slave Act of 1850: Definition & Summary
The Fugitive Slave Act of 1850 took away rights and allowed arrest warrants for runaway enslaved people. Learn how abolitionists and other northerners resisted this act through personal liberty laws, Uncle Tom's Cabin, and the Underground Railroad.
9. Walker Tariff of 1846: Definition & Summary
President James Polk enacted the Walker Tariff of 1846 to help stimulate the economy and trade in the Southern states before the Civil War. Explore the Walker Tariff's historical context, its provisions, and its impact and consequences.
10. Know-Nothing Party: Definition & Overview
The Know-Nothing political party gained popularity in the Northeastern United States in the mid 1800s. In this lesson you will learn about the rise and fall of this party that opposed immigration.
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