The Secession Movement Of The United States Essay

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On January 11, 1861, the state of Alabama seceded from the Union. The secession movement was characterized by a continuous development from the time of the Wilmot Proviso until the final separation. As northern attacks on the institution of slavery began to mount, beginning with the controversy over the admission of Missouri as a slave state in 1819-20, proslavery extremists in Alabama and other Southern states increasingly referred to secession as their ultimate defense to protect their region’s society and economy.(“Secession”, 2011) The increasing success of the new Republican Party in the North, with its adamant opposition to the expansion of slavery into the western territories, seemed proof to more and more Alabamians of the northern intention to reduce southerners to second-class citizenship in the Union. Essentially all Alabama voters, across the entire political spectrum, believed that the territories were the common property of all Americans, and therefore that all Americans should be able to go there and take their personal property, including slaves, with them. The state’s wealthy planters considered slavery essential to their economy. The Republican nominee, Abraham Lincoln, whose party did not exist in Alabama or most of the South and who consequently was not a candidate there, carried every free state, thus finally providing southerners with unarguable proof that the North was determined to deny their constitutional right to settle in the territories with

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