Was the American Civil War Inevitable?

2559 Words May 19th, 2005 11 Pages
Was the American civil war inevitable?

The civil war was inevitable, only however, after one key event; the cotton gin made the civil war inevitable. The invention of the cotton gin in 1793 was the key element which enabled the south to have sufficient vested interest in their traditional lifestyle in order to feel the need to defend it at all costs even from their Northern countrymen. The core argument of this essay centres around the evidence which clearly defines their being in existence two ‘nations' with in America constantly in opposition to each other. Therefore the growth of sectionalism and the events which led up to the conflict made war an inevitable outcome of the hostilities which had arisen from the to ideologically
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Failure to compromise over the issue of protectionism was a primary factor in the growth of sectionalism which necessitated war.
The underlying conflicts between North and South were finally fully exposed as a result of failure of compromise in the political arena. The failure of American leadership in 1846-1861was epitomised by key events such as; Douglas's Kansas Nebraska act of 1854 and the dread Scott case pronouncement of 1857. Both of these events overturned the previous Missouri compromise and thus once again brought the two opposing nations head to head. The Wilmot proviso bill which proposed to eliminate slavery in the territories was a clear signal to the South that the North was plotting against her way of life. Thus the southern mind set became increasingly locked in a persecution complex which they justified by evidence of a ‘Northern conspiracy' to destroy their economic institution, the Wilmot proviso was one such piece of evidence even though it was not passed. The election of Lincoln was the final straw with which the south believed the northern conspirators would gain the upper hand and bring about the destruction of the Southern institutions. "Most irresponsible, wanton, and disastrous of all was the decision of those southern leaders who in 1858-1860 turned to the provocative demand for Congressional protection of slavery in all the territories of the Republic." Allan Nevins. Nevins in the previous quote demonstrates the reckless extent