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This was a great article but there is some small historical inaccuracy as to the pre civil war period.Prior to the Kansas-Nebraska Act of 1854, the Missouri Compromise of 1820 was the law of the land, it decreed that all territories north of the Mason Dixon line would be entered as free states and those territories South of the line would become slave states. (The Mason Dixon line was roughly the Kansas Oklahoma border line.) For the 34 years prior to the Kansas Nebraska Act, Kansas territory was destined to be entered as a free state.
The Democratic Party at that time was controlled by those who were sympathetic with the Southern Slave states. For decades they had enjoyed disproportional influence in National politics and knew that the entrance of additional free states would end their political dominance. They pushed for the Kansas-Nebraska Act of 1854 as an attempt to win the Kansas and Nebraska territories to the pro slavery rosters and keep their political dominance. The result of course was bleeding Kansas and border wars.Lincoln was elected in 1860 but as is done today a period of time elapsed before he was sworn in on March 4th 1861, About 5 weeks after Kansas became a state and about six weeks before the shelling of Fort Sumter. The combination of the entrance of the free state of Kansas and the election of an abolitionist president meant the end of the Democratic Party and Southern States’ dominance. The Southern States were willing to go to war rather then give up their power.
January 21, 2012 at 10:43 a.m.
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