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What is the relationship between territorial expansion and the rise of sectional tensions in the U.S. prior to the Civil War ?
The United States had become a nation of two distinct regions. [ The free states in New England, the Northeast, and the Midwest[3] had a rapidly-growing economy based on family farms, industry, mining, commerce and transportation, with a large and rapidly growing urban population. Their growth was fed by a high birth rate and large numbers of European immigrants, especially Irish, British and German. The South was dominated by a settled plantation system based on slavery. There was some rapid growth taking place in the Southwest, (e.g., Texas), based on high birth rates and high migration
from the Southeast, but it had a much lower immigration rate from Europe. The South also had fewer large cities, and little manufacturing except in border areas. Slave owners controlled politics and economics, though about 70% of Southern whites owned no slaves and usually were engaged in subsistence agriculture. Overall, the Northern population was growing much more quickly than the Southern population, which made it increasingly difficult for the South to continue to influence the national government. By the time of the 1860 election, the heavily agricultural southern states as a group had fewer Electoral College votes than the rapidly industrializing northern states. Lincoln was able to win the 1860 Presidential election without even being on the ballot in ten Southern states. Southerners felt a loss of federal concern for Southern pro-slavery political demands, and continued domination of the Federal government by "Slaveocracy" was on the wane. This political calculus provided a very real basis for Southerners' worry about the relative political decline of their region due to the North growing much faster in terms of population and industrial output. ]
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Expert answered|selymi|Points 8182|
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Asked 5/9/2012 9:10:25 AM
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