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Word Count: 351
There are various factors that led to sectionalism in the United States in the early 19th Century These factors include the Missouri Compromise Kansas-Nebraska Act and the Mexican War The issue of popular sovereignty lay behind a crisis in 1845 The Missouri Compromise had prohibited slavery in the lands that made up Kansas and Nebraska Yet the Kansas-Nebraska Act of 1854 overturned that compromise by proposing that the question of slavery in those territories be decided by popular sovereignty Violence followed when pro- and anti slavery people rushed into Kansas to vote on the issue In the fighting over 200 died Reaction to the Kansas-Nebraska Act led to changes in the political party system One major party Whigs split into Northern and Southern wings and soon died out The Democrats were seriously weakened in the North A new party the Republicans was founded to oppose the spread of slavery It was a sectional rather than national party and proclaimed a platform of Free soil Free Labor Free Men Differences between the North and the South over expansionism and abolition finally threatened the existence of the nation The Mexican War of 1846 and the lands gained by it The Mexican Cession started a series of crises The debate that followed on how slavery should be treated in those lands centered on constitutional issue In the Three-Fifths Compromise the provision that Congress could not end the import of slaves before 1808 and in the fugitive slave clause the Constitution had recognized and protected slavery Such compromises had been seen as necessary to gain Southern agreement to the document They were only removed when the Civil War led to the end of slavery itself The Missouri Compromise of 1820 banned slavery in that part of the Louisiana Purchase north of 3630 latitude This created very big differences between the North and South It upset the South since much less territory was open to slavery then closed to slavery
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