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Delaware Politicians of the Northern states pressed to end it both because it was considered immoral and because white labor could not compete with unpaid black labor The North demanded for its industrial growth a protective tariff federal subsidies for shipping and internal improvements and a sound banking and currency system The West looked to Congress for free homesteads and federal aid for its roads and waterways The South however regarded such measures as discriminatory favoring Northern commercial interests and it found intolerable the rise of antislavery agitation in the North In 1860 Abraham Lincoln was elected president as the candidate of the Republican Party which opposed the spread of slavery The state of South Carolina had threatened to secede if the Republicans won and in December 1860 it did so Other slavery states followed in quick succession and in February 1861 they formed a confederacy the Confederate States of America Delaware was a slaveholding border state with many Confederate sympathizers Lincoln did not carry the state in 1860 However Delaware had more economic ties with the North than with the South by 1860 fewer than 2000 of the almost 22000 blacks in the state were slaves and most Delawareans opposed the extension of slavery There was never any movement in Delaware to secede from the Union and it remained loyal during the American Civil War 1861-1865 that followed the secessions More than 13000 Delawareans nearly one-tenth of the states population served in the Union Army and several hundred fought for the Confederacy Fort Delaware on Pea Patch Island in the Delaware River was garrisoned by Union Army soldiers and served as a prison for Confederate prisoners of war In 1861 Lincoln proposed that Delawares slaves be freed and the owners compensated That proposal failed partly because of party politics on the part of the Delaware Democrats and in 1865 the 13th Amendment to the Constitution freed the slaves with no compensation The Democrats controlled
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