Conservative Political Forum

General Category => War Forum => Topic started by: taxed on February 10, 2012, 12:09:07 PM

Title: Who started the Civil War?
Post by: taxed on February 10, 2012, 12:09:07 PM
Make the case as to who you think started the Civil War.
Title: Re: Who started the Civil War?
Post by: walkstall on February 10, 2012, 12:11:52 PM
Quote from: taxed on February 10, 2012, 12:09:07 PM
Make the case as to who you think started the Civil War.

This should be in the Conspiracy Forum.  lol
Title: Re: Who started the Civil War?
Post by: Holly101 on February 10, 2012, 12:41:33 PM
It depends on who you ask.
The battle at Fort Sumter, South Carolina was the beginning of the Civil war.
The soldiers in the Confederate Union fired the first shots by trying to defend the Fort from the federal government. It was the Union States vs. the Confederate states from that day forth.
Wonder if it will ever happen again?
Title: Re: Who started the Civil War?
Post by: Harry on February 10, 2012, 12:52:37 PM
I think it was me, but only because I have a guilty conscious, and once took a negro's lunch money.
Title: Re: Who started the Civil War?
Post by: walkstall on February 10, 2012, 01:09:34 PM
Quote from: Harry on February 10, 2012, 12:52:37 PM
I think it was me, but only because I have a guilty conscious, and once took a negro's lunch money.

Well I am old, but not that old so I know I did not start it. 
Title: Re: Who started the Civil War?
Post by: hokiewoodchuck on February 10, 2012, 06:54:49 PM
Actually it started when Lincoln sent troops into Maryland to retrieve the representatives....I think. This was prior to the shot at Fort Sumter.

Anyways............damn yankees started it.
Title: Re: Who started the Civil War?
Post by: Harry on February 11, 2012, 12:18:54 AM
I started the damn thing!
Title: Re: Who started the Civil War?
Post by: Solar on February 11, 2012, 12:30:07 AM
I started it, well...
My schizophrenic half did, anyway we confess because he is always doing things when I'm asleep.
Just the other day he went back in time and put real bullets in John Wilkes Booth dueling pistols as a joke.
He's one sick bastard...
I am not, don't you call m that!
Yes you are, you are a...hey, stop that, it hurts, that's my nose as well you know
You always win the argument.
No I don't, yes you do, no I...OWWWW.
Title: Re: Who started the Civil War?
Post by: Shooterman on February 11, 2012, 01:30:38 AM
The Confederacy may have fired the first shot at Sumter, but the Yankees started the war. Slavery, in spite of the antagonism of the abolitionists, did not become a major issue until two years later and the Emancipation Proclamation was designed to freeze any support that may have been forthcoming from the Europeans who were appalled at the bloodshed. Slavery, a terrible institution and practice, of course was a cause or reason, but not the main cause or reason. Tariffs, of which the Southern agrarians paid an unequal share of, both on exported crops and imported goods, was a huge part of the problem. Most of the money, even dating back to Hamilton and his cohorts, was used for improvements in the North, to the detriment of the South. It was also understood, by the South, they still had dominion over their own governments, i.e. states rights were still very much a part of the fabric of constitutional law, which, BTW, protected slavery. It was also understood when a Compact no longer served the needs of a party, that party had an obligation and duty to withdraw from said Compact.

My second Great grandfather, out of Homer, Tx, ( now Huntington, Tx ) in Angelina County, fought with Hoods Brigade. His father before him fought with Andy Jackson at New Orleans, and his grandfather before him fought at King's Mountain during the Revolution. They were all Americans, fighting for their homes and kin. I defy anyone to prove neither was a patriot to his home and his family.   
Title: Re: Who started the Civil War?
Post by: hokiewoodchuck on February 11, 2012, 02:18:17 AM
Quote from: Shooterman on February 11, 2012, 01:30:38 AM
I defy anyone to prove neither was a patriot to his home and his family.   

A little defensive I see..........and who said they weren't? :) :grin:
Title: Re: Who started the Civil War?
Post by: Solar on February 11, 2012, 02:48:49 AM
Both sides wanted war, or there wouldn't have been one.
Title: Re: Who started the Civil War?
Post by: Shooterman on February 11, 2012, 03:14:34 AM
Quote from: hokiewoodchuck on February 11, 2012, 02:18:17 AM
A little defensive I see..........and who said they weren't? :) :grin:

Yeppers, I am defensive. I have had far too many call the Confederacy and those that fought for it traitors.
Title: Re: Who started the Civil War?
Post by: Solar on February 11, 2012, 03:30:33 AM
Quote from: Shooterman on February 11, 2012, 03:14:34 AM
Yeppers, I am defensive. I have had far too many call the Confederacy and those that fought for it traitors.
Really? Here? I don't think so, I don't think either side could be called traitors, both had the best intentions for their way of life.
Aside from the slavery issue, I think many would agree the south were in the right though.
Title: Re: Who started the Civil War?
Post by: Shooterman on February 11, 2012, 04:15:03 AM
Quote from: Solar on February 11, 2012, 03:30:33 AM
Really? Here? I don't think so, I don't think either side could be called traitors, both had the best intentions for their way of life.
Aside from the slavery issue, I think many would agree the south were in the right though.
Said nothing about here, Solar, but this is not the only forum I visit.
Title: Re: Who started the Civil War?
Post by: hokiewoodchuck on February 11, 2012, 07:31:42 AM
Quote from: Shooterman on February 11, 2012, 03:14:34 AM
Yeppers, I am defensive. I have had far too many call the Confederacy and those that fought for it traitors.

You'll have to over-look the ignorance of some people.
Title: Re: Who started the Civil War?
Post by: BILLY Defiant on February 11, 2012, 10:17:34 AM
Politicans and hots head on both sides started it.

My guess would be the North, urged by Abolionists had the greater onus.


Billy
Title: Re: Who started the Civil War?
Post by: elmerfudd on February 11, 2012, 11:16:22 AM
Quote from: Shooterman on February 11, 2012, 01:30:38 AM
The Confederacy may have fired the first shot at Sumter, but the Yankees started the war. Slavery, in spite of the antagonism of the abolitionists, did not become a major issue until two years later and the Emancipation Proclamation was designed to freeze any support that may have been forthcoming from the Europeans who were appalled at the bloodshed. Slavery, a terrible institution and practice, of course was a cause or reason, but not the main cause or reason. Tariffs, of which the Southern agrarians paid an unequal share of, both on exported crops and imported goods, was a huge part of the problem. Most of the money, even dating back to Hamilton and his cohorts, was used for improvements in the North, to the detriment of the South. It was also understood, by the South, they still had dominion over their own governments, i.e. states rights were still very much a part of the fabric of constitutional law, which, BTW, protected slavery. It was also understood when a Compact no longer served the needs of a party, that party had an obligation and duty to withdraw from said Compact.

My second Great grandfather, out of Homer, Tx, ( now Huntington, Tx ) in Angelina County, fought with Hoods Brigade. His father before him fought with Andy Jackson at New Orleans, and his grandfather before him fought at King's Mountain during the Revolution. They were all Americans, fighting for their homes and kin. I defy anyone to prove neither was a patriot to his home and his family.   

Slavery wss the sine qua non of secession, and secession was the main cause of the civil war.  Both sides were equally responsible, but absent the existence of slavery, there would have been no secession.  Tariffs simply were not a big enough issue to cause secession.  And one reason for the problem with tariffs was, ironically, the existence of slavery.  Absent slavery, there quite likely would have been no big issue with respect to tariffs. 
Title: Re: Who started the Civil War?
Post by: hokiewoodchuck on February 11, 2012, 07:00:34 PM
Quote from: elmerfudd on February 11, 2012, 11:16:22 AM
Slavery wss the sine qua non of secession, and secession was the main cause of the civil war.  Both sides were equally responsible, but absent the existence of slavery, there would have been no secession.  Tariffs simply were not a big enough issue to cause secession.  And one reason for the problem with tariffs was, ironically, the existence of slavery.  Absent slavery, there quite likely would have been no big issue with respect to tariffs.

You are sooo full of shit.

It started due to States Rights and self determination without a centralized government. The northern aggressors wanted to control everything in your life. Slavery was an issue that got rolled into the Agressors' first major victory.

IF slavery was the major point of the War between the States then it should have been brought to the forefront of every discussion and speech. It was not.
Title: Re: Who started the Civil War?
Post by: elmerfudd on February 11, 2012, 11:22:12 PM
Quote from: hokiewoodchuck on February 11, 2012, 07:00:34 PM
You are sooo full of shit.

It started due to States Rights and self determination without a centralized government. The northern aggressors wanted to control everything in your life. Slavery was an issue that got rolled into the Agressors' first major victory.

IF slavery was the major point of the War between the States then it should have been brought to the forefront of every discussion and speech. It was not.

Well, genius, read the secession speeches made at the time.  For example, the one made in Mississipi says, regarding secession, that slavery was the ONLY cause of secession.  Preseving slavery was not the major focus of the war. Restoring the union was.  But what divided the union?  Read the speeches, genius, and then get back to me. 
Title: Re: Who started the Civil War?
Post by: hokiewoodchuck on February 12, 2012, 12:41:34 AM
You mean the discussion where one of Lincoln's Sec suggested to Lincoln himself NOT to speak of it(slavery) until they have had a victory.......certainly.
Therefore it was a reason of the war but not THE reason for it. And to only speak of it if it looks like when can win....and only then.
Title: Re: Who started the Civil War?
Post by: Shooterman on February 12, 2012, 01:00:38 AM
Quote from: elmerfudd on February 11, 2012, 11:22:12 PM
Well, genius, read the secession speeches made at the time.  For example, the one made in Mississipi says, regarding secession, that slavery was the ONLY cause of secession.  Preseving slavery was not the major focus of the war. Restoring the union was.  But what divided the union?  Read the speeches, genius, and then get back to me. 

Presuming the secession statements of the various states were more than just political expediency, ( as was the DOI ) so what? The Constitution speaks not to secession, but did protect slavery in the union. A state, once it has determined the union does not serve it's needs any longer, can and should secede. Reasons given matters little. Secession is either legal or not. If legal, then the reason can be anything.
Title: Re: Who started the Civil War?
Post by: elmerfudd on February 12, 2012, 03:33:35 AM
Quote from: Shooterman on February 12, 2012, 01:00:38 AM
Presuming the secession statements of the various states were more than just political expediency, ( as was the DOI ) so what? The Constitution speaks not to secession, but did protect slavery in the union. A state, once it has determined the union does not serve it's needs any longer, can and should secede. Reasons given matters little. Secession is either legal or not. If legal, then the reason can be anything.

But the topic is who started the war, and that always becomes a question of what caused it.  Secession caused it.  The perceived threat to slavery caused secession.  Ergo, slavery is the root cause of the war.  Well, I guess the root cause is the failure of both sides to deal with it in a more rational matter. But it still boils down to slavery. 

I agree that under the Constitution secession probably was constitutional.  But that really din't matter once the war began.  As Roger Taney said (I read this somewhere, I don't have a link), "The issue is now being settled on the field of battle."  But I believe he believed it was constitutional.  So do I.  I am glad it didn't work, though. 
Title: Re: Who started the Civil War?
Post by: elmerfudd on February 12, 2012, 03:47:55 AM
http://www.sonofthesouth.net/leefoundation/Mississippi_causes.htm (http://www.sonofthesouth.net/leefoundation/Mississippi_causes.htm)

Speaks for itself, as do all other secession speeches.  I find it odd that anyone would assert tariffs were a primary cause when slavery is mentioned so prominently.  Why is that?

And notice the reference to slavery being the greatest material interest in the world.  That equals money.  As Solar says, it's always about the money. 
Title: Re: Who started the Civil War?
Post by: mdgiles on February 12, 2012, 01:02:44 PM
Quote from: Holly on February 10, 2012, 12:41:33 PM
It depends on who you ask.
The battle at Fort Sumter, South Carolina was the beginning of the Civil war.
The soldiers in the Confederate Union fired the first shots by trying to defend the Fort from the federal government. It was the Union States vs. the Confederate states from that day forth.
Wonder if it will ever happen again?
The Island the Fort Sumter sat on had been ceded by the State of South Carolina to the Federal government. Because there were no suitable materials locally, the very stones that the fort was made of, had been quarried and brought from New England. South Carolina, and  The Confederacy had no right to that fort - or any federal property. Just because you claim the right to walk out of a house, doesn't mean you can help yourself to all the neat stuff on the way out.
Title: Re: Who started the Civil War?
Post by: Eyesabide on May 15, 2012, 09:37:22 PM
"For want of a nail,"

The Webster - Haynes debates of 1830 might be considered a good place to look for "who" started the civil war, and it might be a good starting place to throw in a third contender for the states rights Vs. slavery as the reasoning for the war. Federal power was not the reason the debates started on, but is what the debate evolved into.
Title: Re: Who started the Civil War?
Post by: Eyesabide on May 15, 2012, 09:54:38 PM
Daniel Webster provided the nail that started the civil war in his "Second reply to Haynes" during the Webster Haynes debates of 1830.

This is interesting in that It is making me curious to dig a little deeper into the western land rights /states rights/slavery issues that most focus on during the what caused the civil war. The federal power issue looms over all of it, and might give a clue to what is going on in the current government.

That whole "History repeating itself thing."
Title: Re: Who started the Civil War?
Post by: tbone0106 on May 16, 2012, 01:49:46 AM
Quote from: elmerfudd on February 12, 2012, 03:33:35 AM
But the topic is who started the war, and that always becomes a question of what caused it.  Secession caused it.  The perceived threat to slavery caused secession.  Ergo, slavery is the root cause of the war.  Well, I guess the root cause is the failure of both sides to deal with it in a more rational matter. But it still boils down to slavery. 

I agree that under the Constitution secession probably was constitutional.  But that really din't matter once the war began.  As Roger Taney said (I read this somewhere, I don't have a link), "The issue is now being settled on the field of battle."  But I believe he believed it was constitutional.  So do I.  I am glad it didn't work, though.

I never thought I'd find myself agreeing with you, Elmer, but in this case... you're close. Slavery was the central issue all right, but only because it was the sine qua non of the unmechanized agriculture-based Southern economy. Even back then, it was all about money. The Missouri Compromise told the southern states that the line had been drawn and the abolitionists were gaining the upper hand. That meant economic doom for the South. THAT was worth seceding and going to war.
Title: Re: Who started the Civil War?
Post by: mdgiles on June 24, 2012, 01:14:11 PM
Quote from: hokiewoodchuck on February 11, 2012, 07:00:34 PM
You are sooo full of shit.

It started due to States Rights and self determination without a centralized government. The northern aggressors wanted to control everything in your life. Slavery was an issue that got rolled into the Agressors' first major victory.

IF slavery was the major point of the War between the States then it should have been brought to the forefront of every discussion and speech. It was not.
Oh Bull, I've said it before ,but I'll say it once more; the South dominated the Union up to Lincoln's election. Most of the Presidents had been Southerners and the entire Union bent over backwards to please the South. the 3/5 Compromise meant that a Southern White's vote was worth more than a Northern white's. And I am sick and tired of hearing the region that pushed the Fugitive Slave Act, talk about their defense of States Rights. The Fugitive Slave Act made the Slave Law of Mississippi superior to the Free Law of Massachusetts - IN MASSACHUSETTS So you can put that States Rights Defense where the sun don't shine. Whenever States Rights or Tariffs appears in the argument, that's a sign that the person making the argument doesn't want to face up to reality. as it had been since the founding of the country, it was all about slavery.
Title: Re: Who started the Civil War?
Post by: elmerfudd on June 25, 2012, 07:08:25 AM
Quote from: mdgiles on June 24, 2012, 01:14:11 PM
Oh Bull, I've said it before ,but I'll say it once more; the South dominated the Union up to Lincoln's election. Most of the Presidents had been Southerners and the entire Union bent over backwards to please the South. the 3/5 Compromise meant that a Southern White's vote was worth more than a Northern white's. And I am sick and tired of hearing the region that pushed the Fugitive Slave Act, talk about their defense of States Rights. The Fugitive Slave Act made the Slave Law of Mississippi superior to the Free Law of Massachusetts - IN MASSACHUSETTS So you can put that States Rights Defense where the sun don't shine. Whenever States Rights or Tariffs appears in the argument, that's a sign that the person making the argument doesn't want to face up to reality. as it had been since the founding of the country, it was all about slavery.

what he said.
Title: Re: Who started the Civil War?
Post by: tbone0106 on June 25, 2012, 03:24:50 PM
Quote from: elmerfudd on June 25, 2012, 07:08:25 AM
what he said.
Heh, heh. Hoo boy. "What he said." Such eloquence.

What Giles should have said and didn't probably because he was a bit upset was "It was all about slavery because the South could not survive economically without it." Giles has said the equivalent of those words several times elsewhere on this board.

The historic argument over the cause of the war is sprinkled with this phrase: "it was all about slavery." And every time, the writer is partly correct, as you are. For some, and in a rather obscure way, the issue was purely the existence of slavery and slaves; the lowest of low whites and other minorities were protected, you might say, by the existence of the black slave underclass below all. But those who were so protected had no say in how things got done. By definition, the only people who could benefit by the mere existence of a class of people who were ALWAYS at the bottom of the food chain are those who are just one step up from there, and they didn't call the shots.

The folks who called the shots in the South were slave-owners to a man, and heavily invested in the economic value of slave labor. They were estate owners, plantation owners, lumber barons, sugar cane and cotton millionaires, all of whom depended on the availability of slave labor, not for their souls or their dignity, but for their fortunes. States' rights was a rallying cry, but a weak one.

Secession wasn't quite like divorce. It meant crazy nation-building stuff like printing your own money (and finding something to back it up). It meant creating your own navy to protect your thousands of miles of shoreline. It meant finding folks overseas to replace the manufacturing capacity of the North that had just been seceded from. it meant finding a place to sell all that cotton and sugar cane and lumber that slaves produced -- other than the North. Secession was serious business, and was based, in the end, on business.

Yeah, it was all about slavery, because the agriculturally-centered southern economy was based on the existence of slavery.
Title: Re: Who started the Civil War?
Post by: COVER D on June 25, 2012, 11:47:39 PM
Actually, Baltimore started the Civil War after the Washington Redskins
whacked them 38-0.  Seriously, DC did whack Bmore and here's how.

This is a little known fact because all the history books say the war started
at Ft Sumter.

Lincoln was getting worried about the South building an Army at his door step
so he ordered troops down from Philadelphia. When the train reached Baltimore's
Union Station they disembarked and had to walk about 6 blocks west to
another station called Camden Yards where Oriole Park and Ravens Stadium
are now. Back then it was a train station that went straight to DC. The rail road
tracks are still there and people use the light rail to go to the games.

Anyway, they had to march and met an angry mob that threw a lot of stuff at
them like beer bottles, much like they do today throwing them at Refs at
football games. They threw rocks and even some bullets.

The troops turned and fired on the mob killing 12 people on Pratt St. These were
the first of over 300,000 Americans to die during the war.

Lincoln was so appalled that he sent an Army to put the crowd down. General
Butler the Buthcer camped out on a high hill over looking the harbor a few
blocks down from Ft McHenry and pointed big guns facing the city.

He said you guys act up again and I'll level the city. The guns are still there on
federal hill named after federal day when our constitution was signed and folks
nearby marched up to the hill to celebrate it.

After Butler did that he went to Annapolis and stopped the legislators from
voting to leave the country. It leaders were arrested and spent the war at
Ft McHenry which was a prison during the war.

Lincoln imposed martial law on Baltimore and they never acted up again although
Harriet Tubman started the underground rail road nearby on the eastern shore
that went to Bmore with the help of many female citizens.

Some of my family were in on those riots as my family lived in that part of town and my grand father's uncles fought for Lee's Army at Antietem.

But that's how the civil war got started. Maryland was always a southern state
and over 100,000 southern sympathizers including John Wilkes Booth who
killed Lincoln. His family owned a home 10 mins from here that had slaves.

Just thought you'd like to know.

Title: Re: Who started the Civil War?
Post by: elmerfudd on June 26, 2012, 03:56:43 AM
Quote from: tbone0106 on June 25, 2012, 03:24:50 PM
Heh, heh. Hoo boy. "What he said." Such eloquence.

What Giles should have said and didn't probably because he was a bit upset was "It was all about slavery because the South could not survive economically without it." Giles has said the equivalent of those words several times elsewhere on this board.

The historic argument over the cause of the war is sprinkled with this phrase: "it was all about slavery." And every time, the writer is partly correct, as you are. For some, and in a rather obscure way, the issue was purely the existence of slavery and slaves; the lowest of low whites and other minorities were protected, you might say, by the existence of the black slave underclass below all. But those who were so protected had no say in how things got done. By definition, the only people who could benefit by the mere existence of a class of people who were ALWAYS at the bottom of the food chain are those who are just one step up from there, and they didn't call the shots.

The folks who called the shots in the South were slave-owners to a man, and heavily invested in the economic value of slave labor. They were estate owners, plantation owners, lumber barons, sugar cane and cotton millionaires, all of whom depended on the availability of slave labor, not for their souls or their dignity, but for their fortunes. States' rights was a rallying cry, but a weak one.

Secession wasn't quite like divorce. It meant crazy nation-building stuff like printing your own money (and finding something to back it up). It meant creating your own navy to protect your thousands of miles of shoreline. It meant finding folks overseas to replace the manufacturing capacity of the North that had just been seceded from. it meant finding a place to sell all that cotton and sugar cane and lumber that slaves produced -- other than the North. Secession was serious business, and was based, in the end, on business.

Yeah, it was all about slavery, because the agriculturally-centered southern economy was based on the existence of slavery.

I agree to a point.  It was definitely about the material wealth that slaves represented, but it was also about "equality."  More than a few of those fire eating slavers could not fathom a south where blacks would be equal to whites, and they feared it at least as much, if not more, than they feared losing their wealth.  All you gotta do is read the secession speeches for proof.
Title: Re: Who started the Civil War?
Post by: Shooterman on June 26, 2012, 05:31:36 AM
Quote from: elmerfudd on June 26, 2012, 03:56:43 AM
I agree to a point.  It was definitely about the material wealth that slaves represented, but it was also about "equality."  More than a few of those fire eating slavers could not fathom a south where blacks would be equal to whites, and they feared it at least as much, if not more, than they feared losing their wealth.  All you gotta do is read the secession speeches for proof.

The Yankees believed the same, Elmer. Racism was not confined to the South. In fact, the North was probably even more racist. Lincoln certainly had no use for the Blacks, whether free or slave. Hell, some of the larger owners of slaves were free Blacks. Were they racist as well?
Title: Re: Who started the Civil War?
Post by: elmerfudd on June 26, 2012, 06:48:29 AM
Quote from: Shooterman on June 26, 2012, 05:31:36 AM
The Yankees believed the same, Elmer. Racism was not confined to the South. In fact, the North was probably even more racist. Lincoln certainly had no use for the Blacks, whether free or slave. Hell, some of the larger owners of slaves were free Blacks. Were they racist as well?
I dunno.  Probably not.  They probably considered the average slave beneath them, but obviously not for reasons of skin color or ethnicity.

Racism certainly existed then, as it does now, above the Mason Dixon line.  I agree Lincoln was a racist.  But that does not alter the fact that the southern slave owning aristocracy feared the wholesale freedom of slaves not just for economic reasons but for quality of life reasons.  They said so in their secession speeches.

And there is no doubt that the secession movement, already headed to critical mass, heated up mightily once Lincoln was elected.  While he was no supporter of equal rights, he certainly was perceived as a threat to the continued existence of legal slavery.  And that's what caused the fever to secede to increase so dramatically.  Not tariffs.  To assert otherwise is to ignore too much documented history. 

I read somewhere that Lincoln said his attitude toward blacks was that he could simply leave them alone, couldn't he?  He did not feel compelled to own them, marry them, socialize with them, or do anything to or for them.  He felt like he could just leave them be. 
Title: Re: Who started the Civil War?
Post by: COVER D on June 26, 2012, 09:30:29 AM
That is so true about blacks. In fact, most black historians hate
Lincoln. He was all for abolition when he visited his friend's
plantation and saw what they did in the 50s. His name was
Joshua Speed and they worked in the same law firm in Springfield.
They were also lovers. True.

Lincoln wanted to see the former slaves back to Africa and many
returned there. Liberia is a country formed by returning slaves
from America.

Lincoln also made racist remarks before the war too.

Blacks don't even celebrate the Emancipation Act but the date
the Yankee army drove the confederates out of town. Many
don't even know what the act is.

Title: Re: Who started the Civil War?
Post by: mdgiles on June 26, 2012, 11:48:57 AM
QuoteYeah, it was all about slavery, because the agriculturally-centered southern economy was based on the existence of slavery.
Most of the economy of the US was based on agriculture and the majority of the people in the country were engaged in agriculture up until about 1895 IIRC. The major problem the Free Soil North had with the South was the plantation system. In the South all the best land was taken up by plantations that grew the money crops.That was why the North grew by immigration and the South didn't. I don't believe anyone cared about slaves. As has been pointed out most people were casually racist. But they did care about being pushed to the margins in a plantation economy. Why non plantation owning whites would fight against their own interests is puzzling, unless the belief was that by seizing the Southern half of the Southwest - which the South tried - there would be enough plantations for everyone. And Northerners fought for both the Union and to make sure the "slave power" advanced no further. "Bleeding Kansas" was an eye opener, it showed that the South wouldn't be content with slavery just in the South. Lincoln was right, the country couldn't exist indefinitely half slave and half free, it must become all one thing or the other. On the South's side, John Brown must had made them realize that the Abolitionists in the North might finally agree with Brown and start arming slaves.