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Q: Civil War - American Society in 1850, the aftermath of the Mexican War ( Answered,   0 Comments )
Subject: Civil War - American Society in 1850, the aftermath of the Mexican War
Category: Miscellaneous
Asked by: cocoonfreak-ga
List Price: $10.00
Posted: 04 Dec 2002 12:36 PST
Expires: 03 Jan 2003 12:36 PST
Question ID: 119248
I need to explain why the urban northeast did not give widespread
support to the Mexican War?
Texts: James M. McPherson, Battle Cry of Freedom, pp.3-77
      William W. Freehling, TheRoad to Disunion, pp.3-118
Subject: Re: Civil War - American Society in 1850, the aftermath of the Mexican War
Answered By: kutsavi-ga on 04 Dec 2002 16:28 PST
Hey there Cocoonfreak, 

There was one primary reason that the Northeast bloc didn’t want to
support the Mexican War, and that was that Anti-slavery, (Northern),
interests didn’t want to accede any more territory to the south for
fear of increasing the Pro-slavery bloc’s representation by gaining
more territory in the south.

So even though Expansionism was a driving force in national politics
at the time, the powerful North came in against the Mexican War at
first.  At the time, Texas was considered a sovereign nation in and of
itself, (by some), and so the fact that warfare was occurring there,
(or as some considered it still Mexico), technically, from the
Northern perspective, was inconsequential.

Since this was the case, especially in light of the fact that any
territory seized from Mexico at the onset of violence in 1846 would
likely have been granted slave state status, tipping the delicate
balance between slave and free states, war between the North and South
may not have been able to be averted.  At the time, most Northerners
and Southerners alike resisted the option of war, but the tide was
definitely turning.

This political situation was what “made” Abraham Lincoln’s name a
household word, because he tried to hold then President Polk to a
“Spot Resolution,” essentially stating that the first place American
blood had been shed had been in Mexican territory, (which it was), and
so did not warrant the declaration of War.  In fact, as Lincoln saw
it, by placing American troops on Mexican soil, Polk had instead
provoked war.  This argument, however, was not supported at the time,
and national fervor and Manifest Destiny won out, which is another
story.  Lincoln, however, won in his own right due to his speaking and
political skills in defending the Anti-slavery position.

We as Google researchers can’t write papers for you, and hence if you
need specific references from the two texts you mentioned, it wouldn’t
be proper for me to do so.  However, you should know that those are
each very well-known texts; outstanding in the field.  What you should
do is take the information I’ve gathered below, and use it to enhance
and elaborate on the required references.

If you need any further information, please request a clarification,
and I would be more than happy to elaborate on any point, or expand to
include any more information that you need.




Manifest Destiny and the Mexican-American War

“Many abolitionists, especially from the northeast, did not approve of
the war and saw the struggle as an attempt by the South to extend

Lincoln and the Mexican War

“Abraham Lincoln, a longtime supporter of Henry Clay, served one term
as a Whig Congressman, 1846-48, from his Illinois district around
Springfield. At the beginning of the Mexican War, many Whigs had
doubts about the war, but few risked having their loyalty questioned.
Only two senators and fourteen congressmen voted against raising
volunteers. Lincoln had not gone to Washington as a congressman when
war got underway, but he supported the war. Others, especially from
the Northeast, saw the Mexican War as a war of expansion and a war of
slavery expansion. Fighting had ended by the time Lincoln arrived in
Washington for the 30th Congress in December of 1847.”
Congress and the Mexican War, 1844-1849
“The Mexican War dominated Lincoln's brief congressional career. In
1846 President James K. Polk, a Tennessee Democrat, ordered General
Zachary Taylor's army to advance to the Rio Grande River. Mexico had
never recognized the United States' 1845 annexation of Texas, and
skirmishes followed the arrival of Taylor's force. Lincoln opposed the
resulting war, which he thought a contest Polk provoked as a
vote-getting device, and he hoped his arguments against the war would
make his reputation in the United States House of Representatives.”
Northeast support Mexican war 

Mexican war anti slavery support

Spot resolutions Lincoln mexico

Clarification of Answer by kutsavi-ga on 04 Dec 2002 17:09 PST
In my above answer, I used the word accede.  This word does not define
what I wanted it to.  I wanted to say that the Northern states did not
want to "give over" any more land to the Slave States.  I think that
the word I should have used was "loose", especially in consideration
of the issue of Manifest Destiny involved.  Sorry for the gaffe.
There are no comments at this time.

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