Chapter

The Republican Revolution

Don E. Fehrenbacher and Ward M. McAfee

in The Slaveholding Republic

Published in print December 2002 | ISBN: 9780195158052
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780199849475 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195158052.003.0010
The Republican Revolution

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The Republican free-soil principle was actually a political and moral compromise with the institution of slavery, and Republican leaders were something less than willful agents of violent social revolution. Southerners made no mistake in perceiving the election of Abraham Lincoln as a sharp break with the past. To understand its revolutionary implications for southerners, one must take into account not only the malign countenance of Republicanism in the South, but also the character and conduct of the national government from 1789 to 1861. However, with Lincoln's election, all was suddenly changed. The old republic—which had protected the slaveholding interest on the high seas, in relations with foreign governments, in the District of Columbia, in the federal territories, and to some extent even in the free states—was at an end.

Keywords: Republican; principle; slavery; revolution; election; Abraham Lincoln; Republicanism; republic; District of Columbia; states

Chapter.  18899 words. 

Subjects: History of the Americas

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