Two Transformative Decades

Frank Cicero

in Creating the Land of Lincoln

Published by University of Illinois Press

Published in print March 2018 | ISBN: 9780252041679
Published online September 2018 | e-ISBN: 9780252050343 | DOI:
Two Transformative Decades

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Chapter 5 summarizes important events in Illinois between 1848 and 1868, including population growth in the Chicago area and a shift in the state’s demographics. The major political debate, both locally and nationally, focused on the question of enslaved blacks. Senator Stephen Douglas supported popular sovereignty through the Kansas-Nebraska Act, which roused Abraham Lincoln to return to politics in opposition to slavery. The emergent Republican Party proved ascendant in the state’s 1856 elections, and the Lincoln-Douglas debates of the 1858 senate campaign brought to the fore Lincoln and his stand against slavery but not necessarily for equality. These political shifts, including Lincoln’s election as president in 1860, can be traced to popular support in northern Illinois, the counties created through the Pope amendment in 1818.

Keywords: Chicago—population; Stephen Douglas; enslaved blacks; Illinois—demographics; Illinois—history; Kansas-Nebraska Act; Abraham Lincoln; Lincoln-Douglas debates; Republican Party—history; slavery

Chapter.  8920 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Political History

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