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American History to Reconstruction: Antebellum America - Politics


The bombardment of Fort Sumpter in Charleston Harbor is depicted in this painting, April 13, 1861, during the U.S. Civil War. (AP Photo)

Significant Events

The Compromise of 1850 was actually a series of bills passed mainly to address issues related to slavery. The bills provided for slavery to be decided by popular sovereignty in the admission of new states, prohibited the slave trade in the District of Columbia, settled a Texas boundary dispute, and established a stricter fugitive slave act. This featured document is Henry Clay's handwritten draft.

Territorial Expansion

Related Political History

Politics of the Era

 National Park Service-Lincoln Home

Political Debates Between Abraham Lincoln and Stephen A. Douglas In the Celebrated Campaign of 1858 in Illinois.

Lincoln-Douglas Debates-Britannica

Primary Sources Online


The Know-Nothing Party

The Know-Nothing Party, also known as the American Party, was a prominent United States political party during the late 1840s and the early 1850s.

Article of note:

Women, the Family, and the Fate of the Nation in American Anti-Catholic Narratives, 1830-1860

From: Journal of the History of Sexuality 
Volume 18, Number 2, May 2009 
pp. 237-264



Also available at the Mount-Call Number JK2341 .A7 1905 .D464

Antebellum Presidents

Martin Van Buren

Martin Van Buren (1837-1841)

Willima Henry Harrison

William Henry Harrison (1841)

John Tyler (1841-1845)

James K. Polk  (1845-49)

Zachary Taylor

Zachary Taylor (1849-1850)

Millard Fillmore

Millard Fillmore (1850-1853)

Franklin Pierce

Franklin Pierce (1853-1857)

James bucahanan

James Buchanan (1857-1861)

Abe Lincoln

Abraham Lincoln (1861-1864, d.1864)

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