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Preface to War: Political Causes of the American Civil War

             A putrid stench of blood mixed with the sulfuric smell of gunpowder lingered heavy in the air, complemented by a smoky haze of spent powder charges that sent murderous balls of canister bellowing out of the roaring guns just hours before. Brothers lay hunched over each other, beaten, shot and slashed, mumbling in pain, crying aloud for their mothers and their home as they awaited the cold touch of death. Occasionally a wounded horse, gored or with a broken leg would whinny in agony, while wounded men cut down in the fury of battle, half-consciously moaned as they slowly bled to death. Unfortunately, this was all-too-often the bloody aftermath of the many battles of American civil war.
             What could drive brothers and countrymen to take up arms against each other? What could cause such merciless carnage that tore apart families and a nation? Was the American civil war necessary?.
             The American civil war was a long and bloody war. It split the United States apart at the seams, pitting former compatriots in a savage war to protect their beliefs and cultures. But in spite of the plethora of destruction and atrocities caused by the American civil war, I believe that the American civil war was a necessary evil, and one that was almost inevitable. The regional cultures, economies, and subsequently their political agendas, were simply far to opposite each other to peaceably co-exist under the same loose federal system. The US constitutional emphasis on state rights allowed the South to secede and go to war with its former compatriots.
             To find the roots of the civil war, one must trace all the way back to the settling of the 13 Colonies. When the British began to colonize America, two distinctly different types of settlers began to claim the land. In the North, middle and lower class settlers came to America seeking refuge from religious persecution. They were typically hard workers, settling in communities to practice their religion without consequence.

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