The Fiery Trial: Abraham Lincoln and American Slavery - Chapter 4 Summary & Analysis

Eric Foner
This Study Guide consists of approximately 30 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of The Fiery Trial.
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Chapter 4 Summary and Analysis

In chapter four, in March of 1857, the Supreme Court handed down the Dred Scot decision, declaring that the founding fathers did not intend to include blacks in their wording of the Constitution. This decision would send a ripple through the nation. In the wake of the Dred Scot decision, President Buchanan declared that slavery existed in all states under the Constitution and tried to bring Kansas in as a slave state under the Lecompton Constitution, despite the fact that it did not support the wishes of the citizens of Kansas. Douglas and several others sided with the Republicans in an attempt to block this constitution. This caused a split in the Democratic party just before the 1860 presidential campaign. At the convention that year, Lincoln presented his House Divided speech in which he suggested that the country needed to either embrace slavery...

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This section contains 739 words
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