What is the significance of Wilmot Proviso?

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pohnpei397's profile pic

pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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The significance of the Wilmot Proviso is that it helped to make the North and the South more angry at each other at the time of the Mexican American War.  It did so by helping to cast the war as one that was about slavery.

Many in the North worried that the point of this war was to take more land that would (because it was in the South) become slave territory.  For this reason, they (a famous example of this is Henry David Thoreau) opposed the war.  The Wilmot Proviso helped to publicize this idea because it stated that no land taken from Mexico could become slave.

The Proviso did not pass, but it still served to make the North and South come into conflcit more.  This helped to bring on the Civil War.

Yojana_Thapa's profile pic

Yojana_Thapa | Student, Grade 10 | (Level 1) Valedictorian

Posted on

Wilmot proviso was specifically provided for the prohibition of slavery in lands acquired from Mexico in the Mexican war. Congress did not pass the Wilmot Proviso. This was one of the causes of the Civil War.

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polvany18 | Student, Grade 9 | eNotes Newbie

Posted on

It led to the Civil War- The BLOODIEST War in American History.

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