Was it possible to save American democracy in 1860? What steps might have been taken to maintain unity? Why do you think these steps were not taken?

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What this question is really asking is whether steps could have been taken to prevent the southern states from seceding and to preserve the United States in 1860. This means that there would have been no Civil War. Certainly this would have been a desirable outcome, as over 600,000 Americans died fighting each other in the conflict.

It is important to realize, however, that numerous steps were taken to end the war in the decades leading up to it, but they were insufficient. The overriding concern that precipitated the war was the issue of slavery, and compromises over this issue went back as far as the writing of the Constitution. Until the 13th Amendment was passed after the Civil War, the US Constitution allowed slavery and even designated how slaves were to be counted for purposes of political representation.

As time passed, the country became more divided between northern states that favored the abolition of slavery and the southern states...

(The entire section contains 468 words.)

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