You have UNTIL JULY 10 5PM to participate in this discussion with your small group. Listen to Pulitzer Prize winning, Yale historian David Blight’s lecture on the election of 1860.
Answer any one of the questions below in 5-7 sentences in your initial post. Respond to a classmate’s post in a respectful and engaging discussion with substance, not simply praise or agreement. The purpose of small group discussion of common readings and historical audio/video links is to deepen our understanding of the past and foster dialogue. Read, watch, think, and talk!
1 What issues divided the Democratic Party, leading to Stephen Douglas and John Breckinridge dividing the Democratic vote in 1860?
2 Southern secession state conventions met from December to April to deliberate about what to do following the election of Abraham Lincoln. What was their concern and why did 11 states secede?
3 James Buchanan remained president until Lincoln’s inauguration in March 1861. By the time Lincoln swore the oath of office, seven states had already seceded and formed the Confederate States of America. What should President Buchanan have done during this four month “Winter of Secession”?
4 Lincoln entered office facing a seven state rebellion, led by South Carolina’s southern nationalists. What options did Lincoln have in responding to the rebellion when he took office?
5 The South was not united on the decision to seceded. African Americans, in some states the majority of the population, had no political voice in electoral politics. Many white southerners remained committed to the Union. What impact did southern Unionists, black and white, play in the crisis? What was the purpose of John Bell’s 1860 presidential campaign?