The Sectional Crisis

Choice #1: John Brown


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You can access the information in one of two ways

One, you can read the transcript of the episode here. (Links to an external site.)

The video is available on YouTube (Links to an external site.)though the captions are auto-generated so there may be some errors.

In light of the material in the video/transcript and this article (Links to an external site.), what do you make of John Brown? Was he justified in his actions? Was he a terrorist? Why or why not? Write a discussion board post of 250 words or more presenting your argument with specifics from the video/transcript and the article. As usual, be sure to add two replies of 75 words or more each.

Option 2: Causes of Southern Secession


When southern states seceded from the United States, several of them issued Declarations of Secession. These were similar to the Declaration of Independence in the sense that these states were explaining their decision to break away. As such, these declarations allow us to review what these southern leaders thought they were doing in their own words. Please review these Declarations of Secession:

South Carolina Declaration of Secession (Links to an external site.)

Mississippi Declaration of Secession (Links to an external site.)

Georgia Declaration of Secession (Links to an external site.)

Texas Declaration of Causes (Links to an external site.)

In a discussion board post of 250 words or more, address what you think the main reason or reasons were for these states to secede. Draw on specifics from all four declarations for full points. As usual, include two replies of 75 words or more each.

Option 3: The political parties and the election of 1856.

Here is the Democratic Party Platform for the 1856 election (Links to an external site.).

Here is the Republican Party Platform for the 1856 election. (Links to an external site.)

In your post of 300 words compare and contrast these two party platforms. In particular, note what each party saw as a threat to the country. How did each party portray itself? How did each party portray its opposition? How did the parties make use of the Constitution and/or the Declaration of Independence. Your comparison does not have to address all of these points but this should give you something to think about as you read the sources. If you find other areas worth comparing, feel free to write about them.

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