The United States was a primarily agricultural nation, before, during and immediately after the civil war of the 19th century (Civil War Trust, n.d.). However, the industrial revolution that had started in the England soon expanded to its colonies including the US. However, the North was more industrialized than the South. Historically, the south was relied on slaves for its agricultural production, while development of the cotton machine resulted in mechanization of farming in the north. As a result, the north developed more cities than the south and this created regional differences in the United States, between the north and the south.
According to (Schulman, n.d.), the Northern economy was primarily manufacturing oriented while the South, which depended on cheap labor from slaves, was primarily import-oriented. Most of the people from South preferred lower tariffs as they viewed it as important for their economy, which depended on importation of finished products from North and other European countries. However, the Northern part of the US preferred higher tariffs as they deemed important in protecting their economy. They saw high tariffs as a way of encouraging the Americans to purchase local products since high tariffs would increase costs of imported items. Consequently, the Northern people persuaded their congressional representatives to increase trade tariffs, while the Southern people persuaded them to lower the tariffs.
During the 1850s, the rift between the North and the South widened as the Southern slaves began to move to the North (Schulman, n.d.). Most of the Congress representatives and senators from the South feared that the industrialized North would drawn their voices in the Congress and this was evidence with the development of the Nullification crisis of the 1830s and their protests against the “Tariffs of Abominations”. The Southern opposed the abolitionist rule and were majorly democrats, while the North remained anti-slave and were republicans. These social, economic and political lives of the Northerners and the Southerners can still be observed today. Majority of the people of the South still live rural agricultural life and are mainly democrats, while the North is majorly industrial and urban, and mainly republicans.
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