Use these links to return to the page you got here from or to investigate other issues related to this topic. If the Civil Rights Movement is new to you, you can visit our dictionary page from any page in the entire web site by clicking here.
Were all people in the North opposed to slavery? No, not all people in the North were opposed to slavery. Some people didn't care one way or the other, while others wanted slavery to continue.
Many people in the North were abolitionists (people opposed to slavery and who spoke out against it.) Some of the people in the North wanted slavery, but knew they couldn't say that in front of a group of abolitionists. Most abolitionists were calm and didn't believe in hurting others. Others, like John Brown for instance, believed in physical force rather than compromise.
Abolitionists started a movement in the 1800's to try to end slavery. Then slave owners began to stick up for slavery in what became the proslavery movement. Some Northerners and Southerners involved in the movement quarreled that slavery was like a "law of nature" which allowed the strong to rule the weak. They believed in was right for Whites to own Blacks as slaves because the strong were ruling the weak. Other people believed that the Bible favored slavery, while others thought that slavery was better then living in Africa, because in the U.S. they would have a lifelong home with better living conditions. By the 1860's, almost all Southerners and many Northerners thought slavery should continue.
Northerners Who Supported Slavery
People in the North had small forms, not huge plantations, so they didn't need slave labor to work on their farms. Many Northerners believed that the South needed to have slavery so the country could get cotton, wheat, tobacco, and many other things from farms and plantations that the North needed. Other Northerners made their living by transporting slaves from Africa to the U.S. and transporting the cotton and tobacco grown on plantations in the South to Europe. They feared that ending slavery would make them lose their jobs.
Not all people in the North were opposed to slavery. Some wanted slavery to continue and others didn't care if there was slavery or not. Many people think everyone in the North was against slavery, but that isn't true.
If you want to be absolutely certain you've looked at every page on our website, check out our site map.
This website is designed to be viewed using Microsoft's Internet Explorer 4.0 or above.