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By Shearer Davis Bowman

Why did 11 slave states secede from the Union in 1860-61? Why did the eighteen loose states unswerving to the Union deny the legitimacy of secession, and take concrete steps after castle Sumter to subdue what President Abraham Lincoln deemed treasonous uprising?

At the Precipice seeks to reply to those and similar questions through concentrating on different ways that american citizens, North and South, black and white, understood their pursuits, rights, and honor throughout the overdue antebellum years. instead of supply a story account of the situation, Shearer Davis Bowman takes readers into the minds of the best actors, interpreting the lives and innovations of such key figures as Abraham Lincoln, James Buchanan, Jefferson Davis, John Tyler, and Martin Van Buren. Bowman additionally offers an extremely shiny glimpse into what much less recognized women and men in either sections thought of themselves and the political, social, and cultural worlds within which they lived, and the way their strategies trained their activities within the secession interval. Intriguingly, secessionists and Unionists alike glorified the announcement of Independence and the structure of the us, but they interpreted these sacred records in markedly alternative ways and held very varied notions of what constituted "American" values.

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At the Precipice: Americans North and South during the Secession Crisis (Littlefield History of the Civil War Era) by Shearer Davis Bowman

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