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A Divided America in 1860 (or so)

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  • hellboy30
    replied
    Originally posted by Janos View Post
    Let's really get out far on the limb here.

    What if the North had allowed the South to secede? Moreover, what if there were more secessions? It has been argued that were the South to be successful, there may be other secessions from the US so let's explore that.

    Let us say for the purposes of discussion that the US split into four nations peacefully.
    • The United States (generally in what is now the northeast across to Minnesota and down to Kansas and Maryland)
    • The Confederacy (11 or 13 states, as you prefer -- I don't see how it makes a difference here)
    • The Pacific Nation* (California, Oregon, Washington) and
    • Deseret (the Mormon State encompassing Utah, northern Arizona, Nevada, and Idaho)

    What about the middle territories (Colorado, for example)?
    And more importantly, what is the impact on the world?
    What's the future for these four nations?

    *Extra points for a good name for this country.
    The funny thing is, this is exactly what I said would happen if Lincoln let the South go without doing anything. Chaos & anarchy. Why? Because if one section could do it, why not everyone else? Everytime a decision is made at the top of the pile that you don't like, simply leave! Forget compromise. Forget trying to sort things out. SImply divide up until you are happy. Personally, I think it woulda split a lot more if the South was let go......4 parts is not nearly enough IMHO.

    Leave a comment:


  • hellboy30
    replied
    Originally posted by dangunner View Post
    The South made a really big mistake in going to war to achieve their independence. Had they put their case before the Supreme Court, they most likely would have won it. The Supreme Court would have had to resort to incredibly tortured, legal gymanastics to declare otherwise. If your state has the freedom to join, then it has the freedom to leave. Secession has to be Constitutional! Any other intrepretation, makes a mockery of everything this country stands for. Secession was legal then and it is legal now.
    Actually, I don't see that at all. There are certainly people who argue that, but they are consigned to folks like the League of the South. There were good arguments on both sides of the matter....I tend to agree with the side that says it was not right. I cannot show you anything in the Constitution that says it is ILLEGAL, but neither can you show me anything that specifically states that it IS. And using the 9th & 10 amendments as crutches to defend the notion are outweighed by the fact that the Constitution specifically says that the states cannot enter into treaties or alliances with other states & such.

    Originally posted by dangunner View Post
    The great myth is that the Civil War proved that Secession is illegal; however, that is what it is: a myth. All the war proved was that the North was stronger than the South. To my knowledge: the Supreme Court has never ruled on the question of a state's right to secede.
    Incorrect. They did rule:
    Did the Supreme Court ever rule on the legality of secession? (U.S. Civil War: The beginning)
    Yes, it did-- after the war. Perhaps the clearest statement is in
    the case Texas v. White (74 U.S. 700). Chief Justice Chase, writing
    for the court in its 1869 decision, said:

    "The Constitution, in all its provisions, looks to an indestructible
    Union, composed of indestructible States. ... Considered, therefore, as
    transactions under the Constitution, the Ordinance of Secession, adopted
    by the convention and ratified by a majority of the citizens of Texas, and
    all the Acts of her Legislature intended to give effect to that ordinance,
    were absolutely null. They were utterly without operation in law. ... Our
    conclusion, therefore, is, that Texas continued to be a State, and a State
    of the Union, notwithstanding the transactions to which we have referred."

    The entire decision is available on the Web at
    http://supct.law.cornell.edu/supct/cases/historic.htm
    The Civil War did decide the matter. At best you can say that it was a matter of interpretation-both sides disagreed on it. The Civil War decided the outcome on the battlefield. The icing on the cake was the ruling made by the Supreme Court afterwards.

    Originally posted by dangunner View Post
    If the South had placed their "Cause" on the docket rather than the battlefield, they most likely would have won for three reasons. First, the Court was dominated Southerners and Southern sympathizers. Secondly, people didn't think of this country as "THE" United States until after the war. Prior to the conflict, it was "THESE" United States. Finally, they would have won, because secession is constitutional. It has to be. If your state doesn't have the freedom to leave, then you are not truly free!
    What does a state trying to leave the Union have to do with personal freedoms? Then again, I guess leaving in the face of a legally elected President is ok when you want the rules to apply when you want them to......

    Leave a comment:


  • JSMoss
    replied
    Well one of the factors Lincoln was balancing was that failure to respond to Southern secession would have likely led to the secession of New England as well. They had been strong movement in that direction over the previous two decades so we would have likely had at least 6. The question then would have been which way NY and PA would have gone, with New England or with the Nutmeggers of the Old Northwest.

    Leave a comment:


  • Guest's Avatar
    Guest replied
    Originally posted by dangunner View Post
    Peacefully breaking the United States into four separate countries doesn't seem like a realistic possibility to me; however, I think that there is a scenario where the North would have grudgingly let the South leave the Union.

    The South made a really big mistake in going to war to achieve their independence. Had they put their case before the Supreme Court, they most likely would have won it. The Supreme Court would have had to resort to incredibly tortured, legal gymanastics to declare otherwise. If your state has the freedom to join, then it has the freedom to leave. Secession has to be Constitutional! Any other intrepretation, makes a mockery of everything this country stands for. Secession was legal then and it is legal now.

    The great myth is that the Civil War proved that Secession is illegal; however, that is what it is: a myth. All the war proved was that the North was stronger than the South. To my knowledge: the Supreme Court has never ruled on the question of a state's right to secede.

    If the South had placed their "Cause" on the docket rather than the battlefield, they most likely would have won for three reasons. First, the Court was dominated Southerners and Southern sympathizers. Secondly, people didn't think of this country as "THE" United States until after the war. Prior to the conflict, it was "THESE" United States. Finally, they would have won, because secession is constitutional. It has to be. If your state doesn't have the freedom to leave, then you are not truly free!

    Assuming that they adopted the strategy of suing their way out of the union, the picture is not a rosy one. The most likely cause of friction would be the division of the spoils from the Mexican War. In order to avoid war with their new neighbors, the Confederacy would have to abandon most, if not all, of its claims on the West. How likely is that?

    Secondly, if they did release all claims to the West, it is well documented that the Leaders of the South entertained designs on territorial expansion on Cuba, Mexico and Nicauraga amoung others. That also would be likely to cause friction with the United States.

    I'm afraid that North America would have seen a heck of a lot more warfare on this continent than it actually did. The sole reason for continental peace has been that the victory over the South in the Civil War reduced the number of competitor states in North America.
    Here's my alternate history idea! We, the South, wearing blue, and waving a Betsy Ross flag, storm DC and throw out the Liberal party, in toto! We quote Jefferson as we show Lincoln the way back to Springfield...

    "it is our right, and our duty to OVERTHROW SUCH GOVERNMENT!

    Amen, and Selah!

    Leave a comment:


  • Guest's Avatar
    Guest replied
    Originally posted by Whiterook View Post
    The 4 nations would not, in my estimation, cooperated with each other to any beneficial degree to create the Super Power status the United States attained.

    World War II probably would have turned out much differently for this part of the continent.

    I'd be living in Deseret with my 7 wives.
    White Rook, this is Check Mate King Two! Do you read me? Over?
    White Rook! This is Checkmate King Two! Come in! Over!

    (Caje! Littlejohn! You're on me! The rest of you, spread out!)

    LOVE THAT SHOW! HAVE ALL ON DVD's!

    First of all, I don't see a WWII without the hellish Reconstruction we placed upon Germany, after WWI, and giving the Little Corporal an excuse to quote Lincoln from MEIN KAMPF at all those speeches!

    According to my grandfather, a corporal (also) in WWI, "Woodrow Wilson got us into WWI. He told Kaiser Bill, "If I had that army of your's, I could whip the world!"

    That is the only political/historical statement my grandfather EVER made to me. I was seven, and clueless, but I remember it, to this day!

    COMBAT was still in black and white, in those days!

    TJ
    Last edited by Th. Jefferson; 23 Jan 08, 23:51.

    Leave a comment:


  • dangunner
    replied
    A more realistic possibility

    Peacefully breaking the United States into four separate countries doesn't seem like a realistic possibility to me; however, I think that there is a scenario where the North would have grudgingly let the South leave the Union.

    The South made a really big mistake in going to war to achieve their independence. Had they put their case before the Supreme Court, they most likely would have won it. The Supreme Court would have had to resort to incredibly tortured, legal gymanastics to declare otherwise. If your state has the freedom to join, then it has the freedom to leave. Secession has to be Constitutional! Any other intrepretation, makes a mockery of everything this country stands for. Secession was legal then and it is legal now.

    The great myth is that the Civil War proved that Secession is illegal; however, that is what it is: a myth. All the war proved was that the North was stronger than the South. To my knowledge: the Supreme Court has never ruled on the question of a state's right to secede.

    If the South had placed their "Cause" on the docket rather than the battlefield, they most likely would have won for three reasons. First, the Court was dominated Southerners and Southern sympathizers. Secondly, people didn't think of this country as "THE" United States until after the war. Prior to the conflict, it was "THESE" United States. Finally, they would have won, because secession is constitutional. It has to be. If your state doesn't have the freedom to leave, then you are not truly free!

    Assuming that they adopted the strategy of suing their way out of the union, the picture is not a rosy one. The most likely cause of friction would be the division of the spoils from the Mexican War. In order to avoid war with their new neighbors, the Confederacy would have to abandon most, if not all, of its claims on the West. How likely is that?

    Secondly, if they did release all claims to the West, it is well documented that the Leaders of the South entertained designs on territorial expansion on Cuba, Mexico and Nicauraga amoung others. That also would be likely to cause friction with the United States.

    I'm afraid that North America would have seen a heck of a lot more warfare on this continent than it actually did. The sole reason for continental peace has been that the victory over the South in the Civil War reduced the number of competitor states in North America.

    Leave a comment:


  • holly6
    replied
    Originally posted by Naffenea View Post
    Jesusland, lol. It would have stayed since The Church's position is the Constitution is a divine document.
    You're to big a trout to rise to that poorly tied fly.

    Consider, would the Eastern US, have use it's ability to dicate the Northern route of a Transcontental RR as leverage between Deserete and the Mountain Region?

    Leave a comment:


  • Naffenea
    replied
    Originally posted by Redwolf View Post
    Nah. Except the Confederacy everybody would have joined/stayed in the U.S. The economic realities are just like that. The Confederate states were the ones in a special situation to resist the total dominance of industry, but there's no reason the Pacific along with a great lakes/north chunk would stay away from the U.S. and richness. Jesusland might have stayed out, but I don't really think so.
    Jesusland, lol. It would have stayed since The Church's position is the Constitution is a divine document.

    Leave a comment:


  • holly6
    replied
    Originally posted by Janos View Post
    I suspect you are right. My understanding is that plural marriage was never widespread and I agree it would have vanished, more or less, by 1900.

    I agree with this as well. Keep in mind that there were a lot of LDS in California (a number of Mormon Battalion vets had settled in the Sutter's Mill area prior to gold being discovered there) so there were already ties.

    I had not considered an alliance with Mexico or the Brits, but such a thing would not be inconcievable.

    Good thoughts, all!
    To many intagibles, it's hard to develop a forcused stratagy. However, some thoughts.
    1. As we all know, the American Military c.1860 was not a force. No succession, no need to build the army. Essentially, what we are speaking of here, is a type of "sucession" without the argument of tariff or slavery. What is the motovation for our 3 Rogue Regions? Distance? Self rule?
    2. The economic necessities might dictate a shift in our borders. Pacifica, for our purpose, would have to include both WA (at the 49 Parellel) and CA. From San Francisco to Seattle there are almost no deep water ports. That's why they spend zillions dredging the Columbia Bar. I do not forsee the British allowing us to keep WA west of the Cascades, it was still sparsley settled and while perhaps not worth the risk of war with a major trading partner, war with a fledging Republic? Hmmm. Puget Sound is an incredible resource for naval trade. At the very least, a blockade of the Sound would be easy work indeed for the British Navy. This is what makes the Pacifica/Deserete connection seem viable.
    Also, in 1860, the Native problems were far from solved in the "Mountain Region". Who provides the dedicated trained troops to subdue the tribe's to open up the mineral wealth there. Deserete? Pacifica? the British? and which of these would do so without an enormous price tag of control or soverignty?

    At the start date of 1860, a split US/CSA, regional rather than national feelings, Britian could end up with WA, N.Id, MT Perhaps N-S. DAK. And I'm beginning to wonder if transportation (or lack of it) would be key. A little like the problems in the Old NW prior to the purchase of New Orleans.

    Fun stuff.

    Leave a comment:


  • Redwolf
    replied
    Originally posted by Janos View Post
    • The United States (generally in what is now the northeast across to Minnesota and down to Kansas and Maryland)
    • The Confederacy (11 or 13 states, as you prefer -- I don't see how it makes a difference here)
    • The Pacific Nation* (California, Oregon, Washington) and
    • Deseret (the Mormon State encompassing Utah, northern Arizona, Nevada, and Idaho)
    Nah. Except the Confederacy everybody would have joined/stayed in the U.S. The economic realities are just like that. The Confederate states were the ones in a special situation to resist the total dominance of industry, but there's no reason the Pacific along with a great lakes/north chunk would stay away from the U.S. and richness. Jesusland might have stayed out, but I don't really think so.

    Leave a comment:


  • Janos
    replied
    Originally posted by Naffenea View Post
    Given how far the Church settled the west and the Church structure itself, I think Polygamy though would probably be scrapped permanently by the 20th century, and a theocracy on the level of the middle east I don't think would happen, though Utah Valley would certainly try (as they seem to try now).
    I suspect you are right. My understanding is that plural marriage was never widespread and I agree it would have vanished, more or less, by 1900.
    Originally posted by allsirgarnet View Post
    1870...

    Given the possible threats and political situation, I feel that Pacifica's and Desterta's shared history and blood ties would see them eventually combine for mutual safety. Each would also have very good economic, political and military reasons for doing so as far as future expansion and security reasons.

    The Mountain Republic would then i feel be strong enough to deter and threats from either the north or south. Its also likely that economic and military alliances might form with both Mexico and Britain. If this happened if would benefit all three strategically, especially if it was along the lines of a triple 'American Entente'. All three could then combine to further their interests in both the Eastern Pacific and Middle America.
    I agree with this as well. Keep in mind that there were a lot of LDS in California (a number of Mormon Battalion vets had settled in the Sutter's Mill area prior to gold being discovered there) so there were already ties.

    I had not considered an alliance with Mexico or the Brits, but such a thing would not be inconcievable.

    Good thoughts, all!

    Leave a comment:


  • allsirgarnet
    replied
    Really interesting ideas...

    1870...

    Given the possible threats and political situation, I feel that Pacifica's and Desterta's shared history and blood ties would see them eventually combine for mutual safety. Each would also have very good economic, political and military reasons for doing so as far as future expansion and security reasons.

    The Mountain Republic would then i feel be strong enough to deter and threats from either the north or south. Its also likely that economic and military alliances might form with both Mexico and Britain. If this happened if would benefit all three strategically, especially if it was along the lines of a triple 'American Entente'. All three could then combine to further their interests in both the Eastern Pacific and Middle America.

    Comments?

    Gary

    Leave a comment:


  • Naffenea
    replied
    Originally posted by holly6 View Post
    Janos, fun thread. "What ifs" can be fun if the responders take it seriously. Airsirgarnett hit a heck of a post. Don't know if I agree with all of it, but it was very well thought out.



    1. Given the vast area involved, and the possibility of immigration barriers from the East, could Deseret have maintained itself as a theocratic unit? Consider that many of the "Pacific" population would maintain the predjudices created during the events in the East. Could they be faced with exchanging Salt Lake City as their Capitol due to the difficulty projecting their power to the Western borders of Deseret? Does the question of poligamy still carry the same political/social barrier to involvement with the Pacific Gov?


    Fun stuff. Any ideas?
    Given how far the Church settled the west and the Church structure itself, I think Polygamy though would probably be scrapped permanently by the 20th century, and a theocracy on the level of the middle east I don't think would happen, though Utah Valley would certainly try (as they seem to try now).

    Leave a comment:


  • Carl Schwamberg
    replied
    Originally posted by Janos View Post
    I would think that Hawaii would remain a kingdom...one of many petty kingdoms scattered across the Pacific.
    Both Britian & Germany had their eye on Hawaii. I'd put my money on the Brits.

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  • Janos
    replied
    Originally posted by holly6 View Post
    And who protects Hawaii? I discount the Russian threat. Ft. Ross seems to be nothing more than a political statement. By this time, I believe the British are becoming involved with Southern Africa, but if they had a chance at the Pacific Coast? Interesting..
    I would think that Hawaii would remain a kingdom...one of many petty kingdoms scattered across the Pacific.

    Leave a comment:

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