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Primary Source Document Review: The Declaration of Causes of Seceding States Ove

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Primary Source Document Review: The Declaration of Causes of Seceding States
Over the course of this semester we have built toward the Civil War and Reconstruction. In recent years, the Civil War has become a contemporary topic again because of the attention generated by the removal of Confederate war monuments. While passions run hot on both sides of this debate, one of the recurring themes of monument defenders is that the Civil War was fought purely over a defense of state rights while proponents of removal point to the role of slavery in the Confederate rationale for secession. This semester we are going to look at both arguments.
While all eleven Confederate states issued an Ordinance of Secession declaring that state’s severing of ties with the United States, five states – Georgia, Mississippi, South Carolina, Texas, and Virginia – issued further statements known collectively as The Declaration of Causes of Seceding States. We will read the five Declarations of Causes of Secession this semester. Cut and paste the URL below into a web browser to access the documents.
In addition to periodic in-class writing assignments, you will prepare an essay of three-five pages addressing the five Declaration of Causes. How are the ordinances different from the declarations in subject matter? What are the prevailing issues addressed by the Declaration of Causes. Specifically, what is the role played by slavery in these Declarations? Make reference to major events over the course of the semester in which the question of slavery dominated national politics. How do the Declarations address these issues? Do the Declarations speak to state rights issues? What events over the course of the semester might influence these references? After reading these sources, what emerges as the stronger rationale for southern secession?
Primary Source Document Review:
The document review should be three to five pages in length. This count does not include the title page, the endnotes, the bibliography, or any appendices. The paper will be typed, double-spaced, with one inch margins, and in a font no larger than 12 pt. Pages should be numbered consecutively in upper right hand corner beginning on page 2 (the title page is not page 1) and going through the bibliography. Pages with headings should not have page numbers but should be counted in the pagination. Endnotes should be numbered consecutively and placed at the end of the paper. The paper must be divided into six parts: the title page, the body, the endnotes, and the bibliography.
Here set forth the results of your research in a clear, well-written narrative. Avoid scissor-and-paste history, i.e., the stringing together of quotations without explanation or critical comment. Ability to quote passages from documents is not the skill this course is trying to develop. Particularly relevant documents may be reproduced in the appendices, but remember that the pages given over to appendices do not count in the total length of the paper. NO MORE THAN ONE FIFTH OF THE PAPER MAY BE QUOTATIONS. Consider using maps and pictures where relevant to your paper. Be sure to credit the source in the lower right hand corner if you do so. These may not count in the length of the total length of the paper.

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