Secession and War: The Crisis of the Union, 1860-61

Saturday, March 15, 2014
(This program continues for multiple sessions)
Saturdays, March 15 – 22

1 – 5 pm

Led by Joseph Harrington

We will analyze the motives that led Southern states to secede from the United States in 1860-61, and the decision of President Abraham Lincoln to use military force to assert U.S. government sovereignty. Arguments by Southern secessionists and unionists will be considered, as well as the evolution of opinion in the North regarding the use of force. For the first session, please read Secession Debated, selections 2, 3, 5, and 7.

Joseph Harrington holds a master’s degree in history from the University of Connecticut. He has led numerous Newberry Library seminars.

Materials List
Note: Due to the limited availability of these texts, please remember to call the Newberry Bookstore in advance at (312) 255-3520.

Required:

  • Freehling, William W. and Craig M. Simpson, eds.; Secession Debated: Georgia’s Showdown in 1860; ISBN 0-19-507945-0
  • Freehling, William W. and Craig M. Simpson, eds.; Showdown in Virginia: The 1861 Convention and the Fate of the Union; ISBN 978-0-8139-2964-4

Supplementary optional readings:

  • McClintock, Russell; Lincoln and the Decision for War: The Northern Response to Secession; ISBN 978-0-8078-3188-5

Readings for the First Session:

  • For the first session, please read Secession Debated, selections 2, 3, 5, and 7.

This class is part of the Newberry’s Adult Education Seminars Program.

Cost and registration information: 

Two sessions, $180.
Register Online.