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Kansas-Nebraska Act

The Kansas-Nebraska Act was an U.S. bill on slavery, it is considered part of the build up to the American Civil War.

It was a bill created by Stephen A. Douglas and passed by the U.S. Congress on May 30, 1854 after fierce debate. It allowed settlers in the territories of Kansas and Nebraska to decide whether to allow slavery within their borders (popular sovereignty[?]). The Act repealed the Missouri Compromise of 1820 which prohibited slavery north of latitude 3630.

After the Kansas-Nebraska Act was passed, pro- and anti-slavery supporters rushed in to Kansas to affect the outcome of the election, using groups such as the Emigrant Aid Company[?]. The pro-slavery position won but the outcome was not accepted by the anti-slavery settlers. The bitterness of the division reached a point that resulted in the establishment of two opposing legislatures in the Kansas territory.

Another election was called. Once again pro-slavery supporters won and once again the results were not accepted by the anti-slavery settlers. As a result, Congress did not recognize the constitution and Kansas was not allowed to become a state.

Eventually a new anti-slavery constitution was drawn up. On January 29, 1861, Kansas was admitted to the Union as a free state.



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