Until Every Drop of Blood Is Paid: A More Radical American Civil War

Chapter 1: Lincoln and Liberty
Until Every Drop of Blood is Paid
A More Radical American Civil War

By: Red_Galiray

"Fondly do we hope, fervently do we pray, that this mighty scourge of war may speedily pass away.
Yet, if God wills that it continue until all the wealth piled by the bondsman's two hundred and fifty years of unrequited toil shall be sunk, and until every drop of blood drawn with the lash shall be paid by another drawn with the sword, as was said three thousand years ago, so still it must be said "the judgments of the Lord are true and righteous altogether."

Chapter 1: Lincoln and Liberty
Even though President Pierce was at first opposed to the Kansas-Nebraska Act, he caved to the southern pressure and vowed to make it a “test of Party Orthodoxy”. When his party passed the test and he signed the bill into law in May 30th, 1854, he probably believed that it would strengthen the position of his party and deal a fatal blow to the already divided Whig opposition. The Act indeed killed the Whig Party, which was irremediably split between its Northern and Southern factions. This coup de grace, the brainchild of the Illinois democrat Stephen A. Douglas, however also had negative consequences for the Democrat Party, for it did "create a deep-seated, intense, and ineradicable hatred of the institution [slavery] which will crush its political power, at all hazards, and at any cost", like the New York Times predicted.

Anti-Nebraska meetings sprang up through the North, while Democratic politicians and voters who opposed the Act started to leave their party in favor of new anti-slavery coalitions that would eventually adopt the name of Republicans. This new party was ready to challenge the Slavocrats in the 1854 midterms. During the campaign season they proved to be a powerful opponent to the Democrats, going toe to toe or even defeating them in several pivotal and hard-fought battles. One of the fiercest was fought in Illinois, Douglas’ state.

One especially eloquent campaigner was a lanky politician and prairie lawyer from the state who still identified as a Whig despite the collapse of the party. Abraham Lincoln had served in the state legislature and been elected for one term to Congress. During his time there, he protested the Mexican War and introduced plans for gradual abolition in the District of Columbia. A declared enemy of slavery but still a moderate with respect for southern rights, Lincoln hoped to be elected to the Senate to replace Senator Shields.

Lincoln managed to get the support of most of the former Whigs and Free Soilers, but he was unable to convince the Anti-Nebraska Democrats, who wanted to elect one of their own. Lincoln decided that he needed to campaign more vigorously so that some seats of the Legislature could be won by members of the Republican coalition. One of the other contenders for the Senate seat, Lyman Trumbull, saw this with preoccupation. A lawyer like Lincoln, Trumbull was one of the Illinois’ most prominent anti-slavery men, and was now an Anti-Nebraska Democrat. Lincoln was making inroads with Northern Illinoisans through eloquent speeches.


Abraham Lincoln

Emulating his example, Trumbull went north and gave a speech in Chicago, where he reminded his audience of his record of defending African Americans from involuntary servitude and his opposition to the Kansas-Nebraska Act, harshly attacking the pro-slavery settlers. Unfortunately for Trumbull, his speech was heard by the farmer John J. Walker, a Kentuckian slaveowner who hoped to start anew in Kansas after failing miserably in his business enterprises. A man of no talent or prominence, with nothing but a slave and a small family, Walker went to Chicago hoping to borrow money from an uncle. But when he heard Trumbull’s speech, he was blinded with fury. Walker waited until Trumbull ended his speech and stepped down from the stump. Then he ambushed him with a revolver, and with three shots the Kentucky farmer murdered the Senate candidate.

The murder of the moderate and respectable Trumbull by a lowly pro-slavery farmer caused fury and horror through the state, possibly deciding the race in favor of the Republican coalition which won 62 seats. The state elected Lincoln to the Senate, with many anti-Nebraska Democrats openly stating that Walker’s horrifying crime and Lincoln’s respectful obituary of his rival led them to decide in favor of ol’ Abe. And thus with his actions the Kentucky farmer helped to elect the Kentucky lawyer to the United States Senate.
POD: Lyman Trumbull is murdered by a pro-slavery fanatic and Lincoln is elected to the Senate as a result. While in Washington, Lincoln broadens his horizons and his views evolve faster, leading to a more Radical Civil War.

The Battle Cry of Freedom, the Civil War Era, by James M. McPherson.
Free Soil, Free Labor, Free Men, by Eric Foner.
The Road to Secession II, by William W. Freehling.
The Fiery Trial, by Eric Foner.
Team of Rivals, by Doris Goodwin.
The Civil War, a Narrative, by Shelby Foote.
McClellan's War, by Ethan S. Rafuse.
Tried by War and Embattled Rebel, by James M. McPherson.
What they fought for and For Cause and Comrades, by James M. McPherson.
The Destructive War, by Charles Royster.
The Fate of Liberty, by Mark E. Neely.
Freedom National, by James Oakes.
Reconstruction, America's unfinished revolution, by Eric Foner.
Lincoln: A Biography, by David Herbert Donald.
Grant, by Ron Chernow.
Breckinridge: Statesman, Soldier, Symbol, by William C. Davis.
Disunion! The Coming of the Civil War, by Elizabeth R. Varon.
The Impending Crisis, by David Potter.

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Chapter 2: The Monstrous Injustice
Chapter 2: The Monstrous Injustice

Newly elected Senator Abraham Lincoln travelled from his hometown of Springfield, Illinois, to Washington summed in deep contemplation. The demeanor of the politician was solemn, in fact, almost funeral. Well aware of political realities and facts, Lincoln recognized that Walker played a part in his triumph. Perhaps he wasn’t the main cause, but the point stood: Trumbull’s death had benefited him. Lincoln consequently took no joy on his victory. Instead, he was invaded by melancholy and pessimism. A slave-owner of Kentucky, the state where he was born, resorted to such terrible acts as murder to protect the “peculiar institution” of the South. Lincoln had always maintained his belief in the innate decency of the Southern people. If they engaged in slavery, it was because it was a part of their culture, of the world they knew. Northerners placed in the same reality would most likely also embrace the institution. But Walker’s acts planted a seed of doubt in his heart. Just how far would southerners go to defend slavery?

The border ruffians of Missouri answered his question. Pouring into the Kansas territory to secure it for slavery, they weren’t above using violence. Free-Soilers responded to this new challenge of the Slavocracy by their own means, often just as violent as those of their enemies. But most of the nation’s interest was focused on the slavers’ desire to corrupt a “virgin territory”. Some were worried because they believed that competition with Blacks degraded White labor. Others, like Lincoln, because they believed in a pro-slavery conspiracy that sought to expand slavery to the entire country. “Bleeding Kansas” was the symbol of slavery’s corrupting influence and the necessity to fight back.

The midterms had been a disaster for the Democrat Party, especially the Northern Democracy. The Senate was still under Southern control, but the House had an opposition majority. This coalition was formed of Republicans, Know-Nothings (or “Americans”) and Whigs who clung to their old party. This coalition was hardly united in anything except in their opposition to the extension of slavery. This division resulted in a bitter struggle for the position of Speaker of the House. Nathaniel Banks, a Know-Nothing and Free-Soiler, won after 133 ballots and two months, with a razor-thin margin of 3 votes.

This did not augur well for the battle for Kansas, which became even bloodier. Kansas by that time had effectively two state governments, a pro-slavery one elected by fraudulent means at Lecompton and a free-soil government that reflected the views of the majority at Topeka. Violence continued to increase, with southerners openly demanding the use of force to conquer the territory for slavery. The Lecompton legislature passed laws forbidding criticism of slavery and setting the death penalty for those who defied the institution by instigating slave revolts or escapes. In the Spring of 1856 the Border Ruffians marched on Lawrence, an anti-slavery bastion, under orders to arrest members of the Topeka legislature that lived there for treason. The defenders of the city decided against resistance, and Lawrence was sacked.


Sacking of Lawrence

Both parties introduced bills for admitting Kansas, the Republicans under the Topeka convention and the Democrats under the Lecompton one. But neither bill could pass because each Chamber was controlled by a different party. Tensions increased even more after Congressman Preston Brooks brutally attacked Senator Charles Sumner. Sumner, an abolitionist from Massachusetts, had given a passionate if irreverent speech titled “The Crime against Kansas”. Without qualms about offending Southern sensibilities, Sumner attacked and attacked, even singling out individual people and states, such as South Carolina and her Senator Andrew Butler. This outrageous “libel” inspired the fury of Brooks, a cousin of Butler, who waited until after almost everyone had left the chambers of the Senate and then attacked Sumner with his cane. Sumner, trapped under his desk, was unable to defend himself, and was beaten until he passed out, covered in blood.

Several Senators, including Senator Lincoln, attempted to stop Brooks’ assault, but fellow Congressman from South Carolina Laurence Keitt prevented this by brandishing a revolver. Lincoln, who in his youth had been a wrestler, tried anyway but was stopped when Keitt shot at the roof, threatening to then shot Lincoln himself. Brook’s finally stopped and Sumner was carried away. “Bleeding Sumner” thus joined “Bleeding Kansas”, and the images of Brooks beating Sumner and Keitt stopping Lincoln with his revolver were widely printed, and this horrified northern readers. “Are we too, slaves, slaves for life, a target for their brutal blows and their horrifying threats, when we do not comport ourselves to please them?”, asked the New York Evening Post. More terrible to many was the Southern reaction of universal approval and praise. Brooks was seen as a hero for teaching a lesson to “the vulgar abolitionists”, and many sent him canes asking him to “hit them again”. For his part, Keitt received gifts as well, including a packet with 22 bullets – one for every Republican in the Senate. The packet also contained a note advising him to “not hesitate to shot Lincoln next time”, just like how “Walker didn’t hesitate to shot Trumbull”, for even if Lincoln was a moderate he should be regarded as an enemy for virtue of being a Black Republican Yankee.

Lincoln was appalled for this call to violence. He had been willing to exclude Walker as an outlet, an extremist who was repudiated by the true moderate Southerners. But the unanimous approval of Brooks and Keitt shook his faith. When they were expulsed from the House by a vote largely opposed by Democrats, they were almost immediately elected back with triumphant majorities. But in Lincoln’s eyes the Northern abolitionist extremists weren’t much better, a case John Brown demonstrated. Furious due to Sumner’s canning, he kidnapped five pro-slavery settlers and killed them with broadswords in his neighborhood of Pottawatomie, Kansas. The massacre, Lincoln wrote a friend, showed that there were extremists on both sides, and that a solution had to be reached by constitutional and legal compromise.


Canning of Charles Sumner

The elections of 1856 offered an opportunity to achieve this great reformation. His own state of Illinois was shaping to be a battleground state. The assassination of Trumbull led to a solidification of Illinois’ Republican Party. Lincoln, in a letter to his friend Joshua Speed, said: “I think I am a whig; but others say there are no whigs, and that I am an abolitionist…. I now do no more than oppose the extension of slavery.” This shows that Lincoln still considered himself a Whig to a certain point, but he recognized the need for a united anti-slavery front, even if it included people he didn’t agree with or even despised, such as the Know-Nothings. Decided to help the Illinois Republican Party grow, Lincoln assisted to a convention at Bloomington. There he played the role of a bridge between radicals such as Owen Lovejoy and moderates. The convention also appointed delegates to the Republican National Convention of 1856, among them Senator Lincoln.

The Convention included radicals from New England and other Northern States, and opened to a proclamation that every man who “respects the immortal Declaration of Independence” hoped to see a day when “slavery shall not exist in the world”. The convention refuted the Administration, demanded the admission of Kansas as a free state and pledged to prohibit slavery in the territories. Lincoln and other delegates also drafted part of the plank calling for abolition in the District of Columbia. Lincoln’s original draft called for it to be done gradually, with compensation and with the consent of the residents of the District.

The Convention proceeded to nominate John C. Frémont for president. Frémont, a romantic figure known as the Pathfinder of the West, was an outspoken slavery critic, but did not have a real political record to defend, which was an advantage in a party that sought to unite so many discordant factions. For his part, Lincoln supported Justice McLean from Ohio. But Frémont was a former democrat, so selecting a former Whig for vice-president was necessary. Lincoln was nominated by his state delegation, but despite being a Senator for almost two years and his participation in the Brooks-Sumner Affair, he was still largely unknown outside of Illinois. Yet Lincoln still received 230 votes to the eventual nominee’s 250. This strong showing cemented Lincoln as the leader of Illinois and a leading Midwest Republican. And the debates of the campaign season increased his national standing even more.


John C. Frémont
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Don't you mean 1856?

Good update...
Yes that confused me a lot cause then later you say 1856 but great update I know that I might be in minority’s here but don’t rush through the updates and with a pod as big as this do a lot of updates talkings about the details please
Good timeline watched one request can you index it all please?

Yes, of course!

Don't you mean 1856?

Good update...

Oh, yeah... I got confused, sorry. Corrected.

Yes that confused me a lot cause then later you say 1856 but great update I know that I might be in minority’s here but don’t rush through the updates and with a pod as big as this do a lot of updates talkings about the details please

Don't worry, I plan to explore every year in the lead-up to the war in detail.
[QUOTE="Red_Galiray, post: 17577374, member: 90387"
Don't worry, I plan to explore every year in the lead-up to the war in detail.[/QUOTE]
Yah! I I just hate if a timeline with a pod as great as this is wither away and doesn’t get the proper care and a think a good way to radicallze him further if he Meets Douglas or harret Tubman! Final question he he still going to become president cause if so then how he going to win if he a radical
[QUOTE="Red_Galiray, post: 17577374, member: 90387"
Don't worry, I plan to explore every year in the lead-up to the war in detail.
Yah! I I just hate if a timeline with a pod as great as this is wither away and doesn’t get the proper care and a think a good way to radicallze him further if he Meets Douglas or harret Tubman! Final question he he still going to become president cause if so then how he going to win if he a radical[/QUOTE]

The TL is basically based on the idea that Lincoln was "radicalized" as the Civil War grew. By becoming a Senator in 1854 and gaining more experienced and contact with African Americans, Lincoln begins his "radicalization" and change of ideas earlier. This is not to say that he will be a fully fledged radical by 1860, but that he will hold more progressive views by that time. Other events will also change the outcome of the election. But I intend to have him still elected in 1860.
Yes I can’t wait to see Them meet and alternate history forum in future debate what would have happen if these chance encounter did not happen
Chapter 3: Free Soil, Free Labor, Free Men
Chapter 3: Free Soil, Free Labor, Free Men

Lincoln and other Senators took advantage of the closing of the second session in August 30th to stump around with enthusiasm for their candidates and for Frémont. Chants of “Free Soil, Free Speech, Free Men, Frémont!” inundated the North. The Republicans went into attack, launching a campaign with greater vigor and fervor than any other ever seen. A meeting in Buffalo declared that a Republican victory was necessary for instating a government of the people, not a government of an oligarchy. This oligarchy, they charged, sought to spread slavery and transform it into a national institution, a shared shame and curse that would forever subjugate the free-men of the North.

The people responded to Republican oratory will equal enthusiasm. The atmosphere was electric. The election was the most contested and ebullient one since the 1840 election. Passions ran high, but the election wasn’t joyous. Rather, as an Indiana politician said, it was not characterized by effervescence “but a solemn earnestness that is almost painful”. Indeed, the necessity to fight back against the Slave Power was greater than ever, and the Republicans so focused on that sole issue that old positions such as tariffs, internal improvements and banks were forgotten. The Republicans continued their attacks against the Democracy through the entire North, conscious that a Solid North may earn them the Presidency.

The Democrats counterattacked with equal ferocity and cheaper tactics. They appealed to the inherent racism of the American people, both Southerners and Northerners. The Republicans, they said, were the party of the Negro, of abolitionism, of slave-uprisings, chaos and societal collapse, of miscegenation and radical extremism. If you voted Republican, you would be inviting thousands of Blacks to the North, where they would be free to rape and corrupt the land. Many Republicans, including moderates such as Lincoln and conservatives like the Blairs, were forced onto the defensive. They stated that they were the real White Man’s Party, for they fought to contain slavery, thus preventing the spread of Negros from the South to the North. They fought to keep Kansas and other territories free of slavery, to protect the dignity and future of White labor.

This message was sour to Abolitionist who considered that the Republicans were no better than the Democracy. The Democracy, for their part, faced internal divisions that threatened to overwhelm it. Pierce and Douglas both tried to obtain the nomination, and while they enjoyed support from Southerners thankful for the Kansas-Nebraska Act, the fallout of the act sowed doubts among the Northern Democrats. James Buchanan, a man of political experience who remained apart from the whole debacle, was ultimately selected as the nominee after Pierce and Douglas withdrew. When juxtaposed with the colorful and romantic figure of Frémont, Buchanan seemed boring, but he was still the choice of the South and of Northerners terrified of the prospect of war. Indeed, threats of secession were the Democrats’ greatest weapon next to racism. Electing Frémont, they proclaimed, would be an intolerable insult that would force them out of the Union.


James Buchanan

Lincoln reiterated that he and his party had no intention to interfere with slavery where it already existed. The Illinois Senator returned to his state in a sort of tour that saw him giving speeches in many cities, until he finally arrived to Illinois. The State Republican Party wanted Lincoln to campaign for them, and exclusively in Illinois, a pivotal state. Lincoln delivered more than 100 speeches in Northern, Central and Southern Illinois. The northern counties were sure to be carried by Frémont, the southern ones by Buchanan; the decisive battle would be fought in the Center. The main obstacle to Republican hopes was the American Party, made of Know-Nothings who couldn’t embrace the Republican cause and Whigs who wouldn’t. The Party nominated former President Fillmore, and subtracted many votes from the Republicans. Lincoln achieved a significant victory by successfully convincing the Know-Nothings to create a Fusion Ticket, that would allot its votes to whomever gained the popular vote.

Despite his efforts, carrying Illinois would still be an uphill battle. The Democratic Party enjoyed great power. None other than Stephen A. Douglas, leader of the Northern Democracy, hailed from the State. But this helped Lincoln rather than hinder him, for Douglas served as a natural foil that allowed Lincoln to exalt and build his Party. During the campaign, Lincoln followed Douglas, who also took to the streets for his Party. They eventually agreed to spar in several debates. The debates quickly gained National attention. They were seen as the ultimate battle between the Northern Democracy and the Republican Party.

Lincoln presented moderate views and at the same time a harsh criticism of slavery as a monstrous injustice that had to be eradicated to allow progress, education and development. Douglas appealed to racism and prejudice, making it clear that the Republican Party threatened White Supremacy. The debates were a source of enthusiasm. Thousands lined to hear the words of two of America’s most celebrated and skilled orators. Many commented that the people seemed more excited to see Lincoln than to campaign for Frémont. Senator Lincoln was quickly becoming a celebrity, and many democrats took note, including Senator Seward, the most prominent Republican in the Upper North.

Republican delegations poured to Illinois. Illinois was the state were the Republicans campaigned the hardest, next only to Pennsylvania. Lincoln’s strong performance made many believe that the state could be carried by Frémont. And Illinois and Pennsylvania, when added to the Upper North, would give Frémont the presidency. But many still didn’t know where Lincoln stood. Radicals accused him of being a Southern Sympathizer, and Moderates of being a Radical. This frustrated the Prairie Lawyer. Nonetheless, Lincoln was still open to the delegations, including a Radical one led by Owen Lovejoy and attended by Frederick Douglas. They questioned Lincoln on the topic of colonization specifically. To “colonize” the African-American Population was seen as a solution to the Black problem, and Lincoln often expressed affinity for the idea.


Frederick Douglas

Douglas and the Radicals, who supported civil rights, tried to convince Lincoln to come over to their side. The US was their home, and Black people weren’t made for tropical climate. To remove them from their home would be inhumane, as monstrous as slavery itself. Lincoln confessed to be surprised by the adamant resistance to the idea by the part of black communities. He always believed that they wanted to immigrate, because the US would always be hostile to them. Lincoln’s lack of contact with Black leaders before his election as Senator had done little to dispel this notion.

Lovejoy, Douglas and the rest of the delegation left Springfield hopeful. Lovejoy had always defended Lincoln and his anti-slavery record. And though they hadn’t fully succeeded to change the Senator’s views, Lincoln started a gradual change, only advocating for colonization if Black people wanted it. During the debates, he often deflected the question by saying that the issue laid in the far way future. His insistence on gradual, compensated emancipation led credence to this claim.

The famous debates, four in total, were won by Lincoln. At least so modern historians and voters thought. Lovejoy’s endorsement convinced the radicals, while, despite his shifting views and strong condemn of slavery, he was still seen as a moderate. The Fusion ticket carried Illinois by a thin margin. But this wasn’t enough, for Buchanan carried Pennsylvania, Indiana and New Jersey along with a Solid South. Fillmore only carried Maryland.

Despite this defeat, the Republicans had reasons to feel hopeful for the next election. The Upper North had chosen and voted for Frémont with a huge margin of 60% of the votes. The electoral victory in Illinois was also cause of celebration, for Illinois had heretofore been a reliably Democrat state. Back when Lincoln was a state Senator many declared that they would first see one rise from the death than Illinois being Whig. The State had never elected a Whig Senator, Governor or President. But now, thanks to Lincoln’s effective campaign and political machine, it had elected Republicans, a party of largely Whig ancestry, to all three of those positions. This victory increased Lincoln’s status, and made many consider him as a possible candidate who could carry the Lower North.


Buchanan - 18 states carried with 45% of the popular vote and 163 electoral votes.
Frémont - 12 states carried with 34% of the popular vote and 125 electoral votes.
Fillmore - 1 state carried with 21% of the popular vote and 8 electoral votes.

It also taught an important lesson: Republicans could win in 1860 if they managed to integrate the Nativists into their fold. The Know-Nothing ideology had been losing ground as slavery became more and more prominent. Democrats were seen as the party of Romanism (Catholicism) and Immigrants, and the party often dominated Irish and other immigrant communities. The exception was a handful of German Protestants who rejected slavery.

The Know-Nothings had created their own Party, the American Party, and Fillmore was one of the most successful third-party candidates in history. But Fillmore was not a rabid Nativist, and most of his voters were simply moderates who couldn’t bring themselves to vote for either main Party. And those were mostly southerners. The Northern Americans wanted to nominate Nathaniel P. Banks, but he withdrew his nomination and endorsed Frémont. In the following years the American Party and Nativism would effectively fade into the background. A subcurrent of nativism still ran through the Republican Party, leading to attacks such as the Republicans being the Party that “says a Negro is better than an Irishman”.

Another source of hope was the rapid economic development of the mid-west. Illinois and other states were growing at a faster pace each year, becoming more connected with the Eastern States thanks to the railway. And most of that growth was in the northern, Republican counties. During the campaign, Lincoln had helped to build an Illinois Party Machine that would secure the region for the Republican Party in the next election.

Though they had lost, Republican prospects were never brighter. And events during the next four years would bring about a complete social and political Revolution. The first of these events was the Dredd Scott decision, which once again galvanized the North.
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I think this has a lot of potential and could you index thing I thought that you should defiantly have Lincoln met many more black leaders maybe even have them become friends