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Slavery and the Commerce Power – How the Struggle Against the Interstate Slave Trade Led to the Civil War - Yale Scholarship Online
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Slavery and the Commerce Power: How the Struggle Against the Interstate Slave Trade Led to the Civil War

David L. Lightner


Despite the United States' ban on slave importation in 1808, profitable interstate slave trading continued. The nineteenth century's great cotton boom required vast human labor to bring new lands under cultivation, and many thousands of slaves were torn from their families and sold across state lines in distant markets. Shocked by the cruelty and extent of this practice, abolitionists called upon the federal government to exercise its constitutional authority over interstate commerce and outlaw the interstate selling of slaves. This book tells the complex story of the decades-long debate and l ... More

Keywords: slave importation, cotton boom, abolitionists, interstate commerce, federal regulation, slave trade, antebellum America, Civil War, constitutional authority, Harriet Beecher Stowe

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2006 Print ISBN-13: 9780300114706
Published to Yale Scholarship Online: October 2013 DOI:10.12987/yale/9780300114706.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

David L. Lightner, author