During the mid-1800s, tension was high between the northern abolitionists and southern pro slavery groups. The land conditions in the south were perfect for huge cotton plantations manned by slaves. The north did not see the use for slaves due to the manufacturing based economy they had. Although the U.S. Constitution in the supreme law of the land, it does not contain anything regarding slavery (Document E). With no guidelines about slavery, the north and south were pitted against one another, both regions fighting for what they wanted. New political parties, expansive western territories, and abolitionist groups all enforced division between the north and the south. Without the Constitution to supply any insight into rules of slavery, political leaders and people alike, were all fighting for what they thought was best for the union.
The Constitution was written to hold a strong union between various sections of a nation, all the while preventing despotism and ensuring the rights that all people deserve. The writers of the Constitution intentionally skirted around touchy areas, so as not to rile the North and South into refusing to ratify the document. Three of the most sensitive topics were what free states should do with slaves that escaped into their soil, the slave status of newly formed states, and if a state could legally secede from the Union. Because of the vagueness in these areas, the Constitution became a source of sectional discord by the 1850s and ultimately contributed to the failure of the union it had created
"By the 1850's the Constitution, originally framed as an instrument of national unity, had become a source of sectional discord and tension and ultimately contributed to the failure of the union it had created . Because of the lack of information in the Constitution, the United States lost its sense of unity. The Constitution contributed to the failure of the union it created by lacking information on slavery and secession.
By 1850, the Civil War was a possibility. Several attempts had been made to sort out the divisive issue of slavery, but inability to do so created a separation of Northern and Southern interests. The inability to resolve the slavery problem, particularly that of slavery in the new territories was the direct responsibility of the constitution which with its customary vagueness, failed to set down a definitive answer to slavery when it could have in 1789. The fact that the constitution failed to prevent slavery splitting the Union is due to open interpretation of its clauses used by both opponents and proponents of slavery. In addition, the resolve of some abolitionists to ignore the laws and the Constitution further complicated the issue.