From small as $50. But the South

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From the onset of war, the North had obvious advantages. Over all, in terms of both the population and productive capacity, the North had a commanding edge over the South. The North has two and a half times the South's population (22 million to 9 million, of whom 3.5 million were slaves) and enjoyed an even greater advantage in industrial capacity (nine times that of the South). The North produced almost all of the nation's firearms, cloth and footwear. And it had 71 percent of its railroad mileage. The North was able to feed, clothe, arm, and transport the soldiers. These advantages were ultimately to prove decisive. Delaware, Maryland, Missouri, and Kentucky chose to stay in the Union which was a severe blow to the Confederacy. The North also found many ways to support the war.They developed ways to finance the war. The Treasury used patriotic appeals to sell war bonds to ordinary people in amounts as small as $50. But the South failed in the area of the finance. The Secretary of State, William Seward, did the job of making sure that Britain and France did not extend diplomatic recognition to the Confederacy. Although the outbreak of war overshadowed everything else, the Republican Party in Congress still developed many programs for the economic development. For example, the Homestead Act gave 160 acres of public land to any citizen who agreed to live on the land for five years. These were powerful nationalizing forces. They connected ordinary people to the federal government during war time. The Emancipation Proclamation also gained the Free African American's support for the war and encouraged southern slaves either to flee to Union or refuse to work for their master. Though there were some dissenters in the North, they had a very strong president, Abraham Lincoln, who never seemed to give up. He was thefirst president to act as Commander-in-chief in both a practical and a symbolic way.

Categories: Economics

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