The Missouri Compromise: What Was it and How Did it Contribute to the Civil War?


The Missouri Compromise was passed into law in 1820 and regulated slavery in the western states. Though it was passed forty-one years before the Civil War, it still played a large role in laying the groundwork for the war that was to come. It contributed to the division and disagreement between north and south regarding the issue of slavery and made the issue more contentious between the two sides of the country.
The Missouri Compromise was written by Henry Clay, and both pro and anti-slavery proponents in Congress agreed to it. The Compromise forbade slavery in Louisiana and any territory that was once part of it in the Louisiana Purchase. Slavery was also forbidden anywhere north of the 36/30 parallel, except within the territory of Missouri (which was being proposed as a state), where it was to be allowed...