In the early 19th century, Americans experienced both social and political impact significantly due to emerging cultural changes. While religion reformed the much of the 19th century it was able to impact both political and social aspects of the Americas, through abolition and temperance it was able to bring about these changes with religion.
The high rate of alcohol consumption prompted reformers to target alcohol as the cause of social ills. The movement began by using moral exhortation. In 1826 Protestant ministers and other concerned with drinking founded the American temperance society, they tried to persuade drinkers to take abstinence.
Factory owners and politicians joined in hopes to reduce poverty and crime. In 1851 Maine went beyond taxing liquor but also prohibited manufacturing and sale of liquor. Twelve states followed before the civil war. In the 1850’s the issue of slavery came to overshadow the temperance movement but would gain strength in the late 1870’s and achieve national success with the passage of the 18th amendment in 1919.
Abolition was the support for a complete, immediate, and uncompensated end to slavery. Slavery was seen as one of the Americas worse social ills. Abolitionist and religious reformers were fighting for the abolishment of slavery. In the North before the Civil War, there were only a few abolitionists and these were generally considered radicals. However, they were prominent and vocal, and as sectional tension mounted, they became more prominent and influential.
This was considered radical, and there were only a few adamant abolitionists prior to the Civil War. Almost all abolitionists advocated legal, but not social equality for blacks. Many abolitionists, such as William Lloyd Garrison were extremely vocal and helped to make slavery a national issue, creating sectional tension because most abolitionists were from the North.
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