Free Soil Party

anti-slavery but non-abolitionist political party in the United States, precursor to the Republican party

The Free Soil Party was, for a short duration, a political party in the United States. It was active in the 1848 and 1852 president elections, and in some state elections. It got lots of its strength from New York. Most of the important party members were former anti-slavery members of the Whig Party and the Democratic Party. Its main purpose was stopping slavery from spreading into the western lands, arguing that free men on free soil had a morally and economically better system than slavery. Also, many workers feared that slave labor would take away work for white workers.

In this 1850 political cartoon, the artist attacks abolitionist, Free Soil, and other such interests of 1850 as dangers to the Union.

The party membership was largely taken over by the Republican Party in 1854.

Further reading

  • Frederick J. Blue; Salmon P. Chase: A Life in Politics 1987
  • Frederick J. Blue. The Free Soilers: Third Party Politics, 1848-54 (1973)
  • Martin Duberman; Charles Francis Adams, 1807-1886 1968.
  • Foner, Eric (1995). Free Soil, Free Labor, Free Men: The Ideology of the Republican Party before the Civil War. New York: Oxford University Press. ISBN 0195094972.
  • T. C. Smith, Liberty and Free Soil Parties in the Northwest (New York, 1897)
  •   1911 Encyclopædia Britannica.

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