The Constitution in the years prior to the Civil War (DBQ from 1987 AP American History Exam)
The Constitution: Unity or Disunity?
The U.S. Constitution is looked upon as not only a legal bond, but as a unifying document that exemplifies the American desire for "life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness." From 1787, the year of its creation, until 1850, the Constitution helped to uphold these ideals, by ruling with the majority, but protecting the minority, as well as acting as a symbol of unity for the growing nation. In the decade before the Civil War, the Constitution's openness for wide interpretation as well as its lack of specificity on sectional issues such as states' righ…
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