loud speaker

Teachers and Parents: Use the coupon code "Snow Day" on or before January 31 to receive 50% off your subscription to MrN 365! The code is valid for all subscription types.

arrow up
Home > History > Missouri Compromise

Missouri Compromise

This page describes the Missouri Compromise.

Missouri Compromise

The Missouri Compromise

Missouri Applies for Statehood

In 1819, as Missouri began drafting a state constitution in preparation for statehood, New York congressman James Tallmadge introduced two antislavery amendments to the bill which allowed for the creation of Missouri as a state. Despite the fact that Tallmadge's bills were not passed, the issue involving slavery threatened to explode.

The Balance in Congress is Threatened

The issue of slavery had remained controversial in America since 1787. In 1819, half of America's twenty two states were free states (northern), and half were slave states (southern). Because the free states had larger populations, they controlled the House of Representatives. Free and slave states shared equal representation in the Senate. The admission of Missouri as a free state or slave state would upset the balance. Antislavery members of Congress argued that slavery should be prohibited in new states, while Pro-slavery members of Congress argued that the state should have the right to determine if slavery was legal or illegal within its borders.

Clay's Compromise

A compromise was made when Maine applied for statehood in 1820. According to the deal thought of by Henry Clay, if the southern states agreed to the admission of Maine as a free state, Missouri would be admitted as a slave state. In addition, all lands acquired in the Louisiana Purchase north of 36° 30' N latitude would be free. Both the free and the slave states agreed to Clay's compromise. Nevertheless, the influence of the Missouri Compromise would last nearly thirty years before it would be repealed.

UPGRADE TO MRN365.COM

Upgrade to MrN 365 to access our entire library of incredible educational resources and teacher tools in an ad-free environment. If you like MrNussbaum.com, you will LOVE MrN 365!

Learn More