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Stephen Douglas Essay, Research Paper

American Studies Assignment-Stephen A. Douglas

My name is Stephen A. (Arnold) Douglas (born: April 23,1813- died: June3, 1861). I have been given the nickname “The Little Giant” representing my fiery conviction, prowess, and self-reliance. I believe that the country’s destined direction lies west. I myself worked and put myself through school in Vermont, and then at age twenty moved all the way out to Illinois to become a lawyer. I am a democrat and therefore represent the governmental interests of a democrat such as my hero Andrew Jackson. At age twenty-seven (in 1840) I became a state Supreme Court Justice; At thirty(in 1843) I was elected to the House of Representatives; And at age thirty-four (in 1847) I was elected to the Senate. During all of my time in politics I persisted to express that even though I have never owned slaves myself, I am not opposed to slavery, and that my chief concern is saving the Union. I believe that compromises such as “popular sovereignty”(half slave states/half free states) is the key to peace among the Nation. I have always tried to explain that if voters of a territory were against slavery, they could simply fail to pass the slave codes that were needed for its existence. But this is a diminutive concern compared to my belief in binding together the Union. Even though my adversary is Abraham Lincoln who eventually beat me in the presidential race of 1860, I, Stephen Arnold Douglas offered my services and helped in the preservation of the Union that we both loved.

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