Lead:  One hundred and fifty years ago the Republic was facing its greatest crisis. This continuing series examines the American Civil War. It is A House Divided.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: By the end of the 1830s no significant subject in American political life could be discussed without reference to the enormous social, economic and moral issue of slavery. Americans were losing control of their ability to have a rational conversation. No national discussion was possible without dragging in the way in which it would affect the progress, expansion, restriction, or destruction of slavery. Whether it was tariffs, internal improvements, foreign affairs, economics, public education western expansion, the Transcontinental Railroad, the War in Mexico, all were affected by this question. Most American’s opinion on one issue was shaded by their opinion on The Issue.