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From the time the Americans began to form their nation since Declaration of Independence and the Revolutionary War, the institution of slavery had been a serious issue which raised many questions until it was formally abolished by the ratification of the 13th amendment in 1865. At the Constitutional Convention in 1787, although the words “slave” and “slavery” never appear in the original Constitution, the documents created in Philadelphia prohibited Congress from abolishing the importation of slaves from abroad for twenty years. Although the new federal Constitution required both Southern and Northern states to recognize and help police the institution of slavery, the Framers made the clause strikingly ambiguous. In other words, the Constitution in 1787 gave the national government no power to interfere with slavery in the states, the migration and importation of slaves cannot be prohibited by the Congress. Also, the three-fifth clause, a compromise reached by the debate over Slavery during the Constitutional Convention, provided that three-fifths of the slave population would be counted in determining each state’s representation in the House of Representatives. Since the economy of the South was mostly based on the plantation system of tobacco, cotton and so on, the requirement of slavery was much needed so that the population of slaves was much larger than the North. In the South as a whole, slaves made up one-third of the total population. This led the South to have greater members in the House of Representatives which could have disproportionate influence on the presidency, the House, and the Supreme Court later. Over time, this problem would also become a major source of conflict between the North and the South. Though slavery was more serious in the South, Northern merchants and manufacturers also participated in the slave economy and shared in its profits. Money earned in the trade helped to finance industrial development and internal improvements in the North. 
Yet within several years of the end of the Revolutionary War, most of the Northern states had carried out gradual emancipation acts which assumed that former slaves would remain in the country, not be colonized abroad. Northern statesmen like Hamilton, Jay, and Franklin worked for abolition, and some helped to establish schools for black children. In 1787, Benjamin Franklin had agreed to serve as president of the Pennsylvania Abolition Society. However, many white Americans excluded blacks, mostly slaves, from their conception of the American people. Africans were allowed to become a naturalized citizen until 1870. Not like the North’s abolition to some degree, slavery became the “peculiar institution” of the South. The number of slaves and the economic and political importance of slavery continued to grow, especially in the South. Slavery gradually shaped the lives of all Americans. It helped to determine where they lived, how they worked, and under what conditions they could exercise their freedoms of speech, assembly, and the press. 
Controversy of the institution of slavery emerged and gradually intensified since it became more important to American lives. People who support slavery are called proslavery while people who propose abolishing slavery become abolitionists. During the 1790s, the Haitian Revolution took place and the slave uprising led to the establishment of Haiti as an independent nation in 1804. This revolution inspired hopes for freedom among slaves in the new United States. Another product in this age was Gabriel’s Rebellion. Gabriel, a literate enslaved blacksmith, tried to plan a large slave rebellion in 1800, but unfortunately, the rebellion was failed because of a storm that washed out the roads to Richmond, and the leaders were all arrested and hanged. As conflicts kept being enhanced, Missouri Compromise was adopted by the Congress in 1820, proposing that Missouri is admitted to the Union as a slave state and Maine as a free state. And slavery would be prohibited north of latitude 36°30′. 

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