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Kansas-Nebraska Act

[kan-zuh s-nuh-bras-kuh] /ˈkæn zəs nəˈbræs kə/
noun, U.S. History.
1.
the act of Congress in 1854 annulling the Missouri Compromise, providing for the organization of the territories of Kansas and Nebraska, and permitting these territories self-determination on the question of slavery.
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for Kansas-Nebraska Act
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • It is needless to add that it was instantaneous in its opposition to the Kansas-Nebraska Act.

    Abraham Lincoln and the Union Nathaniel W. Stephenson
  • But would this be true to that principle of "popular sovereignty" which was the very essence of the Kansas-Nebraska Act?

    Abraham Lincoln and the Union Nathaniel W. Stephenson
  • The passage of the Kansas-Nebraska Act aroused his indignation as nothing had ever aroused it before.

  • Mr. Toombs contended that the compromise measures of 1850 and the Kansas-Nebraska Act of 1854 were made to conform to this policy.

    Robert Toombs Pleasant A. Stovall
  • This doctrine triumphed in 1850 and, despite the assertion of his opponent, was reaffirmed in the Kansas-Nebraska Act.

    Robert Toombs Pleasant A. Stovall
  • The topic is more fully and fairly discussed in the subsequent debates on the Kansas-Nebraska Act.

  • How would the author of the Kansas-Nebraska Act face the palpable breakdown of his policy?

    Stephen A. Douglas Allen Johnson
  • The report began with a constitutional argument in defense of the Kansas-Nebraska Act.

    Stephen A. Douglas Allen Johnson
  • Popular sovereignty as applied in the Kansas-Nebraska Act was put upon the defensive.

    Stephen A. Douglas Allen Johnson
Kansas-Nebraska Act in Culture

Kansas-Nebraska Act definition


A law passed by Congress in 1854 that divided the territory west of the states of Missouri and Iowa and the territory of Minnesota into two new territories, Kansas and Nebraska. The law was extremely controversial because it did not exclude slavery from either territory, despite the fact that the Missouri Compromise prohibited slavery in these territories. By effectively repealing the Missouri Compromise, the law outraged many northerners, led to the collapse of the Whig party and the rise of the Republican party, and moved the nation closer to civil war.

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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