The sectional struggle over slavery came to a head in 1820. With eleven free states and eleven slave states, if Missouri entered the Union as a slave state, the balance of power would shift toward the South. After several months of debate, a compromise emerged: Maine would enter the Union as a free state, Missouri as a slave state. Additionally, slavery was prohibited in the territory of the Louisiana Purchase north of Missouri’s southern border.

March 6, 1820

An Act to authorize the people of the Missouri territory to form a constitution and state government, and for
the admission of such state into the Union Read more