Department Chair

Andrew D. Nicholls, Ph.D. Professor of History and Social Studies Education

Date of Award

5-2016

Access Control

Open Access

Degree Name

History, M.A.

Department

History and Social Studies Education Department

Advisor

Cynthia A. Conides, Ph.D., Associate Professor of History and Social Studies Education

First Reader

Cynthia A. Conides, Ph.D., Associate Professor of History and Social Studies Education

Second Reader

Jill M. Gradwell, Ph.D., Professor of History and Social Studies Education

Abstract

The American Civil War was a multi-faceted conflict: North versus South, states’ rights versus federal law, slavery versus abolition. Due to increasing and constant advancements in technology, this was the first war in American history that developed in full view of the public through newspapers. The Industrial Revolution and capitalism allowed the press to evolve into rich and powerful soap boxes for political bosses and editors alike to voice their opinions far beyond the village square. Unbeknownst to much of the public at the time, the Union had been at the mercy of newspaper editors and politicians in a grand spectacle to sectionalize the American people in the name of capital, popularity, and power. A growing city at the center of innovation, Buffalo, New York had a thriving journalism industry during the mid-1850s and faced the same dilemmas involving sectionalism and upheaval from the influence of the press on the public prior to the Civil War.