American Slavery and the Civil War: A Quick When and Why

(03-18-2014, updated 07-15-2018)  There's really no such thing as a quick overview of this topic, so I feel a series coming on. A Dutch friend said that she didn't learn that much about American slavery in high school. I learned a lot--enough to argue viciously with my distant relatives in Bakersfield, California when I visited them at the annoying age of 18, anyway.