History Hour - Sectionalism and Suffrage: North Carolina’s 1835 Constitutional Convention

  • Virtual

  • Address: 283 Victoria Rd, Asheville, NC 28801
  • Times: 6:00 PM - 7:00 PM
  • Dates: June 06, 2024
  • Admission: Price Varies
  • Contact: Trevor Freeman
  • Phone: (828) 253-9231
  • Email: education@ashevillehistory.org

North Carolina’s 1835 constitutional convention epitomizes the complex history of the antebellum South. In many ways, the event was a victory for western North Carolinians. White residents of the state’s mountainous regions had been demanding constitutional revisions for a number of years, as the existing constitution failed to grant them legislative representation in proportion to their increasing population. Yet even as white men of the mountains gained political power, North Carolina’s free men of color lost it. Before 1835, free men of color could vote in NC, but delegates to the state’s constitutional convention decided that suffrage was for white men only. This talk will explore the 1835 convention’s complicated history and provide insight into delegates’ decision to expand political rights for western North Carolinians as they eliminated free men of color’s right to vote.

Map loading icon