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Nation within a NationThe American South and the Federal Government$
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Glenn Feldman

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780813049878

Published to Florida Scholarship Online: September 2014

DOI: 10.5744/florida/9780813049878.001.0001

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First to Secede, Last to Accede

First to Secede, Last to Accede

South Carolina's Resistance to the Republic, 1780–Present

(p.19) 1 First to Secede, Last to Accede
Nation within a Nation

Thomas F. Schaller

University Press of Florida

Political scientist Thomas F. Schaller examines in detail the unique role of South Carolina in American history and politics. The center of the Nullification Crisis of the nineteenth century, as well as the first state to secede, the Palmetto State has consistently been at the forefront of opposition to the federal government and a virulent insistence on the sanctity of states’ rights. Its importance continues today, as Schaller demonstrates, including the prominent role that the state's primary and customary visits to Bob Jones University play for the GOP presidential nominating process. From the 1770s South Carolina embraced the resister's role with relish and John C. Calhoun—perhaps its favorite son—is virtually synonymous with the antebellum “nullification” movement and the doctrine of interposition. Schaller examines why it is that South Carolina has repeatedly distinguished itself as a federal outlier to the Republic—a state first to secede, and often last to accede—to the laws and norms embraced by much of the rest of the nation. In doing so, he links the past to the present.

Keywords:   South Carolina, “Nullification” Crisis, “Interposition”, Federal Government, John C. Calhoun, Bob Jones University

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