Good idea Herb, you see everyone has their opinion, sort of like...well you know what I mean. I would suggest reading "The Causes of the Civil War" edited by Kenneth M. Stampp. It contains key documents of the people alive then, think they might have a handle on what they believe, don't you? Now I know you want to know my view. You don't?...lol...here it is anyway. There were many causes for the war. However once it was under way, slavery (or race) made it the escalating factor. Why it couldn't be stopped. Talking about what started the war? Well Herb, you see, we were, are and will be...two culturally different people. Northerners and Southerners have been antagonistic toward each other since the Revolution. I'm not saying you can't or didn't have friends across the Mason-Dixon line, but in the main we were, especially at that time, a different group of people with different values and we just didn't like each other that much. The fight had been building for a long time Herb. You might have notice, vestiges of it are still alive today. Adieu.