We've seen how greatly Harpers Ferry influenced events during the eighteen months prior to Fort Sumter. Just for a moment, consider how events may have transpired during that period if Harpers Ferry never happened.
First, Southern governors would not have demanded their allotment of arms from Federal armories in the North. Thousands of cases of rifles, rifled muskets, carbines and revolvers never shipped to armories in Southern states, which housed only small numbers of antiquated arms. Secretary of War John B. Floyd never issued those orders.
Second, Southern legislatures did not take steps to reorganize and train their state militias, nor did they trouble themselves to appropriate large sums for the purchase of modern arms. Southern governors never gave a thought to sending agents to New England to buy as many arms as they could from manufacturers there. Only a few colorfully-uniformed volunteer companies in larger Southern towns and cities maintain their organizations and appear on parade for national holidays.
Third, Southern citizens continue to view abolitionists as an inconsiderable Northern spliter group. They have absolutely no concerns about violence or arsonists in the South because there are no reasons for concern. No one listens to 'fire-eaters' like Yancey and Rhett because the Constitution represents an uncontestable guarantee against any threat to their property rights. There's no need for an independent Southern Republic.
In either scenario, Abraham Lincoln is a moderate and a darkhorse candidate for the Republican nomination in 1860. In this less agitated, more harmonious political enviroment, who is elected President of the United States, and what is the result for the South?