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     Prior to the start of the Civil War, the northern states were largely urban and industrial. Steam powered factories sprung up all across the North between the 1830's and 1850's.  As a result of this industrial might, large cities and urban areas also began to develop.  Also during this time period, the north experienced a large increase in population.  This increase was due to natural   

birth as well as large amounts of immigration.  Many immigrates choose to escape the crowed streets of Europe and move to the USA.  They hoped to improve their lives and seek jobs.  To spite poor working conditions, the factories in the North offered them both new opportunities and employment.  A large portion of these immigrants came from Germany and Ireland.  Although work in the factories was difficult and they faced discrimination, the prospects of living in the USA was still better than their homeland.  This influx of people gave the north a large population prior to the Civil War.

Immigration to the North 

1830's - 60,000 per year

1840's - 1.7 million per year

1850's - 2.5 million per year