As a southerner and a student of history I can tell you that slavery was an economic blight on most of the South. For every slave owned at least 3 jobs were lost for nonslaves,and any economic benefit went to the less than 1% that owned slaves. The war was fought over an over-reaching Federal Govt. imposing tariffs on imported european manufactured goods the South was trading for agriculture prods. We did not fight to keep slaves we did not own, we fought to preserve the Constitution. Lincoln made slavery an issue and only freed the slaves in the South, not the North.