Cotton also spawned a series of federal regulations during the war. The North needed cotton for its textile mills, and it wanted to deprive the South of its financing power.
The price of cotton soared from 10 cents a pound in 1860 to
$1.89 a pound in 1863-1864. [see King Cotton diplomacy - wikipedia]
Cotton ruled the Northeast because the domestic textile industry there produced $100 million worth of cloth each year. In addition, the North
sold to the cotton-growing South more than $150 million worth of manufactured goods every year, and Northern ships transported cotton
and cotton products worldwide. Although the South never succeeded
in convincing foreign powers to intervene against the North, cotton
diplomacy was successful in obtaining financial help from abroad.