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  • The American Civil War, Abraham Lincoln, Gettysburg Address
    fitting and proper that we should do this But in a larger sense we cannot dedicate we cannot consecrate we cannot hallow this ground The brave men living and dead who struggled here have consecrated it far above our poor power to add or detract The world will little note nor long remember what we say here but it can never forget what they did here It is for us

    Original URL path: http://history-world.org/gettysburg.htm (2016-02-11)
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  • Major Civil War Battles
    remove him and Grant soon justified the president s faith The Confederates on the other hand lost almost as heavily and missed their chance to break up the Union advance in the west Battle of Antietam For weeks the tide of the Civil War ran in favor of the Confederacy The morale of the North had been lowered by Gen George B McClellan s disastrous Peninsular Campaign in Virginia in 1862 As a result President Lincoln was forced to postpone issuing his Emancipation Proclamation for fear of seeming to appeal to blacks for aid in a losing cause When he laid aside the proclamation he vowed he would give it to the world after the first Union victory Instead of victory came more setbacks General Lee crossed the Potomac carrying the war into the North and striking terror into the hearts of the people of Maryland and Pennsylvania Finally on Sept 17 1862 his troops met the numerically superior forces of McClellan at the little creek of Antietam in Maryland All day long the battle raged The loss of men on each side was about 11 000 No decisive results were obtained from the fierce conflict of that day On the next day however Lee felt that it was wiser to withdraw from the field Thus the victory seemed to be left with McClellan Lee had not obtained the aid from the people of Maryland that he had expected and so he recrossed the Potomac into Virginia McClellan made no attempt for a while to follow him and so little military advantage was gained Nevertheless the people of the North were encouraged and Lincoln had the opportunity to issue his Emancipation Proclamation For these two reasons the battle of Antietam was one of the important battles of the Civil War Battle of Fredericksburg One of the costliest defeats suffered by the Union forces in the war was at the battle of Fredericksburg Va on Dec 13 1862 At that time Lee had retreated from the North as a result of his defeat at Antietam With about 78 000 men he had established himself on the high bluffs of the Rappahannock River near Fredericksburg The Army of the Potomac led by Union Gen Ambrose E Burnside held the north bank of the river at Falmouth There were about 120 000 men under his command With many difficulties he transported them across the river on pontoon bridges to attack the strongly entrenched Confederates After six assaults with great losses Burnside was persuaded by his officers not to renew the attack Two nights later under the cover of a storm on December 15 the discouraged remainder of the Union army was brought back to Falmouth The Union army had lost 12 653 men while the Confederate loss was 5 309 men As a result of his tragic defeat Burnside was replaced a week later by Gen Joseph Fighting Joe Hooker The gloom that this disaster brought to the people in the North was changed to rejoicing a few weeks later Then news came of the Union victory in the battle of Murfreesboro or Stones River Tenn fought from December 31 to January 2 At Murfreesboro the Confederate forces under Gen Braxton Bragg were repulsed by the Union army under Gen William S Rosecrans This victory opened the way for the Union advance to Chattanooga and finally to Atlanta and the sea Campaign for Vicksburg A primary objective of the Union forces in the Civil War was to cut the Confederacy in two by winning control of the Mississippi River To do this it was necessary to take the Confederate stronghold at Vicksburg Miss As long as Vicksburg was held by the South Union vessels could not operate freely on the river The city also served as an important transportation point for the Confederacy Supplies arms and men from the southwestern states were assembled at Vicksburg and then transported eastward by rail On Jan 29 1863 General Grant was put in command of the Army of the West with orders to capture Vicksburg It was a difficult assignment because the city located east of the Mississippi was on a high bluff overlooking a hairpin bend in the river All earlier attacks against Vicksburg had failed Grant now set his men to work with pick and shovel rather than with guns They tried to dig a canal across the neck of land opposite the city and thus bypass Vicksburg by turning the river from its old bed Despite their most strenuous efforts Grant s troops failed to change the course of the river Another way to reach the city had to be found Grant saw that Vicksburg could be approached only from the south and east The west bank of the Mississippi became dry enough for the men to travel over but how were they to recross to the east bank after getting below the city This could be done in only one way The Union fleet would have to face the Confederate batteries and go down the stream as the men marched along the west shore One dark night the attempt was made The Confederates learned of the plan and sent troops across the river in skiffs They set fire to houses on the shore so that Confederate gunners might have light to see the Union ships Nevertheless all but one of the Union s vessels ran by the batteries in safety and transported Grant s men to the eastern bank This was all accomplished by the end of April 1863 Now began the task of pushing the Confederate troops back into the city Seven times Grant met and defeated them before he reached Vicksburg Failing to take the town by storm he settled down to starve it into surrender For seven weeks the town held out A Confederate woman who was shut up in the city gave this description of life during that time So constantly dropped the shells around the city that

    Original URL path: http://history-world.org/some_major_civil_war_battles.htm (2016-02-11)
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  • American Civil War, Submarines
    dive while en route to attack Union ships The second submarine developed by the same builders was a remarkably advanced concept a 25 foot iron boat intended to be propelled by a battery and electric motors Not surprisingly no suitable motors could be found so a propeller cranked by four men was again adopted The submarine sank without loss of life in heavy seas off Mobile Bay while seeking to attack the enemy The third submarine of the Confederacy was the H L Hunley a modified iron boiler lengthened to between 36 and 40 feet Ballast tanks and a system of weights submerged the craft it could travel at a speed of four miles an hour powered by eight men cranking its propeller Its armament consisted of a torpedo filled with 90 pounds 40 kilograms of gunpowder towed behind the submarine at the end of a 200 foot line The Hunley was to dive under an enemy warship and drag the torpedo against its hull After a successful test against a barge the Hunley was moved by railroad to Charleston S C There the vessel suffered several disasters sinking three times and drowning a number of crewmen including Hunley himself Manned for a fourth time the Hunley was fitted with a torpedo on the end of a long spar and the craft made several successful dives On the night of Feb 17 1864 the submarine attacked the Union warship Housatonic in Charleston harbor The torpedo s detonation exploded the warship s magazines the Housatonic sank in shallow water with the loss of five men but the Hunley was also destroyed by the explosion and its crew was killed One of the more intrepid submarine inventors of the same period was Wilhelm Bauer a noncommissioned officer of Bavarian artillery who built

    Original URL path: http://history-world.org/submarines.htm (2016-02-11)
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  • Absolutism
    s Emancipation Act of May 9 and disavows his order July 17 Adoption of the Second Confiscation Act and Militia Act by the Administration which authorized emancipation and the employment of fugitive slave labor as weapons of war The two Act declared forever free all captured and fugitive slaves of the Confederates and authorized the mobilization of Blacks in any military or naval service for which they may be found competent August 11 General Ulysses S Grant issued an order in Corinth Mississippi utilizing the services of all fugitive slaves behind his lines August 14 President Lincoln advocated the colonization of Blacks in Central America during a meeting with a delegation of free Blacks August 21 Union Generals David Hunter and John Phelps denounced by Confederate President because of their wish to recruit slaves for the Union Army September 16 Abolitionist Frederick Douglass rejected the proposal by President Lincoln to colonize free Blacks in Central America September 22 The first draft of Emancipation Proclamation read to the cabinet by President Lincoln September 27 thru November 24 The 1st 2nd and 3rd Louisiana Native Guard Regiments African Descent organized and mustered into the Union Army in New Orleans October 10 Confederate President Jefferson Davis requested the state of Virginia to draft 4500 Blacks to build fortifications around Richmond October 27 28 The 1st Kansas Colored Volunteer Regiment engage the Confederates at Island Mound Missouri The regiment was organized by General Jim Lane and engaged the enemy prior to being mustered into the Union Army December 23 A proclamation issued by Confederate President Jefferson Davis declared that General Benjamin Butler s soldiers be considered robbers and criminals deserving death The statement was interpreted by Confederate soldiers as justifying the massacre of Black Union soldiers 1863 January 1 President Lincoln issues Emancipation Proclamation The document was directed only to the states that seceded from the Union Slaves states that remained with the Union was not affected January 12 The Confederate Congress approved President Jefferson Davis proclamation of December 23 1862 January 20 Governor John A Andrew of Massachusetts was authorized by Secretary of War Edwin M Stanton to recruit and organize Black soldiers January 26 The 1st South Carolina Volunteer Regiment African Descent engage the enemy at Township Florida shortly after being mustered in at Beaufort March 21 Frederick Douglass issues a declaration Men of Color To Arms He began to recruit troops including his sons Charles and Lewis March 26 The Secretary of War issued an order directing Adjutant General Lorenzo Thomas to organize black regiments in the Mississippi Valley March 30 54th Regiment Massachusetts Volunteers mustered in to serve withe the Union Army April 2 Confederate government disturbed by Bread Riot in Richmond Virginia May 18 1st Kansas Colored Volunteer Regiment engage the enemy at Sherwood Missouri May 22 The War Department established of Colored Troops to handle the recruitment organization and service of the newly organized black regiments commanded by white officers May 22 thru July 8 Battle of Port

    Original URL path: http://history-world.org/civil_war_chronology.htm (2016-02-11)
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  • The American Civil War, Should the Rebel Flag Fly
    the subject THOSE REBEL FLAGS by John Howard Jewett 1843 1925 Shall we send back the Johnnies their bunting In token from Blue to the Gray That Brothers in blood and Good Hunting Shall be our new watchword to day In olden times knights held it knightly To return to brave foemen the sword Will the Stars and the Stripes gleam less brightly If the old Rebel flags are restored Call it sentiment call it misguided To fight to the death for a rag Yet trailed in the dust derided The true soldier still loves his flag Does love die and must honor perish When colors and causes are lost Lives the soldier who ceases to cherish The blood stains and valor they cost Our battle fields safe in the keeping Of Nature s kind fostering care Are blooming our heroes are sleeping And peace broods perennial there All over our land rings the story Of loyalty fervent and true One flag and that flag is Old Glory Alike for the Gray and the Blue Why cling to those moth eaten banners What glory or honor to gain While the nation is shouting hosannas Uniting her sons to fight Spain

    Original URL path: http://history-world.org/rebel_flag.htm (2016-02-11)
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  • The American Civil War,  Wilmer and The War
    One of the first shots fired was a cannon which exploded in Wilmer s summer kitchen When the fighting was finished Wilmer decided to move his family out of harms way He choose a place in western Virginia called Appomattox Courthouse It was here three and one half years later that again the combatants came together By this time however the Army of Virginia was but a shadow of what

    Original URL path: http://history-world.org/wilbur_and_the_war.htm (2016-02-11)
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  • The American Civil War, LINCOLN WINS REBEL DEBATE
    The same Georgian dared the North to make the Southerners stay in Like a schoolboy thumbing his nose at a potential adversary he cried Come and do it Georgia he declared was on the warpath We are as ready to fight now as we will ever be Treason Bah Those hot words marked his swan song as a senator for minutes later in January 1861 Toombs was gone resigned to join his state in secession but not before visiting the U S Treasury to collect the remainder of his Federal salary and mileage compensation funds for his return home Oddly it was the same Toombs who just a few weeks later as the newly installed Confederate secretary of state stood alone to beg Jefferson Davis and his Cabinet to forbear rather than allow guns to open fire in Charleston Harbor This surprising but astute reaction from Toombs took place April 9 an auspicious date for any Civil War calendar Word had just been received of President Lincoln s message to Governor F W Pickens of South Carolina that he Lincoln felt constrained to supply the isolated garrison at Fort Sumter It was a courteous message with serious implications Come what may It was indeed a gauntlet Lincoln knew the South must actÉor back down And if it be war Lincoln needed the South to strike the first blow in order to have a unified Union behind him If only war could resolve the crisis it must be war initiated by the other party who indeed had already fired upon a supply ship once in December 1860 and who had already cut off and trapped the garrison of men on the island of Fort Sumter It was Toombs then who saw what Lincoln was about All the Rebel Cabinet was ready

    Original URL path: http://history-world.org/lincoln_wins_rebel_debate.htm (2016-02-11)
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  • The American Civil War, Letter From Joshua Chamberlain
    two struck just over my head in a tree Sometimes our own shells would explode right over our head scare the men dreadfully No sooner had we got over in line than we were ordered to recross The General sent Col Ames with six companies to defend the ford by lying behind the bank of the canal me with four companies to support the batteries on the heights We had four wounded not seriously At dusk we were sent out as pickets we have been lying here all night the whole Regt crouching along the banks of the river The rebels firing every time they saw a head we doing the same for them The river is narrow At about mid night I rode softly along examining our pickets whenever the horse stumbled whiz would come a bullet in the dark All this morning at least as often as every three words I have written a bullet or a shell has hissed over my head either from our own sharpshooters or the rebels 5 in that last line I am lying in a hollow where I am not much exposed really not at all disturbed Glancing down at this moment I see a rebel ball that had struck right by my side but I suppose before I came I hope to be relieved soon get somewhere where I can live like a civilized being Our eating drinking sleeping arrangements are not remarkable for comfort I can see plenty of dead wounded men lying around from where I sit As soon as it can be done we are going to rescue some wounded who are calling to us from the rebel shore Our Regt has not done much yet but we feel as if we could I am very well happy

    Original URL path: http://history-world.org/letter%20joshua_chamberlain.htm (2016-02-11)
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