The Civil War – Fact Sheet

The Civil War – Fact Sheet
• More than three million men fought in the war.
• Two percent of the population—more than 620,000—died in it.
• In two days at Shiloh on the banks of the Tennessee River, more Americans fell than in all previous
American wars combined.
• During the Battle of Antietam, 12,401 Union men were killed, missing or wounded; double the casualties
of D-Day, 82 years later. With a total of 23,000 casualties on both sides, it was the bloodiest single day of
the Civil War.
• At Cold Harbor, Va., 7,000 Americans fell in 20 minutes.
• Senator John J. Crittendon of Kentucky had two sons who became major generals during the Civil War:
one for the North, one for the South.
• In 1862, the U.S. Congress authorized the first paper currency, called "greenbacks."
• Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr., future chief Justice, was wounded three times during the Civil War: in the
chest at Ball’s Bluff, in the back at Antietam and in the heel at Chancellorsville.
• Disease was the chief killer during the war, taking two men for every one who died of battle wounds.
• North and South, potential recruits were offered awards, or "bounties," for enlisting, as much as $677 in
New York. Bounty jumping soon became a profession, as men signed up, then deserted, to enlist again
elsewhere. One man repeated the process 32 times before being caught.
• African Americans constituted less than one percent of the northern population, yet by the war’s end
made up ten percent of the Union Army. A total of 180,000 black men, more than 85% of those eligible,
• Confederate General Nathan Bedford Forrest had 30 horses shot from under him and personally killed 31
men in hand-to-hand combat. "I was a horse ahead at the end," he said.
• The words "In God We Trust" first appeared on a U.S. coin in 1864.
• In 1864, Ulysses S. Grant was promoted to Lieutenant General, a rank previously held by General George
Washington, and led the 533,000 men of the Union Army, the largest in the world. Three years later, he
was made President of the United States.
• On November 9, 1863, President Lincoln attended a theater in Washington, D.C., to see "The Marble
Heart." An accomplished actor, John Wilkes Booth, was in the cast.
• On March 4, 1865, Lincoln was inaugurated for a second term. Yards away in the crowd was John Wilkes
Booth with a pistol in his pocket. His vantage point on the balcony, he said later, offered him "an excellent
chance to kill the President, if I had wished."
• On May 13, 1865, a month after Lee’s surrender at Appomattox, Private John J. Williams of the 34th
Indiana became the last man killed in the Civil War, in a battle at Palmito Ranch, Texas. The final skirmish
was a Confederate victory.