Civil War notes - Maine West High School

What you should know about the
Civil War…
Significant people…
Differences/Basic facts…
Advantages for each…
Why did soldiers fight?
Where/when were the first shots?
Where was the first battle?
What did most people expect the war to be?
What was the result of the first battle?
Where did Grant show early success?
What was significant about Shiloh?
What was significant about Antietam?
The Civil War
• Let there be no compromise on the
question of extending slavery. If there
be, all our labor is lost, and, ere long,
must be done again.
• You think slavery is right and ought to
be extended; while we think it is wrong
and ought to be restricted. That I
suppose is the rub. It certainly is the
only substantial difference between us.
• The United States of
• The Union
• Yankees
• Billy Yank
• Preserve the Union
• President – Abraham
• The Confederate
States of America
• The Confederacy
• Rebels
• Johnny Reb
• Independence –
state’s rights
• President – Jefferson
Abraham Lincoln
Jefferson Davis
• Bigger population
• More soldiers
• More Industry
• Know the territory
• Defending homes
• Better military leaders
• Army splits as Southerners feel loyal to
home states
• Many officers fought together and gained
experience during War with Mexico
• Many soldiers on both sides had never
been more than a few miles from home
• Northern soldiers fight to preserve Union;
Southern soldiers fight Northern
Fort Sumter
Union fort in Confederate territory
Confederacy demands surrender
Lincoln decides to re-supply the fort
First shots of the Civil War
April 12, 1861
Fort defended by Maj. Robert Andersoninstructor of the attacker, PGT Beauregard at
West Point
• One Union soldier killed as they fire cannon in
• Lincoln gets Davis to start the war
First Battle of Bull Run
Bull Run
First battle
25 miles from Washington, D.C.
Union troops led by Irwin McDowell
Union pushed Confederates back
Confederate troops rally behind General Thomas
Jackson – earns the nickname “Stonewall”
• Confederate reinforcements chase Union from the field,
retreat all the way to D.C.
• Retreat slowed by people who came to watch the battle
• Knew it would be a real war
Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson
• From Virginia
• Instructor at Virginia
Military Institute
• Extremely religious
• Robert E. Lee’s most
trusted commander
“There stands Jackson like a stonewall” –
Gen. Bee
Ulysses S. Grant
• West Point graduate
• Failure as farmer, bill
collector, real estate
agent, store clerk
• Decisive military
• “Unconditional
Surrender” Grant
Forts Henry and Donelson
Forts Henry and Donelson
Union army invades western Tennessee
Led by General Ulysses S. Grant
Union victories
Forts held strategic importance on
Tennessee and Cumberland Rivers
Shiloh – place of peace
• Grant attacked by Confederates and
suffered huge losses
• Grant counterattacks the next day with
• Confederates retreat
• Both sides see they are in for a long and
bloody war
• ¼ of 100,000 men who fought there were
killed, wounded, or captured
Robert E. Lee
• Gave up command of
Union army to defend
home state of Virginia
• Became commander
of Confederate army
• Against secession
• Brilliant military
George McClellan
• Made U.S. commander
after Bull Run
• Brilliant trainer
• Slow to action
• Frustrated Lincoln
• Always felt he needed
more men before he
could attack
• Lincoln said he had a
case of “the slows”
• George B. McClellan finds Robert E. Lee’s
plans in a cigar wrapper – Lee and
Jackson are split
• Bloodiest single day in American history
• Double number of deaths in War of 1812
and war with Mexico combined
• Southern troops escape to Virginia
• McClellan fails to follow
• Lincoln fires McClellan
• “to see what war was without romance. I
cannot describe my feelings, but I hope to
God never to see the like again.”
- Northern soldier
Confederate dead at Antietam – bloodiest day in U.S. history
Trent Affair
• Britain declares neutrality
• Confederacy sends diplomats to meet with
Britain and France
• Traveled on a British ship, the Trent
• U.S. warship, San Jacinto, stops ship and
arrests Confederate representatives
• Britain sends 8,000 troops to Canada
• U.S. releases prisoners
Fredericksburg – Dec. 1862
• Virginia
• Union army, under
General Ambrose
• Confederate
• Burnside replaced
Chancellorsville – May 1863
• Virginia
• Lee** outmaneuvers new
Union commander
Thomas “Fighting Joe”
• Confederate victory**
• Stonewall Jackson
accidentally shot and
killed by his own men**
• Lee lost his most trusted
• July 2-4, 1863
• Lee** leads army into Pennsylvania to force the
war into Union territory
• One of few major battles to take place in the
• Began as a skirmish as Confederate troops
going into town looking for shoes ran into
Union cavalry**
• Shooting attracted more troops
• July 2 – 90,000 Union;75,000 Confederate
George Meade
• Commander of
Union forces at
• Replaced Burnside
James Longstreet
• Replaced Jackson as
Lee’s top advisor
Day 2
• Union has the high ground on hills known
as Cemetery Ridge, Big Round Top, and
Little Round Top
• Union troops mistakenly vacate Little
Round Top – both sides rush to take it
Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain
• Joshua Chamberlain,
professor and colonel
of Maine regiment,
defends the hill
• Running out of
ammunition, he
leads a daring
bayonet charge and
stops the
Confederate attack
Day 3
• Robert E. Lee decides to attack the center
of the Union line
• Attack led by General George Pickett
• Had to cross long exposed field –
becomes known as Pickett’s Charge
• Union troops were well entrenched
• Pickett’s division suffers heavy losses
Union victory**
Total casualties appx. 30 %
Union – 23,000 killed or wounded
Confederate – 28,000 killed or wounded
Prove that Lee can be beaten
Lee retreats back south and never again
invades the North - Meade fails to follow up with
• Considered by many to be the “turning
point” of the war**
Gettysburg Address
Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent, a
new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men
are created equal.
Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any
nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure. We are met on a great
battle-field of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field, as a
final resting place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might
live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this.
But, in a larger sense, we can not dedicate -- we can not consecrate -- we can
not 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 the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the
unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced.
It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us -that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for
which they gave the last full measure of devotion -- that we here highly resolve
that these dead shall not have died in vain -- that this nation, under God, shall
have a new birth of freedom -- and that government of the people, by the
people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.
• Mississippi
• Major port on Mississippi River
• July 4, 1863 - Surrenders to Grant after
long siege
• Union victory
• Puts Mississippi River under Union
• Along with Gettysburg, seems to suggest
a shift in momentum
Grant and Lee in Virginia
• March 1864, Lincoln appoints Grant commander
of all Union armies
• Plans war of attrition against Lee
Wear him down
Attack Lee relentlessly
North could replace troops; South could not
From May 4 – June 18, 1864, Grant loses 60,000
men to Lee’s 32,000
• The Wilderness; Spotsylvania; Cold Harbor
(Grant lost 7,000 men in one hour); Petersburg
• Northern newspapers refer to Grant as a
Sherman’s March to the Sea
• Grant appoints William
Tecumseh Sherman as
commander of part of the
• Plans on marching
through Georgia,
destroying everything in
his path
– Total War
– Make the South “so sick of
war that generations would
pass away before they
would again appeal to it.”
Appomattox Court House
• By late March, 1865, Grant and Philip Sheridan
approaching Richmond, VA, from the west;
Sherman from the south
• Jefferson Davis and gov’t abandon capital
• April 9, 1865 – Lee surrenders to Grant at
Appomattox Court House, Virginia,
• Terms were generous, as per Lincoln’s request
• Within two months, all remaining resistance