Battle Summary: Fort SumterOn April 10th, Confederate general Beauregard demanded the Union garrison commanded by Anderson at Fort Sumter at Charleston, South Carolina to surrender. Anderson refused and two days later, Beauregard had Confederate batteries (cannons) fire on the fort. The next day, Anderson surrendered the fort and had the garrison evacuate. The fighting showed the Union that the rebels were going to fight.
1st Battle of Bull Run
Battle Summary: Manassas, FirstUnion forces led by McDowell clashed with Confederate forces led by Beauregard near Manassas, Virginia. Union forces pushed the Confederates back to Henry Hill until Confederate reinforcements arrived later in the afternoon. After the reinforcments arrived, they were able to push the Union back and gave the Confederacy the victory of the first major land battle of the Civil War. The battle showed the Union that it had under estimated its apponent and the war would be a long and costly affair.
Battle of Hampton Roads
Battle Summary: Hampton RoadsOn March 8th, the Confederate ironclad Virginia (also known as the Merrimack) attacked Union vessels Cumberland and Congress near Hampton Roads, Virginia. It sinked the Cumberland and ran the Congress aground. The next day, the Union ironclad Monitor arrived and initiated the first ironclad battle in history with the Virginia. The ships fought to a standstill, ending the battle with no clear victor. The battle however, changed military and navy history and made wooden ships obselete.
Battle of Shiloh
Battle Summary: ShilohConfederate troops led by Johnston suprise attacked Union forces led by Grant on March 6th near Pittsburg Landing, Tennessee. After repeated rebel assults, Union troops established a defensive line around Pittsburg Landing where they recieved reinforcments. The next morning, Beauregard, who was in charge because Johnston was killed earlier in the battle, attacked the Union line and was pshed back and forced to withdraw to Corinth. The victory gave the Union control of the Mississippi River.
2nd Battle of Bull Run
Battle Summary: Manassas, SecondBetween the 28th and the 30th of August, Union and Confederate forces once again clashed near Manassas, Virginia. Only this time, Union forces were led by Pope and Confederate forces were led by Lee. Confederate reinforcments arrived at noon on the 29th and drove the Union forces back to Washington on the 30th. The Confederate victory allowed the Confederacy to regain control of most of Virginia.
Battle of Antietam
Battle Summary: AntietamFrom the 16th to the 18th of September, Union forces led by McClellan and Confederate forces led by Lee clashed at Sharpsburg, Maryland. Hooker's corps mounted an assult on the dawn of September 17th that began the bloodiest day in American history. Both sides fought until Lee ordeered his army across the Potomac. Even though Lee retreated, the outcome of the battle was seen as a draw. The battle led Abraham Lincoln to propose the Emancipation Proclamation.
Battle of Fredricksburg
Battle Summary: FredericksburgFrom the 11th to the 15th of December, Union forces led by Burnside attacked entrenched Confederate forces led by Lee at Fredericksburg, Virginia. Starting on the 13th, Burnside staged a series of assults on the Confederate's position that left his army in tatters. On the 15th, Burnside called off the offensive and crossed the Rappahannock. The Confederate victory stoppped the final Union advance of the year 1862.
National ArchivesAfter the Battle of Antietam, Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation. The Proclamation freed slaves in only thee territories that had rebelled, which ment that not many slaves were freed. It also allowed African Americans to be accepted into the U.S. armed forces. The Emancipation Proclamation showed the Confederacy that the war was centered on the issue of slavery.
Battle of Chancellorsville
Battle Summary: ChancellorsvilleOn the morning of May 2nd, confederate forces led by Lee attacked Union forces led by Hooker at Chancellosville, Virginia, but they were held off. The next day, Lee attacked again and drove Hooker to withdraw a mile and entrench himself in a defensive "U". During the night of May 5th, Hooker crossed the Rappahannock. Even though the battle at Chancellorsville was considered to be one of Lee's greatest victories, it cost the Confederacy the life of Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson.
Siege of Vicksburg
Battle Summary: VicksburgForm May to June of 1863, Union forces led by Grant converged on Vicksburg, Mississippi. Grant laid siege to Confederate forces in Vicksburg led by Pemberton. On July 4th, Pemberton surrendered vicksburg. The surrender gave the Union the Mississippi River and effectively split the Confederacy in two, completing ine of the final stages of the Anaconda Plan.
Battle of Gettysburg
Battle Summary: GettysburgAt the beggining of July of 1863, Confederate forces led by Lee converged on the town of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania from the west and north and attacked Union forces led by Meade. On July 2nd, Lee attacked Meade, but the union forces were able to hold off part of the assult. The next day, the confederates lost their last toe-hold on Culp's Hill. The day after that, Lee withdrew his army to the Potomac. The Union's victory crushed Lee's hopes of a Confederate victory in the North.
Siege of Atlanta
Battle Summary: AtlantaIn July of 1864, Union general Sherman laid seige to Confederate general Hood and the city of Atlanta, Georgia. On September 1st, after a four-month seige, Hood evacuated the city and ordered public buildings and possible assets destroyed. The next day, the mayor surrendered the city to Sherman. The Union capturing the "heart of the south" gave Lincoln enough support to win his re-election against McClellan.
Surrender at Appomattox Courthouse
Battle Summary: Appomattox CourthouseAt the begining of April of 1865, Confederate general Lee had retreated from Union general Grant at Petersburg and arrived at Appomattox Courthouse, Virginia. As Grant approched, Lee was about to make a run for his supplies in Lynchburg. But on April 9th, Union forces surrounded him and fighting broke out until Lee surrendered. The surrender at Appomattox Courthouse was the last engagement of the Civil War
Assassination of Abraham Lincoln
Lincoln PapersWhile Lincoln was watching a play at Ford's Theatre in Washington, D.C., John Wilkes Booth, a famous actor and Confederate sympathizer, crept into the presidential box and shot Lincoln in the back of the head. After Booth shot Lincoln, he jumped from the box, landed on the stage, and ran out of the theatre and dissapeared into the night on horseback. At 7:22 the next mourning, Lincoln died. His bodie was sent by train to Springfield, Illinois, where he lived before he became president.
Ratification of the 13th Amendment
Primary Documents in American HistoryThe 13th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution was proposed by Lincoln and passed by Congress on January 31st of 1865. The amendment declared that "Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction." Lincoln, however, died before it could be ratified and enforced. The 13th Amendment formally abolished slavery in the United States.