Civil War and Reconstruction

  • Civil War Begins

    Civil War Begins
    The Confederacy attacks Fort Sumter beginning the American Civil War in Charleston, South Carolina. The result was a Union surrender after 34 hours of bombardment.
  • Call for Union Volunteers

    President Abraham Lincoln requests for 75,000 soldiers to serve for a period of ninety days to put down the rebellion.
  • Union and Confederate Forces Mobolized

    Both Confederate and Union troops are ready for war. President Lincoln sets up a blockade of all Confederate ports.
  • Robert E. Lee commands Virginia forces

    Robert E. Lee commands Virginia forces
    Robert E. Lee take control of the Virgian army after Virginia secedes from the Union.
  • Habeas Corpus suspended

    Abraham Lincoln suspends Habeas Corpus after a riot in Baltimore endangers soldiers and citizens.
  • Confederate Capital established

    The Confederate States name Richmond, Virginia as its capital.
  • US Sanitary Commision established

    The United States Sanitary Commission was established to see to the health and comfort of Federal soldiers.
  • Dorothea Dix named Superintendent of Female Nurses

    Dorothea Dix named Superintendent of Female Nurses
  • First Battle of Bull Run

    First Battle of Bull Run
    This ruined the chance of the Civil War being short and quick. The Union army attacked and retreated out of panic when the Confederacy returned with a counter attack.
  • Crittenden-Johnson Resolution

    The Senate passed the Crittenden-Johnson Resolution, which stated that the war’s purpose was to defend the Constitution, not to interfere with slavery.
  • Revenue Act of 1861

    Revenue Act of 1861
    Revenue Act of 1861 created the first federal income tax in US history.
  • Trent Affair

    Trent Affair
    The Trent Affair began when US forces boarded a British ship, the Confederate shipTrent, and arrested Confederate envoys James Mason and John Slidell. The action angered the British government. Britain threatened to sever diplomatic ties with the United States, and Lincoln and his Cabinet agreed to release the Confederates taken from the Trent in order to maintain diplomatic ties with Britain.
  • Battle of Fort Henry

    Battle of Fort Henry
    Navy gunboats captured Fort Henry, Tennessee, opening the Deep South to Union forces.
  • Battle of Pea Ridge

    Battle of Pea Ridge
    The Battle of Pea Ridge, Arkansas, ended in Union victory. Assured Union control of the Missouri River.
  • Battle of Shiloh

    Battle of Shiloh
    The bloodiest battle in American History in that time frame. the battle was a Union victory. The Union suffered 13,047 casualties, while the Confederacy sufferd10,699 casualties.
  • Union capture Port of New Orleans

    Union capture Port of New Orleans
    Confederate forts at the mouth of Mississippi River surrendered to the Union Navy, opening New Orleans back to Union control.
  • Habeas Corpus suspended nationwide

    Habeas Corpus suspended nationwide
    Secretary of War Edwin Stanton suspends habeas corpus nationwide.
  • The Second Battle of Bull Run

    The Second Battle of Bull Run
    The Second Battle of Bull Run in Virginia ended as a Confederate victory with 22,180 casualties.
  • Battle of Antietam

    Battle of Antietam
    This was the first major battle on Northern soul. This battle resulted in the most casualties in a single day of the war. The battle resulted in a Union victory, Lee and his army retreated, and the Union did not take any action defeating Lee's army following his retreat.
  • Emancipation Proclamation

    Emancipation Proclamation
    President Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclomation which he states, "all persons held as slaves within any State or designated part of a State . . . in rebellion against the United States . . . thenceforward and forever free.” Slaves in border states however were not freed because then the border would seced to the Confederacy.
  • National Bank Act

    National Bank Act
    The National Bank Act established a federal banking system and a national currency based on the holdings of the federal Treasury.
  • Battle of Vicksburg

    Battle of Vicksburg
    The siege of Vicksburg, Mississippi, began on May 18. The city surrendered on July 4 to Ulysses S. Grant’s army; the Union victory came at a cost of 19,233 casualties.
  • Battle of Gettysburg

    Battle of Gettysburg
    Lee and his army led an attack up the left and right flanks of the battlefield. Lee was met and his attack was repelled by the Union army. The Union army expected the Confederacy to attck from the left and right again so they strengthened the left and right flanks of their defense. But to their surprise Lee led his man up through the middle. The confederate shoulders made it into enemy lines, but the Union's defense held strong and caused Lee's army to retreat to Virginia.
  • Gettysburg Address

    Gettysburg Address
    Lincoln gave an address to the people of Gettysburg to dedicate the graveyard to the men who had served in the Battle of Gettysburg. Lincoln further strengthend the cause of the Union with this speech by making it about the people not the war. "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.”
  • Ten Percent Plan

    Ten Percent Plan
    President Lincoln announced a program for reconstruction in his Proclamation of Amnesty and Reconstruction. Part of Lincoln’s plans for Reconstruction included the Ten-Percent Plan, which allowed each Southern state to be readmitted to the Union once ten percent of its voters swore an oath of allegiance to the Union.
  • Grant named Union general in chief

    Grant named Union general in chief
  • Lincoln Re-Elected as President

    Lincoln Re-Elected as President
  • 13th Amendment passed

    13th Amendment passed
    Congress passed the Thirteenth Amendment abolishing slavery and sent it to the states for ratification
  • The Freedman's Bureau established

    The Freedman's Bureau established
    Congress established the Freedmen’s Bureau to assist newly freed slaves in transitioning to their new status.
  • Richmond Captured

    Richmond Captured
    The Union Army captured the Confederate capital, Richmond, Virginia.
  • Lee Surrenders at Appomatox Courthouse

    Lee Surrenders at Appomatox Courthouse
    Lee surrenders at Appomatox Courthouse after being overtaken by Ulysses S. Grant's army about one hundred miles west of Richmond.Recognizing that further resistance would be pointless, Lee surrendered at Appomattox Court House on April 9. The next day, in a final message to his troops, Robert E. Lee acknowledged that he was “compelled to yield to overwhelming numbers and resources.”
  • President Lincoln Assasinated

    President Lincoln Assasinated
    President Lincoln was shot by John Wilkes Booth at Ford’s Theatre in Washingon, DC, during a performance of Our American Cousin.
  • Andrew Johnson becomes president

    Andrew Johnson becomes president
    Lincoln died at 7:22 a.m.; Andrew Johnson became president.
  • Amnesty Proclamation

    Amnesty Proclamation
    President Andrew Johnson issued a proclamation granting amnesty and pardon to all persons who participated in “the existing rebellion,” with a few exceptions.
  • Southern Rebellion declared over

    Southern Rebellion declared over
    President Andrew Johnson declared the Southern rebellion over.
  • 14th Amendment

    14th Amendment
    Congress passed the Fourteenth Amendment, which granted citizenship to African Americans and reduced representation in Congress of any southern state that deprived African Americans of the vote
  • Purchase of Alaska

    Purchase of Alaska
    Secretary of State William Seward negotiated the purchase of Alaska from Russia for the United States.
  • Ulysses S. Grant elected as President

    Ulysses S. Grant elected as President
    Ulysses S. Grant was elected the eighteenth president of the United States of America, receiving 214 of 294 electoral votes.
  • Fifteenth Amendment passes Congress

    Fifteenth Amendment passes Congress
    Ratified in the wake of the Civil War, this amendment guaranteed the right to vote regardless of race or color.
  • Indian Appropriation Act

    Indian Appropriation Act
    In the late nineteenth century, Indian policy began to place a growing emphasis on erasing a distinctive American Indian identity. To weaken the authority of tribal leaders, Congress passed the Indian Appropriation Act, which ended the practice of treating tribes as independent, sovereign nations.
  • Amnesty Act of 1872

    Amnesty Act of 1872
    The Amnesty Act of 1872 removed voting and office-holding restrictions on most former members of the Confederacy.
  • Grant re-elected

    Grant re-elected
    Ulysses S. Grant defeated Horace Greeley with 286 of 352 electoral votes and was re-elected President of the United States.
  • Panic of 1873

    Panic of 1873
    The Panic of 1873 was prompted by the international economic problems and led to a major national depression.
  • The Compromise of 1877

    The Compromise of 1877
    At a meeting in February 1877, Democratic leaders accepted Hayes’s election in exchange for Republican promises to withdraw federal troops from the South, provide federal funding for internal improvements in the South, and name a prominent southerner to the president’s Cabinet. When the federal troops were withdrawn, the Republican governments in Florida, Louisiana, and South Carolina collapsed, bringing Reconstruction to a formal end.
  • Troops Evacuate South

    Troops Evacuate South
    The last of the federal troops pull out of the southern states.