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Civil War Era Timeline

  • Abraham Lincoln Elected President

    Abraham Lincoln wins the Election of 1860. This causes widespread outrage in the Southern States. The South hated Lincoln so much that 10 of the states even banned his name from the Ballots.
  • Secession of South Carolina

    South Carolina Secedes from the Union in response to Lincoln winning the Election. This is the start of a chain reaction that directly leads to the civil war. It was arguable predictable considering the state's history (Nullification Crisis, general troublemaking)
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    Great Britain and France Refuse to Recognize the Confederacy

    The British and French never recognize the Confederacy as a sovereign nation. Because of this, Confederates are unable to receive any support, diplomatic, economic, or military.
  • Confederates Attack Fort Sumter

    The Confederates Attack Fort Sumter in Virginia. This is the official start of the Civil War. The confederates win.
  • Secession of Virginia

    Virginia Secedes from the Union. The Capital of the Confederacy is moved to Richmond. Robert E. Lee joins the army and the Confederates officially have a fighting chance in the war.
  • Union Blockades Confederate Ports

    The Union Declares Blockades of all confederate Ports. This prevents the Confederates from receiving any aid from other countries in the form of weapons and supplies. It also damaged their economy by preventing them from exporting their crops.
  • First Battle of Bull Run

    The first Major Battle of the War. Resulted in a Confederate Victory. Set the tone for the rest of the war, considering Confederates won most of the battles, despite losing the war.
  • The Battle of Hampton Roads

    Also called the battle of Monitor Versus Merrimac. This was the first Battle between Ironclad ships. This was a significant technological development at the time.
  • Capture of New Orleans

    Union forces capture New Orleans. The Confederates are blocked from the mouth of the Mississippi River. This was the first success in the Union's Grand Pincer maneuver.
  • Battle of Antietam

    First Major Battle of the Civil War to take place on Union Soil. Bloodiest Day of the War. Confederacy retreated, leading Union to declare victory, although tactically a draw.
  • Emancipation Proclamation

    Issued by Abraham Lincoln after his resolve was strengthened by the battle of Antietam. Freed all slaves only in belligerent Southern Territories. He could not free slaves in border Union states for fear of more rebellion.
  • Battle of Chancellorsville

    Significant confederate victory against Superior Numbers. Stonewall Jackson Killed. Hooker fired due to incompetence.
  • Pickett's Charge

    An infantry assault ordered by Lee on the Last day of the Battle of Gettysburg. This is considered to be Lee's biggest, and only, tactical blunder. He should not have sent troops into the center of an entrenched Union Line. This turned a slight union victory into a disastrous rout.
  • Surrender of Vicksburg

    Vicksburg, the last Confederate stronghold on the mississippi, is surrendered. The Union gains control of the Mississippi. This completes the second phase of the Southern half of their Grand Pincer Maneuver.
  • Grant Promoted to Commander-in-Chief of Union Armies

    General Ulysses S. Grant is given control of all Union Armies. This was necessary because Grant's understanding of the need to put the hammer down and quit being a little baby was vital in bringing down the confederacy.
  • Siege of Petersburg

    General Grant surrounds Lee's Army in Petersburg. This eventually led to Lee's final surrender and the Confederate loss of the war. Trench warfare was used extensively here, setting the tone for later wars, notably World War 1, where trench warfare was prevalent.
  • Sherman Burns Atlanta

    Union General Sherman Captures Atlanta. He burns it to the ground. This outrages Southern soldiers and civilians alike.
  • Thirteenth Amendment

    The thirteenth amendment rids the Union of Slavery absolutely. Lincoln felt secure in doing this with his stronger position in the war, whereas he couldn't have done so when issuing the emancipation proclamation. That could have caused him to lose the war.
  • Lee Surrenders

    General Lee surrenders after the long siege of Petersburg ends. He surrenders near appomattox Courthouse. This is the turning point in Johnston's decision to surrender his troops and end the war.
  • Joe Johnston Surrenders

    Joe Johnston surrenders the rest of the Confederate forces. He felt that winning the war was impossible after Lee's surrender. Jefferson Davis wanted to continue the war. This saved a lot of bloodshed.