Key Dates of the Civil War

Timeline created by amfritz
In History
  • Lincoln is elected

    Lincoln is elected
    Lincoln's First Inaugural Address Lincoln is elected President of the United States. He won the electoral college votes, but did not earn a popular majority vote. The nation was very clearly divided over his presidency before it even began.
  • South Carolina secedes

    South Carolina secedes
    Upon the realization that an anti-slavery president would be at the healm of the nation, South Carolina became the first to secede from the Union.
  • The Confederacy is born

    The Confederacy is born
    In rapid succession, six states followed suit and left the Union after South Carolina. In February 1861, these seven states formed the Confederate States of America in Montgomery, Alabama.
  • Battle of Fort Sumter

    Battle of Fort Sumter
    The Battle of Fort Sumter Located near Charleston, South Carolina. Fort Sumter was held by American military forces despite being surrounded by Confederate troops in Charleston. Tensions came to a head and the fort was attacked in a 2 day siege. No loss of life occured, but when it was over, people on both sides of the disagreement favored military action.
    After this, 4 more states seceded from the Union.
  • Battle of Bull Run

    Battle of Bull Run
    Fought in Prince William County, near Manassas. This was the first major battle of the Civil War, and then Union forces retreated without orders to Washington. This is also where "Stonewall Jackson" got his nickname.
  • Emancipation Proclamation

    Emancipation Proclamation
    The Emanciptation Proclamation Delievered by President Lincoln, this proclamation declared that all people being held as slaves were to be freed. It only applied to states that had seceded. This would all be for nothing, though, if the Union couldn't win the war.
  • Battle of Gettysburg

    Battle of Gettysburg
    The Battle of Gettysburg (VIDEO) Fought in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. Considered a turning point in the war - Union troops defeated Confederate soldiers and effectively stopped the South's invasion. It is the bloodiest and deadliest of the Civil War battles. Nearly 50,000 soldiers total lost their lives.
  • Lincoln's Second Inagural Address

    Lincoln's Second Inagural Address
    Second Inagural Address Lincoln was elected to a second term in office and gave his simple but powerful second address on this date. Sadly, a little over a month later, President Lincoln was assassinated at a theatre.
  • Lee surrenders; Union wins.

    Lee surrenders; Union wins.
    General Lee surrendered at Appomattox Court House to General Grant. Confederate troops were weak and tired and separated from the pack; Lee had no choice but to surrender. With this, the Civil War was over.
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    Key Dates of the Civil War