The Civil War

  • The Confederate States of America is Formed

    South Carolina was the first state to secede from the Union. Mississippi, Florida, Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, and Texas also seceded in Febuary of 1861, thus creating the Confederate States of America. Their president was Jefferson Davis.
  • Abraham Lincoln Elected President (First Term)

    Abraham Lincoln Elected President (First Term)
    Lincoln announced in his inaugural address that he believed that the U.S. citizens had the power to change their government through majority contest. However, he opposed the idea that southern states could leave the Union because they were unhappy with the government's position on slavery.
  • Attack on Fort Sumter

    Attack on Fort Sumter
    Confederate guns started firing on Fort Sumter before sunrise. The fort stood little chance against the Confederate forces. After 34 long hours of canon blasts, Fort Sumter surrendered.
  • First Battle of Bull Run

    First Battle of Bull Run
    The first major battle of the Civil War. It shattered the hopes of a quick Union victory because the Confederates won the battle. Also called the Battle of Manassas.
  • Trent Affair

    The Trent Affair happened when USS San Jacinto intercepted the British mail packed RMS Trent. The first reaction of the United States was to start a war with Britain, but President Lincoln did not want to risk war.
  • USS Monitor vs. CSS Virginia

    After returning to Hampton Roads later that month, the Monitor was waiting to fight with the Virginia. After fighting for several hours neither ship was seriously damaged, but the Monitor forced the Virginia to withdraw.
  • Battle of Shiloh

    Battle of Shiloh
    The Union army gained greater control of the Mississippi River Valley. Each army had about 10,000 casualties. Even though both sides claimed victory, the Union actually won.
  • Union Captures New Orleans

    The Confederates fired at Farragut's ships from the shore and from gunboats. They also launched burning rafts, to try and stop him from capturing New Orleans. Their efforts did not work because the twin forts made it to New Orleans.
  • Seven Days' Battle

    The Seven Days' Battle forced the Union army to retreat from near Richmond. General John Pope told his soldiers. "Let us look before us and not behind. Success and glory are in the advance."
  • Second Battle of Bull Run

    Second Battle of Bull Run
    The Confederate army forced most of the Union army out of Virginia. This was when Confederate General Robert E. Lee decided to take the war to the North.
  • Battle of Antietam

    Battle of Antietam
    This battle was the bloodiest single-day battle of the Civil War and in U.S. history. It stopped the northward advancement of General Lee's army. The Union won.
  • Emancipation Proclamation

    Emancipation Proclamation
    Lincoln wrote it in order to free the Confederate slaves. The proclamation had little immediate effect, because the government could not enforce the law in the South. It went into effect on January 1, 1863.
  • Seige of Vicksburg

    The Union troops that were fighting at Vicksburg were there for so long that they ran out of food and had to eat dogs, horses, and even rats. When General Pemberton of the Confederacy surrendered, General Grant immediately sent food to the soldiers and civilians.
  • West Virginia Becomes a State

    West Virginia became a state after the Wheeling Conventions and broke away from Virginia. It became a key border state and was the only state to be formed by seceding from a Confederate state.
  • Battle of Gettysburg

    Battle of Gettysburg
    This battle is known as the turning point of the Civil War. Even though the Confederate forces took over some Union trenches, the Union pravailed.
  • Lincoln is Re-Elected as President (Second Term)

    Lincoln ran against Democrat George B. McClellan, who served in the Union army. He won in a landslide with over 400,000 popular votes.
  • Gettysburg Address

    Gettysburg Address
    The Gettysburg Address praised the bravery of Union soldiers and renewed President Lincoln's commitment to winning the Civil War. Lincoln referenced the Declaration of Independence and its ideals of liberty, equality, and democracy.
  • Battle of Cold Harbor

    Battle of Cold Harbor
    This would be the last victory for the Confederates during the Civil War. The Union realized that the end of the Confederacy was near.
  • Assassination of President Lincoln

    Assassination of President Lincoln
    Lincoln was the first American President to be assassinated. He was shot by John Wilkes Booth, who was part of a larger conspiracy in an attempt to revive the Confederacy. He was watching the stage play "Our American Cousin" at Ford's Theatre in Washington, D.C with his wife, Mary Todd Lincoln and a few more guests. He died the next morning.
  • Surrender at Appomattox Courthouse

    General Lee of the Confederaty finally realized that the situation was hopeless. General Lee surrendered to General Grant at the Appomattox Courthouse, thus ending the Civil War.