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Civil War timeline

By Newbexx
  • Missouri Compromise

    Missouri Compromise
    The Missouri Compromise was passed in 1820 between the pro-slavery and anti-slavery factions in the United States Congress, involving primarily the regulation of slavery in the western territories.
  • Underground Railroad

    Underground Railroad
    The system of escape routes they used became known as the
    Underground Railroad. It started by African Americans and white abolitionists. Its purpose is to hide fugitive slaves.
  • Santa Fe Trail

    Santa Fe Trail
    One of the busiest routes was the Santa Fe Trail, which stretched 780 miles from Independence, Missouri, to
    Santa Fe in the Mexican province of New Mexico. Each spring from 1821 through the 1860s, American traders loaded their covered wagons with goods
    and set off toward Santa Fe.
  • Mexico abolishes slavery

    Mexico abolishes slavery
    Stephen obtained permission, first from Spain and then from Mexico after it had won its independence, to carry out his father’s project. In 1821 he established a colony where “no drunkard, no gambler, no profane swearer, and no idler” would be allowed.
  • San Felipe de Austin

    San Felipe de Austin
    The main settlement of the colony was named San Felipe de Austin, in Stephen’s honor. By 1825, Austin had issued 297 land grants to the group that later became known as Texas’s Old Three Hundred. Each family received either 177 very inexpensive acres of farmland, or 4,428 acres for stock grazing, as well as a 10-year exemption from paying taxes. By 1830, there were mor
  • Trail of Tears

    Trail of Tears
    The Trail of Tears is a name given to the ethnic cleansing and forced relocation of Native American nations from southeastern parts of the United States following the Indian Removal Act of 1830.
  • Nat Turner’s Rebellion

    Nat Turner’s Rebellion
    In August 1831, Turner and more than 50 followers attacked four
    plantations and killed about 60 whites. Whites eventually captured and executed many members of the group, including Turner.
  • The Liberator

    The Liberator
    Garrison became the editor of an antislavery paper in 1828. Three years later he established his own paper, The Liberator, to deliver an uncompromising demand: immediate emancipation.
  • Oregon Trail

    Oregon Trail
    The Oregon Trail stretched from Independence,
    Missouri, to Oregon City, Oregon. It was blazed in 1836 by
    two Methodist missionaries named Marcus and Narcissa
    Whitman. By driving their wagon as far as Fort Boise (near
    present-day Boise, Idaho), they proved that wagons could
    travel on the Oregon Trail.
  • Texas Revolution

    Texas Revolution
    the 1836 rebellion in which Texas gained its
    independence from Mexico.
  • Mexican-American War

    Mexican-American War
    Texas gained its independence from Mexico in 1836. Initially, the United States declined to incorporate it into the union, largely because northern political interests were against the addition of a new slave state. The Mexican government was also encouraging border raids and warning that any attempt at annexation would lead to war.
    Nonetheless, annexation procedures were quickly initiated after the 1844 election of Polk, who campaigned that Texas should be “re-annexed” and that the Oregon Ter
  • Manifest Destiny

    Manifest Destiny
    In the 19th century, Manifest Destiny was the widely held belief in the United States that American settlers were destined to expand throughout the continent.
  • Texas enters the United States

    Texas enters the United States
    Most Texans hoped that the United States would annex their republic, but U.S. opinion divided along sectional lines.
    Southerners wanted Texas in order to extend slavery, which already had been established there. Northerners feared that the annexation of more slave territory would tip the uneasy balance in the Senate in favor of slave states—and prompt
    war with Mexico
  • The North Star

    The North Star
    In 1847, Douglass began his ownantis lavery newspaper. He named it The North Star, after the star that guided runaway slaves to freedom.
  • Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo

    Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo
    On February 2, 1848, the United States and Mexico signed the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo. Mexico agreed to the Rio Grande as the border between Texas and Mexico and ceded the New Mexico and California territories to the United States. The United States agreed to pay $15 million for the Mexican cession, which included presentday California, Nevada, New Mexico, Utah, most of Arizona, and parts of Colorado and Wyoming.
  • Harriet Tubman

    Harriet Tubman
    Shortly after passage of the Fugitive Slave
    Act, Tubman resolved to become a conductor on the Underground Railroad. In all, she made 19 trips back to the South and is said to have helped 300 slaves—including her own parents—flee to freedom.
  • Compromise of 1850

    Compromise of 1850
    After obtaining support of the powerful Massachusetts senator Daniel Webster, Clay presented to the Senate a series of resolutions later called the Compromise of 1850. Clay’s compromise contained provisions to appease Northerners as well as Southerners. To please the North, the compromise provided that California be admitted to the Union as a free state. To please the South, the compromise proposed
    a new and more effective fugitive slave law. To placate both sides, a provision allowed popular so
  • Fugitive Slave Act

    Fugitive Slave Act
    Under the law, alleged fugitive slaves were not entitled to a trial by jury. In addition, anyone convicted of helping a fugitive was liable for a fine of $1,000 and imprisonment for
    up to six months. Infuriated by the Fugitive Slave Act, some Northerners resisted it by organizing “vigilance committees” to send endangered African Americans to safety in Canada. Others resorted to violence to rescue fugitive slaves. Still others worked to help slaves escape from slavery.
  • Uncle Tom’s Cabin

    Uncle Tom’s Cabin
    In 1852, Harriet Beecher Stowe published her novel Uncle Tom’s Cabin, which stressed that slavery was not just a political contest, but also a great moral struggle.
  • Kansas-Nebraska Act

    Kansas-Nebraska Act
    Douglas introduced a bill in Congress on January 23, 1854, that would divide the area into two territories: Nebraska in the north and Kansas in the south.After months of struggle, the Kansas-Nebraska Act became law in 1854.
  • Dread Scott v. Sandford

    Dread Scott v. Sandford
    Dred Scott, a slave whose owner took him from the slave state of Missouri to free territory in Illinois and Wisconsin and back to Missouri. Scott appealed to the Supreme Court for his freedom on the grounds that living in a free state—Illinois—and a free territory—Wisconsin—had made him a free man. On March 6, 1857, the Supreme Court ruled against Dred Scott.
  • John Brown’s raid/Harpers Ferry

    John Brown’s raid/Harpers Ferry
    Brown secretly obtained financial backing from several
    prominent Northern abolitionists. On the night of October 16, 1859, he led a band of 21 men, black and white, into Harpers Ferry, Virginia (now West Virginia). His aim was to seize the federal arsenal there and start a general slave uprising.
  • Abraham Lincoln and Stephen Douglas Debates

    Abraham Lincoln and Stephen Douglas Debates
    They were debating a series of debates on the issue of slavery in the territories. Douglas believed deeply in popular sovereignty. Lincoln, on the other hand, believed that slavery
    was immoral. Douglas won at last.
  • Abraham Lincoln becomes president

    Abraham Lincoln becomes president
    As the 1860 presidential election approached, the Republicans nominated Abraham Lincoln. Lincoln appeared to be moderate in his views. Although he pledged to halt the further spread of slavery, he also tried to reassure Southerners that a Republican administration would not “interfere with their slaves, or with them, about their slaves.” Nonetheless, many Southerners viewed him as an enemy.
  • Formation of the Confederacy

    Formation of the Confederacy
    In February 1861, delegates from the secessionist states met in
    Montgomery, Alabama, where they formed the Confederate
    States of America, or Confederacy. Jefferson Davis was the president.
  • Attack on Fort Sumter

    Attack on Fort Sumter
    Months earlier, as soon as the Confederacy was formed, Confederate soldiers in each secessionist state began seizing federal installations—especially forts. Lincoln decided to neither abandon Fort Sumter nor reinforce it. He would
    merely send in “food for hungry men.” At 4:30 A.M. on April 12, Confederate batteries began thundering away to the cheers of Charleston’s citizens. The deadly struggle between North and South was under way.
  • Battle of Bull Run

    Battle of Bull Run
    The first bloodshed on the battlefield occurred about three months after Fort Sumter fell, near the little creek of Bull Run, just 25 miles from Washington, D.C. . In the afternoon Confederate reinforcements helped win the first Southern victory. Fortunately for the Union, the Confederates were too exhausted to follow up their victory with an attack on Washington. Still, Confederate morale soared. Many Confederate soldiers, confident that the war was over, left the army and went home.
  • Battle at Antietam

    Battle at Antietam
    McClellan ordered his men to pursue Lee, and the two
    sides fought on near a creek called the Antietam (Bn-tCPtEm). The clash proved to be the bloodiest single-day battle in American history, with casualties totaling more than 26,000.
  • Emancipation Proclamation

    Emancipation Proclamation
    On January 1, 1863, Lincoln issued his Emancipation Proclamation. The proclamation did not free any slaves immediately because it applied only to areas behind Confederate lines, outside Union control. Nevertheless, for many, the proclamation gave the war a moral purpose by turning the struggle into a fight to free the slaves. It also ensured that compromise was no longer possible.
  • Conscription

    Conscription
    As the fighting intensified, heavy casualties and widespread desertions led each side to impose conscription, a draft that forced men to serve in the army.
  • Battle at Gettysburg

    Battle at Gettysburg
    The Battle of Gettysburg began on July 1 when Confederate soldiers led by A. P. Hill encountered several brigades of Union cavalry under the command of John Buford, an experienced officer from Illinois.
  • Battle at Vicksburg

    Battle at Vicksburg
    Vicksburg itself was particularly important because it rested
    on bluffs above the river from which guns could control all water traffic. Federal commander Grant cptured Vicksburg. Residents suffered.( Their confidence growing with every victory, Grant and his troops rushed toVicksburg, hoping to take the city while the rebels were reeling from their losses.Grant ordered two frontal attacks on Vicksburg, neither of which succeeded. )
  • Gettysburg address

    Gettysburg address
    A ceremony was held to dedicate a cemetery in Gettysburg. There, President Lincoln spoke for a little more than two minutes. According to some contemporary historians, Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address “remade America.” Before Lincoln’s speech, people said, “The United States are . . .” Afterward, they said, “The United States is . . .” In other words, the speech helped the country to realize that it was not just a collection
    of individual states; it was one unified nation.
  • Sherman’s March

    Sherman’s March
    In the spring of 1864, Sherman began his march southeast through Georgia to the sea, creating a wide path of destruction. His army burned almost every house in its path and destroyed livestock and railroads. By mid-November he had burned most of Atlanta. After reaching the ocean,
    Sherman’s forces—followed by 25,000 former slaves—turned north to help Grant “wipe out Lee.”
  • Income Tax

    Income Tax
    As the Northern economy grew, Congress decided to help pay for the war by collecting the nation’s first income tax, a tax that takes a specified percentage of an individual’s income.
  • Assassination of Abraham Lincoln

    Assassination of Abraham Lincoln
    On April 14, 1865, five days after Lee surrendered to Grant at Appomattox, Lincoln and his wife went to Ford’s Theatre in Washington to see a British comedy, Our American Cousin. During its third act, a man crept up behind Lincoln and shot the president in the back of his head.
  • Thirteenth Amendment

    Thirteenth Amendment
    After some political maneuvering, the Thirteenth Amendment was ratified at the end of 1865. The U.S. Constitution now stated, “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.”
  • Surrender at Appomattox Court House

    Surrender at Appomattox Court House
    In a Virginia town called Appomattox (BpQE-mBtPEks) Court House, Lee and Grant met at a private home to arrange a Confederate surrender. At Lincoln’s request, the terms were generous. Grant paroled Lee’s soldiers and sent them
    home with their possessions and three days’ worth of rations. Officers were permitted keep their side arms. Within a month all remaining Confederate resistance collapsed. After four long years, the Civil War was over.
  • Abolition

    Abolition
    The movement to abolish slavery, became the most important of a series of reform movements in America.