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Most modern wars are known by one name: World War II, the Korean War, the Vietnam War. The American Civil War, commonly called the Civil War, has many names, especially in the states of the former Confederacy. It is known as the War of Southern Secession, the War Between the States, the War of Northern Aggression, the Second War of Independence, and the Second American Revolution. more
 
A number of articles in this section cover the introduction and spread of slavery below the Mason-Dixon line and the gradual outlawing of slavery north of that line.  Others address the American Revolution... >>  
As with the war itself, battles had different names.  Whereas the South named them after the closest town, such as Sharpsburg, the North often chose the closest river or geographical landmark, such as Antietam Creek. >>  
The most written about person in American history is Abraham Lincoln.  Our articles cover all aspects of his life: from gawky rail-splitter to national icon.  Although the first Republican president...>>  
All the major commanders are discussed in this section.  Robert E. Lee stands out as the preeminent Southern leader, followed by Stonewall Jackson, James Longstreet, J.E.B. Stuart, and a host of others.>>  
These articles concentrate on the stories of the common soldier, whether from the North or South.  Most were farmers or came from small towns.  In the beginning, the prevailing opinion was that the war would last three months ...>>  
Although superficially begun as a fight over state’s rights, the conflict eventually grew into a war to end slavery and make sure that “all men are equal.”  When the war began, there were few blacks in the army, but by the end...>>  
What happened to the North and South after the war?  What about future political leaders?  Five future presidents – Grant, Hayes, Garfield, Harrison, and McKinley – had been Union officers.  And what about the newly freed...>>  
What was happening in Great Britain, France, Canada, Russia, and other countries as they saw the American experiment in democracy seeming to fall apart?  Although no country officially recognized the Confederacy...>>  
What was happening to territories such as Montana, New Mexico, and Colorado during the war?  What was going on in Washington, D.C., and Richmond?  How about the medical profession and nursing? >>  

The rotating Civil War images above are presented courtesy of the Library of Congress and the National Archives and Registration Administration.
    The Slavery Period
(1619-1860)

The American Revolution, Constitution and Founding
Fathers (1770-1820)

Jacksonian Democracy, Abolitionism and the Failure
of Unity (1820-1860)
 
    1861       1863        1865
1862       1864
 
    Abraham Lincoln
Other Unionists
Jefferson Davis
Other Confederates
 
    Ulysses S. Grant
Other Union Leaders

Robert E. Lee
Other Confederate Leaders
 
  Union Soldiers and Sailors
Confederate Soldiers and Sailors
Northern Civilians
Southern Civilians
 
  Slavery During the War
The Growth of Freedmen
The Emancipation Proclamation
United States Colored Troops
 
  The North
The South
From Slavery to Freedom
– and Back Again
 
 
  Washington, DC, Area During the War
Richmond During the War
The Medical Field During the War
Modern Events About the Civil War
Movies About the Civil War
Newspapers, Magazines, Books on the Civil War
Other
 

 













 
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