- Time Period
The primary cause of the Civil War revolved around the expansion of slavery into the new territories of the United States. Moral and religious opposition to slavery was growing in the North, but Southerners depended on slave labor for its plantation-based economy. Abraham Lincoln’s election in 1860 escalated southern fears over national abolition and on Dec. 20, 1860, South Carolina became the first state to secede from the Union. Ten other states followed and the Confederate States of America elected Jefferson Davis as its president.The war began on April 12, 1861 at Fort Sumter in South Carolina and ended on April 9, 1865 in Virginia, when Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee surrendered to U.S. Gen. Ulysses S. Grant. Later that year, the 13th Amendment was ratified, abolishing slavery.Some 620,000 soldiers and at least 50,000 civilians died in the Civil War, almost as many deaths as all other American wars combined.
- Interactive Timeline(s)
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Dabney, Robert Lewis
Attack of the 1st Minnesota at Gettysburg- Painting by Don Troiani; Courtesy of the National Guard (CC BY 2.0)
The Battle of Shiloh- Library of Congress, LC-DIG-pga-04037
Encounter between the Monitor and the Merrimac- Library of Congress, LC-DIG-pga-04044
The Battle of Antietam- Library of Congress, LC-DIG-pga-01841
The Surrender of General Lee- Library of Congress, LC-DIG-pga-02394
- Web Source(s)
"Civil War Facts"
National Park Service, "The Surrender Meeting between Lee and Grant"
- Web Page Contributor
Affliated with: Former Religion and Ethics Editor, The San Diego Union-Tribune