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The American Civil War Portal

The American Civil War (1861–1865) was a bitter sectional rebellion between the United States of America and the Confederate States of America, formed of eleven southern states' governments which moved to secede from the Union after the 1860 election of Abraham Lincoln as President of the United States. The North's victory was eventually achieved by leveraging advantages in population, manufacturing and logistics and through a strategic naval blockade denying the Confederacy access to the world's markets.

In many ways, the conflict's central issues – the role of constitutional federal government, the rights of states, and the treatment of African-Americans – are still not completely resolved. Not surprisingly, the Confederate Army's surrender at Appomattox on April 9, 1865 did little to change many Americans' attitudes toward the potential powers of central government. The passage of the Thirteenth, Fourteenth and Fifteenth amendments to the Constitution in the years immediately following the war couldn't change the racial prejudice prevalent among Americans of the day; and the process of Reconstruction couldn't heal the deeply personal wounds inflicted by four brutal years of war and more than 970,000 casualties – 3 percent of the population, including approximately 560,000 deaths. As a result, controversies affected by the war's unresolved social, political, economic and racial tensions continue to shape contemporary American thought. The causes of the war, the reasons for the outcome, and even the name of the war itself, are subjects of much controversy, even today.

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U.S. Military Academy COA.png
The United States Military Academy at West Point (also known as USMA, West Point, or Army) is a four-year coeducational federal service academy located at West Point, New York. Established in 1802, USMA is the oldest of the United States's five service academies. The military garrison at West Point was occupied in 1778 and played a key role in the Revolutionary War. The academy sits on scenic high ground overlooking the Hudson River, 50 miles (80 km) north of New York City. The entire central campus is a national landmark and home to scores of historic sites, buildings, and monuments. The majority of the campus's neogothic buildings are constructed from gray and black granite. The campus is a popular tourist destination complete with a large visitor center and the oldest museum in the United States Army.

With the outbreak of the Civil War, West Point graduates filled the general officer ranks of the rapidly expanding Union and Confederate armies. Two hundred and ninety-four graduates served as general officers for the Union, and one hundred and fifty-one served as general officers for the Confederacy. Of all living graduates at the time of the war, 105 (10%) were killed, and another 151 (15%) were wounded. Nearly every general officer of note from either army during the Civil War was a graduate of West Point and a West Point graduate commanded the forces of one or both sides in every one of the 60 major battles of the war.

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Grand Parade of the States

Flag of Nevada.svg
Nevada in the American Civil War began the war as a territory, but full statehood was expedited into in the United States by the events of war. Union sympathizers were so eager to gain statehood for Nevada that they rushed to send the entire state constitution by telegraph to the United States Congress before the presidential election and they did not believe that sending it by train would guarantee that it would arrive on time. The constitution was sent on October 31, just eight days before the election on November 7, 1864. The Nevada state constitution remains the largest and costliest transmission by telegraph. It had less than 40,000 inhabitants when it gained statehood (territories needed 60,000 to petition for statehood), far fewer than the initial population of any other state. President of the United States Abraham Lincoln wanted an additional Northern state that would presumably vote for his reelection, and help force pro-Northern ideas into new amendments to the United States Constitution. In total, Nevada sent 1,200 men to fight for the Union.

Nevada's main contribution to the war was the Comstock Lode, whose silver totaling $400 million financed the Union Civil War effort to defeat the southern states. A common belief is that Nevada achieved early statehood due to its silver, but as the Union already had Nevada's silver due to Nevada being its territory, its statehood was due to political concerns, not economic.

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Don Carlos Buell.jpg
Don Carlos Buell (March 23, 1818 – November 19, 1898) was a career United States Army officer who fought in the Seminole War, the Mexican-American War, and the American Civil War. Buell led Union armies in two great Civil War victories—Shiloh and Perryville—but was relieved of field command in late 1862 and made no more significant military contributions.

He graduated from the United States Military Academy in 1841 and was commissioned a second lieutenant in the 3rd U.S. Infantry regiment. In the Mexican-American War, he served under both Zachary Taylor and Winfield Scott. He was breveted three times for bravery and was wounded at Churubusco. Between the wars he served in the U.S. Army Adjutant General's office and as an adjutant in California.

At the start of the Civil War, Buell was an early organizer of the Army of the Potomac and briefly commanded one of its divisions. In November 1861, he succeeded Brig. Gen. William T. Sherman as head of the Department of the Ohio for operations in eastern Tennessee, an area with Union sympathies and considered important to the political efforts in the war. However, Buell essentially disregarded his orders and moved against Nashville instead, which he captured on February 25, 1862, against little opposition. On March 21, he was promoted to major general of volunteers.

At the Battle of Shiloh, Buell reinforced Grant, helping him defeat the Confederates on April 7, 1862. Buell considered that his arrival was the primary reason that Grant avoided a major defeat. There have been accusations that Grant developed a professional grudge against Buell that would haunt his future career; however Grant gave Buell unwavering praise in his memoirs.

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Republican presidential ticket 1864b.jpg
Credit: Durova

Abraham Lincoln ran for re-election with Andrew Johnson in 1864 not as a Republican, but as the head of the National Union Party.

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African-American Repatriations • Confederate States Secretary of the Navy • Confederate States Secretary of the Treasury • Delaware in the American Civil WarFremont Emancipation • Irish-Americans in the Civil War • Ironclad Board • Mexican-Americans in the Civil War • Minutemen (secessionist) • Dakota Territory in the American Civil War • Troop engagements of the American Civil War, 1865 • Washington in the American Civil War • Wyoming in the American Civil War
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31st Maine Infantry Regiment56th Illinois InfantryGeorge Leonard AndrewsArmy of the WestBattle of Amelia SpringsBattle of BerryvilleBattle of Blair's LandingBattle of BoonsboroughBattle of Cabin CreekBattle of Fort Sumter IIBattle of Guard HillBattle of Middle Boggy DepotBattle of Rice's StationBattle of Simmon's BluffBattle of Summit PointBattle of Yellow BayouCharleston ArsenalEdenton Bell BatteryElmira PrisonFirst Battle of DaltonBlackshear PrisonOrris S. FerryEdwin ForbesHiram B. GranburyHenry Thomas HarrisonBen Hardin HelmLouis Hébert (colonel)Benjamin G. HumphreysLunsford L. LomaxMaynard CarbineDaniel RugglesThomas W. ShermanHezekiah G. SpruillSmith Percussion CarbineMassachusetts in the American Civil WarEdward C. Walthall
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Battle of Athens (1861)Battle of Lone JackUpton HaysCharles R. JennisonJames Montgomery (colonel)James S. Rains
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