The challenges that the Union and the Confederacy faced during the Civil War were very different. Critical weaknesses that seemed unfit for war, plagued the opposing American forces, and would serve to be a continuous obstacle that would need to be conquered by patriotism of the people, for their opposing views. To allow for both sides to be competitive, the efforts put forth had to mold to the varied needs of the armies by both the civilian population and their militaries. To the people in the south the similarity to the colonists in the Revolutionary War, was assimilated to their separatist cause in the Civil War and would be their drive to compete with the dominating Northern states. This mindset started the Confederacy in the Civil War, despite many disadvantages, with the confidence in defeating Union forces, before becoming overwhelmed and being defeated after four well fought years.
The original seceding states of the Confederacy consisted of Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, and Alabama. The people of these states saw themselves extremely different than that of the northern states both politically and culturally, and felt continuous pressure from the population dominating in the northern states to conform to northern ideals. It seemed the only and best option to keep the southern way of life was to become an independent Confederate nation. That idea to become a separate nation was not a sudden idea when Lincoln came into office; it was simply not recognized by previous presidents, which would allow for the issue to hit its climax when he was elected. By the time Lincoln came into office, talks of revolution were already at its tipping point, but as stated by Lincoln, “Both parties deprecated war, but one of them would make war rather than let the nation survive, and the other would accept war rather than let it perish. And the war came.” Feeling sympathy and the same operation as the seceding states Virginia, North Carolina, Arkansas, and Tennessee joined the Confederate forces demanding to be an independent nation.
As soon as Lincoln was sworn in, his address to the nation was in attempt to create peace, reassuring the rebellious southern states that their way of life would not change and the president has no legal right to issue any enforcement to take away their freedoms or customs. He also gave warning in affect stating if an action was to start civil war it must be of a southern militant deed to warrant an assault from the Federal Army. The south did not adhere to Lincolns warning because southern independence was Jefferson Davis’, and his followers’ priority. The first Confederate assault came on April 13th and 14th 1861 when Jefferson Davis ordered an attack on Ft. Sumter. On April 15th Lincoln called for 75,000 volunteers to enlist in the armed forces for 90 days. The response from Lincoln’s call to action in the Northern public to fill the volunteer spots was overwhelming. Large numbers of young men from every northern state volunteered to keep the nation whole. Lincoln believed that with the overwhelming population difference between the north and south that the rebel army of the south would be crushed in a matter of days. The first battle of the war demonstrated just how confident the Federal Government was in their efforts to crush the Confederate army. Lincoln ordered General Irvin McDowell to lead the first attack on the Confederate army in the summer of 1861, in what has been come to be known as Battle of Bull Run (Manassas). McDowell led 35,000 new, eager Union troops against less than 20,000 Confederates. The Federal Government was so confident in their expected victory they invited the troop’s friends and families watch the Union army defeat the rebel Confederates. Soon after the Union army arrived, and opened up fire on the smaller rebel army, unexpected Confederate reinforcements came around the side of the Union’s main force. The Confederate reinforcements...
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