Family Life During Civil War

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Family Life During Civil War

As a pivotal point in our nation’s history, the civil war holds a special fascination in the land and minds of the American people. It was a war entirely fought by Americans, often dividing families and even brothers against brothers. The American civil war was unforgettable. It was fought between the United States of America and the Southern slave states of the nearly formed confederate state of America under Jefferson Davis. The Civil War made really a tragic long lasting effect on a family unit of that period. During Civil War, families on both sides of the war had to bear a pain of personal loss. Husbands and fathers and sons died not in hundreds but in thousands of numbers in both the North and South and many of them returned home either handicapped or wounded manner. So many men not only injured physically but due to their wartime experiences, they had suffered more emotionally also. This effected their already burdened struggling families more. This way, the families had suffered with physical and psychological pain a lot. Also the families were divided during Civil war. The only bread winner of any family – may be a father or husband or an elder son had to go far off the home. So in those families, especially middle class, wives and mothers had to work in the home and also out of the home. They were the only to take care about every aspects of the family including children. And for this they were not much trained. This situation for city women was much more difficult (.netplaces.com). The painting from the article of war sprits at home by Lily Martin Spencer shows that she herself is sitting in the kitchen with her children and a servant. Lacking an adult male figure, the painting reflects the absence of men in the home during this period in American history. The painting from the article of war sprits at home by Lily Martin Spencer shows that she herself is sitting in the kitchen with her children and a servant. Lacking an adult male figure, the painting reflects the absence of men in the home during this period in American history.

Northern families lost a great many loved ones over the course of war and experienced their share of problems and grief, but southern families suffered far more. Many southern towns and cities were destroyed and the impact on the confederate civilian population was enormous in all eras (netplace.com). Most people and families in the south led the pastoral life, organized around agricultural activities. Many people in south had no slaves or very few, so all the man does physical labor. Due to war, families lost their able-bodied man, which had changed the condition of family that women had to do all the work in the house and farms to keep farms functioning with the other works such as cleaning, making and fixing cloths, and raising the children (civilwar.org). As war went on, people also started suffering from hunger. With confederate troops, to feed and burning all the remaining food, combined with the lack of available rail transportation which was being use by war efforts. They also suffered from the lack of goods as all the industries and factories were busy preparing the goods for civil war. As many men and sons were forced to leave their house they were not able to concentrate in the war. Handwritten letters were the main form of communication between soldiers and their relatives during civil war. Soldiers became desperate to hear from their families and for news from home. They even gladly read each other’s letters just to hear about familiar places and everyday situations; anything to take their mind off the war and their struggles. Robert T. Tallman, wrote to William Brown, with an interesting suggestion as a possible means to encourage more communication (ozarkscivilwar.org). “I have not had a letter for two weeks what is our folks doing. tell them I am dead and maybe they will send for my bounty and wages, and I will hear from them that way...
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