Fought 1861-1865, the American Civil War was the result of decades of sectional tensions between the North and South. Focused on slavery and states rights, these issues came to a head following the election of Abraham Lincoln in 1860. Over the next several months eleven southern states seceded and formed the Confederate States of America. During the first two years of the war, Southern troops won numerous victories but saw their fortunes turn after losses at Gettysburg and Vicksburg in 1863. From then on, Northern forces worked to conqueror the South, forcing them to surrender in April 1865. Causes & Secession:
The roots of the Civil War can be traced to increasing differences between North and South and their growing divergence as the 19th century progressed. Chief among the issues were expansion of slavery into the territories, the South's declining political power, states rights, and the retention of slavery. Though these issues had existed for decades, they exploded in 1860 following the election of Abraham Lincoln who was against the spread of slavery. As the result of his election, South Carolina, Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, and Texas seceded from the Union. Fort Sumter & First Bull Run:
On April 12, 1861, the war began hen the South opened fire on Fort forcing its surrender. In response to the attack, President Lincoln called for 75,000 volunteers to suppress the rebellion. While Northern states responded quickly, Virginia, North Carolina, Tennessee, and Arkansas refused, opting to join the Confederacy instead. Union forces commanded began marching south to take the rebel capital of Richmond. On the 21st, they met a Confederate army near Manassas and were defeated. War in the East, 1862-1863:
Following the defeat at Bull Run, Gen. In early 1862, they shifted the army south to attack Richmond. He was defeated and forced to retreat after the Seven Days Battles. The rise of Robert E. Lee to the command of Confederate...