The Civil War And Its Ending Of — страница 2

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resulted in the nomination by the Southern wing of John C. Breckinridge of Kentucky and the nomination by the Northern wing of Stephen Douglas. The newly formed Constitutional Union party, reflecting the compromise sentiment still strong in the border states, nominated John Bell of Tennessee. The Republicans nominated Abraham Lincoln on a platform that opposed the further expansion of slavery and endorsed a protective tariff, federal subsidies for internal improvements, and a homestead act. The Democratic split virtually assured Lincoln’s election, and this in turn convinced the South to make a bid for independence rather than face political encirclement. By March 1861, when Lincoln was inaugurated, seven states?South Carolina, Mississippi, Florida, Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana,

and Texas?had adopted ordinances of secession, and the Confederate States of America, with Jefferson Davis as president, had been formed. In his inaugural address, Lincoln held that secession was illegal and stated that he intended to maintain federal possessions in the South. On April 12, 1861, when an attempt was made to resupply Fort Sumter, a federal installation in the harbor at Charleston, South Carolina, Southern artillery opened fire. Three days later, Lincoln called for troops to put down the rebellion. In response, Virginia, Arkansas, North Carolina, and Tennessee also joined the Confederacy. Neither the North nor the South was prepared in 1861 to wage a war. With a population of 22 million, the North had a greater military potential. The South had a population of 9

million, but of that number, nearly 4 million were enslaved blacks whose loyalty to the Confederate cause was always in doubt. Although they initially relied on volunteers, necessity eventually forced both sides to resort to a military draft to raise an army. Before the war ended, the South had enlisted about 900,000 white males, and the Union had enrolled about 2 million men (including 186,000 blacks), nearly half of them toward the end of the war. In addition, the North possessed clear material advantages?in money and credit, factories, food production, mineral resources, and transport?that proved decisive. The South’s ability to fight was hampered by chronic shortages of food, clothing, medicine, and heavy artillery, as well as by war weariness and the unpredictability of

its black labor force. Even with its superior manpower and resources, however, the North did not achieve the quick victory it had expected. To raise, train, and equip a massive fighting force from inexperienced volunteers and to find efficient military leadership proved a formidable and time-consuming task. Only through trial and error did Lincoln find comparable military leaders, such as Ulysses S. Grant and William T. Sherman. On August 30, in the Second Battle of Bull Run, the combined Confederate forces of Lee, Jackson, and General James Longstreet inflicted heavy casualties on Union troops and sent them reeling back to Washington, where Pope was relieved of his command. Following up on this victory, Lee in September 1862 startled the North by invading Maryland with some

50,000 troops. Not only did he expect this bold move to demoralize Northerners, he hoped a victory on Union soil would encourage foreign recognition of the Confederacy. McClellan, with 90,000 men, moved to check Lee’s advance. On September 17, in the bloody Battle of Antietam, some 12,000 Northerners and 12,700 Southerners were killed or wounded. Lee was forced back to Virginia; Lincoln, angered that McClellan made no effort to cut off Lee’s retreat, relieved the general of his command. In late 1862, the Army of the Potomac resumed its offensive toward Richmond, this time under the command of General Ambrose E. Burnside. On December 13, he unwisely chose to challenge Lee’s nearly impregnable defenses around Fredericksburg, Virginia, on the Rappahannock River. In still

another disaster, Union forces suffered more than 10,000 killed or wounded and were forced to retreat to Washington. Burnside too was relieved of his command. On May 1 Union troops under General Benjamin F. Butler moved into the largest city and principal port. During the last months of 1862, Grant consolidated his position along the Mississippi. Buell, ordered to move on Chattanooga, Tennessee, clashed indecisively with Confederate forces under General Braxton Bragg. In December, General William S. Rosecrans, who had replaced Buell, confronted Bragg’s troops in a three-day battle on the Stones River near Murfreesboro, Tennessee, forcing them to retreat. Meanwhile, Grant prepared for an assault on Vicksburg, Mississippi, the last remaining Confederate stronghold in the West,