"25 - 26 June 1876: The Battle of Little Bighorn" by Scott Lyons

The significance of the Battle of Little Bighorn extends well beyond the immediate outcome of the conflict. This consequential showdown between Native American tribes and United States forces encapsulates the height of struggle for control over the Great Plains. Painted against a backdrop of tension, the resounding Native American victory underscored their fortitude in repelling encroachment upon their lands, while simultaneously foreshadowing a devastating aftermath for the indigenous tribes – an ultimate defeat and relegation to reservations. It stands as a pivotal yet paradoxical chapter in their resistance; a poignant triumph followed by the erosion of freedom and age-old traditions. In 1868, an all-too-fleeting tranquility settled upon the western front of the Missouri River. The notable Treaty of Fort Laramie, signed by tribal leaders of the Lakota, Northern Cheyenne, and Arapaho tribes, gestated the Great Sioux Reserve within modern-day South Dakota, conceived in hubristic…

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“9 May 1800: Abolitionist John Brown is Born – in 1859 the U.S. Civil War Ignites” by Scott Lyons

John Brown's raids in Kansas and at Harpers Ferry have cemented his legacy as a complex figure in American history. Labeling him solely as a terrorist oversimplifies the multifaceted nature of his campaigns against slavery. Brown's actions, particularly the Pottawatomie raid and the seizure of Harpers Ferry, were undeniably violent and resulted in loss of life. However, these acts were driven by a fervent opposition to the institution of slavery, which he viewed as a moral abomination against God's law. His strategic use of violence aimed at dismantling the infrastructure of slavery and provoking a broader insurrection among enslaved populations. The dichotomy of Brown's character—seen as a martyr by some and a fanatic or terrorist by others—highlights the profound divisions in antebellum America over the issue of slavery. In both instances, Brown's actions were underpinned by a combination of moral imperatives and tactical considerations. The Pottawatomie raid was a direct response…

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"12 April 1862: The Great Locomotive Chase and the First Medal of Honor" by Scott Lyons

The Great Locomotive Chase was a daring military action initiated on 12 April 1862, in northern Georgia, during the American Civil War. Conceived by civilian scout James J. Andrews and executed by Union Army volunteers, this mission sought to cripple the Confederate stronghold by disrupting the Western and Atlantic Railroad. In a meticulous chain of events, members cut telegraph wires, destroyed track switches and bridges, and ultimately commandeered the steam engine General to redirect toward Chattanooga, Tennessee. This offensive march spanned 87 miles and evaded initial Confederate attempts at interdiction due to the severed communication lines. Though the chase ended in the capture of most Union men by Confederate Colonel William Aiken in Ringgold, Georgia, it represents a significant chapter of Civil War history. The subsequent trial led to the execution of Andrews and seven other Union spies by hanging, with the remaining men held as prisoners-of-war until their release two…

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"6-7 April 1862: Exorbitant Casualties in Tennessee: The Battle of Shiloh" by Scott Lyons

The Battle of Shiloh was a turning point in the American Civil War and a defining moment in the history of the United States. The two-day conflict, fought on April 6-7, 1862, between General Ulysses S. Grant's Union forces and General Albert Sidney Johnston's Confederate troops, resulted in a Union victory that changed the course of the war. The battle was fought in southwestern Tennessee, along the Tennessee River, and was known by the Union as the Battle of Pittsburg Landing, after the landing where Grant's troops disembarked. The battle was one of the bloodiest of the Civil War--to that time--with nearly 24,000 soldiers killed or wounded. However, despite the heavy losses, it was a turning point in the war as it marked the Union's first major victory in the Western Theater. The victory at Shiloh gave the Union control of crucial railroads and waterways in the region, which was vital for future military operations and supply lines. In his personal memoirs, Ulysses S. Grant…

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"29 March to 9 April 1865: War of Brother Against Brother Ends: The Appomattox Campaign" by Scott Lyons

The Appomattox campaign marked a turning point in the American Civil War. It was the culmination of four years of fighting, and the decisive victory by the Union Army signaled the end of the war and the beginning of a new era in American history. The Appomattox campaign was one of the most critical and decisive events of the United States Civil War. The campaign marked the end of the longest and most brutal conflict in American history and gave rise to the dawn of a new era, one in which slavery was abolished, and the prospects of unity and progress were enhanced. The campaign began in March of 1865, when Union forces under the command of General Ulysses S. Grant launched a series of attacks against Confederate forces led by General Robert E. Lee. The goal of the campaign was to capture Richmond, the capital of the Confederacy, and bring an end to the war. The Union forces were well-equipped, well-trained, and heavily outnumbered the Confederate troops. On the other hand, Lee's forces…

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"11 December 1862: Failed Union Leadership in Virginia: The Battle of Fredericksburg Begins" by Scott Lyons

The Battle of Fredericksburg was one of the bloodiest battles of the American Civil War, fought from 11 December to 15 December 1862, in and around Fredericksburg, Virginia. The Union army, led by General Ambrose Burnside, suffered a crushing defeat at the hands of Confederate General Robert E. Lee's forces. The battle was fought in the Eastern Theater of the Civil War, and the two armies represented the largest number of armed men that had ever confronted each other. The battle was fought between the Union Army of the Potomac, commanded by Major General Ambrose Burnside, and the Confederate Army of Northern Virginia, commanded by General Robert E. Lee. The Union army was organized into three grand divisions, each consisting of infantry corps, cavalry, and artillery, comprising 120,000 men, of whom 110,000 were engaged in the battle. The Right Grand Division, commanded by Maj. Gen. Edwin V. "Bull" Sumner, consisted of the II Corps and the IX Corps. The Center Grand Division, commanded…

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"17 September 1862: the Bloodiest Single Day in American History; the Battle of Antietam" by Scott Lyons

BACKGROUND The Battle of Antietam, fought on 17 September 1862, between Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee's Army of Northern Virginia and Union Gen. George B. McClellan's Army of the Potomac, remains one of the most significant battles of the American Civil War. It was the first major engagement in the Eastern Theater of the war to take place on Union soil and resulted in the bloodiest single day in American history, with a combined total of 22,726 casualties. Although the Union emerged victorious, the battle was somewhat inconclusive from a tactical standpoint, and the Confederates were able to withdraw their forces back to Virginia. However, the battle's outcome had significant political ramifications, as President Abraham Lincoln gained the confidence to issue the Emancipation Proclamation, declaring all slaves within Confederate territory to be "forever free." In 2019's The Cambridge History of the American Civil War, historian D. Scott Hartwig writes of the battle's one-day carnage…

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Confederate Financing of the Civil War by Henry M. Rivera

  Introduction This paper focuses on an important but often overlooked reason for the defeat of the Confederate States of America: its economic infirmity.   As Cicero stated: “The sinews of war are unlimited money.” We see this principle applied today in the war in Ukraine where NATO is attempting to deprive Russia of the funds necessary to wage war through economic sanctions and caps on oil and gas prices.                This paper reviews the economic condition of the Confederacy before the war, during the war and during Reconstruction.  It examines the Confederacy’s economic base and Richmond’s policies to finance the war.  That said, it is important to note that at the war’s beginning, the Union was more than two times as populous as the Confederacy (twenty-two million people vs nine million, Black and White), and, significantly, the Union had an industrial base that was probably five times as great.                 The Confederacy’s bedrock philosophical principle informing its…

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19-20 September 1863: River of Death: The Battle of Chickamauga

The Battle of Chickamauga, fought on 19-20 September 1863, was a turning point in the American Civil War. The Union forces, under Maj. Gen. William Rosecrans, were defeated by the Confederate Army of Tennessee, led by Gen. Braxton Bragg, in what would become one of the bloodiest battles of the war in terms of casualties. This battle marked the end of the Union offensive, known as the Chickamauga Campaign, in southeastern Tennessee and northwestern Georgia. The Battle of Chickamauga was a significant victory for the Confederacy, as it halted the Union's advance into southern territory and prevented them from taking the city of Chattanooga. It was also the first major battle fought in Georgia during the Civil War. The battle involved the second-highest number of casualties after the Battle of Gettysburg, with over 34,000 casualties and over 18,000 killed or wounded. The conflict began when Rosecrans, following his successful Tullahoma Campaign, renewed his offensive against Bragg's army…

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  • Gettysburg
  • Chickamauga
  • Spotsylvania Court House
  • Chancellorsville
  • The Wilderness
  • Stones River (Murfreesboro)
  • Shiloh (Pittsburg Landing)
  • Antietam (Sharpsburg)
  • 2nd Bull Run (2nd Manassas)
  • Fredericksburg
  • Cold Harbor
  • 2nd Petersburg
  • Gaines's Mill
  • Missionary Ridge
  • Kennesaw Mountain
  • Atlanta
  • Seven Pines (Fair Oaks)
  • Nashville
  • Opequon (3rd Winchester)
  • Cedar Creek
  • Franklin
  • Malvern Hill
  • 3rd Petersburg
  • Perryville
  • Glendale
  • 2nd Corinth
  • Peachtree Creek
  • Champion Hill
  • The Crater
  • Fort Stedman
  • South Mountain
  • 1st Bull Run (1st Manassas)