A Brief History Of The American Civil War

By Toby Tunwase

A significant event in the history of America is the American Civil War which lasted from 1861-1865. The war was a huge determinant of what sort of country the United States would become.

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Two major ideological and political issues led to the war. The first is the institution of slavery. The second is whether the United States of America was a single nation with a national government or a confederation of sovereign states where dissolution was possible. These issues were resolved based on the winning side of the conflict- the North. This ensured a nation that was founded on a declaration that all men are born free and equal in dignity and rights. The declaration ended slavery, and thus, America remained a single nation. 

The war ended in 1865 when the major components of the confederate armies surrendered. Furthermore, the capture of Jefferson Davies (Confederate President) on May 10, 1865, put an end to whatever form of resistance was left.

Image credit: americanhistorycenter.com

However, the price of this resolution was the loss of several American lives- about 625,000. In terms of numbers, this is close to the total of soldiers that America has lost during all previous wars combined, including the two world wars. No wonder the American civil war is considered the largest battle between 1815 (the culmination of Napoleonic wars) and 1914 (the outbreak of World War I). 

The end of the war was the beginning of rebuilding the United States, where slavery did not exist.