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The Civil War

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The Civil War was a fight between the Southern states and the Northern states. It began in 1861 and ended in 1865. The northerners referred to this war as the war to preserve the Union because that became the main goal of the Civil War. Slavery was one of the causes of the war, but in the end Lincoln’s goal became preserving the union.

When Eli Whitney invented the Cotton Gin in 1783, cotton then became very profitable. Many farmers that had plantations but were not currently in the cotton business were then persuaded to grow cotton instead of what they were growing previously thus causing a very high demand for slaves. However, unlike the southern states agricultural based economy, the northern states economy was based on industry, and to develop a strong advanced society people of all different classes and ethnicities had to work together.

The south believed that Abraham Lincoln opposed slavery and favored the northern states more than the southern states. Therefore, seven states were trying to secede from the union before Abraham Lincoln even became president. The southern states believed that the 10th Amendment in the Bill of Rights entitled them to have the right to secession. Abraham Lincoln thought it was wrong for the states to try and secede, naturally Abraham Lincoln and congress declared war on the southern states.

The Civil War began in 1861 on April 12th. The first shots of the war were fired at Fort Sumter. After this incident, Abraham Lincoln called for 75,000 volunteers to serve in the army for 90 days. Lincoln wanted to get the northerners to focus on saving the union to avoid making the war about slavery. Slave states in the union had to choose a side because of this; they all chose to stand with the south.

The goals of the southern states were to be their own independent nation and to continue to continue with slavery unchanged. They made a huge profit from slavery; they knew that Lincoln was against it so slaves would slowly gain their freedom. They also wanted to keep the northern states from entering their territory.

Even though Lincoln thought that slavery was bad and wanted to abolish it, his one true goal was to keep the union together. Abraham Lincoln said, “If I could free the slaves and preserve the Union, I would do it. If I could free some of the slaves and preserve the Union, I would do that instead. If I could free no slaves and preserve the Union, I would do that, too.” Lincoln thought that leaving the union was a betrayal and that it went against the constitution. He thought slavery was wrong, but preserving the union was a more important cause at the time being.

The official date the Civil War ended on was April 9th, 1865 with more than 10, 500 confrontations and battles when Lee surrendered his army. However, the last confederate surrender was on November 6th 1864. The last battle of the Civil War was the Battle of Palmito Ranch located in Texas. The total deaths from the Civil War are estimated around 620,000.

After the Civil War ended they began to reconstruct the south. Not everything that Lincoln wanted to fix was done after the Civil War ended. Though all the slaves were freed, given citizenship, and the right to vote due to the 13th, 14th, and 15th amendments. Still the south tried to restrict their freedom by enforcing the Black Codes which were a set of laws.

The Civil War was mainly a fight to preserve the Union and also free the slaves. Abraham Lincoln’s goals for preserving the Union and freeing the slaves were reached. The Northern States won the war and kept the Union together. Due to the Civil War the 13th, 14th, and 15th amendments were passed and gave African Americans the rights that they deserved. The south has been reconstructed by the south forming new state governments, the freeing of slaves, the confederate government leaving, and not allowing confederate officers in the new government.

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