Major Events of the Civil War

By: Matt Lautner


South Carolina Secedes


On December 20, 1860, South Carolina became the first Southern state to declare its secession and later formed the Confederacy.

MIssissippi Secedes


Mississippi was the second state to secede from the union. Mississippi seceded on January 9, 1861.

Lincon Innaguration


At Lincoln's inauguration he had no plans to end slavery in states that had it already existing. and at his Inaurgation he also wad that he would not accept secession. He wanted to help the nations crisis without warfare.

Confederate Constitution Signed


The Constitution of the Confederate States of America was the supreme law of the Confederate States of America, as adopted on March 11, 1861, and in effect through the conclusion of the American Civil War.

Civil War Begins


The Constitution of the Confederate States of America was the supreme law of the Confederate States of America, as adopted on March 11, 1861, and in effect through the conclusion of the American Civil War.[

Union Surrender at Ft. Sumpter


Beauregard,was in command of the provisional Confederate forces at Charleston South Carolina. demanded the surrender of the Union garrison of Fort Sumter in Charleston Harbor.Major Anderson surrendered Fort Sumter.

Lincoln Requests Army


Lincoln addresses Congress and requests the enlistment of a Union Army. Congress authorizes a call for 500,000 men. It is clear now that the war will not be short.

First Battle of Bull Run


The First Battle of Bull Run pits Union General Irvin McDowell against the new Confederate army. McDowell is defeated causing a panicked retreat back to Washington, which is about forty miles away. The withdrawal is hampered by the large numbers of spectators who are there to see the battle.

Battle of Shiloh

4/8/1862 - 4/9/1862

Confederate forces attacked Union forces at Shiloh Tennessee.The federal troops were almost defeated but during the night, reinforcements arrived, and by the next morning the Union were a head. Confederate forces retreated.

Robert E. Lee Assumes Command


General Robert E. Lee assumes command of the Confederate Army of Northern Virginia.

Second Battle of Bull Run


The Second Battle of Bull Run is a resounding victory for Confederate General Stonewall Jackson. Union General John Pope is blamed for the loss and is relieved of his duties after the battle.



The Battle of Antietam is the bloodiest day in United States history. Over 26,000 men are killed, wounded or missing in action on both sides. Though officially a draw, the battle stops General Robert E. Lee's invasion of Maryland and he retreats back to Virginia.



The Union Army under General Ambrose E. Burnside suffers a horrible defeat at the Battle of Fredericksburg in Virginia. Fourteen individual assaults on an entrenched Confederate position cost the Union 13,000 casualties.

Emancipation Proclomation


Lincoln issues the Emancipation Proclamation. It frees all slaves in territory captured by the Union Army, and orders the enlistment of black soldiers. From this point forward, the Civil War is a war over slavery.


5/1/1863 - 5/4/1863

Over the course of three days, General Robert E. Lee divides his army in the face of a larger enemy, and manages to defeat the Union Army led by "Fighting" Joe Hooker. The North suffers 17,000 casualties, the South 13,000.



From July 1 to July 4, the Union Army under General Meade defeats Robert E. Lee's Confederate Army at Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. One of the bloodiest battles of the war, Gettysburg is a turning point, and marks the farthest advance of the Confederate Army into northern territory.

Pickett's Charge

7/1/1863 - 7/4/1863

On the third day of the Battle of Gettysburg, General Robert E. Lee orders General George Pickett to assault entrenched Union positions. In what would become known as "Pickett's Charge," More than half of the 12,000 Confederate soldiers who participate in the charge are slaughtered as they walk slowly across a 3/4-mile field into a hail of gunfire.



Far to the West on the Mississippi River, General Ulysses S. Grant takes Vicksburg after a long siege. At this point, the Union controls the entire river, cutting the Confederacy in two.

Gettysburg Adress


President Lincoln delivers the two-minute Gettysburg Address at the dedication of the National Cemetery at the battlefield in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania.

Battle of Chickamauga


Union General William Rosecrans is defeated by Confederate General Braxton Bragg at the Battle of Chickamauga, in Tennessee.

Seige of Petersburg


With the beginning of the Siege of Petersburg, south of Richmond, the mobile war of the past month ends, replaced by a nine-month siege

Battle of Nashville


The Confederate Army of the Tennessee is crushed by the Union Army of the Cumberland in Nashville. The war in the West is nearly over.

Thirteenth Ammendment Ends Slavery


The United States Congress approves the Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, which will abolish slavery.

Fall of Richmond


Lee Surrenders


General Robert E. Lee surrenders to General Ulysses S. Grant in a farmhouse in the town of Appomattox Court House, Virginia. The war is over.

Lincoln Shot


President Lincoln was watching a performance of "Our American Cousin" at Ford's Theater in Washington, D.C., he was shot by John Wilkes Booth, an actor from Maryland obsessed with avenging the Confederate defeat. Lincoln died the next morning

Slavery Abolished


The Thirteenth Amendment is ratified by the States. Slavery is abolished.