|Ann, since you live in Sweden, I'll give you a quick view of where the Civil War was fought, and why.
Look at a US map. Find Washington, DC, which is on the Potomac River. Draw an imaginary line running east to west from the Potomac to the Ohio River, which flows west into the Mississippi River. All the states south of that imaginary line seceded and fought for the Confederacy, except one, Kentucky, which stayed loyal to the Union. Those states are Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Alabama, Tennessee, Mississippi, Louisiana. Then, west of the Mississippi River, Arkansas and Texas also seceded.
There were battles in every southern state and two huge battles in two northern states: Battles of Antietam in Maryland and Gettysburg in Pennsylvania.
There is a long range of mountains which runs northeast to southwest, generally parallel to the Atlantic coast. That range was a physical barrier and was considered the dividing line between the "eastern theater" and the "western theater."
The capital of the Confederate States of America was in Richmond, Virginia, only 100 miles (166 km) south of Washington. With the two capitals so close together, it's easy to understand why so many battles were fought in Virginia during the four years.
In the western theater, Tennessee had many battles too.
Soldiers came from all states to fight in the war. Also there were many immigrants who fought, mostly from Ireland and Germany. Some served in the Union armies, others in the Confederate forces.
The southern states didn't like the power of the Federal government in Washington. They thought they could do better by seceding and forming their own nation. After the states seceded, the shooting war started in Charleston, South Carolina, on April 12, 1861, when some South Carolina soldiers shot at a Federal fort on an island in Charleston harbor. Immediately the US President, Abraham Lincoln, called for volunteers from the loyal northern states to put down the rebellion and bring the seceded states back into the Union.
After four years of terrible fighting and suffering, the war stopped in April 1865. One by one, the southern generals surrendered to their northern conquerors.
Last edited on Fri Jan 19th, 2007 05:10 pm by Widow