The American Civil War
The American Civil War witnessed 11 states leave the United States to form the Confederate States of America, was the bloodiest conflict in American history, transformed the nation, abolished slavery and continues to impact the US today.
American Poet and novelist Robert Penn Warren referred to the Civil War as the ‘greatest event in our history’. Historian Shelby Foote called it ‘the crossroads of America’, after which modern America came to be.
Over 700,000 Americans were killed in the four-year period, more than in all our other wars combined including both world wars. At Cold Harbor 7,000 men fell in just 20 minutes.
The war freed four million slaves from bondage.
This was the first modern war – the first submarines, ironclad naval vessels, extensive trench networks, bomb-proof shelters, repeating rifles, machine guns, mines.
It saw the creation of leaders who remain ‘household names’ today – Lincoln, Lee, Grant, Jackson, Sherman, Stuart.
The conflict was not confined to North America, as it caused famine in Lancashire and threatened the future expansion of the British Empire.
It was a war that pitted father against son, and brother against brother.
Resources for this course
|Seminar 4 Handout||
These are the documents we shall analyse in our seminar during Week 4.
|Seminar 3 Handout||
This is the Seminar material we will be discussing in Week 3.
|Seminar 1 handout||
This is the material we used for our seminar discussion in Week 1.
|Seminar 2 handout||
This is the material we used during our seminar discussion in Week 2.
|Course Reading List||
This is a list of sources which are available to you via the Department's library. Some books are available in hard copy, the rest are accessible...
This is the course syllabus, which provides a breakdown of our week-by-week lectures/seminars, as well as information regarding the required...