This site contains the diary, memoirs,photographs,and other memorabilia of an Illinois soldier in the Civil War.
Private Jefferson Moses was a Union volunteer from Illinois. During the war, he wrote a diary, letters, and memoirs to record what he experienced during the war. He talks about specific battles, and the different routine that each morning brought. For example, on February 25, he writes about the Line of Battle at Dalton saying, "We we're roused up at 2 o'clock to be ready to march at 3 o' clock." Also, he talks about some of the positive aspects during the war. Expressed in his journal, he wrote, "We have good news from the east this morning. This evening I got a Chicago Day Tribune." Confederate and union soldiers alike, faced similar obstacles and triumphs. Private Jefferson Moses portrayed a tremendous amount of courage, and he fought for the cause that he believed in. Without his and other Union soldiers' courage and determination, our nation would not be the same, emancipated place that it is today.
Fort Fisher, located in North Carolina, was an important target for the Union because it defended the Confederate port, which was the last way that the Confederates could obtain supplies from other countries. Grant decided that he would use the Army and Navy to fight. The attack was very delayed due to rainstorms, but this gave the Union more time to strategize. But, on December 23, a Union ship exploded in an unsuccessful attempt to damage the fort. However, when the army attacked, the Fort was greatly damaged. Eventually after more fighting, the confederates were victorious, and the union, defeated. The fort was not severely damaged, but it was repaired and stable to defend again. The Confederates had a new sense of winning as they came back and won against the Union.
Eli Pinson Landers was nineteen years old when he left his home in Gwinnett County, GA to join the Confederate Army in August of 1861.
Eli Landers, a nineteen year old Georgia native, left home to join Confederate forces. Eli was very passionate about fighting for the South. His letters to his mother clearly describe the ongoing hardship and triumph of the war, that all soldiers felt. the letters become more intense as the letters go on. He vents to his mother about losing people that he called friends, and talks about how painful it is to eat with dead bodies keeping him company. As the war waged on, Eli's health declined and he became very ill. In his letters while he is ill, he tells his mother how he would like to be buried, and what words he would want written on his own tomb. He also tells his mother what an honor it was to fight for the Confederate cause. His story is significant as thousands of other soldiers experienced the good and bad times of the Civil War.
Rachel Young King Anderson lived in Missouri from 1818 to 1898. Obviously, she lived during the Civil war, and kept a diary, recalling events, and recording her feelings. Her husband was apart of the Union, and clearly worried incessantly about him and his safety. She writes down quotes of women, worried sick for their children, men who are forced to go beyond their morals, and children who simply frightened. When her relatives come home safely, she is very relieved in her writing, as any wife and mother would be. Finally, the last entry is about President Lincoln being killed, and what a tragedy it was, confirming her Union loyalty.
Images from the Graue Mill (One of the stops along The Underground Railroad), Gettysburg, and Civil War era photos set to Richie Havens "The Drinking Gourd" ...
This song was made before the Civil War, but the song's message was carried on until that time. "Follow the Drinking Gourd" is about slaves seeking freedom in the North, especially during the Civil War era. The "drinking gourd" is the big dipper, which is the constellation that escaping slaves used to locate the North. The lyrics are very significant and somewhat metaphorical, guarding the meaning of the song to owners. For example, "the river bank makes a very good road" corresponds specifically with the Tombigbee river, which many slaves had to cross in Tennessee. Also, many lyrics had to do with the Underground Railroad, which was a network of secret routes and houses, for the convenience of the fleeing slaves.
Historical map of the Battle of Antietam made by Willcox
The Confederate president, Jefferson Davis, wanted Lee to join his troops in Western Maryland because it was Union territory. He wanted to move the war deeper into the Northern states. McClellan, however, was following the Confederate troops, with a large group of soldiers on the Union side. Lee, once in Maryland, decided to divide his troops into four parts to confuse McClellan. But the copy of the orders was lost and found by Union soldiers who brought it to McClellan. Because McClellan took his time, Lee was able to gather his troops, and they went to Antietam, Maryland. The Union did win but it was the bloodiest day in the war. This once again gave the Union confidence, and soon after the Union victory, Abraham Lincoln would give the Emancipation Proclamation. This would give a strong impact on not only the United States, but also the war.
The Battle of Chattanooga happened over three days in November of 1863 in Tennessee. The Union soldiers instigated the fight and attacked the Confederates. After the forced attack, Grant launched another attack and captured Lookout Mountain in a matter of six hours. Finally, at the last part of the battle, the Union broke Confederate lines. After this, the Union were on their way to victory with their newly gained confidence. They won three battles in three days. Also, the Confederates withdrew, leaving the South completely open to the Union.
In this document, there is a portrait of Harriet Tubman. Harriet Tubman is a very well known underground railroad conductor. Before her life of helping slaves, she was a slave for many years, but escaped. Over the 10 years of her life as a conductor, she made 19 trips into the South and assisted over 300 slaves to freedom. But even before the Civil War, she was a well known abolitionist. Her bravery is very noted, and she sacrificed her life to help slaves who were once in her own position.
The Battle of Bull Run started the Civil war, after tension broke into fighting.About 30,000 Union soldiers attacked a small Confederate force. Because it was the first battle, many of the soldiers were unskilled, but the Confederates broke the Union lines. This left the Union soldiers running into town with panic. This battle showed the Northerners that the fight would not be easy, or short. Also, the loss alerted Lincoln, who became even more determined to win. He took action by putting a call out for soldiers to assist the Union soldiers in the war.
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