About This Chapter
The American Civil War Overview - Chapter Summary
Our instructors have created engaging lessons you can study at your leisure to learn about or better understand the American Civil War. Among topics covered in this comprehensive overview are the politics of the war, major American Civil War battles, the role of women in the Civil War and the war's legacy. Feel confident in your understanding of this war by checking your knowledge with multiple-choice quizzes and a comprehensive chapter exam. Any questions you develop during your studies can be submitted to our subject-matter experts via the Dashboard. After utilizing these resources, you will be able to:
- Outline the causes and effects of the American Civil War
- Detail the legislative and executive actions of the U.S. and Confederate governments during the war
- Compare and contrast the policies and strategies of the Union and Confederate armies
- Explain the impact the Civil War had on the economy and everyday life in the North and South
- Describe technological advancements of the Civil War
- Discuss the history of African Americans in the Civil War
- Provide details about the human, economic and cultural costs of the Civil War
1. American Civil War: Facts, Causes & Effects
In this lesson, we'll examine the American Civil War. We'll explore the causes leading to the outbreak of war, examine key battles and developments, and analyze the impact of this horrible war.
2. The Politics of War: Legislation & Executive Actions
This lesson will explore the laws and executive actions the U.S. and Confederate governments used to support the war effort. We will also discuss the prisoner exchange system and the political opposition to the war on both sides.
3. Comparing the Union and Confederate Armies: Policies & Members
Union and Confederate armies were spread out across the nation during the Civil War. They were comprised of soldiers with various reasons for fighting, and had many different factors which influenced their successes and defeats. Learn about both armies and their members in this lesson.
4. Comparing Union & Confederate Civil War Strategies
Learn about the different strategies that the Union and the Confederacy used during the American Civil War, and how those strategies reflected their political goals.
5. Primary Source: Letter from Gen. Robert E. Lee to Confederate President Jefferson Davis, 1863
After losing the Battle of Gettysburg in 1863, Robert E. Lee wrote President Jefferson Davis a letter outlining his situation. It offers insight into the state of the army, Lee's personal thoughts, and the relationship of the two men.
6. Major American Civil War Battles: Timeline & Sites
In this lesson we will learn about major Civil War battles. We will identify their locations and dates, and highlight the central themes and developments associated with them.
7. How the Civil War Affected the Economy and Everyday Life in the North and South
With the strongest and most productive demographic of society away fighting in the Civil War, the task of running homes, communities, and the nation fell to those who stayed behind. The war on the home front changed their lives forever.
8. U.S. Civil War Technology: Advancements & Facts
The American Civil War was the costliest conflict in United States history. In this lesson, we will learn how new ideas lead to wartime advances in technology that would last long after the struggle had ended.
9. African Americans in the Civil War: History & Facts
In this lesson, we will explore the experiences of African Americans during the Civil War. Some of them were slaves; others were free. Some were 'contraband' runaways; others were soldiers. Together, they contributed greatly to Civil War history.
10. The Role of Women in the Civil War
In this lesson, we will explore some of the roles women played in the American Civil War. We will see how northern and southern women worked hard to supply the soldiers and take care of their homes. We will also meet women who served as nurses, spies and even soldiers.
11. The Costs of the Civil War: Human, Economic & Cultural
This lesson will explore the costs of the Civil War. We will examine the economic costs of the four-year conflict; its cultural costs, especially in the South; and its human costs, particularly casualties and veterans' post-war experiences.
12. The Legacy of the American Civil War
This lesson covers the battle of interpretation surrounding the Civil War. Was it a war for states' rights, or a war for slavery? How should we remember the Confederate flag?
13. Required Assignments Reminder
Sorry for the interruption to your course progress! We wanted to make sure you knew this course has a written assignment requirement in order to be completed. Read on to learn where to find these assignments and how to submit them.
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Other chapters within the History 309: War & American Society course
- Introduction to War & American Society
- War & the American Colonies
- The American Revolutionary War
- America & the War of 1812
- American Conflicts & Wars Between 1820-1860
- America & the Indian Wars
- America, War & Imperialism in the 1890s
- America in World War I
- America in World War II
- America & the Cold War
- U.S. Conflicts & Wars Post-Cold War
- American Conflicts & Wars in the 21st Century
- Required Assignments for History 309