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Ch 6: The Tide of War Shifts: 1864

About This Chapter

Watch online video lessons and learn about the Battle of Cold Harbor, the 1864 presidential election, the fall of Atlanta and more. These lessons are just a portion of our American history learning materials which cover the Civil War and its aftermath.

The Tide of War Shifts: 1864 - Chapter Summary and Learning Objectives

Let an experienced instructor familiarize you with some of the events occurring in 1864 that helped bring an eventual end to the war. Topics of discussion include General Grant's promotion and General Sherman's capture of Atlanta. Video lessons also touch on the trench warfare techniques, counter-attacks and defense strategies employed by both Union and Confederate troops. By the end of this chapter, you should be familiar with the following:

  • Components of General Grant's military strategy
  • Significant battles occurring in the Overland Campaign
  • Factors contributing to Lincoln's re-election
  • Goals of General Sherman's march to the sea

Video Objective
General Ulysses S. Grant Takes Charge Outlines the promotion of General Grant to General-in-Chief of the Union army and his final strategic plan for ending the war.
The Wilderness Campaign Describes the battle of attrition that kicked off General Grant's Overland Campaign to defeat the Confederate Army under General Robert E. Lee in Virginia.
The Battle of Spotsylvania: Summary & Significance Explains the goals, progress and conclusion of the 12-day battle fought between Generals Lee and Grant, claiming the highest ranking Union casualty.
The Battle of Cold Harbor: Events & Significance Discusses the regrettable Union assault on Confederate forces and ensuing stalemate in one of the last battles of the Overland Campaign.
The Siege of Petersburg: Summary, Timeline & Significance Describes the trench warfare and 10-month siege of the Confederacy's last stronghold outside the Southern capitol of Richmond.
Shenandoah Valley Campaigns Outlines the attacks, counter-attacks and unorthodox warfare in the Shenandoah Valley that took place throughout the war but especially in 1864.
General William T. Sherman's Atlanta Campaign Maps out General Sherman's march from Chattanooga through Georgia, the Confederacy's attempted defense and the fall of Atlanta.
The Battle of Mobile Bay: Summary & Significance Explains the progress and significance of Farragut's naval attack against the port at Mobile Bay.
The Politics of 1864: President Abraham Lincoln is Re-Elected Profiles Abraham Lincoln's tenuous political position in 1864, the presidential campaign and events that helped secure Lincoln's re-election.
The Battle of Nashville: Summary & Outcome Describes the lead-up to the conflict, the progress and outcome of the battle, as well as the generals involved.
Sherman's March to the Sea Outlines the goals, logistics, characteristics and achievements of General Sherman's continued campaign through Georgia to the coast.

11 Lessons in Chapter 6: The Tide of War Shifts: 1864
General Ulysses S. Grant Takes Charge: His Strategic Plan for Ending the War

1. General Ulysses S. Grant Takes Charge: His Strategic Plan for Ending the War

In this lesson, we will learn about the promotion of Union General Ulysses S. Grant to the prestigious rank of Lieutenant General. We will also study Grant's plan to end the Civil War.

The Wilderness Campaign: Summary & Significance

2. The Wilderness Campaign: Summary & Significance

In this lesson, we will study General Ulysses S. Grant's Wilderness Campaign in Northern Virginia. We will focus especially on the Battle of the Wilderness, which pitted Grant's forces against General Robert E. Lee's Confederate army.

The Battle of Spotsylvania: Summary & Significance

3. The Battle of Spotsylvania: Summary & Significance

In this lesson, we will study the Battle of Spotsylvania, a 12-day battle between the Union army under General Ulysses S. Grant and the Confederate army under General Robert E. Lee.

The Battle of Cold Harbor: Events & Significance

4. The Battle of Cold Harbor: Events & Significance

In this lesson, we will learn about the Battle of Cold Harbor. At this little Virginia town, Union forces under General Ulysses S. Grant clashed with Confederate troops under General Robert E. Lee.

The Siege of Petersburg: Summary, Timeline & Significance

5. The Siege of Petersburg: Summary, Timeline & Significance

In this lesson, we will explore the Siege of Petersburg, which lasted 10 months. Union troops under General Grant set up fortifications outside Petersburg, Virginia, while Confederate troops, commanded by General Lee, holed up inside the town.

Shenandoah Valley Campaigns: Summary, Timeline & Significance

6. Shenandoah Valley Campaigns: Summary, Timeline & Significance

Virginia's Shenandoah Valley became a battleground more than once during the Civil War. In this lesson, we will explore the Shenandoah Valley Campaigns of 1862 and 1864.

General William T. Sherman's Atlanta Campaign: Summary & Significance

7. General William T. Sherman's Atlanta Campaign: Summary & Significance

In this lesson, we will discuss General William T. Sherman's Atlanta Campaign, which took place throughout the spring and summer of 1864. During this campaign, Union troops under General Sherman marched south from Tennessee and eventually captured the Confederate city of Atlanta.

The Battle of Mobile Bay: Summary & Significance

8. The Battle of Mobile Bay: Summary & Significance

In this lesson, we will explore the events and outcome of the 1864 naval battle at Mobile Bay, Alabama, that pitted Admiral David Farragut's Union navy against Admiral Franklin Buchanan's Confederate ships.

The Politics of 1864: President Abraham Lincoln is Re-Elected

9. The Politics of 1864: President Abraham Lincoln is Re-Elected

In this lesson, we will explore the turbulent political landscape of 1864, focusing especially on that year's presidential campaign that pitted incumbent Abraham Lincoln against General George McClellan.

The Battle of Nashville: Summary & Outcome

10. The Battle of Nashville: Summary & Outcome

In this lesson, we will examine the Battle of Nashville, which took place on December 15 and 16, 1864. This battle was between the Union soldiers under General George H. Thomas and the Confederate forces commanded by General John Bell Hood.

Sherman's March to the Sea

11. Sherman's March to the Sea

In 1864, General William T. Sherman began his Atlanta campaign. His success assured Lincoln's re-election in 1864. Sherman then began his destructive March to the Sea in order to capture Savannah.

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