Explore World War II and Other Wars discussion

20 views
American Civil War > The Confederate States of America

Comments Showing 1-21 of 21 (21 new)    post a comment »
dateDown arrow    newest »

message 1: by Martin Lamb, Head Moderator (new)

Martin Lamb | 212 comments Mod
What factors led to the formation of The Confederate States of America? What factors contributed to their defeat?


message 2: by Martin Lamb, Head Moderator (new)

Martin Lamb | 212 comments Mod
A book about the Southern politics that lead the South to secede from the Union.

Look Away! A History of the Confederate States of America by William C. Davis William C. Davis

Description:
The military history of the Civil War is well known. The political history of the era, and especially of the South, is less documented, a gap that William Davis's Look Away! admirably addresses.
Although the rhetoric of secession was democratic, invoking the ideals of the American Revolution and its classical forebears, Southern politics was directed by members of a small, self-serving aristocracy. And though the Confederate government advanced what then and now might be thought to be radical proposals (for one, that the postal service had to be self-supporting within two years of its founding), it was intolerant of dissent; the South's leaders, Davis writes, even barred a constitutional provision "recognizing the right of a state to secede." The natural result, Davis shows, was widespread resistance, including the development of a peace movement and of political groups loyal to the old Union. At the end of the war, Davis writes, "Confederate democracy had gone and would not be seen again--but the oligarchies had survived." Davis's study affords a new view on the Civil War, and it makes a fine addition to the overflowing library devoted to that crisis. --Gregory McNamee


message 3: by Paul (new)

Paul Pellicci There was the slavery issue which was the basis for all other issues! States Rights, Expansion of Slavery, to start.


message 4: by Martin Lamb, Head Moderator (new)

Martin Lamb | 212 comments Mod
Yes, Lincoln's main reason for fighting was to bring back the seceded states. The termination of slavery was an extra accomplishment.


message 5: by Paul (new)

Paul Pellicci Right, but all the debates before the war were of issues which slavery was a factor. The Missouri Compromise for instance. Lincoln struggled to keep the ultimate slavery issue out of the mix even though he knew it was all of the mix. States Rights was the right to go get the escaped slaves. On and on. Lincoln was in the middle of the war and still did not want to spoil a future relationship with the south by speaking "slavery issue."


message 6: by Martin Lamb, Head Moderator (new)

Martin Lamb | 212 comments Mod
Yes especially during the Emancipation Proclamation which freed slaves in confederate states not in the slave holding states that remained loyal to the Union.


message 7: by Matt, Assistant Moderator - Naval History (new)

Matt | 31 comments Mod
Martin wrote: "What factors led to the formation of The Confederate States of America? What factors contributed to their defeat?"

The factors for defeat of the Confederacy was multifold. First and formost since the South's economy was driven by agriculture they did not have the population to succeed in a sustained conflict. Next since they were an agricultural based economy they did not have the industry to sustain any sort of war effort. That is why they were desperate for England's active support more than building a few ships or running the blockade but by putting a British Army in the feild was the only way the South could win. After Gettysburg and Vicksburg the South was out of options to win the war. Once Grant started his meat grinder warfare of attrition the South was finished.


message 8: by Martin Lamb, Head Moderator (new)

Martin Lamb | 212 comments Mod
Wasn't it the Emancipation Proclomation that caused Britain to stay out of the Civil War. By then they had all ready gotten rid of slavery and entering into a war with a side that supported slavery would not go well politically. Grant was the only Union general that could meet on equal terms ar General Lee. Didn't General Sherman use a scorched earth policy?


message 9: by Matt, Assistant Moderator - Naval History (new)

Matt | 31 comments Mod
Great Britain was involved with a lot of blockade runners and built the CSS Alabama and a few others through a few legal shenanigans. England was waiting for a sign that the South could win such as a solid offensive victory in the North. The South's major victories were all on the defensive in their territories. While Antietam was a defeat and led to the Emancipation Proclamation but England while banning slavery wasn't that concerned about issues against the treatment of other people. Look at their history in China at the time or India or Africa. Slavery as political issue while troublesome wasn't the driving factor economy was. What the British wanted was a sign that the South could go on the offensive. The loss simultaneous loss of Vicksburg and of Lee's army at Gettysburg proved to the British the South was lost. The other issue that helped England stay "neutral" was the fact that they discovered Egyptian cotton and since it was in the English sphere of influence it was cheaper and they treated the Egyptians in a similar manner as the South treated the slaves. The other good part about Egyptian cotton was it was being produced in area controlled by the Royal Navy and British Army and was not a war zone.

Grant became the general to meet Lee on "equal terms" because Grant was the first general with influence on policy to see that the war was one of attrition rather than Napoleonic style of warfare. The general often forgotten as the general to really best Lee on the field was General Meade who led the Army of the Potomac from Gettysburg on. Grant never took command of the Army of the Potomac he had his headquarters with the Army because he realized that Lee was in reality the South's true army force. Other generals who were Lee's equal were Sherman and Sheridan. Sherman's Scorched Earth policy came after Vicksburg was captured when the interior of the South was opened up and proved to be a hollow shell.


message 10: by Martin Lamb, Head Moderator (new)

Martin Lamb | 212 comments Mod
Thank you for that information. Is the civil war era your main focus of history?


message 11: by Matt, Assistant Moderator - Naval History (new)

Matt | 31 comments Mod
No it is not but my main interest is naval history but the periods I am interested in are the War of 1812, the Napleonic Wars (naval campaigns), Civil War and World War II.


message 12: by Martin Lamb, Head Moderator (last edited Apr 04, 2010 09:08AM) (new)

Martin Lamb | 212 comments Mod
Such as the Battle of Trafalgar (I think I spelled it wrong).


message 13: by Matt, Assistant Moderator - Naval History (new)

Matt | 31 comments Mod
THats one of my all time favorites


message 14: by Martin Lamb, Head Moderator (new)

Martin Lamb | 212 comments Mod
I watched a show on the history channel awhile back about it. How many ironclads were constructed during the civil war? I know there was the Monitor vs the Merimac.


message 15: by Matt, Assistant Moderator - Naval History (new)

Matt | 31 comments Mod
That can be a tricky question because on the rivers there were ironclads but sometimes they were also just covered in tin. My all time favorites were the oncs covered with cotton. This is a good reference to both navies in the Civil War. Civil War Navies, 1855-1883


message 16: by Martin Lamb, Head Moderator (new)

Martin Lamb | 212 comments Mod
Thanks. Were there many engagements between ironclads?


message 17: by Matt, Assistant Moderator - Naval History (new)

Matt | 31 comments Mod
Not to many most of the naval war was blockading and the South didn't have the resources to build many but there were a few. Hardluck Ironclad The Sinking and Salvage of the Cairo by Edwin C. Bearss This describes a minor skirmish as well as the sinking of the USS Cairo. You might want to look at William Fowler's under two flags for a greater over viewUnder Two Flags: The American Navy in the Civil War At the moment I can only think of perhaps three or four ironclad vs. ironclad engagements. However Union ironclads were used to try to batter Fort Sumter into submission and failed.


message 18: by Martin Lamb, Head Moderator (new)

Martin Lamb | 212 comments Mod
Ok thanks for the recommendation.


message 19: by Matt, Assistant Moderator - Naval History (new)

Matt | 31 comments Mod
my pleasure


message 20: by Silvana (new)

Silvana (silvaubrey) Hi, anybody here know about the submarine used by the South (?) to sink a Union ship? I think it's called HS Hunley. It was a success, although the crew didn't made it.


message 21: by Martin Lamb, Head Moderator (new)

Martin Lamb | 212 comments Mod
I think I read something once about early submarine use by the Confederates. I believe they rammed a Union ship with their sub sinking both of them. I am not sure if that is corect though.


back to top