Battles of the Civil War: Crash Course US History #19


CCUS19 – Battles of the Civil War Hi, I’m John Green and this is Crash Course
US History. Starting next week, we’re going to be talking about the Civil War. As you
may have noticed, Crash Course doesn’t usually focus on military history, because we’re
more interested in causes and effects and that kind of stuff, but because some in our
audience are likely to insist that a series on American History has to include the battles
of the Civil War, I am now going to tell you about EVERY SINGLE fight of the war. Oh. Stan, this says there were 8,000 instances
of violence between the Union and the Confederate States of America between 1861 and 1865. Can
that be right? Slight change of plan. I’m going to tell
you about the MAJOR battles of the Civil War. The shooting started in 1861. In April the
first shots of the war were fired at the Battle of Fort Sumter, South Carolina, which the
South won. Next the Battle of Rich Mountain went to the North. First Bull Run happened
in Manassas, VA in July. The South won, General Jackson got the nickname Stonewall, and the
North realized this war was going to be serious business. The South had another victory at
Wilson’s Creek in August, but lost to the Union at Carnifex Ferry in September. The
North got another win at the Battle of Cheat Mountain, but the South finished the year
strong with wins at Ball’s Bluff and Chustenahlah. The North came roaring back in 1862 with wins
at the battles of Mill Springs, Fort Henry, Roanoke Island, and Fort Donelson, where the
Confederate general was named Simon Bolivar Buckner. What!? There was fighting in the west, with the South
winning at Valverder, NM, and Pea Ridge, AR. The Union won at New Madrid, MO. The Battle
of Hampton Roads, VA in March was a draw, and featured the first fight between two ironclad
warships, the USS Monitor and the CSS Virginia. The Union won the Battle of Bern, and the
first battle of Kernstown, and then draws at Glorieta Pass, NM, and Yorktown. The Union
won the Battle of Shiloh, where future Ben Hur author Lew Wallace was accused of incompetence
and cowardice. The Union won the Battle of Fort Pulaski and the Battle of Forts Jackson
and St Philip, which gave the North control of New Orleans. The North won the siege of
Corinth, and McClellan fought one of the many indecisive battles he would be involved in
at Williamsburg, VA. Then Stonewall Jackson had a great run, winning battles at McDowell,
Front Royal, and Winchester. Union forces captured Memphis, TN in May, but then lost
a couple more to Jackson at Cross Keys and Port Republic. In Virginia that June, Robert
E Lee and Goerge McClellan fought a series of six battles in seven days, which were called
the seven days battles. There was a draw at Oak Grove, Union victory at Beaver Dam Creek,
a win for Lee at Gaines’ Mill, ties at Garnett’s and Golding’s Farm, the Battle of Savage’s
Station, and the battle of Glendale. The Union finally won the Seven Days at Malvern
Hill, but McClellan withdrew after the battle, allowing Lee and the remaining confederates
to escape. In July 1862, one of the least consequential battles of the war took place
in Stan’s hometown, Newburgh, IN. A force of 35 Confederate irregulars built some fake
cannons out of stovepipes that they called Quaker guns, crossed the Ohio River, captured
some weapons and a hospital full of wounded Union soldiers, and then abandoned the town
later the same day. This was the first town in the North to be captured by Confederates.
Later that summer came the Battles of Baton Rouge, Cedar Mountain, Mannassas Station,
the Second Battle of Bull Run, Richmond, KY, Chantilly, and Harper’s Ferry, all of which
the Confederates won. The Union won at South Mountain, but lost at Munfordville. On September
17 McClellan ended Lee’s invasion of the north at Anteitam, MD. This was the bloodiest
single day of the war with 22,717 dead, wounded, or missing. The rest of 1862 saw the battles
of Perryville, Prairie Grove, Fredericksburg, and Chickasaw Bayou. 1863 started in Tennessee with a Union victory
at the Battle of Stones River, but also with a simultaneous Confederate victory at Galveston,
TX. There were lots of smallish skirmishes during the winter and early Spring, until
the Battle of Chancellorsville in May, where Lee defeated Hooker, but Stonewall Jackson
was mortally wounded. He lost his arm, and then died 8 days later of pneumonia. His arm
buried with its own headstone near Chancellorsville. The North won a bunch of battles in Mississippi
at Port Gibson, Raymond, Jackson, Champion Hill, Big Black River Ridge, and finally,
Vicksburg. This victory, along with the victory at Port Hudson effectively ended the Confederacy’s
ability to use the Mississippi River. June, 1863 in Virginia was inconclusive, with draws
at Brandy Station, Winchester, Aldie, Middleburg, and Upperville. July brought the Battle of
Gettysburg, a major Union victory. This battle featured Pickett’s famous charge, was the
end of Lee’s second invasion of the north, was the costliest of the war in terms of caualties,
and led to, believe it or not, The Gettysburg Address. The rest of that summer brought split results
with Union wins at Helena, AR, Honey Springs, OK and Chattanooga, TN. The Confederates answered
with two victories at Ft Wagner, SC. They also won at Ft Sumter AGAIN, holding the fort
against heavy Union bombardment, and they perpetrated a massacre of civilians in Lawrence,
KS. The rest of 1863 saw battles at Sabine Pass, TX, Bayou Fourche, AR, a major confederate
win at Chickamauga, the battles of Bristow Station, Wauhatchie, Rappahannock Station,
Chattanooga again, Ringgold Gap, Fort Sanders, and Mossy Creek. Oh man, we’re only to 1864. Gotta keep it
moving. Stan, can you just indicate who won these on screen? Great The first major battles of 1864 were in February
at Olustee, FL and Okolona, MS. The spring saw battles at Fort De Russy, Mansfield,
Prairie D’Ane, AR, Pleasant Hill, LA, and Fort Pillow, TN. There were The Battles of
the Wilderness, Spottsylvania Courthouse, Procter’s Creek, New Market, North Anna,
Old Church, Cold Harbor, and the Battle of the Piedmont all in Virginia. Summer brought the battles of Marietta, GA,
and Brice’s Crossroads, MS. The battles of Trevillian Station, Petersburg, Lynchburg,
and Jerusalem Plank Road were all fought in Virginia. Also Kennesaw Mountain, GA, Monocacy,
Maryland, and Fort Stevens, in the District of Columbia. Abraham Lincoln himself went
to observe this battle, and the guy standing next to him got shot. Next were the battles
of Tupelo, MS, Peachtree Creek, GA, and Atlanta, GA, a major Union victory won by General Sherman.
Also fought were the battles of Kernstown, VA, Ezra Church, GA, the Battle of the Crater
in Virginia, the battles of Mobile Bay, AL, Deep Bottom, Globe Tavern, and Reams station
in VA, and the battle of Jonesborough, GA which solidified Union control of Atlanta. Ok. Autumn of 1864, we’re in the home stretch
here. The battles of Opequon, Fisher’s Hill, Chaffin’s Farm, Peebles’ Farm, and Cedar
Creek were all fought in Virginia. The battles of Byram’s Ford, Newtonia, and Westpory
all happened in Missouri. Johnsonville, TN, Griswoldville, GA, Spring Hill, TN, The Sand
Creek Massacre, The Battle of Franklin, TN, Fort McAllister, GA, and Nashville, TN finished
out the year. Whew. 1865, here we go. The Battles of Fort
Fisher, NC, Hatcher’s Run, VA, Waynesboro, Virginia, Bentonville, NC, Fort Stedman, VA,
Spanish Fort, AL, White Oak Road, VA, Five Forks, VA, Selma, AL, the THIRD battle of
Petersburg, VA, Fort Blakely, AL, Saylor’s Creek, VA, Appomattox Station, VA, and finally,
the decisive battle at Appomattox Courthouse, VA, on April 8, 1865 which resulted in Lee’s
surrender to Grant. There were a few more minor skirmishes, but the war was OVER. So there you have it, an episode of Crash
Course ENTIRELY about battles. I know that we missed many, many battles of the war, but
these are most of the big ones. There’s not even a big finish this week, because I’m
just exhausted from all the fighting. Thanks for watching, and we’ll see you next week.

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