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An American Civil War Encyclopedia & Library Project

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American Civil War

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The American Civil War, arguably the most traumatic event in the history of the United States, was fought from 1861 to 1865, the culmination of sectional issues which deeply divided the country between a pro-Federal government North and a pro-states rights, pro-slavery South, whose eleven states formed a breakaway government called the Confederate States of America. The costliest war in terms of human lives, the American Civil War claimed in excess of 620,000 battle or disease-related deaths - roughly two percent of the country's total population at that time, and nearly more deaths than all other American wars combined.

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The Merrimac Gun

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What's a damaged weapon doing still firing in the heat of a battle? Discover a cannon with a unique pedigree, one of the few remaining relics from a ship which changed the course of naval warfare.

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General Grant National Memorial

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Ulysses S. Grant, a Civil War hero who was thought to be chiefly responsible for the defeat of the Confederacy, was perhaps the most popular American in his day, and when he died on July 23, 1885, the American pubic ensured the Hero of Appomattox would get more then a simple grave.

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