This part explains how the war began as a fight between amateurs. Armed with a strategy and eager to get to a fight, both sides quickly discovered at places such as Bull Run, Shiloh, the Seven Days Battles, Perryville, and Antietam, that war is not as simple as it seems. Despite terrible losses, neither side showed any inclination of giving up. The war would be long and difficult, a great test for the fortitude and will of both the Union and Confederacy. Part III shows how both armies adjusted to the shock of war and what leaders emerged to become world famous in just a few short months. Other Generals seemed to come and go rather quickly and are rarely heard of again.
The fighting in 1862 stretched from the Mississippi to the Atlantic. It was both bloody and ultimately indecisive, as each side sought to make the most of its opportunities. Northern army advances in Tennessee and naval successes at New Orleans were offset by brilliant Confederate victories in Virginia and the first invasions of the North in Maryland and Kentucky. The failure of these invasions marked the loss of the South’s best chance for a short war and decisive victory. As a result, the hope of diplomatic recognition or armed intervention from Europe on behalf of the Confederacy faded away.
In 1862, Lincoln made a fateful decision that changed the United States forever. With the Emancipation Proclamation, he reshaped the goals of the war for the North. Although of little importance at first, it grew to become a powerful strategic weapon in its own right.
After North and South went to war, they quickly found out that agreat deal of work and planning had to be done before any soldier could step on a battlefield to decide which side would win the victory. Part II introduces you to broad issues related to fighting not only this war, but any war.
The two government had to evaluate their strengths and weaknesses, develop a national strategy, establish commands, organize units, and assign generals, recruit and train soldiers and provide them with supplies, arms and equipment. Developing an army is a very demanding business, something neither side fully realized in the first two years of the war.
Part II also shows you how the North and South compared in resources critical to success in war and how each nation had advantages to exploit -- and weaknesses to protect. The main idea of this part is to give you some background on basic military concepts and terminology and to get you comfortably in the military mindset when you actually get into descriptions of strategy, campaigns, and battles.