The Lincoln and Grant Meeting

The climactic events leading to the collapse of the Confederacy began on April 1, 1865 when Union forces defeated the two divisions of General George Pickett at the Battle of Five Forks. Lee could no longer hold Petersburg or stop the Yankees from cutting the Southside railroad. It was time for a breakthrough and General Grant seized the moment in a series of coordinated attacks that broke the siege and put Union troops into Petersburg proper.
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Why the South Lost the Civil War – III

Lead:  Confronted by Abraham Lincoln's implacable determination to end the Rebellion and an overtaxed economic system, the Confederate armies finally ran out of men.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: Civil War casualties were enormous. Strategy and tactics to prevent this slaughter had not kept pace with the improvement in weaponry. Industrial technology had made it possible to kill people in huge numbers. While the dead and wounded on both sides were approximately the same during the course of the war, Southern casualities were drawn from a much smaller pool of eligible fighters. The white population of the South was 5.5 million. By contrast Northern states had 22 million citizens. Now the South had 4.5 million slaves who were able in many cases to relieve whites to go off to war, but not until the end of the war, after much soul searching, did the Confederate Congress authorize the use of slaves in the Army. With memories of John Brown fresh, Southerners were loath to put a gun in a black man's hand. Howell Cobb of Georgia spoke for many when he warned, "use all the Negroes you can get, as hewers of wood and drawers of water, but don't arm them. If slaves will make good soldiers, our whole theory of slavery will be proved wrong."

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Why the South Lost the Civil War – II

Lead:  Facing a Federal government which was determined to prevent it from going its own way, the Confederacy had to fight for its life. If pride and energy could take the place of cast cannon, the South might have succeeded.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: In the middle of the nineteenth century, the economy of the Southern United States, was in large part a brilliant creation of the Industrial Revolution. The principle of division of labor had established in the South a ready source of raw materials which were then transformed into fabricated products in Northern and European factories. Thus, the South's prosperity was based on its supply of staple crops: cotton, rice, tobacco and sugar to industry elsewhere. For all its cultural and social brilliance, the South before the Civil War was very similar to a developing economy in the twentieth century. In a pre-scientific agricultural era, its increasingly depleted fields supplied raw materials to factories in England and the North. With the coming of disunion the economic inequity became quickly apparent.

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Why the South Lost the Civil War – Part I

Lead:  In the spring and summer of 1865 the Confederate States of America disappeared. Why did the South lose its great crusade?

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: The silence of the guns at Appomattox represented for the former slaves the start of a new way of life and theoretically, at least, the promise of freedom and prosperity. For white southerners the end of active rebellion meant the beginning of a long period of struggle almost as bad as the war itself. Added to the sting of defeat and subsequent occupation by Federal troops, was the wrenching social adjustment necessary if the two theretofore considered unequal races were to live together in harmony. The requirements of the peace forced white southerners to accept as fellow citizens men and women of color whom many whites considered sub-human and at least in part for whose subjugation over a quarter million Southern sons had just died. As these troops who had endured enormous sacrifice returned to their homes, they might have wondered how they got to this place.

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