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Civil War

Vocabulary Words

TermDefinition
Secession To secede or withdrawal (Eleven states broke away or seceded from the Union before the Civil War over the issues of states’ rights and slavery)
Union States that remained united after the secession of eleven others. Commonly called “the North” or “the Free States” during the Civil War.
Confederacy The eleven states that seceded from the Union before the Civil War over the issues of states’ rights and slavery. Commonly called “the South” or “the Slave States” during the Civil War.
Border States The four states of Delaware, Kentucky, Maryland, and Missouri. These states allowed for slavery, but did not withdrawal (secede) from the Union before the Civil War.
Popular Sovereignty Giving people the power to decide issues in government. An example is the Kansas-Nebraska Act in which people were given the right to decide the slavery issue for themselves in their state
Topography The study or description of surface features in a region including hills, mountains, valleys, rivers, ports, and plateaus (Very important during the Civil War- Ex. High Ground at Gettysburg and Mississippi River at Vicksburg)
Blockade To isolate, close off, or surround a place such as a port (Examples in the Civil War were ports of New Orleans, Savannah, and Charleston blockaded by the Union)
Cash Crops A crop that is heavily marketed for profit (examples were tobacco and cotton in the South)
Missouri Compromise (1820)- Missouri entered the Union as a slave state; Maine would enter the Union as a free state
Compromise of 1850 California entered the Union as a free state. The Southwest Territories would decide the slavery issue for themselves.
Kansas-Nebraska Act People in each state would decide the slavery issue (Popular Sovereignty)
Fort Sumter The Confederate attack here marked the beginning of the Civil War
The First Battle of Manassas Also called “Bull Run” and was the first MAJOR battle of the Civil War
Emancipation Proclamation Issued by Abraham Lincoln and made “freeing the slaves” the new focus of the war (Many African-Americans joined the Union army as a result)
Battle of Vicksburg Divided the South and gave the North control of the Mississippi River
Battle of Gettysburg Was the turning point of the Civil War as the North repelled Lee’s invasion
Gettysburg Address Given by Abe Lincoln who said the war was to preserve a government “of the people, by the people, and for the people”.
Appomattox Court House Where Lee surrendered to Grant in 1865 to end the war
Abraham Lincoln U.S. president during the Civil War who opposed slavery spreading and was resoluted to preserve the Union, by force if neeeded. Made the Emancipation Proclamation and made the Gettysburg Address. His election made the success of the Confederate states
Jefferson Davis President of the Confederate States of America during the war
Ulysses S. Grant General of the Union army that defeated Robert E. Lee
Robert E. Lee Leader of army of North VA who was offered command of the Union forces at start of war, but didn't want to fight VA. Opposed rift, but did not think the Union could be held together by force. Urged southerners to accept defeat and reunite after war
Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson A skilled Confederate general from Virginia
Frederick Douglass An enslaved African-American who escaped to the North and became an abolitionist (wrote the North Star newspaper)
Clara Barton A Civil War nurse who created the American Red Cross
Robert Smalls An African-American sailor and Union naval captain who was highly honored for his feats of bravery and heroism. He became a Congressman after the war.
Created by: Samuel Austin.
 

 



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