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Among all the killing fields of the Civil War, certain battlegrounds have earned the right to be called legendary: Shiloh, Antietam, Gettysburg and Cold Harbor. With a level of destruction and a rate of casualties unprecedented in American military history, each of these clashes played a pivotal role in shaping the course and the ultimate outcome of the war between the states. Civil War Combat offers a dramatic look at the most significant and brutal battles of America’s bloodiest era..
The Wheatfield At Gettysburg:
Until July 1863, most of the major battles of the Civil War had been fought on Confederate soil. General Robert E. Lee was thus determined to bring the fighting to the North. Lee launched his attack in Pennsylvania, despite poor intelligence reports that left him unaware of Union troop movements. After initial success against Northern troops, Lee allowed his exhausted army to rest -- giving Union forces vital time to dig in. When the two armies finally clashed near Gettysburg, the battle of "The Wheatfield" saw soldiers fighting literally hand-to hand. This battle remains one of the most dramatic scenes in American military history.
The Tragedy Of Cold Harbor:
In the Spring of 1864, President Lincoln appointed General Ulysses S. Grant commander of all Union armies. Relentlessly pursuing Lee’s forces, Grant finally caught up with him outside of Richmond, Virginia, near a dusty crossroads tavern known as Cold Harbor. On June 3rd, Grant attacked, sending his troops into what some called a suicidal assault against the well-entrenched Confederate armies -- and lost over seven thousand men in just twenty minutes. According to one Rebel officer observing the slaughter, "It wasn’t war. It was murder." But ten months later, Cold Harbor would be looked upon as the beginning of the end of the Confederacy -- and the launch of the era of trench warfare.
The Hornets’ Nest At Shiloh:
By the winter of 1862, Union forces under General Ulysses S. Grant had marched deep into southern Tennessee. Grant’s intent was to secure the Cumberland and Tennessee Rivers and bring in Union reinforcements. South of the Tennessee border, however, Confederate General Albert S. Johnston was aware of Grant’s plans. On April 6th, Johnston attacked, catching Grant by surprise near Shiloh Church. The battle peaked along an abandoned wagon road ultimately named "The Hornets’ Nest" for the intensity of the fighting there. With over four thousand men dead in the battle’s aftermath, Americans on both sides of the conflict now had a graphic image of what they had wrought -- a brutal, bloody war.
The Bloody Lane At Antietam:
In September of 1862, Confederate forces under General Robert E. Lee invaded the North for the first time. His advance was blocked by Union troops in a battle fought near a small Maryland stream called Antietam Creek. The resulting loss of men on both sides would make this the bloodiest single day in American military history. And of all the fighting, the most ferocious clash took place at a sunken wagon track immortalized as "Bloody Lane". Here, waves of Union soldiers charged repeatedly against well-protected, well-trained rebel lines. The casualties stunned both sides -- and figured significantly in President Abraham Lincoln’s decision to issue the Emancipation Proclamation -- an act that would drastically alter the tenor and course of the war.
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Upplagd i sortimentet: 17 September, 2009