Thursday, August 15, 2013

Border State Civil War History

Border State Civil War History

During the American Civil War (1861-1865) the Border States were geographically vital to the conflict, as both the Union and Confederacy recognized the strategic value of the region. To march on Southern soil, consequently, meant marching through hostile Border States. The Border State Civil War History portrays divided loyalties, the Brother against Brother War, bushwhackers, and an environment well-known for its guerrilla warfare.

The Border States--Delaware, Kentucky, MarylandMissouri, and West Virginia--comprised the Civil War's middle ground, a region of moderation lying between the warring North and South. It was the region in which no states supported Abraham Lincoln in the 1860 presidential election.
Yet, any hope that this pursuit of the middle ground would bring peace to border state residents was quickly dashed in wartime. Angry confrontations, including some of the most violent guerrilla warfare in American history, became an everyday fact of life in this region, as the two sides lived side-by-side and confronted one another on a daily basis. The border states were both compromising in peacetime and antagonistic in war, two seemingly contradictory positions that in fact sprung from the same source: each state encompassed deep and enduring internal divisions.
In the Border States, civilian loyalties were divided, with some favoring secession and others remaining loyal to the Union. These divided populations had a profound impact on Union and Confederate strategy, both political and military. Each side undertook measures, including brutal guerrilla warfare, intended to persuade or sometimes conquer areas of divided loyalty. Each side suffered setbacks in the face of hostile moral and political views held by local civilians.

In the Border States, the war pitted neighbor against neighbor. The wrong word at the wrong time could land a civilian in jail. In some areas, bitter resentments and divisions remained long after the war was over. See also Border State Civil War History and Civil War Border States: A History.

No comments:

Post a Comment