|The following has been reproduced from the liner notes written by Robert Garofalo and Mark Elrod for Civil War Military Music, a recording of period brass band music performed by the Heritage Americana Brass Band (Robert Garofalo, conductor) and the Fife & Drums of Musick Virginia (George Carroll, director). The recording features 22 musical selections from Union and Confederate bandbooks, including quickstep medleys, marches, patriotic airs, ballads, and polkas, and can be obtained by writing to Pictorial Histories Publishing Company, 713 South Third West, Missoula, MT 59801 or calling (406) 549-8488.|
|For more information on period brass bands and instrumentation, this site recommends Garofalo and Elrod'sA Pictorial History of Civil War Era Musical Instruments and Military Bands. This comprehensive volume contains approximately 240 photographs and illustrations (lithographs, prints, paintings, and sheet music covers). Most of the photographs have never been published before; nearly half are of musical instruments made in America between 1840 and 1870. More than 40 early instrument makers are represented. A "must-have" book for anyone interested in the military music of the War Between the States and the men who played it. 8-1/2x11, 116 pages, 240 photographs, full-color cover, softboundISBN 0-933126-60-3$12.95Pictorial Histories Publishing Company713 South Third WestMissoula, MT 59801(406) 549-8488|
|Set of over-the-shoulder saxhorns from the collections of the Smithsonian Institution, Division of Musical Instruments.More Information|
|D-flat piccolo||Thomas Perazzoli||A Boehm-system, wood, conical-bore flute that, by its construction, produces the same sound as that of the instruments used earlier, though it is modern.|
|E-flat sopranosaxhorn (solo)||Adel Sanchez||Bell-front, nickle-plated brass; J. Howard Foote, New York City, ca. 1880. From the Smithsonian Institution.|
|E-flat sopranosaxhorn||Lawrence J. Ferris||Over-the-shoulder nickle-silver; Christian R. Stark, New York City, ca. 1855-65. From Glenn Ferris, Niagara Falls, N.Y.|
|E-flat cornet||George Recker||Over-the-shoulder, brass; Klemm, Philadelphia (possibly a European import). It was used in the Clifton Springs Cornet Band during the Civil War. From Robert E. Sheldon.|
|E-flat sopranosaxhorn||David M. Flowers||Bell-front, nickle-silver; E.G. Wright, Boston, ca. 1865-70. Inscribed "5th Mass. Cavalry." From the Smithsonian Institution.|
|B-flat cornet||David M. Flowers||Bell-front, nickle-plated brass; J. Howard Foote, New York City, ca. 1880. From the Smithsonian Institution.|
|Trumpet||David M. Flowers||Brass, 2 Stölzel (piston) valves, crooked in F ("General Taylor Storming Monterey") and E-flat ("Lilly Bell Quickstep"); probably English, unsigned, ca. 1835. From the Smithsonian Institution.|
|B-flat cornet||G. Harrison Bowling||Bell-front, nickle-silver; D.C. Hall, Boston, ca. 1865-70. From Robert E. Sheldon.|
|B-flat contraltosaxhorn||Robert Brackman||Over-the-shoulder, nickle-silver; J. Howard Foote, New York City, ca. 1880. From the Smithsonian Institution.|
|E-flat tenorhorn||Robert E. Sheldon||Bell-upright, nickle-silver; John Stratton, New York City, ca. 1870. From Robert E. Sheldon.|
|E-flat tenorhorn||Thomas W. Murray||Bell-upright, brass; J. Howard Foote, New York City, ca. 1880. From the Smithsonian Institution.|
|E-flat tenorhorn||Richard Butler||Over-the-shoulder, nickle-plated brass; J. Howard Foote, New York City, ca. 1880. From the Smithsonian Institution.|
|B-flat tenorhorn||Robert Isele||Bell-upright, brass; J. Howard Foote, New York City, ca. 1880. From the Smithsonian Institution.|
|B-flat bass(baritone)||John Marcellus||Over-the-shoulder, nickle-silver; J. Howard Foote, New York City, ca. 1880. From the Smithsonian Institution.|
|B-flat bass||Robert H. Kraft||Over-the-shoulder, nickle-silver; J. Howard Foote, New York City, ca. 1880. From the Smithsonian Institution.|
|B-flat bass(baritone)||Dallas Parker||Bell-upright, brass; J. Howard Foote, New York City, ca. 1880. From the Smithsonian Institution.|
|E-flat bass (tuba)||David Bragunier|
|E-flat bass (tuba)||Robert Eliason||Bell-upright, brass; J. Howard Foote, New York City, ca. 1880. From the Smithsonian Institution.|
|Snare drum||James Stutsman||Civil War era, rope-tension drum.|
|Bass drum||Nancy E. Stutsman||Unmarked, rope tension; ca. 1870. From the Smithsonian Institution.|
WOMENS ROLES IN THE CIVIL WAR
The roles of the Soldiers, Generals, and Government leaders during the American Civil War have been well documented and publicized. The roles that women played during that same time have only recently been given the same respect. What were some of the roles played by women during this time period? If we look in the context of this time period, the woman was considered the light of the hearth and home. Upon her fell the duty of managing the home, bearing and teaching the children, and in the rural communities would run the farms and plantations as well. Etiquette manuals tell us that a lady could not leave the house without a gentleman escort. When the war broke out the entire sphere of the woman’s world changed. With fathers, husbands , sons and brothers going off to join the ranks, women had to adapt, change their way of thinking in order to survive. Keep in mind that at this time, a woman could not vote, or sign contracts. The womans heart beat responsive to the call of war. While she could not still remain a lady and take up arms and fight, there were many things she could do to support the cause. They became nurses, laundresses, spies, vivandiere’s, Sanitary and Christian Commission workers, writers for newspapers for example.
When the war broke out in April 1861, both sides were not prepared for the onslaught of wounded that would follow a battle. There were no trained nurses. By June 1861, it was decided that Dorothea Dix would be appointed Superintendant of Army Nurses by order of President Lincoln and Secretary of War Cameron. This was in response to all the ladies who proposed to follow the men to the front and tend their wounds. Dorothea Dix set very tough standards for her nurses. They were to be over the age of 30, plain of face, dress in a plain serviceable dress (preferably brown or black) without the fashionable hoops or fancy decorations and be of good moral character. Each nurse would be personally interviewed by Miss Dix, then assigned to a hospital or later on in the war a hospital transport ship. Nurses generally worked 12 hour shifts in a ward of at least 40 sick or wounded soldiers. They would be responsible for cooking the diet and feeding the soldiers, washing the soldiers faces and hands, writing letters for the soldiers, dispense medications as ordered by the surgeons and if especially trusted by the surgeons could change bandages. The long hours and work load would often cause even the strongest of nurses to become ill. Some even died. One of the best descriptions of life as a nurse is in a book entitled "Hospital Sketches" written by Louisa May Alcott. It is a fiction book that chronicles her experiences as a nurse in a hospital in Washington around the time of the battle of Fredricksburg. Another excellent source is "The Diary of Hannah Ropes". Many women chose to become nurses on their own. Clara Barton was one of these nurses. She is perhaps best known for her post war work as the founder of The American Red Cross. She was employed in Washington at the start of the war. When the Massachutes regiments were attacked as they attempted to pass through Baltimore, she felt it was her duty to assist these men, many of whom were her former students. She began collecting supplies and distributing them to the men. She was not affliated with Miss Dix’s nurses in any way, therefore she had no authority to enter the hospitals or the field unless she had special permission. This she obtained from a very influential senator from her home state of Massachutes Senator Henry Wilson. She was one of the first on the field at Antetiam with wagons full of supplies desperately needed by the surgeons. She came under fire there including having a bullet pass through her sleeve and hit the soldier she was tending. Mary Todd Lincoln, the First Lady, also visited the hospitals often on a daily basis when she was in
Washington, spending time bringing flowers and special foods to the soldiers. She would also write letters for them and read to them. She was present with a soldier as his leg was being amputated. It is said that she held his hand and comforted him, showing an unusal strength and courage for her normally high strung character. She might be accompanied by other Washington ladies such as Mrs. Gideon Welles (wife of secretary of the Navy). The Confederacy did not have a formal organized nursing service. There are some famous Confederate nurses however. These include Kate Cummings and Phoebe Yates Pember. Phoebe Pember served as a Ward Matron at the Chimborazo Hospital in Richmond. She wrote a book after the war on her experiences entitled "A Southern Woman’s Story". It is a very insightful look into the life of a nurse in the Confederacy. For many women in the south, they would be pressed to serve as nurses as the Battles were fought in and around their homes.
Spies Many women found themselves involved in the war as spies and couriers. They chose this role out of a burning desire to do something for "the Cause". Women could not take up arms and fight. Many wanted to do something glamourous and exciting and serving as a spy fulfilled that wish. Particularly around Washington and Richmond and near battle scenes were opportunities found. One of the most famous spies is Mrs. Rose O’Neal Greenhow. She lived in Washington and had been very influential in the Buchanon Presidency. She had many friends and aquaintences who moved in the political circles of Washington. She was able to gather information, code it and pass it through the lines to the Confederacy. She is most noted for gathering the plans which lead to the Battle of Bull Run ( Manassas) in July 1861. She was arrested and spent time in the Old Capitol Prison before being sent south to Richmond. The woman who served as a spy or engaged in espionage was taking a great risk. Women who were in or near the Army Camps were subject to careful scrutiny and were suspect, particularly if they were there at odd times, unescorted, or acted in anyway eccentric. Spies might tie up papers in their hair to get information to the other side. It was expected that ladies should be treated as ladies so they believed it very easy to move information or even contraband goods through enemy lines. Soldiers were instructed to search ladies attempting to pass through the lines for messages and contraband items such as weapons or quinine. A period journalist reported that "It was better for the blood to rise to a ladies face rather than have the blood of our boys flow on the ground" as ladies would be subject to search. The fashionable hoop skirts of the period were very easy to sew in dispatches, arms and ammunition and desperately needed medicines. The severe hairstyle of the period (parted in the middle with hair neatly confined in a bun or roll) made it very easy to wrap up letters and maps. If you chose to be a spy or courier and attempt this, you risked the loss of everything, your friendships, your reputation and your future.
Vivandiere’s, or daughters of a Regiment were an acceptable way to serve with the Army. They were commonly found at the start of the war. Most Vivandiere’s accompanied their husband or male relative with the intent of being there to serve as a nurse should he be wounded or to keep an eye on their activities. Vivandiere’s dressed in a militaristic fashion in attire that resembled an exercise outfit of the period. They would wear military trousers and jacket, along with a knee length skirt. Many of them carried swords or side arms. They were very busy in camp being responsible for cooking for the troops, tending the sick and wounded, and during battles would accompany the Regiment carrying water and medicine for the wounded. On occasion they would work to rally the troops by picking up the flag and � waving the men on. Two of the most famous Vivandiere’s is Marie Tepe (buried in Pittsburgh) and Annie Etheridge of Michigan. A daughter of the regiment was held in very high esteem by the men, as they possessed good moral character.
Sanitary and Christian Commission Workers In June 1861, the US Sanitary Commission was founded. Women of the "Womens Central Relief Association" in New York City were the biggest influence in starting this organization. It encompassed not only nurses, but also field agents and workers in every city town and hamlet in the north. Supplies for the soldiers and the hospitals were being collected and distributed to the soldiers. The Sanitary and Christian Commissions were the 2 agency’s responsible for the collection and distribution of these items. There were central depots in key northern cities such as Chicago, Philadelphia, Pittsburg, Louisville and Washington where the supplies collected would come to be sorted, labeled and distributed. Women were responsible for making many of the shirts, hospital shirts, quilts and bandages sent to these depots. Women would staff the offices, noting what was received and what was dispersed. In addition, women would also send appropriate letters of thanks to contributors and also requests for additional supplies. By 1863, money was needed to fund the relief efforts and Sanitary Fairs were planned in the large cities. The first was held in Lowell Massachutes. Chicago, New York, Philadelphia, St. Louis, Cleveland and Pittsburg followed suit. These Fairs were planned by and staffed by women committees. Men were required to sign the necessary contracts, a great source of frustration for Mary Ashton Livermore, a Sanitary Commission Worker in Chicago. The Pittsburg Sanitary Fair in June 1864 raised approximately $344,000 dollars, the largest sum per capita of any of the Fairs. For women to even go into the field to distribute the collected items they needed to be accompanied by a male escort and have appropriate Military passes. They were expected to behave as proper ladies. The Sanitary and Christian Commission workers were soon into the field after a battle setting up hospitals and diet kitchens, securing and ensuring transportation of the wounded to general hospitals and offering support to the wounded and dying soldiers. The tireless effort of the ladies involved in this work is greatly praised in a book written shortly after the war " Women at War". The success of both these commissions is directly attributed to the organization and efforts of women throughout the north.
Other Roles There are so many other roles that women played in the War effort. There are journalists such as Pittsburg’s own Jane Grey Swisshelm who wrote for the New York Tribune and other papers. There are the women who worked at the various Arsenals (such as the Allegheny Arsenal in Pittsburg) making the ammunition and uniforms needed at the front. Can we forget women who were political writers such as Anna Ella Carrol whose pamphlets were used to support and defend the war? How about the women who suddenly found themselves widowed and forced to earn a living perhaps as a teacher, or working for the Treasury? How about the southern women who found themselves refugees, turned out of their homes and forced to flee from the invading army? These are but a few of the roles women played in the Civil War. This time was a turning point for women of all classes and races. To quote the book " Women in the Civil War" by Mary Elizabeth Massey, they were "lept from their sphere’s". Women found themselves taking on new responsibilities and roles, rising to the occasion and becoming the better for it. It is no accident that at this time in history and out of this time in history grew the women’s movement.
Cost Of The American Civil War
The approximately 10,455 military engagements, some devastating to human life and some nearly bloodless, plus naval clashes, accidents, suicides, sicknesses, murders, and executions resulted in total casualties of 1,094,453 during the Civil War. The Federals lost 110,100 killed in action and mortally wounded, and another 224,580 to disease. The Confederates lost approximately 94,000 as a result of battle and another 164,000 to disease. Even if one survived a wound, any projectile that hit bone in either an arm or a leg almost invariably necessitated amputation. The best estimate of Federal army personnel wounded is 275,175; naval personnel wounded, 2,226. Surviving Confederate records indicate 194,026 wounded. In dollars and cents, the U.S. government estimated Jan. 1863 that the war was costing $2.5 million daily. A final official estimate in 1879 totaled $6,190,000,000. The Confederacy spent perhaps $2,099,808,707. By 1906 another $3.3 billion already had been spent by the U.S. government on Northerners\' pensions and other veterans\' benefits for former Federal soldiers. Southern states and private philanthropy provided benefits to the Confederate veterans. The amount spent on benefits eventually well exceeded the war\'s original cost. Inflation affected both Northern and Southern assets but hit those of the Confederacy harder. Northern currency fluctuated in value, and at its lowest point $2.59 in Federal paper money equaled $1 in gold. The Confederate currency so declined in purchasing power that eventually $60-$70 equaled a gold dollar. The physical devastation, almost all of it in the South, was enormous: burned or plundered homes, pillaged countryside, untold losses in crops and farm animals, ruined buildings and bridges, devastated college campuses, and neglected roads all left the South in ruins. Detailed studies of Union and Confederate military casualties are found in Numbers and Losses in the Civil War in America 1861-65 by Thomas L. Livermore (I901) and Regimental Losses in the American Civil War, 1867-1865 by William F. Fox (1889).
Source: "Historical Times Encyclopedia of the Civil War" Edited by Patricial L. Faust Civil War Summary
- This brief summary is not meant to be a comprehensive history of the Civil War, but only the highlights. See one of the many Civil War history pages for more complete histories.
The North and the South had many basic differences. The North was mainly a center for manufacturing and industry and the financial strength necessary for success. The South economy was based in agriculture, with cash crops of tobacco, cotton and sugarcane bringing in a large portion of the economic strength. The South depended greatly on the industry of the North and the northern commercial services to further its trade to the North and to Europe. The southern "planter class" held the majority of slaves during this time, with more than 4 million enslaved men, women and children. They were an economic and financial investment to the southern gentlemen. The non-slave owners also gave their nod to slavery to ensure there would be no unrest. In the United States government, legislators avoided the slavery question like a plague to keep harmony between the northern and southern factions. But time overcame the avoidance. Growing anti-slavery opinions in the north and the growing expansion of slavery towards the north brought more and more verbal conflict. The Missouri Compromise of 1820 addressed this question by establishing a demarcation line at the 36o 30` parallel between Slavery areas and non-slavery areas. This temporarily settled the outright arguments until the USA began to expand westward. Once again in 1850, new boundaries were established in the Compromise Measures of 1850, which established California as a free state and created the Utah and New Mexico territories from land acquired in the Mexican War. In the two new territories, the local governments were allowed to choose their status between free or slave. These measures did not appease many and conflict continued to escalate. The southern factions believed their views were being ignored and that they were losing any control they may have had in the congress. The northern leaders, in the other hand, wanted funding for expansion, subsidies for improvements, good currency, homesteads and other items needed in a growing and expanding economy. The South felt the North was being favored while they were being discriminated against. In 1854, discord reared its ugly head once again with the establishment of two new territories, Kansas and Nebraska. Senator Stephen A. Douglas of Illinois sponsored a bill to give both territories popular sovereignty. In effect, this Kansas-Nebraska Act voided the Missouri Compromise and raised the ire of many northerners. Due to the uproar, a new political party, the Republican party, was created. This new party valiantly opposed slavery and gained great strength in the north. By 1856, it had grown so strong that its new candidate for President, John C. Fremont, was nearly elected. President Buchanan asked congress to admit Kansas as a slave state, further irritating the northern supporters. On 7 March 1857, the Supreme Court ruled in the Dred Scott Case that congress could not prohibit slavery in US Territories. This action greatly infuriated the north. On 16 Oct 1859, John Brown, an anti-slavery leader, led his famous raid at Harper's Ferry, Virginia (which is now in West Virginia). These events, among others, led to great insecurity among Southern leaders. The 1860 election saw great division among the ranks. Candidates were John C. Breckinridge of Kentucky by the southern wing of the Democratic party, Stephen A. Douglas by the northern wing of the same party, John Bell by the newly formed Constitutional Union Party and Abraham Lincoln by the Republican party. The Democratic split mostly ensured Lincoln's election and he took office in March of 1861 on a platform that opposed the further expansion of slavery and endorsed a protective tariff, federal subsidies for internal improvements, and a homestead act. By the time of his inauguration, the Confederate States of America had been formed with Jefferson Davis as president and seven states had gone along - Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, South Carolina and Texas. President Lincoln took a firm stand from the moment of his inauguration by stating that secession was not legal and further stating he would maintain the federal possessions in all southern states. On the infamous day of 12 April 1861, when an attempt was made to re-supply Fort Sumter at Charleston, South Carolina, the southern forces opened fire beginning the Civil War. Lincoln retaliated within a few days which also brought about the secession of Arkansas, North Carolina, Tennessee and Virginia. Though the North had more resources, more volunteers, more money and supplies than the South, neither side was prepared for a great conflict such as the Civil War would bring. Throughout the war, the north was able to muster more men, including troops of former slaves and freemen. The south was constantly hampered by lack in all areas, including military forces. Though more powerful in their resources and manpower, the North did not win as quickly and as efficiently as they had hoped. The South was able to bring in more experienced military men, such as Robert E. Lee while the North had more difficulty finding its military leadership, eventually finding great generals in Grant and Sherman. Each side employed what they felt were certain advantage. The South wanted to keep the fighting in familiar territory until the North lost its will to fight, while the North wanted to attack broadly, cutting off supply to the South. The Northern leaders felt a march directly to Richmond, Virginia, the confederate capital would bring the war to a rapid end. Both sides employed various techniques, all of which either worked or failed at some point. In other words, the battles went both ways, large areas were ravaged, lives were lost and not much ground was covered to end the conflict. Later in 1861, several border states, Delaware, Kentucky, Maryland and Missouri, were brought into the Northern sympathies, but these areas still maintained high levels of secessionism. Later, in September 1861, Kentucky joined the Union side as it was invaded by Confederate troops. West Virginia was also formed at this time from the western counties of Virginia and went to the Northern side. After a number of major battles with losses on both sides, Lee invaded Maryland in September 1862, resulting in major losses for both north and south in the Battle of Antietam. Further conflicts in all fronts moved the battle lines back and forth. The real turning point in the war appears to have been the Battle of Gettysburg beginning on 1 July, 1863, with Lee's army eventually retreating back into northern Virginia. By the end of 1863, the war had definitely turned in favor of the North, though, by no means, was the bloodshed over. For many months in 1864 Grant's forces attempted to break down Richmond's supply lines by taking Petersburg, Virginia. Meanwhile, Atlanta had fallen and their supply lines obliterated. By September 1, the southern forces had to leave the city. Sherman's troops began their march from Atlanta, burning and destroying all that fell in their path that might help the confederate efforts. By April, 1865, Sheridan and Grant joined up to assail Lee's army for perhaps the final battle. Lee and his army fled to the west, only to be stopped by Grant. On 9 April, 1865, General Robert E. Lee surrendered to General Ulysses S. Grant at the Appomattox Court House in southwestern Virginia. Once the surrender was complete, what Confederate armies remained quickly fell apart. A naval blockage was initiated to prevent any re-supplying to the south. With a minimal navy, Union forces had trouble enforcing the blockade. Also coming into the picture during March of 1862, was the new southern weapon, the Merrimack, an old steam frigate covered with metal armor. The following day, the north responded with their own "ironclad" ship, the Monitor. The indecisive battle gave neither side a true victory. Although the Merrimack returned to the safety of Norfolk Harbor, its presence forced McClellan to alter his route of march to Richmond. Other naval operations helped to cut off supply from New Orleans and other ports for the south during the remainder of the war. Lincoln had issued a preliminary proclamation of emancipation in September of 1862 stating that in those states or portions of states that were still engaged in rebellion, the slaves would be "forever free." He felt that the Confederate states would not return to the Union and slavery would not be so much an issue. But he clearly stated that the preservation of the Union was his primary objective! In issuing the emancipation proclamation, he maintained it would further weaken the south and was militarily necessary for victory and maintenance of the Union. Several states and portions of states were excluded from the proclamation. The 13th Amendment which abolished slavery in the entire United States was ratified by the legislature in December 1865. On 8 December 1863, a Proclamation of Amnesty and Reconstruction was issued by the President. Any Southerner who took an oath of loyalty to the Constitution and swore to obey the legislation and proclamations on slavery would be granted amnesty. New constitutions could be written and leaders sent to Congress once certain provisions were met. Republicans in congress were generally unhappy with this situation, wanting more protection for freed slaves and more reconstruction. This internal war was the most costly to the American people in both physical devastation and in terms of human lives taken. By the end of the war, 620,000 men had been killed. Bear in mind that at this time there were only a total of 35 million people in the entire country! This does not include the many more who were injured. Most of the destruction took place in the south. Most of the large cities lay in ruins. The surrounding countrysides were ravaged, crops were destroyed and livestock either killed or taken. After this war, other ways to voice grievances were employed by the states and the Union showed more permanence. The war needs had dramatically increased production and capital in the north as well as in the south. Once the war was over, these facilities were converted over to civilian use to the benefit of the general economy. This marked the beginning for the United States in becoming an industrial power in the world. Though the slaves had been freed, it took many, many years to change attitudes, which are still needing adjustment. Great advances have been made in Civil Rights since the end of the war, though change continues to be needed in many areas to this day. Source http://www.usacitiesonline.com/footstepsofhistory/civilwar/footstepsofhistorycivilwar.htm Northern Industry In The Civil War
The Civil War\'s effect on Northern industry was uneven, ambiguous, even Contradictory. A wealth of economic data offers evidence that the industrial capacity of the North was greatly expanded by the conflict. Other statistical information, equally abundant, suggests that the war exercised no major influence on Northern industry or actually retarded its growth. One major economic result of the war was that it helped change the U.S. from a country with an essentially agrarian society to one dependent on mechanization and a national market system. Only the North possessed an industrial base, small as it was, before the shooting started. During the fiscal year ending 1 June 1860, the country possessed some 128,300 industrial establishments. Of these, 110,274 were located in states that remained in the Union. The most heavily industrialized states, New York and Pennsylvania, each had more industry than all the seceding states combined. In 1860, too, America had a total of $1,050,000,000 invested in real and personal property devoted to business, with $949,335,000 concentrated in the North; Pennsylvania, New York, and Massachusetts each had a larger investment than the South as a whole. Finally, the North contributed 92.5% of the $1.9 billion that comprised the total value of annual product in the country in 1860. One body of evidence indicates that the war widened this sectional disparity by destroying the South\'s minute industrial base and expanding that of the North to prodigious dimensions. Statistics on specific industries provide what appears to be convincing proof. While the loss of the Southern crop produced a steep war-long decline in production in the North\'s largest industry, cotton textiles, its woolen industry enjoyed a 100% production rise during the conflict. The second largest consumer industry in the Union, shoes and leather, also enjoyed tremendous growth, thanks to army contracts that more than offset the loss of the Southern market. Other war related industries, especially firearms, gunpowder, and wagon manufacturing, grew rapidly on the strength of military contracts. Meanwhile, iron production in the North experienced a slump early in the war but boomed 1863-64, in the latter year reaching a production level 29% higher than that of the entire country in the busiest prewar year, 1856. The coal industry experienced similar growth, in 1861-65 enjoying an expansion rate 21% higher than that for the nation as a whole during the 4 years immediately preceding civil strife. The war years stimulated production of new inventions and accelerated the growth of established technology. Due to a deluge of government contracts, sewing machines became an integral part of the clothing industry, and the 50-year-old system of machine-made interchangeable parts became firmly entrenched in the production system. Agriculture-related industrial goods also witnessed production spurts attributable to the war: Gail Bordens condensed-milk process, patented in 1856, became essential to the diets of many Union soldiers, while implements including the thresher and the rotary plow experienced sales booms as machinery took over work abandoned by farm hands gone to war. In other ways, such as by easing unemployment and by promoting the enactment of protective tariffs, the war encouraged wide-scale industrial expansion. No wonder that by 1864 the Unions manufacturing index had risen to a level 13% greater than that of the country as a whole in 1860. But the war gave rise to no important new industries and, despite the statistics quoted above, generated no unusual increase in basic industrial production. It did not, as some economists later asserted, spawn an American industrial revolution; most of the innovations that did revolutionize American industry later in the century originated in the period 1820-60. Sharp declines marked the production expansion of many Northern industries during wartime. The nations railroads, for example, increased their trackage by 70% during the 1860s, as against over 200% in a brief period prior to the 1860s. The war saw only a 10% rise in the production of pig iron, though that industry had experienced a 17% increase 1855-60 and in the 5 years following Appomattox grew by 100%. Though the coal industry as a whole expanded, bituminous coal production failed to increase during the conflict, while the copper industrys rate of growth was dramatically low, especially given its importance to war materiel production. Perhaps a more revealing ratio is the 22% increase in total American commodity output in the 1860s, compared to a 62% growth rate in both the 1850s and 1870s. Another striking comparison is the 3% decline in American output per capita in the 1860s, as against an average decennial increase of 20% for the balance of the period 1840-1900. The war may also have exerted a negative influence on Northern industry in more generalized ways. The state of the wartime economy, which inspired the issuance of paper currency throughout the Union, produced a steady inflation, a general rise in commodity prices, and a decrease in purchasing power. It also gave rise to trade unions, work strikes, and other conditions considered injurious to industrial growth. By discouraging immigration, the war reduced a source of cheap labor. The conflict also helped unsettle business conditions by drawing off capital and labor from North and South alike, a trend whose impact on the economy lasted well into the 1870s. Predictions early in the war of a quick Union victory hindered industrial growth by making entrepreneurs wary of over expanding. As late as Aug. 1 862, the New York Tribune complained about "our paralyzed industry." But wartime statistics, positive or negative, fail to tell the full story of the Civil Wars impact on Northern industrialism. Perhaps the primary economic effect of this period of upheaval was to prepare the U.S. for an intense industrialization in the decades following 1865. The conflict helped do away with industry-stifling government regulation; nationalized the regional market system of antebellum years; created a generation of war-weary young men motivated by the acquisitive ethic; reduced the energy-sapping political strife that had adversely affected industrialism prior to 1861; and brought to long-term power a political party that favored business growth. Thus, regardless of the immediacy of its effects, the war contributed much to the long-term economic climate that made a reunited America the industrial giant of the 20th century.
Source: "The Historical Times Encyclopedia of the Civil War" Edited by Patricia L. Faust