16. Abraham Lincoln (1861-1865)

Third War-Time President

Assassinated April 14, 1865 (died 4/15/1865)

Party: Republican

Vice Presidents – Hannibal Hamlin; Andrew Johnson


  • Secession Crisis 1860-1861
  • Civil War 1861-1865 which saw 23 Northern states with 22 million people against 11 Southern states with 9 million (3.5 million of which are slaves)
  • Lincoln calls for 75,000 militia to suppress initial rebellion
  • Upper South states and Border States become a problem
  • Northern Strategy was to blockade all southern ports to cut off southern trade, take control of the Mississippi River and New Orleans to surround the Southern Confederacy, and to capture the Confederate capitol of Richmond, Virginia
  • Southern Strategy was to defend Southern Sovereignty against Northern invasion, bring Great Britain into the war on the Southern side, and to stalemate Northern intentions to force an international recognition of Southern independence
  • Battle of Antietam saw 23,000 killed in one day and convinced many that the war would be very long [September 17, 1862]
  • Battle of Gettysburg saw 23,000 Union soldiers and 28,000 Confederate soldiers killed, wounded, and missing – the battle that decided the North’s ultimate victory [July 1-3, 1863]
  • Sherman’s March to the Sea (May-September 1864)
  • Siege of Petersburg (August 1864 to April 1865) leads to surrender of Southern forces at Appomattox Court House in Virginia [April 9, 1865]
  • Morrill Tariff passed to increase rates to help domestic businesses during poor conditions of the Civil War [March 2, 1861]
  • Morrill Act (a.k.a. Land-Grant Act of 1862) to grant millions of acres of Federal land to states for sale to raise revenue to establish agricultural and mechanical arts colleges (i.e., University of California and Michigan State University) [July 2, 1862]
  • Homestead Act allotted 160 acres of western land to any adult citizen head of family who had not fought against the Union during the Civil War on the promise to live and cultivate for five years – intended to populate the West – the Homestead Act expired in 1976 with the exception of Alaska where it ended in 1986 [May 20, 1862]
  • Emancipation Proclamation 1863


  • Trent Affair 1861 saw tensions rise between the Union and Great Britain over the seizure by American navy of two Confederates onboard the British ship
  • Alabama Affair 1862 saw tensions tighten between the Union and Great Britain by the British construction of Confederate commerce-raider ships that threatened Union international shipping
  • Battle of the Rams 1863 saw near-war threatened between the Union and Great Britain over two iron-clad warships being built for the navy of the Confederacy; Union promises an invasion of Canada, so London relents and buys ships for the Royal Navy instead
  • French occupation of Mexico by Napoleon III in 1863 and installation of puppet dictator-emperor Maximillian in 1864