Learning Lincoln On-line

CONTENTS: SET TWO--  COMMANDER & CHIEF HOME PAGE

(Topic Forty-Eight/ with Topic Fifty:  Lincoln as a Military Commander)


 

The Civil War  



 

An Activity to Learn About our 16th President's Leadership
and the Reconstruction Plans that he never could initiate

INTRODUCTORY ACTIVITY:  COMPLETE THE CHART

Using Internet links, your job will be to research how Abraham Lincoln solved the problems listed above.  You will complete tables, and write short responses to questions and problems.President Lincoln's Instruction to General Grant on winning the War.   In this Activity you are to look over the Highlights of each Civil War Year.

In order to study Lincoln & His Command, one must see the order of events
This Library of Congress Timeline nicely describes the problem that Lincoln had in obtaining a Union victory
Use the table to compile the order of events.

Complete:  A Record of President Lincoln's Command Leadership

CIVIL WAR YEAR
GREAT BATTLES,  GENERALS IN CHARGE  WINNING SIDE? LINCOLN'S ACTION TO HELP WIN THE WAR
1862  Year of Retreat & Failure Land: Military Decisions:
. . .
. . .
. Sea & Waterways: Political Decisions:
.. . .
.. . .
1863  Gettysburg, Emancipation, The Draft Land: Military Decisions:
.. . .
. . .
. Sea & Waterways: Political Decisions:
.. .. ..
.. .. ..
1864 U.S. Grant commands Union Army Land: Military Decisions:
.. . .
. . .
. Sea & Waterways: Political Decisions:
.. . .
. . .
1865  Lincoln offer to South refused, War ends, South surrenders at Appomatox Land: Military Decisions:
... . .
. . .
. Sea & Waterways: Political Decisions:
. . .
. . .

 

PART ONE-- SECESSION AND THE CONFEDERACY FORMS

During 1860 secession starts.

South Carolina seceded December 20, 1860.

During 1861 these states seceded.

  • January 9 - Mississippi secedes from the Union.
  • January 10 - Florida secedes from the Union.
  • January 11 - Alabama secedes from the Union.
  • January 19 - Georgia secedes from the Union.
  • January 26 - Louisiana secedes from the Union.
  • January 29 - Kansas admitted to the Union as a free state.
  • February 9 - The Confederate States of America is formed with Jefferson Davis as president.
  • February 23 - Texas secedes from the Union.
  •  
  • April 17 - Virginia secedes from the Union, followed within 5 weeks by Arkansas, Tennessee, and North Carolina, thus forming an eleven state Confederacy.

CLICK HERE TO STUDY SECESSION AND THE PRESIDENT'S RESPONSE

PRESIDENT LINCOLN'S AND OUR COUNTRY'S PROBLEM:

1.  Holding the Union together, with an ongoing Civil War

 

PART TWO-- SLAVERY

"Abraham Lincoln is often referred to as "The Great Emancipator" and yet, he did not publicly call for emancipation throughout his entire life. Lincoln began his public career by claiming that he was "antislavery" -- against slavery's expansion but not calling for immediate emancipation.  He was not an active "Abolitionist."
However, the man who began as "antislavery" eventually issued the Emancipation Proclamation, which freed all slaves in those states that were in rebellion. He vigorously supported the 13th Amendment which abolished slavery throughout the United States, and, in the last speech of his life, he recommended extending the vote to African Americans."

CLICK HERE TO STUDY ABRAHAM LINCOLN AND SLAVERY

PRESIDENT LINCOLN'S AND OUR COUNTRY'S PROBLEM: 

2.  Dealing with the slave issue as a moral issue

 

 

PART THREE-- WAR POLITICS INVOLVED FROM CAPITOL HILL

(THE JOINT COMMITTEE ON THE CONDUCT OF THE WAR)

The Joint Committee on the Conduct of the War was a government panel in Washington during the American Civil War, whose most controversial function was to investigate the cause of Union battle losses. This provided a forum for generals to try to deflect blame, at a time when accusations of disloyalty were hard to disprove, and it encouraged an atmosphere of suspicion and mistrust. The committee was dominated by Radical Republicans of no military experience, urging rash movements, at odds with Lincoln's more considered strategies.

 

PRESIDENT LINCOLN'S AND OUR COUNTRY'S PROBLEM

3.  Abraham Lincoln and the Committee on the Conduct of the War (Congressional Jealousy of the Executive Branch)

 

PART FOUR-- WINNING BATTLES "LINCOLN'S COMMAND"

Abraham Lincoln, 16th President, chose a cabinet of former political opponents, and made plans as soon as becoming president to deal with the "secessionist."  He decided to let the Confederacy take the first shots of the looming "war."  He and many thought that the insurrection of southern radicals would be short.  The President made a call April 15, 1861, for 75,000 volunteers to put down the troubles.   They were to serve for three months following the bombardment and surrender of Fort Sumter.  Cities and towns, and rural areas all over the North sent their boys and men.  There was much excitement and pride.  Each regiment would have their own "colors" sewn by women in their communities.  The people of each community would help to supply weapons and other items.  Not even the President knew that the war would go on for four years, and over 600,000 of the men and boys that volunteered would die.


The war would go terribly for the North for months and years.  So many losses and deaths. 

Leadership in the Army was poor.  West Point graduate generals and officers did not learn to be

offensive soldiers.  We would sometimes come close to winning, but not follow up.  Most often

there was major defeat.


On March 11, 1862, President Abraham Lincoln issues War Order No. 3, a measure making several changes at the top of the Union Army command structure. Lincoln created three departments, placing Henry Halleck in charge of the West, John C. Fremont in command of troops in the Appalachian region, and George McClellan in charge in the East.

PRESIDENT LINCOLN'S AND OUR COUNTRY'S PROBLEM:

4.  Lincoln's Command-- Finding a General that would fight and win

 

PART FIVE-- 5.   LEARNING THE ART OF WARFARE & RE-CREATING THE POSITION OF "COMMANDER & CHIEF"

Lincoln as Commander in Chief

A self-taught strategist with no combat experience, Abraham Lincoln saw the path to victory more clearly than his generals.  James M. McPherson

CLICK HERE FOR THE ENTIRE ARTICLE

from the Smithsonian Magazine at http://www.smithsonianmag.com/history/lincoln-as-commander-in-chief-131322819/

        "When the American Civil War began, President Abraham Lincoln was far less prepared for the task of commander in chief than his Southern adversary. Jefferson Davis had graduated from West Point (in the lowest third of his class, to be sure), commanded a regiment that fought intrepidly at Buena Vista in the Mexican War and served as secretary of war in the Franklin Pierce administration from 1853 to 1857. Lincoln's only military experience had come in 1832, when he was captain of a militia unit that saw no action in the Black Hawk War, which began when Sac and Fox Indians (led by the war chief Black Hawk) tried to return from Iowa to their ancestral homeland in Illinois in alleged violation of a treaty of removal they had signed. During Lincoln's one term in Congress, he mocked his military career in an 1848 speech. "Did you know I am a military hero?" he said. "I fought, bled and came away" after "charges upon the wild onions" and "a good many bloody struggles with the Musquetoes.""

 

PRESIDENT LINCOLN'S AND OUR COUNTRY'S PROBLEM:

5. Learning the art of warfare & Re-Creating the position of "Commander and

Chief."

 

PART SIX-- POLITICAL LEADERSHIP TO KEEP HIS PROGRAM ALIVE (DEALING WITH CONGRESS)

"Government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the Earth."

Lincoln adhered to the Whig theory of the presidency, which gave Congress primary responsibility for writing the laws while the Executive enforced them. Lincoln only vetoed four bills passed by Congress; the only important one was the Wade-Davis Bill with its harsh program of Reconstruction. He signed the Homestead Act in 1862, making millions of acres of government-held land in the West available for purchase at very low cost. The Morrill Land-Grant Colleges Act, also signed in 1862, provided government grants for agricultural colleges in each state. The Pacific Railway Acts of 1862 and 1864 granted federal support for the construction of the United States' First Transcontinental Railroad, which was completed in 1869. The passage of the Homestead Act and the Pacific Railway Acts was made possible by the absence of Southern congressmen and senators who had opposed the measures in the 1850s.

PRESIDENT LINCOLN'S AND OUR COUNTRY'S PROBLEM

6.  Political Leadership to keep his program alive (Congress)

 

PART SEVEN-- RECONSTRUCTING THE SOUTH FOR A SOLUTION IN HELPING THE SOUTH REBUILD

The Only Bill That President Lincoln Pocket Vetoed:  The Wade-Davis Bill (Reconstruction Plan)

       Lincoln's Plan-- In late 1863, President Abraham Lincoln and the Congress began to consider the question of how the Union would be reunited if the North won the Civil War. In December President Lincoln proposed a reconstruction program that would allow Confederate states to establish new state governments after 10 percent of their male population took loyalty oaths and the states recognized the “permanent freedom of slaves.”

Several congressional Republicans thought Lincoln’s 10 Percent Plan was too mild. A more stringent plan was proposed by Senator Benjamin F. Wade and Representative Henry Winter Davis in February 1864. The Wade-Davis Bill required that 50 percent of a state’s white males take a loyalty oath to be readmitted to the Union. In addition, states were required to give blacks the right to vote.

Congress passed the Wade-Davis Bill, but President Lincoln chose not to sign it, killing the bill with a pocket veto. Lincoln continued to advocate tolerance and speed in plans for the reconstruction of the Union in opposition to the Congress. After Lincoln’s assassination in April 1865, however, the Congress had the upper hand in shaping Federal policy toward the defeated South and imposed the harsher reconstruction requirements first advocated in the Wade-Davis Bill.

Lincoln was a high-power politician and got his 13th Amendment through.  Watch the movie,

Lincoln, and you can see a version of how he operated with Congress.  He won his second

election, was inaugurated January of 1865, but as we all know was assassinated April 13, 1865. 

This ended the chance of his 10% Plan. 

How would our history be now, if his 10% Plan had become law.  No doubt he would have

gotten it passed.

 

PRESIDENT LINCOLN'S AND OUR COUNTRY'S PROBLEM

7.  Reconstructing the South for a solution in helping the South rebuild



RESOURCES

16th President Home Page Here

Commander & Chief Page

Learning On-Line Home Page