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In 1864, after his successes in the West, General Grant replaced
General Meade as the commander of the Union Army.
Grant decided that no matter the cost he would finally capture
Richmond, the Confederate capital.
Grant began fighting Lee in Virginia in 1864. He continued to
fight even though he wasn’t getting closer to Richmond.
Grant knew that Lee had a harder time replacing his troops than
While Grant battled Lee, he sent General William T. Sherman
with the task of capturing Atlanta.
Sherman was told to destroy anything he felt would help the
Confederacy, such as food, farms, weapons, railroads, and fields.
The idea of fighting and destroying more than just armies, but
targeting people, resources, and attempting to demoralize them
is called total war.
Grant took the Union Army in the East and began to
His 115,000 men fought Lee’s 64,000 at the Battles of
the Wilderness, Spotsylvania Courthouse, and Cold
Grant was going to continue to throw soldiers at Lee
until he surrendered.
At the Battle of the Wilderness, men fought in blinding
smoke, with men burning to death after fires started
from all the weapons fire.
At Cold Harbor, men had begun to pin their names to
their bodies to be identified.
Grant continued to push forward, and at one point lost
50,000 men in 30 days.
William Tecumseh Sherman
led another army toward
He laid siege to Atlanta,
finally forcing Confederate
General John Hood to leave
with his men.
On the shores of Alabama,
David Farragut led the Union
Navy at Mobile Bay.
He helped secure the ports
east of the Mississippi so that
the Confederates could not
Lincoln had to run for President
again in 1864.
Confederates hoped he would
lose, and that the new President
might not want to continue the
Lincoln was elected by a vote of
212 to 21 in the electoral college.
He decided that his victory meant
that the people were behind him.
He supported Congress as they
voted to end slavery forever by
passing the 13th Amendment to
the Constitution in 1865.
Slavery was now illegal in the
United States forever.
In the middle of 1864, General
Sherman reached Atlanta and
set it on fire.
After making sure Atlanta would
no longer be a problem,
Sherman marched his men from
Atlanta to the Atlantic Ocean,
destroying anything the
Confederates used to continue
Sherman’s success helped to get
Abraham Lincoln reelected in
After reaching the sea, Sherman
marched to help General Grant
end the war.
In April of 1865, Grant and his forces
General Lee soon realized he was
surrounded and agreed to surrender
The two men met at Appomattox
Grant told Lee his men must
surrender their weapons and leave
The surrender marked the end of
the war, and the process of
reconstructing the country could
In all, over 260,000 Confederate and
360,000 Union troops died during the
Another 500,000 were wounded.
Slavery was now dead in the United
States, but questions about the future
of freed slaves remained.
The nation was to be reunited, but it
would take a long time before the
country was truly whole again.
It would take another century for
African Americans to truly take their
place as equals in the United States.