The importance of the Civil War and Reconstruction in the history of the United States cannot be overstated. There was a very real possibility that the union could have been sundered, resulting in a very different American history, and probably world history. But the union was held together by tough and determined leaders and by the economic muscle of the North. Following the end of the war, the period of American history known as Reconstruction followed. This was a period construed in many different ways. While the states were once again united, many of the postwar efforts divided different segments of the population and failed to achieve their goals in an era too often remembered for carpetbaggers and scalawags, and Congressional imbroglios and incompetent government. This one-volume dictionary, with more than 800 entries covering the significant events, persons, politics, and economic and social themes in the U.S. Civil War and Reconstruction, is a research tool for all levels of readers from high school and up. The extensive chronology, introductory essay, dictionary entries, and comprehensive bibliography introduce and lead the reader through the military and non-military actions of one of the most pivotal events in American history.
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