gary w. gallagher & kathryn shively meier On March 4, 1865, Abraham Lincoln delivered his Second Inaugural Address to a crowd that had gathered despite drenching rains earlier in the day. The president and his audience understood that Union victory almost certainly lay just ahead. As the fourth anniversary of the outbreak of war approached, 2 million men had shouldered muskets in U.S. armies. Casualties among these soldiers--dead, wounded, and taken prisoner-- surpassed eight hundred thousand. Lincoln left no doubt about the important role U.S. armies had played. "The progress of our arms, upon which all else chiefly depends, is as well known to the public as to myself," he said in language revealing the direct connection between military campaigns and civilian morale, "and it is, I trust, reasonably satisfactory and encouraging to all." In a message to the Confederate Congress on May 2, 1864, Jefferson Davis similarly had referred to the ties between the military and civilian spheres. "The army which has borne the trials and dangers of the war; which has been subjected to privations and disappointments," he stated, ". . . has been the centre of cheerfulness and hope." As the conflict ground toward its
The Journal of the Civil War Era – University of North Carolina Press
Published: Nov 8, 2014
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