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U.S. Civil War 1861-1865

1861 - Divided State

February 28, 1861 - Over 90,000 North Carolinians come to the polls to vote. They must decide if they want a resolution that calls their elected representatives to meet at a statewide convention. The convention would put to an official vote whether or not North Carolina should secede from the U.S. By only 651 votes, citizens defeat the resolution. For a few more months, the state will remain part of the U.S.

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1865 - Surrender

April 9, 1865 - General Robert E. Lee, commander of all Confederate armed forces, surrenders at Appomattox Courthouse, Virginia. Lee had fought brilliantly at Antietam, Chancellorsville, Fredericksburg and Gettysburg. Now the military strategist who once refused President Lincoln's offer to lead the Union troops must admit defeat. Lee surrenders to General Ulysses S. Grant, who commands the Union army. More than 600,000 people have died in the Civil War.

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1861 - Sumter

April 12, 1861 - U.S. army troops are stationed at Fort Sumter, South Carolina, an island at the entrance to Charleston Harbor. From across the water, Confederate soldiers open fire with mortar shells on the fort. The Civil War has begun! For the next four years, the war will turn America's countrymen, neighbors and families bitterly against each other.

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1865 - A Nation in Mourning

April 14, 1865The Civil War is over. President Abraham Lincoln is attending Ford's Theater in Washington, D.C. with his wife when actor John Wilkes Booth appears in the president's private theater box. Booth, a supporter of slavery, despises the president. He shoots and kills Lincoln, then jumps to the stage and flees. Booth will be found hiding in Virginia 12 days later and be shot. As Americans mourn the loss of Lincoln, they are uneasy. They wonder what will happen next.

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1861 - Change of Command

April 20, 1861 - North Carolina Governor John Ellis sends Col. John Y. Boyce and his troops to Charlotte. They command Green Caldwell to turn over control of the Mint. Officials strike out the words of the U.S. from all their documents. No longer will the Mint make coins for the United States. It will soon belong to the new Confederate States of America.Governor John Ellis

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