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US Civil War

What weaknesses existed in the South at the start of the Civil War? Were these same weaknesses present in the North? Explain thoroughly your conclusions. Whose war-making resources were greater? What strengths did the South possess?

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Militarily, the South was not at all prepared for the onset of war. The Southern states had no navy to speak of, but had hundreds of miles of coastlines and rivers to defend. Furthermore, the Southern states had an economy based almost exclusively on agriculture. Its wealth was based on its cotton production, and manufacturing in the South was very limited. Manpower in the South was also greatly inferior to that of the North. The total population of the 11 Southern states was about 9 million, but some 4 million of these were slaves, a manpower source the Confederacy would not attempt to tap until the waning days of the conflict. The North boasted a population well in excess of 20 million. In addition, immigration gave a new source of manpower to the Union armies, as migrants from Europe were actively recruited into the Northern military. In transportation the North also enjoyed a great advantage, as her railroad system was far more developed, and throughout the war the South had difficulty maintaining the rails that were so vital in ...

Solution Summary

The solution provides a discussion of certain elements of the American Civil War history, in particular the weaknesses that the South had prior to the war and if these said weaknesses were also present in the North. The strengths of both were also discussed, in particular that of the South.

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