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Old September 15th, 2006, 02:06 PM   #1
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The Mississippi River in the Civil War


How important was it to control the Mississippi River in the civil war? Who controlled it the most? The north or the south?
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Old September 15th, 2006, 03:27 PM   #2

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Can you say "lifeline?' At the very outset the North knew it had to do two things relatively quickly just to be able to win the war, the first was to blockade southern ports. The second was to control the Mississippi River. Controlling it would cut the South in two. Not only that, but everything that was coming in through New Orleans would have to go over land which took more than twice as long to ship. After Donnelson, it was pretty much in the North's court until after Vicksburg when the South lost it's final grasp on it.
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Old September 16th, 2006, 05:25 PM   #3

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Couldn't have said it better myself Cronus. Without the river and without solid railroad lines, the South really had no other means of transportation except ground travel.

If the south had controlled the River, the could have swept into the North from Illinois and attacked from two sides... illustrated by my awesome map.

Click the image to open in full size.
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Old September 16th, 2006, 06:54 PM   #4
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Mississippi was the lifeline. Thats why Vicksburg was so important to the Confederacy to defend ... and the Union to take over.
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Old September 16th, 2006, 08:48 PM   #5

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Commander
Couldn't have said it better myself Cronus. Without the river and without solid railroad lines, the South really had no other means of transportation except ground travel.

If the south had controlled the River, the could have swept into the North from Illinois and attacked from two sides... illustrated by my awesome map.

Click the image to open in full size.
And Boom! You'll be giving Joe Maddon a run for his money one day. The area in question, through Illinois, was realatively unattended by any troops. A good size army, with help from Forrest and his cavalry, could have done some damage. The presence of Southern soldiers in Northern states would pin a pretty good size rock against Lincoln via the states wanting this reslolved before any blood is spilled on Northern soil. Let's remember that during the first two years there was still Southern sympathy in a few of the Northern states. The war could have been over before it had a chance to get good momentum going.......but.........bad leadership and more things that need to be discussed in a topic of their own played a big deal in why the Mississippi fell.
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