Entries

Alien and Sedition Acts
Enacted in 1798 by the 5th United States Congress, the Alien and Sedition Acts served the dual purpose of attempting to muffle anti-war sentiment and to cripple the Democratic-Republican Party. Continue Reading »
Anaconda Plan
The Anaconda Plan is a term that describes General Winfield Scott's recommendation to slowly strangle the southern rebellion by blockading southern seaports and seizing control of the Mississippi River. Continue Reading »
Calhoun, John C. - Senate Speech on the Compromise of 1850 (Transcript)
Transcript of John C. Calhoun's speech on the Compromise of 1850, as delivered on the Senate floor by Virginia Senator James Mason. Continue Reading »
Civil Rights Act of 1866
Enacted by Congress over President Andrew Johnson's veto, the Civil Rights Act of 1866 aimed to counter Black Codes enacted by Southern states by validating the citizenship of former slaves and endowing them with specific, federally-guaranteed, civil rights Continue Reading »
Compromise of 1850
The Compromise of 1850 was proposed by Kentucky Senator Henry Clay to resolve sectional issues in the United States regarding slavery after the Mexican-American War. Continue Reading »
Confiscation Act of 1861
Enacted by Congress and signed by President Lincoln on August 6, 1861, the Confiscation Act of 1861 declared fugitive slaves used or employed in aiding, abetting, or promoting war against the United States to be contraband and stripped the proprietors of such slaves to their rights to ownership. Continue Reading »
Confiscation Act of 1862
Enacted by Congress and signed by President Lincoln on July 16, 1862, the Confiscation Act of 1862 expanded the scope of the Confiscation Act of 1861 and moved the United States towards universal emancipation and the abolition of slavery. Continue Reading »
Conscription Act
On March 3, 1863 the United States President Abraham Lincoln signed the Conscription Act (aka the Enrollment Act), which required states to implement conscription (a draft) if they were unable to provide a proscribed number of volunteers for the Union forces during the Civil War. Continue Reading »
Corwin Amendment
The Corwin Amendment was a proposed amendment to the United States Constitution that was approved by Congress in 1861 in an attempt to avoid disunion and civil war. Continue Reading »
Crittenden Compromise
Proposed by Kentucky Senator John J. Crittenden on December 18, 1860, the Crittenden Compromise, also known as the Crittenden Plan, was an unsuccessful eleventh-hour attempt to save the Union and to avoid the American Civil War, but the agreement was never adopted by the Senate. Continue Reading »
Emancipation Proclamation
Issued by President Abraham Lincoln on January 1, 1863, the Emancipation Proclamation stated that people held in slavery in areas designated in rebellion against the United States to be freed from bondage. Continue Reading »
Fifteenth Amendment
Approved by Congress on February 26, 1869, ratified by the states on February 3, 1870, and certified by Secretary of State Hamilton Fish on March 30, 1870, the Fifteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution affirmed that, "The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude." Continue Reading »
Force Act (1833)
Approved by Congress on March 1, 1833 and signed by President Andrew Jackson the next day, the Force Act of 1833, known in South Carolina as the "Bloody Bill," authorized President Jackson to employ land, naval, or militia forces for the purpose of protecting customs officials and for enforcing United States tariff laws. Continue Reading »
Fourteenth Amendment
Ratified in 1868, the Fourteenth Amendment to the Constitution was the second of the Reconstruction Amendments proposed by Congress and ratified by the states following the American Civil War. Continue Reading »
Freeport Doctrine
During the Lincoln-Douglas Debates of 1856, Illinois Senator Stephen A. Douglas proposed the Freeport Doctrine, which held that citizens of territories could ban slavery, despite the 1856 Supreme Court decision in the case of Dred Scott v. Sandford. Continue Reading »
Fremont's Declaration of Martial Law
On August 30, 1861, Major General John C. Fremont declared martial law in Missouri and freed the slaves of Missouri residents in revolt against the United States. Continue Reading »
Fugitive Slave Act of 1793
When delegates to the Constitutional Convention assembled in Philadelphia in 1787, one of the more daunting tasks that they faced was resolving sectional differences between the North and South centered on the issue of slavery. After weeks of debate proved futile, the delegates negotiated a series of compromises that enabled them to proceed with their primary assignment of forming "a more perfect Union" between the separate states. Continue Reading »
Fugitive Slave Act of 1850
The Fugitive Slave Act of 1850 was passed by Congress as one provision of the Compromise of 1850. The harsh terms of the act angered many Northerners and contributed to the sectional division over slavery that led to the American Civil War. Continue Reading »
Gag Rule
The gag rule consisted of a series of changes to the rules of the U.S. House of Representatives that prohibited the introduction of petitions related to slavery between 1836 and 1844. Continue Reading »
General Orders, No. 1 (Army of Tennessee)
On December 27, 1863, General Joseph E. Johnston issued General Orders, No. 1 (AoT) announcing that he was assuming command of the Army of Tennessee. Continue Reading »

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Ohio Civil War Central: An Encyclopedia of the American Civil War