5th Grade ESL Tennessee History
Part Two: Volunteer State Divided
Tennessee History for Kids has a video on what it might have been like to have been a soldier in the Civil War, called "Hard Tack and Salt Pork" Click here to see it using Quicktime; here using Media Player; and here on youtube.
A re-enactment at Shiloh National Military Park
Tell me more about the Civil War.
1) There were two sides fighting each other.
2) The Civil War had many causes.
- There was the Union. They wanted to remain part of the United States.
- There was the Confederacy. They wanted to separate from the United States and be a new nation.
3) Some battles were well organized. But the Civil War was, at times, fought in an unorganized way. Sometimes the army generals had a hard time organizing their soldiers and were even sometimes accidentally killed by their own men.
- Some people wanted to preserve slavery; some people wanted to abolish it.
- Some people were fighting for their state's rights, while some people were fighting for the preservation of the country.
4) During the Civil War, unarmed civilians were shot and killed on both sides.
5) Children generally did not fight in the Civil War. But, there were some children, as young as ten, who would walk alongside the soldiers to beat a drum or load a weapon.
6) During the Civil War, more soldiers died from disease than from wounds. Wounded soldiers would have to amputate their wounded leg or arm. They did not have anesthesia to help with the pain.
The tomb of a drummer boy at Shiloh
What was the Civil War like in Tennessee, the Volunteer State?
1) More Civil War battles took place in Tennessee than in any other state except Virginia.
2) Middle and Western Tennesseans fought for the Confederacy. East Tennesseans fought for the Union. Explain this difference.
3) Sometimes neighbors would be fighting neighbors or brothers would be fighting brothers. How could this happen?
4) Tennessee was the last state to leave the Union and the first state to come back into the Union.
5) In 1864, the Union army captured Nashville without firing a shot.
6) The Battle of Shiloh, near present day Corinth, Mississippi, had more fatalities than in all the wars that Americans had fought in up to this time.
A statue of Forrest
7) Nathan Bedford Forrest was a famous cavalry officer. He was a Tennessean who narrowly escaped death a number of times.
8) In 1864, President Lincoln ran for re-election. He chose a Tennessean, Andrew Johnson, to be his running mate. When President Lincoln won the election, Johnson became vice president. When President Lincoln was assassinated, Johnson became president.
President Johnson had a difficult presidency and was very close to being removed from office.
Tennessee History for Kids has created a video about African Americans in the Civil War. In "The Lost Soldier," History Bill wanders through the Nashville National Cemetery and meets a soldier to tell his story. Click here to see it using Quicktime; here using Windows Media Player; and here on youtube.
President Andrew Johnson
PHOTO: Library of Congress
Tennessee History Words
* civil war: A civil war is a war between two groups of people who live in the same country.
* preserve: If you preserve something, you do not change it.
* abolish: If you abolish something, you get rid of it.
* unarmed civilians: Unarmed civilians are people who are not in the military and are without weapons.
* wounds: A wound is a very bad cut on one's body.
* amputate: When you amputate a leg or arm, you cut it off.
* anesthesia: Anesthesia is medicine that helps a person not feel pain.
* fatalities: Fatalities are deaths.
* cavalry: The cavalry is the part of the army that fights on horseback.
* re-election: You are re-elected when you win an election again.
* running mate: A presidential candidate will chose another person to run for vice-president. This person is the candidate's running mate.
* election: In an election, someone is chosen for a job by the citizens' votes.
* vice-president: A vice-president is a person who ranks immediately below the president.
* assassinated: An assassination is the surprise murder of a very inportant person.
Elsewhere on Tennessee History for Kids: Click here for a tour of the Andrew Johnson Historic Site; here to read about Abraham Lincoln's special connection to Tennessee; here to read about Admiral David Farragut, the first admiral in American naval history; and here to read about Sam Davis, the "Boy Hero of the Confederacy."
Click here to go to the next section.