Civil War

Lincoln's Whistle-Stop Trip to Washington

On the way to his inauguration, President-elect Lincoln met many of his supporters and narrowly avoided an assassination attempt

Starting in 1864, Arlington National Cemetery was transformed into a military cemetery.

How Arlington National Cemetery Came to Be

The fight over Robert E. Lee's beloved home—seized by the U.S. government during the Civil War—went on for decades

Antietam remains the bloodiest day in American history—23,000 men died or were wounded on that battlefield.

Civil War Geology

What underlies the Civil War’s 25 bloodiest battles? Two geologists investigate why certain terrain proved so hazardous

The Lincoln Memorial, Washington, D.C.

Lincoln's Contested Legacy

Great Emancipator or unreconstructed racist? Each generation evokes a different Lincoln. But who was our sixteenth president?

James McPherson is a professor emeritus of American history at Princeton University and author of Commander in Chief, which appears in the January 2009 issue of Smithsonian magazine.

James M. McPherson on "Lincoln as Commander in Chief"

Marine archaeologists rescued the shipwrecked H.L. Hunley (above, a computer rendering) in August 2000 more than 135 years after it sank during the Civil War.

Saving Our Shipwrecks

New technologies are aiding the search for one Civil War submarine, and the conservation of another


General Resent

In this interview, Ernest "Pat" Furgurson, author of "Catching Up with 'Old Slow Trot,'" says some people are still fighting the Civil War

"The enemy came, looked at [Battery Hooper and other defenses] and stole away in the night," said General Wallace.

The Best Offense

A buried Civil War battery in a Kentucky suburb tells of valiant men standing at the ready... and waiting... and waiting....

Overview of the former village of New Philadelphia, Illinois

Ahead of Its Time?

Founded by a freed slave, an Illinois town was a rare example of biracial cooperation before the Civil War

Britannia offers solace and a promise of compensation for her exiled American-born Loyalists

Divided Loyalties

Descended from American Colonists who fled north rather than join the revolution, Canada's Tories still raise their tankards to King George


Tumult and Transition in "Little America"

A quarter century of civil war over festering ethnic animosities has renewed questions about the U.S. role in the African nation

Lee's father, Maj. Gen. "Light-Horse Harry" Lee fought in the Revolutionary War.

Making Sense of Robert E. Lee

"It is well that war is so terrible, or we should grow too fond of it."— Robert E. Lee, at Fredericksburg

As part of her cover, Frances Clayton took up gambling, cigar-smoking and swearing.

Covert Force

Hundreds of women fought in the civil war disguised as men

The condition of the main facade in 1979, showing absence of the main steps


The New York City courthouse that caused his downfall has been returned to its former glory, and Tweed's odious reputation has been refurbished


Who Are Those Guys?

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