Civil War Timeline

Quick reference to events 1860–1865

1860 | 1861 | 1862 | 1863 | 1864 | 1865


November 6 Lincoln elected
December 20 South Carolina secedes


January 9 USS Star of the West fired on in Charleston Harbor
9 Mississippi secedes
10 Florida secedes
11 Alabama secedes
19 Georgia secedes
29 Kansas admitted as 34th state
February 1 Texas secedes
18 Davis inaugurated as provisional president of Confederacy
23 Lincoln arrives in Washington DC
March 4 Lincoln inaugurated
April 12 Confederates fire on Fort Sumter in Charleston Harbor
13 Sumter surrenders
15 Lincoln calls for 75,000 volunteers
17 Virginia convention votes secession
18 Federal soldiers abandon Harpers Ferry
19 Soldiers-civilians clash in Baltimore
20 Confederates seize navy yard in Norfolk (VA)
May 6 Arkansas secedes
7 Tennessee negotiates alliance with Confederacy
20 North Carolina secedes
21 Confederate legislators vote to move capital to Richmond
23 Virginia secedes (after popular vote)
24 Union soldiers occupy Alexandria (VA)
June 3 Battle at Philippi (now WV)
10 Battle at Big Bethel (VA)
11 Western Virginia counties create separate government
July 11 Battle of Rich Mountain (now WV)
21 Battle of First Manassas (Bull Run)
August 10 Battle of Wilson’s Creek (MO)
11 Union soldiers occupy Hatteras Island (NC)
September 6 Union troops take Paducah (KY)
October 21 Battle of Ball’s Bluff (VA)
November 6 Davis elected to six-year term as president of Confederacy


January 19 Battle of Mill Springs (KY)
February 6 Union army/navy forces take Fort Henry on the Tennessee River
8 Union soldiers take Roanoke Island (NC)
16 Confederates surrender Fort Donelson on the Cumberland River (TN)
22 Davis officially inaugurated Confederate president in Richmond
March 7-8 Battle of Pea Ridge (AR)
8 Confederate ironclad Merrimac enters Hampton Roads, destroys Union warships
9 Battle of Monitor-Merrimac in Hampton Roads
21 First battle of Kernstown (VA)
28 Battle of Glorieta (NM)
April 6-7 Battle of Shiloh (TN)
8 Confederates surrender Island No. 10 on Mississippi River
11 Union forces take Fort Pulaski (GA)
25 New Orleans falls to Union naval forces under Farragut
May 4 Confederates evacuate Yorktown
5 Battle of Williamsburg (VA)
8 Battle of McDowell (VA)
15 Battle of Drewry’s Bluff (VA)
23 Battle of Front Royal (VA)
25 Battle of Winchester (VA)
31 Battle of Seven Pines (Fair Oaks) (VA)
June 1 Lee takes command of Confederate army in Richmond
6 Union forces occupy Memphis
8 Battle of Cross Keys (VA)
9 Battle of Port Republic (VA)
26 Battle of Mechanicsville (VA)
27 Battle of Gaines’ Mill (VA)
29 Battle of Savage’s Station (VA)
30 Battle of Glendale (VA)
July 1 Battle of Malvern Hill (VA)
August 9 Battle of Cedar Mountain (VA)
29-30 Second battle of Manassas (Bull Run) (VA)
September 1 Battle of Chantilly (VA)
5 Lee crosses Potomac into Maryland
14 Battles at South Mountain (MD)
15 Harpers Ferry falls to Confederates
17 Battle of Antietam
22 Lincoln issues preliminary Emancipation Proclamation
October 4 Battle of Corinth (MS)
8 Battle of Perryville (KY)
December 11 Union army crosses Rappahannock River into Fredericksburg
13 Battle of Fredericksburg
31-Jan 2 Battle of Stone’s River (Murfreesboro) (TN)


January 1 Emancipation Proclamation takes effect
April 2 Bread riots in Richmond
May 1-4 Battle of Chancellorsville
10 Stonewall Jackson dies
16 Battle of Champion’s Hill (MS)
June 9 Battle of Brandy Station (VA)
15 Second Battle of Winchester
20 West Virginia admitted to Union as 35th state
July 1-3 Battle of Gettysburg
4 Vicksburg surrenders to Grant
13-16 New York City draft riots
August 21 Lawrence (KS) burned by Quantrill
September 7 Fort Wagner (SC) occupied by Union troops
19-20 Battle of Chickamauga (GA)
November 6 Battle of Droop Mountain (WVA)
19 Lincoln delivers Gettysburg address
23-25 Battles for Chattanooga (Lookout Mountain, Missionary Ridge)


February 17 Confederate sub Hunley sinks Housatonic (SC)
April 8 Battle at Sabine Crossroads (LA)
12 Fort Pillow captured (TN)
May 5-6 Battle of the Wilderness (VA)
6 Atlanta Campaign opens
7-19 Battle of Spotsylvania (VA)
11 Battle of Yellow Tavern (VA)
12-13 Second Battle of Drewry’s Bluff (VA)
15 Battle of New Market (VA)
24 Battle of the North Anna River (VA)
25-27 Battle of New Hope (GA)
June 1-14 Battle of Cold Harbor (VA)
10 Battle of Brice’s Crossroads (MS)
11-12 Battle of Trevilian Station (VA)
15 Initial Union attacks at Petersburg
18 Battle of Lynchburg (VA)
27 Battle of Kennesaw Mountain (GA)
July 9 Battle of Monocacy (MD)
20 Battle at Peachtree Creek (GA)
22 Battle of Atlanta
24 Second battle of Kernstown (VA)
30 Battle of “The Crater” at Petersburg
30 Confederate cavalry burn Chambersburg (PA)
August 5 Battle of Mobile Bay (AL)
September 2 Union troops occupy Atlanta
19 Third battle of Winchester
22 Battle of Fisher’s Hill (VA)
29 Battle of Fort Harrison (Chaffin’s Farm) (VA)
October 19 Battle of Cedar Creek (VA)
23 Battle of Westport (MO)
November 8 Lincoln elected for second term
15 Sherman begins “March to the Sea”
30 Battle of Franklin (TN)
December 15-16 Battle of Nashville
21 Savannah occupied by Union troops


January 15 Fort Fisher falls to Union forces
February 3 Peace conference at Hampton Roads (VA)
17 Columbia (SC) occupied by Union troops, burned
18 Charleston (SC) occupied by Union troops
22 Wilmington (NC) falls to Union troops
March 2 Battle of Waynesboro (VA)
4 Lincoln inaugurated
25 Battle of Fort Stedman at Petersburg
April 1 Battle of Five Forks (VA)
2 Petersburg occupied by Union troops
2-3 Richmond falls, Confederate government evacuates
4 Lincoln visits Richmond
6 Battle of Sailor’s Creek (VA)
9 Lee surrenders at Appomattox CH
14 Lincoln shot at Ford’s Theatre
15 Lincoln dies
26 Johnston surrenders in North Carolina
26 Lincoln assassin Booth trapped and killed
May 10 Confederate president Davis captured in Georgia
26 Smith surrenders Trans-Mississippi Confederate army

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