February 4, 1861 – Peace Conference to try to resolve the question of slavery in the states was held at the Willard Hotel in Washington, D.C.

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February 11, 1861 – President-elect Abraham Lincoln departs Springfield, Illinois by train for his inauguration in Washington

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March 4, 1861 – First inauguration of President Abraham Lincoln

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April 12-14, 1861 – Bombardment and surrender of Fort Sumter, and beginning of Civil War

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May 24, 1861 – First casualty of the Civil is Elmer Ellsworth, Lincoln’s former law clerk and a New York Zouave, killed in Alexandria, Virginia

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July 21, 1861 – First major battle of the Civil War ocurrs at the First Battle of Bull Run (also called the First Battle of Manassas) pitting the Union Army led for General Irvin McDowell against the Confederate Army led by General Beauregard. The Confederate Army wins the battle as a result of Stonewall Jackson standing firm with his troops atop Henry Hill, earning Jackson his nickname “Stonewall”

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March – July, 1862 – Peninsula Campaign pitting Union Army under George McClellan mounting an attack by water down the Chesapeake Bay against Richmond defended by Confederate General Joseph Johnston

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