The Fight For Tennessee: July 1863 to January 1864

Gettysburg Address

What was the economic situation?

Throughout much—though not all—of the North, it had never been better. There were businessmen who had lost everything in the Panic of 1837 and rebuilt their fortunes, only to lose most of it again in the Panic of 1857. Many of these fortunes were being remade.

At no previous time had there been so many different ways to make money. Then, too, so many different economic enterprises were formed in haste. Even the speed, or haste, did not detract from the moneymaking possibilities. To give just a brief list:

The Union armies needed shoes, shirts, handkerchiefs, pistols, socks, and underwear. The Union transport system needed railroad cars, steam-fitted rails, and all sorts of other instruments and devices. Just to list one that is often overlooked, the Union needed thousands of drums.

An illustration of Wall Street shortly after the Civil War. During the war, stocks and bonds fluctuated considerably depending on the battle successes and failures of the Union army.


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