Embattled Courage: The Experience Of Combat In The American Civil War

1160 Words 5 Pages
Matthew Morrison
Professor Duchess
United States History 110-05
8 December 2016

Final Essay The Civil War was the bloodiest war in the history of the United States, there were over 600,000 casualties between the Union and the Confederates. Most deaths occurred from gunfire and disease. What were the main factors that persuaded men to volunteer? Even throughout the fighting did the men still believe they made the right decision fighting for their ideals? One of the main factors that created this war was slavery; the Union states believed slavery was immoral and had no place in society, whereas the Confederate states didn’t see that as an issue. Another factor that led to the enlistment of individuals was due to duty and honor, as for these are powerful motivating
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However, religion was one of the things that kept the soldiers motivated throughout the war, it helped soldiers to endure the hardships of combat (McPherson, 76). Similarly, in Embattled Courage: The Experience of Combat in the American Civil War, Linderman states that religion “permitted people to explain why a soldier died, a battle was lost, or a cause seemed to be failing” (Linderman, 105). He also states that courage was likened to godliness, and that helped soldiers to stick around in the ranks and persevere in combat situations. Only one of the letters mentioned religion, and that was the letter of James Dupray, a Union soldier, however his descriptions match the assessments of both Linderman and McPherson. Dupray stated that he would “trust all to the care of God” (Dupray, 15 December 1861). When he put his faith in God, that alone demonstrates his use of God to cope with war. He also goes on and asserts his duty to God, which not only shows that religion was a coping mechanism, but now it is a motivating factor as

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