The Battle of First Bull Run
The battle of First Bull Run/Manassas was an influential moment in history that defined the course of the Civil War. What was presumably an assured easy victory for the Federal forces of the North resulted in a bloody battle that prolonged the war for another several years. President Lincoln only assembled an army that consisted of 90-day volunteers, anticipating a swift victory over the Confederate army. This resulted in a poorly organized and inexperienced force that was inefficient in the heat of battle. However, inexperience was an issue that plagued both sides, demonstrating a need for well-trained, battle-ready soldiers in the future.

The war had actually begun three months earlier with the shots fired at Fort Sumter. President Lincoln, pressured by the press and the looming expiration of his army’s 90-day enlistment, sought to strike a crushing blow to Confederate forces near Manassas, Virginia and then proceed to the Confederate capital in Richmond. General Irvin McDowell warned Lincoln that his untrained troops were not prepared for this endeavor, but was overruled (

On July 16, 1681, Gen. Irvin McDowell led the Union army of 35,000 men (although other sources report between 28,000 and 35,000) towards Richmond with the ideology that they were going to end the war. These so-called soldiers consisted mostly of shopkeepers and farmers, who had little knowledge of what war would be like. They were confronted by 22,000 Southern troops commanded by Gen. Pierre G.T. Beauregard. Gen. Beauregard wasted no time in sending for help, as they were grossly outnumbered. On the 21st of July, three days after engaging in battle, 10,000 Confederate troops led by Gen. Joseph E. Johnston arrived to successfully turn the tide of battle. After a brief Union victory at Matthew Hill, the Confederates rallied at Jackson Hill and managed to best the Union soldiers, resulting in

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President Lincoln And General Irvin Mcdowell. (April 2, 2021). Retrieved from