Dialectic of the Union Blockade during the Civil War

1863 WordsJun 25, 20188 Pages
The Civil War in the United States from 1861 to 1865 serves as a dark reminder of how disjointed a nation can become over issues that persistently cause heated debate among party factions. Most students that have taken courses in American history understand the disadvantage possessed by the Confederate States of America as they fought against the powerful Union army for what they perceived as a necessary institution of slavery. Historians have debated over the effectiveness of the blockade and if it was important in creating the failures faced by the Confederate States of America. This debate has generated the contested question of “Did the Union blockade succeed in the American Civil War?” The blockade, whether considered a success or an…show more content…
The authors considered the psychological effect of the blockade to double as a mode of deterrence when it came to blockade running. A presence of Union ships on the southern coast was enough to deter Confederate ships from running through blockades and risk losing vessels of the small Confederate navy (Bonner and McCord 378). In relation to the authors’ thesis, the presence of a psychological effect forcing the southern populace to realize the consequences of the blockade, and reduce the number of raiders attempting to breach the blockade. Following the psychological assessment of the southern attitudes, the authors transition to the initially reason for the blockade, crippling the southern economy. The blockade aided in the Confederacy’s deterioration, but was not the only source of prevention. The blockade led to the collapse of the already fragile Confederate railroad, leading to a decrease in transporting goods to soldiers (Bonner and McCord 381). The south was also limited in the amount of cotton it could export to Europe, and with it being their largest source of income, greatly reduced clothing supplies, and monetary assets (Bonner and McCord 381). Furthermore, the revenue that came from blockade running paled in comparison to pre blockade profits. This led to the Confederacy only providing immediate needs for the populace (Bonner and McCord 381). To continue with the economic theme, the authors include a cost/benefit assessment completed by David Surdam, who

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