3 Facts About the American Civil War You Didn’t Learn in School

You probably think that your history books contain everything there is to know about the American Civil War. However, that isn’t quite the case. There are quite a few facts about the conflict that you probably didn’t learn in school. Let’s check out some of them below.

Diseases Were the Leading Cause of Death

It is estimated that around 600,000 soldiers died during the American Civil War. However, most of those deaths actually didn’t take place in battles. The leading causes of death during the American Civil War were diseases like pneumonia, typhoid, and malaria, which spread quickly due to poor conditions soldiers found themselves in and were often fatal.

Union Used Hot Air Balloons

Union Army established a Balloon Corps under the recommendation of President Abraham Lincoln in 1861. The objective of the unit’s activities was to perform aerial reconnaissance on the Confederate Army using hot air balloons. Being led by several expert aeronauts, the unit proved quite successful and made significant contributions that improved the Union Army’s positions. However, Balloon Corps didn’t receive much respect from its peers and was put out of use after its leader, Thaddeus S. C. Lowe, resigned from his position due to reduced pay.

Women Disguised as Men to Participate in Battles

It wasn’t so uncommon for women to want to go to the battlefield. However, since women were not allowed to enlist in the military, they had to disguise themselves as men. Some of the women did it to fight for the cause, others were looking for adventure, and some did it because it came with a $13 monthly wage, more than they could earn in any other job.

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