The Economics of the Civil War should instruct us in ways that the history of the Civil War might not. Cotton had much to do with what the war was about. Slavery as a cause of the Civil War is a modern development. How did the Union win the war? How did the aftermath of the war affect our own lives? What lessons can benefit us?
The blockade was the source of the Union victory. As it became more and more effective, the Union position strengthened until the last port in North Carolina fell. So, it was the war at sea, not on land that determined the outcome.
Lecture 1 of 8 from Mark Thornton's The Economics of the Civil War, presented to the Auburn University Academy for Lifelong Learners.