The American Civil War
The American Civil War was one of the bloodiest series of battles ever fought within a single country.
It was an epic struggle waged for five years (1861-1865) between the northern free States, as the United States of America, and the seceding Southern slave States, which formed a splinter country known as the Confederate States of America. It has several other names, including The War Between the States, The War of Northern Aggression and The War for Southern Independence, but it is also sometimes called the War of Brothers because the emotions it engendered polarized and divided family members against each other.
Because the issues at stake and the war itself were so strongly emotional, it was not uncommon for two brothers to fight on opposing sides, or for a father and son to be engaged in battle against each other. And because of the polarizing issues and the huge number of casualties suffered, memories of the Civil War are burned into the hearts and minds of many Americans alive even today, almost 150 years after the war is end. This cultural memory is probably responsible for the great popularity of Civil War collectibles.
Civil War collectibles exist for both sides of the struggle, North and South. In fact, because of their great historical interest, there is no sign that the popularity of Civil War collectibles has reached its apex or will wane at any time in the foreseeable future.
Different Types of Civil War Collectibles, for Different Interests.
A multitude of different types of Civil War collectibles exist, both large and small, from each sides armies. They range from everyday, mundane items used by infantry soldiers to more esoteric or specialized Civil War collectibles used only by certain types of officers or cavalry troops. Civil War collectibles include belt buckles, uniform buttons, canteens and flasks, caps and hats, insignia, uniform jackets, pants and shirts, pins, revolvers, rifles, swords and sabers, bullets and shot, cannonballs, and cannon and other artillery pieces. Photographs of soldiers, battlefield maps and other paper ephemera, together with postage stamps and currency issued by the Confederacy, are also interesting Civil War collectibles.
People acquire Civil War collectibles for different reasons. Some are history buffs, fascinated by the swirl of events, or collectors of militaria. Others have a much more personal connection - an ancestor who fought in the war or who was in some other way affected by it. Still others have a strong sense of pride in the accomplishments achieved by Confederate soldiers against almost overwhelming odds, and in the sacrifices made by those soldiers in order to retain what they viewed as an essential way of life. But whatever reasons underly a persons interest in Civil War collectibles , they are fascinating symbols of one of the most significant historical events of the western hemisphere.