By Alex Jones
GRAPHIC photographs from the American Civil War capture the death and destruction of the USA’s bloodiest conflict.
Harrowing images from the brutal American Civil War, which lasted from 1861-1865, show countless rows of freshly filled graves, dead soldiers slumped in trenches, and packed hospitals doing their best to deal with the hordes of suffering countrymen.
The remarkable shots were captured by renowned Civil War photographer Mathew Brady, who travelled throughout the conflict meeting the war’s key players and collecting photos of the war’s devastating consequences, which led to the untimely deaths of over 620,000 soldiers – nearly as many Americans soldiers as died in all the other wars in which the US has fought combined.
The Civil War was fought between the United States of America and the Confederate States of America, a collection of eleven southern states that left the Union in 1860 and 1861 and formed their own country in order to protect the institution of slavery.
Principally, the war was between the North who wanted a unified country and to abolish slavery, and the South who wanted a confederation of sovereign states with no central governmental control, and for slavery to continue as farm hands and other unpaid labourers formed the backbone of the southern economy.
After years of bloodshed, the North eventually triumphed. Three million black slaves were freed and the United States was changed forever more.
The war had seen unprecedented levels of violence, 10,000 battles and engagements were fought across the continent, from Vermont to the New Mexico Territory, and one in four soldiers that went to war never returned home. Roughly two per cent of the country’s population lost their lives.