The Civil War tore through the United States in 1861, dividing families and turning countrymen into mortal enemies. By the time it ended four years later, it had left behind hundreds of thousands of casualties, a ruined Southern economy, and a complicated legacy of emancipation.
Yet it also produced countless artifacts and documents through which we may better understand the period. Search these Civil War collections to find the guns with which the war was fought, the uniforms that soldiers wore into battle, the letters they wrote home, and many other items from one of the most transformative periods of American history.
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