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On a battlefield so littered with dead bodies that General Ulysses S. Grant said it would have been possible to walk across it in any direction without a foot touching the ground, the Union Army notched a brutal but significant victory against the Confederate Army.

The two-day battle, with the highest number of casualties recorded in the fighting up to that time, dashed the hopes of a short war. Still, few could have grasped that this battle was only the beginning of a national campaign of slaughter that would see so many Yankee and Rebel deaths. President Lincoln realized what the two factions—North and South—were only beginning to grasp: that this would be a long, bitter, brutal war. If the Union was to be victorious and the United States restored to wholeness, Lincoln needed men who would fight. The Battle of Shiloh proved that Grant was such a man.

©2022 Hourly History (P)2022 Hourly History

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