Between 1861 and 1865, The United States was divided and fought in what was to become the bloodiest war in its history.
Here are some strange facts about the Civil War.
General Lee was given a flock of chickens by a Virginia farmer in 1862. The soldiers ate all but one of the chickens, which had caught the attention of the General. This chicken became his pet, was named Nellie and laid eggs under Lee’s cot every day
55. Angel’s Glow
Soldiers from both sides began reporting glow-in-the-dark wounds after the Battle of Shiloh in 1862. Of nearly 16,000 wounded, those with glowing wounds seemed to heal faster. Later research revealed that the area was likely a breeding ground for P. luminescens, a luminescent bacterium that produces a natural anti-biotic.
54. Not-So-Nice Abe
Before and during the Civil War, Abraham Lincoln tried to send freed slaves abroad.
The policy, called colonization, pushed to deport freed blacks to Central America, calling for a constitutional amendment authorizing Congress to pay for colonization. Lincoln never successfully gathered support for the policy, and after signing the Emancipation Proclamation, he never publicly mentioned it again.
53. Thanks, Robert
Robert E. Lee’s Virginia estate, named Arlington House, was confiscated by the Union and turned into a cemetery during the war. The idea—supported by Lincoln–was that if Lee should ever return, he would “have to look at these graves and see the carnage that he had created.”
In 1877, George Washington Custis Lee sued the federal government for confiscating Arlington illegally, and the Supreme Court awarded the estate back to him. What did Robert’s son do with an estate littered with dead bodies? He sold it back to the federal government for $150,000.
52. Interesting Find
Abraham Lincoln died on April 15th, 1865. Found in his wallet was a Confederate $5 bill with the image of Confederate President Jefferson Davis on it. The bill perplexed historians, with some suggesting he may have acquired it as a souvenir as the Civil War was drawing to a close.
Confederate general Stonewall Jackson did not eat pepper because he felt it made his leg weak. He made sure to always stand upright, thinking it helped “naturally” align his organs. He would raise one arm when under fire so blood would flow down his body and re-establish his equilibrium.
50. Lucky Lincoln
Lincoln was almost killed two years before he was assassinated. Late one August evening in 1863, Lincoln rode alone by horse to his family’s summer residence. A private at the gate heard a shot ring out and, moments later, a bareheaded Lincoln clinging to his steed galloped into the yard.
Lincoln explained that gunfire at the foot of the hill had sent his horse into a frenzied gallop, running so fast that it knocked his hat off. Two soldiers retrieved Lincoln’s hat, which had a bullet hole in it. Lincoln asked the guards to keep the incident quiet because he didn’t want to worry his wife..
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