This Month in the Civil War – July, 1863 New York City’s Draft Riots – By Sandy McBride

In the early days of July, 1863, thousands of Americans lay dead or dying while thousands more were suffering greatly as a result of two major confrontations in the Civil War.  With the Union finally able to claim two pivotal victories, one in the three-day battle in the Pennsylvania countryside at Gettysburg and another in the successful siege of the Mississippi River stronghold at Vicksburg, it would seem that the Federal government finally had the upper hand over the rebellious Confederate states.

It is said that “War is hell”, and for sure, a civil war is true hell.  Every family . . . every man, woman and child . . . on either side of a warring, divided nation is invested in a civil war in one way or another. Every facet of life is affected. By July, 1863, our divided nation was war-weary.  And the ugliness was about to get even uglier.

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