Civil War Smore

By: Chris Agro

Gods and Generals

Gods and Generals covers the events of the American Civil War before the climactic battle of Gettysburg. Seen from the points of view of leaders such as Lt. General Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson, Lt. Colonel Joshua Chamberlain, Winfield Hancock and General Robert E. Lee. The film begins just after the attack on Fort Sumter in April 1861, and culminates with the battle of Chancellorsville in May of 1863. The Confederates were dominating the Union in this film. Lee's tactics and battle positions were just to smart and strong for The Union. Though he passed away in this film, my favorite character was Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson. He was very determined to be a great leader and did a very good job at it. Jackson was also a very godly man, he would pray before battles. Chamberlain led the 20th Maine, which was one of the strongest regiments in the army.


This film covers the three day, brutal battle of Gettysburg. This was the bloodiest 3 day battle of the Civil War. This was also the turning point in which the North takes dominance. The first 2 days were both stalemates. Though there were many lives lost, neither side won. Lt. Colonel Chamberlain did an excellent job on the second day when him and the 20th Maine protected little round top with little to no ammo. Chamberlain made a quick, smart decision of having a bayonet charge knowing he would not have enough ammunition to hold the Confederate troops off. His charge succeeded, and little round top was safe. On the third day, General Lee wanted to attack immediately. He wanted to send Pickett and his men on a charge that consisted of 15,000 men. Lee thought the charge would succeed without a doubt. Longstreet told Lee that he thought the plan would fail because of the over a mile long walk the troops had to make in open fire of the Union, but Lee did not listen. Pickett's charge failed, and the Confederate's lost the battle. By the end of the battle, Maj. General Pickett had no division left. General Lee blames it all on himself but the remaining soldiers yell "No!" and even have the heart to go back to the battlefield and fight again. Lee says no but is happy that their spirits are not all gone. I admired Lee for his valiant effort and determination, never being scared of the battle and always going towards it. But in the end, that is what hurt him and caused him to loose the battle, and even worse, the war.


Colonel Robert Shaw was an officer in the Federal Army during the American Civil War. He was given an opportunity to lead the first company of black soldiers (54th Massachusetts Infantry Regiment). Shaw was forced to deal with the prejudices of both the enemy (who had orders to kill commanding officers of blacks), and of his own fellow officers. Shaw had changed as a person through this film. At first, Shaw was very timid and a weak leader, feeling sympathetic for the men who the fellow officers were harder on. As the film goes on, you get to see Shaw change into this real commanding officer. He went by the book and their were no exceptions. On the down side of this, his friends he grew up with like Major Cabot Forbes and Cpl. Thomas Searles did not like the fact that Shaw treated them as if they weren't best friends. Shaw later gained respect from his troops and fellow officers by not accepting his monthly pay because his soldiers didn't. Shaw also finally got shoes for the troops. This whole time, Shaw has been trying to get his men into action and fight. When the opportunity came up for anyone willing to lead the attack on Fort Wagner, Shaw took it immediately. throughout the film, we have seen Private Trip as a negative, bully type man who is too cool for everyone. But the night before the attack, he opens up to his fellow troops and says he loves them. This was a huge change in personalities from the beginning of the film. The men go into confident and ready, but the artillery and protection of the enemy is too strong for Shaw and his men. They were defeated, but were remembered for their valiant effort and showed that African Americans can fight just as well as white men.


It's January, 1865, and US President Abraham Lincoln has just started his second term in office as an immensely popular leader, especially among his supporters, because of his love and kindness for the people. Throughout this film, Lincoln's main goal is get the 13th Amendment passed and abolish slavery. Lincoln knows nothing will get done until slavery is abolished. However, the country is in turmoil entering its 4th year in the Civil War and thousands of lives lost on each side. Lincoln believes that if the Amendment is passed, the war will be over, seeing as slavery is the main cause of the war. Lincolns son also causes him stress because of the sudden urge to enlist in the army. Robby knows he will never forgive himself if he doesn't serve his country. However, his father (Abraham Lincoln) and mother (Mary Todd) strongly oppose the thought of their son enlisting in the army. But Robby is very determined, he sees all of the limbs that have been amputated and still insists that he is going to join. Lincoln and his men try to convince some of the democrats to change their minds and vote "yes" for the bill. All they need is two more "yes'" to get it passed. Their effort to persuade these men was a success and they got the vote to pass. General Lee surrendered his army and the North won the Civil War. Slavery was no more.