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Ken Burns on PBS
The Civil War. A Film by Ken Burns
Images of the Civil War
The Film, Past and Present
The War
The Filmmakers
In the Classroom
Using the Series
Classroom Activities
Civil War in Your Town

Civil War in Your Town
Nurse and patients at Gettysburg

The numbers are astonishing. Of three million men fighting, more than 620,000 killed and hundreds of thousands more wounded or missing in a devastating and remarkably bloody four-and-a-half-year war. The Civil War, in one way or another, touched the lives of every American but its tremendous impact on domestic life is often overlooked.

Battles drew participants from all of the then-existing states. Men, women, and children on the homefront were challenged to assume new economic and social roles and to provide support for those directly engaged in the war. Above all, the war defined the character of Americans during the period, many of whom exhibited extraordinary creativity and courage.

This section identifies online documents, records, and articles as well as books useful in studying the U. S. Civil War in one’s own community. Whenever possible, research is linked to historic people and events or to student’s background and experiences. The lesson plan and activities are easily adaptable for student’s from states with seemingly little Civil War history-- however, once students begin to research their hometown, what they find may surprise them!

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