Saturday, November 8, 2014

150 Years Ago Today: Lincoln Re-elected!

This day in history in 1864: Lincoln Re-elected!

150 years ago today voters in the North overcame their war-weariness to re-elect Abraham Lincoln.  Whatever hope the South had of a negotiated settlement died its final death that day.   Even had Lincoln lost to Little Mac (George McClellan), however, the Union would still have had nearly five months to finish the job.

Just prior to the election, Lincoln met with Generals Grant and Sherman and told them that no matter how the vote went, they were to continue to press the South - and press hard.  Moreover, if he lost, they were to redouble their efforts and do all in their power to bring the war to an end before the new president could be inaugurated on March 4, 1865.

The election plays a big part in my strategic naval game of the Civil War,  Rebel Raiders on the High Seas.  Each turn is four months, and the last turn of the game begins in December, 1864.  There is, however, a card which if drawn by the North gives the Union player a chance for an extra, 13th turn - one that begins in April 1865.  The card, however, like the election of November 1864, is not a sure thing:  a die is rolled and modified in the Union's favor based on which key cities the North controls.  If the North is doing well, the Yankee will get that extra turn to drive old Dixie down....but if not, the pressure is on, just as if Lincoln had indeed lost the election.

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