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What if the South won the Civil War?

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  • What if the South won the Civil War?

    What do you think would have happened if the CSA had won the war?
    Please share your thoughts.

  • #2
    Welcome Tankmaster. I hope you enjoy your stay here. I'd advise you go look on the ACW forums for the nearly limitless series of discussions we've had on this topic over the years.

    Though I'm sure many will be willing to explain in detail their opinions in this thread as well....
    Tacitos, Satrap of Kyrene

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    • #3
      If by 'won' you mean a negociated peace which made it a separate nation, then I think it would result in a lengthy Cold War between the USA and the CSA.

      Lincoln had sewed up the West pretty well, so the CSA would be hemmed in.

      With slavery, the CSA could only get so close to the UK.

      Without the US threat in '65, Mexico would have had a somewhat different timeline.

      Ultimately, the CSA would be faced with the issue that the bulk of its manufactured goods and food come from the USA. The UK had gotten cotton going in its colonies, so King Cotton was being dethroned. The crippling fissures in the system of Confederacy that appeared during the war cetainly wouldn't go away.

      I think in the end the CSA would have become a very poor cousin to the USA, and likely would have been re-absorbed a couple generations down the road.

      Of course, in the meantime the Monroe Doctrine would likely have gone out the window.
      Any man can hold his place when the bands play and women throw flowers; it is when the enemy presses close and metal shears through the ranks that one can acertain which are soldiers, and which are not.

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      • #4
        Bad news because when the Cold War came about if the USA or The CSA had an argument one side with the Russians . Who Know ?

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Yankee View Post
          Bad news because when the Cold War came about if the USA or The CSA had an argument one side with the Russians . Who Know ?


          That's a horrible thought.
          Any man can hold his place when the bands play and women throw flowers; it is when the enemy presses close and metal shears through the ranks that one can acertain which are soldiers, and which are not.

          Comment


          • #6
            Republicans lose power in the North and are seen as a radical party. No great migration of negroes into the North. As for slavery in the South: impossible to say. Assuming the abolition platform is marginalized in the North, it would be fair to then presume that its equivalent in the South becomes more marginal. Segregation laws would undoubtedly be enforced and would not come to an end in the 1960's.

            I doubt a long, armed standoff would take place. Same thing for conventional war.

            CS becomes close ally with Great Britain and France. Emperor Maximilian probably wouldn't have come to such a sorry end. Depending on whether the Confederate Territory, Arizona, is ceded to the CS during peace talks, a NM corridor is built or NM is annexed.
            Actually a lot depends on what the circumstances for victory would be. Regardless, Seward is out and doesn't annex Alaska.

            Military significance: possible recognition in Europe (France in particular) of the changing face of warfare and the need to move away from centralized control. CS Navy turns the Caribbean into a Confederate/British lake. Actually there's a wargame on it: http://www.avalanchepress.com/gameConfederateNavy.php
            South becomes a bastion of arts and culture.
            North becomes industrial giant.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Hypaspist View Post
              Republicans lose power in the North and are seen as a radical party. No great migration of negroes into the North. As for slavery in the South: impossible to say. Assuming the abolition platform is marginalized in the North, it would be fair to then presume that its equivalent in the South becomes more marginal. Segregation laws would undoubtedly be enforced and would not come to an end in the 1960's.

              I doubt a long, armed standoff would take place. Same thing for conventional war.

              CS becomes close ally with Great Britain and France. Emperor Maximilian probably wouldn't have come to such a sorry end. Depending on whether the Confederate Territory, Arizona, is ceded to the CS during peace talks, a NM corridor is built or NM is annexed.
              Actually a lot depends on what the circumstances for victory would be. Regardless, Seward is out and doesn't annex Alaska.

              Military significance: possible recognition in Europe (France in particular) of the changing face of warfare and the need to move away from centralized control. CS Navy turns the Caribbean into a Confederate/British lake. Actually there's a wargame on it: http://www.avalanchepress.com/gameConfederateNavy.php
              South becomes a bastion of arts and culture.
              North becomes industrial giant.

              Overall, very interesting, although I would debate the close ties with the UK-the slavery issue was a major barrier for British aid during the CSA's high tide.

              And a bastion of arts and culture? As the only Western power still employing slavery, I would think a post-war CSA would have difficulty exporting either. Not to mention an increasingly repressive internal security mechanism to keep slaves from running for the free borders.
              Any man can hold his place when the bands play and women throw flowers; it is when the enemy presses close and metal shears through the ranks that one can acertain which are soldiers, and which are not.

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              • #8
                I've gotten into too damn many fights over this. So I won't say what I think.
                This bass guitar kills TERRORISTS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Arnold J Rimmer View Post
                  Overall, very interesting, although I would debate the close ties with the UK-the slavery issue was a major barrier for British aid during the CSA's high tide.

                  And a bastion of arts and culture? As the only Western power still employing slavery, I would think a post-war CSA would have difficulty exporting either. Not to mention an increasingly repressive internal security mechanism to keep slaves from running for the free borders.
                  There was one British alternate history novel where the CSA is absorbed into the Empire and General Lee becomes "Lord Arlington." Can't remember the name though...
                  As for the slavery issue and the British law, it's impossible to say for sure. I don't want to see a repeat of the wankfest going on in another subforum about Britain's moral superiority because of abolition. Suffice to say that Britain, at the time of its emancipation, was not in a similar situation to what had ever existed in the Americas. This was partly because they no longer had vastly populated territories with the pre-existing condition in the New World and because their mercantilist economy did not depend on it, as the CSA's did. As to whether this would have made an alliance impossible, it is doubtful: consider who comprised the Entente powers in WW1. Even the central powers made for bizarre alliances; The Ottoman Empire officially declared a Jihad against Christians (which, tragically led to a shooting of children in Australia), but they were allied to two Christian great powers, and many of their soldiers were awarded the Iron Cross (which they wore proudly).
                  So would slavery have prevented a CS-British Empire trade agreement/alliance/whatever? I doubt it. Would slavery in the CSA have gone the Brazil route? It wouldn't possibly have been the same because miscegenation was practiced for years in Brazil and was not seen as out of the ordinary for the lower classes. Also remember that many of the defenses of slavery were in reaction to the radical actions and words of the abilition movement. The most likely alternative would have been the eventual deportation of negroes to the Caribbean.


                  Originally posted by rebpreacher View Post
                  I've gotten into too damn many fights over this. So I won't say what I think.
                  Then why make this post? I don't think anyone is going to fight with you over your opinion in a thread where there is already a free exchange of ideas.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Arnold J Rimmer View Post
                    Overall, very interesting, although I would debate the close ties with the UK-the slavery issue was a major barrier for British aid during the CSA's high tide.
                    Yet without aid from the UK and France the South could not have won, or even lasted as long as they did in reality.
                    Originally posted by Arnold J Rimmer View Post
                    And a bastion of arts and culture? As the only Western power still employing slavery, I would think a post-war CSA would have difficulty exporting either. Not to mention an increasingly repressive internal security mechanism to keep slaves from running for the free borders.
                    Well, its wasn't friendship with the South that was important, it was the European aristocracy's enmity towards the US that was the driving force... mainly due to our on-going success with our "experiment" with Democracy. It was a very different world back then, and ours was the only large country where our form of Government could be found, and working, during the Civil War.

                    Southern aristocrats were also seen by the European ruling class as the only real gentlemen in America.

                    The people of Europe, on the other hand, had very different ideas, and it was their opposition to helping the Confederacy that stayed the hands of the leadership. Even without universal suffrage, the threat of 1848-style riots had to be considered.

                    Germany and Italy were still in the process of being unified, so leadership in Europe rested with just half a dozen nations; Britain, France, Spain, Prussia, Austria and Russia.
                    Western Europe's Governments leaned towards the Confederacy, but Prussia and Russia wee very much in the Union camp.
                    Austria was so neutral that they didn't even intervene to save Maximilian in Mexico... which had been seized by France while the US was having a Civil War, and promptly abandoned after the fall of the South.

                    So, certain European powers had a vested interest in a Confederate victory.
                    After the war, had the South won, they would have continued to have an interest in keeping the US divided. The aristocrats, especially people like Napoleon III, would not want their subjects to start thinking that Democracy had a real future, would they?
                    "Why is the Rum gone?"

                    -Captain Jack

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                    • #11
                      Napoleon III was ineffectual but not very much of a tyrant.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Yankee View Post
                        Bad news because when the Cold War came about if the USA or The CSA had an argument one side with the Russians . Who Know ?
                        Now that is a huge jump even for AH.

                        Before the "Cold War" we had a couple of pretty HOT wars to get through, plus the Spanish American War. The USSR politics of post WWII would not favor either USA or the CSA. By that time it could just a well have been that neither was a world power.
                        "Ask not what your country can do for you"

                        Left wing, Right Wing same bird that they are killing.

                        you’re entitled to your own opinion but not your own facts.

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                        • #13
                          Hypaspist, you've made good points, but I can't see the deportation-the South's export crop economy was based on slavery, and the capitol investment in them was huge.

                          Originally posted by Exorcist
                          Well, its wasn't friendship with the South that was important, it was the European aristocracy's enmity towards the US that was the driving force... mainly due to our on-going success with our "experiment" with Democracy.
                          Very good point. Of course, the British lower classes were more pro-Union during the war for exactly the same reason. Still, you're right, the UK would certainly have stirred the pot in North America.
                          Any man can hold his place when the bands play and women throw flowers; it is when the enemy presses close and metal shears through the ranks that one can acertain which are soldiers, and which are not.

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                          • #14
                            Still, you're right, the UK would certainly have stirred the pot in North America.

                            WHY would the UK have stirred the pot? What advantage would it have been for them?

                            mainly due to our on-going success with our "experiment"
                            After the Civil War I don't think we could have claimed success.
                            "Ask not what your country can do for you"

                            Left wing, Right Wing same bird that they are killing.

                            you’re entitled to your own opinion but not your own facts.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Half Pint John View Post
                              WHY would the UK have stirred the pot? What advantage would it have been for them?
                              Well, the fact that the US was a break-away colony who had fought a second war with them would be one reason.

                              The US is a growing power in the Western Hemisphere, where the UK has a great deal of colonial acreage.

                              As has been pointed out, the apathy towards the US' one man, one vote system by the British ruling class would suggest that ensuring continued failure in the USA/CSA would be useful.

                              And in a colonial empire, which the UK certainly was, shaking the tree to see what territory might fall out would be a perfectly valid consideration. Look at the Empire's actions in India just fifty years earlier.
                              Any man can hold his place when the bands play and women throw flowers; it is when the enemy presses close and metal shears through the ranks that one can acertain which are soldiers, and which are not.

                              Comment

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