|The ‘War of the Rebellion Atlas’
The American Civil War goes by many names. The War Between the States, the War of Northern Aggression, the War to Save the Union, the States’ Rights War, and the War of 1861 to 1865 have all been used to describe the conflict that rent the nation asunder. Following the publication in the 1880s and 1890s of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies, it was given another: the War of the Rebellion.
When the War Department began to issue its 70 volume set of records generated by both the Union and Confederate Armies, it also created an Atlas to Accompany the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies, published in 1895. Its 175 plates contain more than 1,000 maps, illustrations, and diagrams detailing battlefield maps, scenes from the conflict, and military equipment.
The Texas Collection at Baylor University is proud to house a pristine copy of the Atlas, and in 2010 the Digitization Projects Group scanned the plates and placed them online in this collection. The maps are searchable by keywords, including military personnel, city, state, and geographic features.
Timeline: Creating the War of the Rebellion Atlas
|January 20, 1864||Joint resolution of Congress calling for collection and publication of military reports and correspondence|
|May 19, 1864||Resolution signed by President Abraham Lincoln|
|June, 1864||Collection of records begins. Documents spanning from December 1, 1860 to the termination of hostilities in Texas on August 20, 1866 will eventually be collected.|
|Late 1864||Preliminary printing of 47 volumes begun by the Adjutant General’s Office. The process is halted due to poor organization of records; in some cases, information on a single battle could be found listed separately in up to six different volumes.|
|1866||Responsibility for creating records granted to the War Department|
|1877||Robert N. Scott (Bvt. Lt. Col., 3rd U.S. Artillery) appointed director of Publications Office, War Records|
|1881||Publication of The Official Records of the War of the Rebellion begun. It was later renamed The War of the Rebellion: a Compilation of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies, popularly called the Official Records. Publication of all 128 books takes until 1901.|
|1895||The Atlas to Accompany the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies published.|
A Guide-Index to the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies, 1861-1865 by Dallas Irvine (1966)
The Official Records of the American Civil War: A Researcher’s Guide by Alan C. Aimone (1972)
The Official Military Atlas of the Civil War by George B. Davis, Leslie J. Perry, Joseph W. Kirkley ; compiled by Calvin D. Cowles ; introduction by Richard Sommers (2003)
The Official Records of the War of the Rebellion, available online from Cornell University’s “Making of America” project
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