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A collection of Departments reporting to one commander (e.g., Military Division of the Mississippi, Middle Military Division, Military Division of the James).

Military Divisions were similar to the more modern term Theater; and were modeled close to, though not synonymous with, the existing theaters of war.

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The war proved to be longer and more extensive than anyone North or South had expected, and on July 22, 1861, Congress authorized a volunteer army of 500,000 men.

Lincoln's call forced the border states to choose sides, and four seceded, making the Confederacy eleven states strong.

These campaigns were characterized by another strategic notion of Grant's-better known as total war—denying the enemy access to resources needed to continue the war by widespread destruction of its factories and farms along the paths of the invading Union armies.

Grant had critics who complained about the high numbers of casualties that the Union Army suffered while he was in charge, but Lincoln would not replace Grant, because, in Lincoln's words: "I cannot spare this man. The decisive victories by Grant and Sherman resulted in the surrender of the major Confederate armies.

The Signal Corps was created and deployed for the first time, through the leadership of Albert J. Below major units like armies, soldiers were organized mainly into regiments, the main fighting unit with which a soldier would march and be deployed with, commanded by a colonel, lieutenant colonel, or possibly a major. Some units only possessed between four and eight companies and were generally known as battalions.

Regiments were almost always raised within a single state, and were generally referred by number and state, e.g. Regiments were usually grouped into brigades under the command of a brigadier general. Mc Clellan, built and trained the massive Union Army of the Potomac, the primary fighting force in the Eastern Theater.

This group's loyalties were far more sharply divided, with 92 doning Confederate gray and 102 putting on the blue of the Union Army. With the Southern slave states declaring secession from the Union, and with this drastic shortage of men in the army, President Abraham Lincoln called on the states to raise a force of 75,000 men for three months to put down the insurrection.

When the American Civil War began in April 1861, there were only 16,367 men in the U. In addition, almost 200 West Point graduates who had previously left the Army, including Grant, Sherman, and Bragg, would return to service at the outbreak of the war. Army consisted of ten regiments of infantry, four of artillery, two of cavalry, two of dragoons, and three of mounted infantry. Of the 197 companies in the army, 179 occupied 79 isolated posts in the West, and the remaining 18 manned garrisons east of the Mississippi River, mostly along the Canada–United States border and on the Atlantic coast.

It was more common to name departments for rivers (such as Department of the Tennessee, Department of the Cumberland) or regions (Department of the Pacific, Department of New England, Department of the East, Department of the West, Middle Department).

Each of these armies was usually commanded by a major general.

At least two million and possibly as much as two and a half million men served in the Union Army; almost all (upwards of 94%) were volunteers. Approximately 20% of these officers, mostly Southerners, resigned and joined the Confederate army.

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