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Wednesday, April 4, 2012

New information on Civil War death toll

If you have been keeping up with my posts you know that I have quite a few Civil War veterans in my line.  That isn't even getting into my husband's line.  So far, all of our relatives came back from the fighting.  Some were wounded, often severely enough to be discharged.  Others fought the entire war with barely a scratch on them.  Our families are the lucky ones.  As of today I have not found a relative who was killed in action.

Recently I read an article on the BBC website about new numbers for death toll from the Civil War.  It discussed an article written by J. David Hacker, published in the December 2011 issue of Civil War History, titled "A Census Based Count of the War Dead." 

His findings change the estimated total dead to near 750,000, not the original 620,000.  That is a 21% increase in the number of estimated fatalities; which he states could in reality range from 617,877 to 851,066 deaths.  In today's population numbers those deaths would equate to 7.5 million lives lost.

If you are doing Civil War research go out and read this article.  I will warn you that it is not a light read, at 42 pages, and I have only made it through half the article as of this morning.  If my kids cooperate, I can finish it this afternoon. 

*Image from the Library of Congress: Building pontoon bridges at Fredericksburg Dec. 11th.

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