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From Wikipedia

The American Civil War (1861-1865) was a major war between the United States (the "Union") and eleven Southern slave states which declared that they had a right to secession and formed the Confederate States of America, led by President Jefferson Davis. The Union, led by President Abraham Lincoln and politically dominated by his Republican Party, included all of the free states and four slaveholding border states that were later joined by pro-Union counties of Virginia (see West Virginia). Republicans opposed the expansion of slavery into territories owned by the United States, which increased Southern desires for secession. However, Republicans (and the previous Democratic administration under Buchanan) rejected any right of secession. Fighting commenced... more

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