The Civil War raged into its third year, tearing apart the young nation that President Abraham Lincoln tried to hold together. Three years earlier, eleven southern states seceded to form the Confederate State of America. The War Between the States pitted Americans against other Americans. In some cases, family members fought against other family members. They battled for independence, state’s rights, freedom and equality.
During four years of brutal fighting, pivotal battles took place all across the country. But in May and June of 1864, all eyes were on the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia, where Union General David Hunter, operating under the direct orders of Ulysses S. Grant, marched southward to drive out confederate forces. This is the story of the renowned general and thousands of soldiers who fought for and against him and thousands more residents of the Shenandoah Valley affected by Hunter’s Raid.