Guns and Ammo
New infantry weaponry used in the Civil war affected battle in a very dynamic way, nullifying original formations, such as the lines of soldiers used in the Revolutionary War, due to the inevitable heavy losses. Tactics centered around cover and positions low to the ground were used, and those tactics eventually gave way to trench warfare much like that in World War I, seen in the Battle of the Crater and the siege of Vicksburg.
The Winchester Repeating Rifle
Previously, and oftentimes during the war, rifles were muzzle-loaded. Each shot, with gunpowder, was stuffed down the muzzle of the gun and fired, then the barrel had to be cleaned and the process was repeated. However, in 1860, Oliver Winchester of the New Haven Arms Co. popularized the repeating rifle, which would
An original Winchester Repeating Rifle
An original Winchester Repeating Rifle
be patented as the Model 1866. Rather than individually loading each shot, soldiers would put multiple rounds in a chamber and fire them all at once, allowing infantrymen far greater firing efficiency. Winchester Repeating Arms also manufactured the M1 Carbine, a widely used rifle in World War I. Winchester rifles are no longer manufactured today, but the company remains a major ammunition producer.

The Colt Repeating Revolver
Patented in 1836, Samuel Colt's repeating revolver consisted of six shots loaded into a revolving chamber. After one shot was fired, the chamber repeated in order to prepare the next shot for being fired. The lack of accuracy was made up for by the ability for many shots to be fired consecutively. Originally used by Western frontiersman, the Colt revolver was largely by officers during the war due to the concern that infantrymen would be slowed by the extra weight.
The Ironclads
The Union had a fleet of wooden ships blockading Hampton Roads in Virginia. However, the Confederate ironclad ship U.S.S Virginia, more commonly known as the Merrimac, due to the fact that it was built from the hull of the wooden ship C.S.S. Merrimac, entered via the Elizabeth River and quickly gained an upper hand
The U.S.S. Monitor
The U.S.S. Monitor
the Union ships. After a lopsided iron-wood battle, the U.S.S. Monitor, the Union's ironclad vessel, arrived and fought the Confederate ship to a draw. Assembled by placing iron shielding over a wooden body, the ships, along with a few submarines seen during the war (U.S.S. Alligator and C.S.S. Hunley), signaled a new age of naval warfare.
Transportation and Communication
Possibly the biggest advantage the North had over the South during the war was its advanced network of railroads , which were comparably new at the time. They allowed the North to ship large quantities of goods and troops long distances. Transporting those by horse, wagon, or by canal would have been far slower and more inconvenient. Railroads, as well as revolutionizing speed and ease of transportation, played a tactical role in the war as well. Since regiments needed to be close to lines to receive supplies, marching routes were sometimes centered around railroads. The first battle of war, at Manassas , was fought at that location in part because of the large rail junction the Confederacy controlled. Another
Manassas Junction-February 1862
Manassas Junction-February 1862
that greatly expediated communication between officers was the telegraph, where operators would tap out Morse Code messages that would travel along a line to officers, who would receive the messages. Telegraphs were not as widely used as railroads because there were comparatively few skilled operators and there were many difficulties associated with laying down telegraph lines over battlefields. Oftentimes, both armies dispatched spies to tap the lines.

Works Cited
"Battle of the Monitor and Merrimac." Web. 10 Jan. 2010. <>."Battle of the Monitor and the Merrimack C.S.S. Virginia Civil War Naval Battle." American Civil War History Timelines Battle Map Pictures. Web. 10 Jan. 2010. <>.Brinkley, Alan. American History: A Survey. 12th ed. New York: McGraw Hill, 2007. Print."Civil War Submarines." American Civil War History Timelines Battle Map Pictures. Web. 10 Jan. 2010. <>."McCormick, Charles Patrick, Sherwood, Clark Co., Wisconsin." Wisconsin Valley Library Service. Web. 10 Jan. 2010. <>."This Day in History 1847: Colt sells his first revolvers to the U.S. government." The History Channel - Home Page. Web. 10 Jan. 2010. <>."The Winchester Rifle: The Gun That Won the West-Science Reference Guide-Science Reference Services, Library of Congress)." Library of Congress Home. Web. 10 Jan. 2010. <>