The Confederacy’s failure to receive Diplomatic Recognition

Battle_of_Antietam_by_Thulstrup (1)

Charge of the Iron Brigade near the Dunker Church during the Battle of Antietam, 1862

One of the most important victories won by the United States during the Civil War was not ever fought on a battlefield. Rather, it was a series of diplomatic victories that ensured that the Confederacy would fail to achieve diplomatic recognition by even a single foreign government. Although this success can be attributed to the skill of Northern diplomats, the anti-slavery sentiments of the European populace, and European diversion to crises in Poland and Denmark, the most important factor stills rise from the battlefields on American soil. The Confederate states were incapable of winning enough consecutive victories to convince European governments that they could sustain independence.

The South believed it would be recognized by Europe

Southerners began the war effort confident that the cotton their plantations provided European textile manufacturers would naturally ally their governments to the Confederacy, especially Great Britain. After declaring secession, the North would declare a blockade on Southern ports. Any interruption of cotton supply would disrupt the British economy and reduce the workers to starvation, they thought. Britain would have to break the blockade and provoke a war with the North that would allow Confederates to solidify independence and gain international recognition.

Read the rest of the article at DailyHistory.org



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