This video was filmed on April 5, 2012 as part of the National Geographic Live! Lecture series at National Geographic Society headquarters in Washington, D.C.

Author Winston Groom writes that Shiloh was the first battle in the Civil War that shocked Americans into seeing how long and how terrible the war would become.


  • Picturing Shiloh: the landscape, geography, and battlefield (start-02:51 min.)
  • Shocking aspects of the Battle of Shiloh (02:52-04:01 min.)
  • Military tactics in the Civil War (04:02-05:00 min.)
  • *Characteristics of Ulysses S. Grant and the creation of Grant's army (05:01-07:11 min.)
  • Confederate and Union troop leaders (07:12-08:00 min.)
  • Rebel assault, battle strategy, and the beginning of the fight (08:01-09:26 min.)
  • Caught off-guard: Union camp setup and battle day atmosphere (09:27-10:34 min.)
  • Noted writers and soldiers on both sides (10:35-11:58 min.)
  • Battle day and the Confederate control of the Hornet's Nest (11:59-15:22 min.)
  • One final charge and the Confederate withdrawal (15:23-17:05 min.)
  • The end of the Battle of Shiloh (17:06-17:31 min.)
  • *Grant's reputation and leadership (17:32-19:18 min.)
  • Vicksburg and Grant's ongoing ideals (19:19-20:12 min.)
  • The significance of the Battle of Shiloh (20:13-21:25 min.)

* This segment contains content that may be inappropriate for young students.



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Civil War

(1860-1865) American conflict between the Union (north) and Confederacy (south).


Confederate States of America, states which broke from the United States to form a new government during the Civil War.


having to do with the Confederate States of America (south) during the Civil War.


having to do with states supporting the United States (north) during the U.S. Civil War.