Q:

Who won the Battle of Antietam?

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Quick Answer

The winner of the Battle of Antietam was deemed inconclusive, although a tactical victory was claimed by the Union army and gave President Abraham Lincoln the backing he needed to deliver the Emancipation Proclamation. The Battle of Antietam was fought on September 17, 1862, in Sharpsburg, Maryland, and was the first battle to be fought in the North. As of 2014, the battle remains the bloodiest single day in American history.

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Who won the Battle of Antietam?
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Full Answer

The Battle of Antietam was part of the Maryland campaign during the Civil War. It fought by 87,000 Union soldiers under the leadership of Major General George B. McClellan, and 45,000 Confederate soldiers under General Robert E. Lee. The battle would result in an estimated 22,717 casualties, including 2,108 killed on the Union side and 1,546 killed on the Confederate side.

The armies of McClellan and Lee confronted each other on September 16th. At dawn the next day, the Union army corps of Major General Joseph Hooker began an attack on the Confederate army's left flank but was unable to overpower them. After four hours, they attacked the army's center head on, then turned to attack the army's right flank. Although they were able to successfully piece through the right, Confederate army reinforcements stopped them from going further. Lee withdrew his army across the Potomac River. While the Union army claimed victory, militarily the battle is considered a draw.

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