Why was the US Civil War such a destructive conflict?
Weapon technology had advanced but the commanders still used old
military tactics on the field. Rifles could shoot further and more
accurately than in previous wars. Pistols that fired multiple shots
and repeating rifles came into use in battle for the first time.
Artillery also became more accurate and were more mobile, allowing
them to get closer to the enemy. With the advance in weapons, there
was little advance in treatment of the wounded. Field hospitals had
not been used before the war. Anesthesia and medicines were still
not used to any great extent. More soldiers died in battle. The
largest killer was disease---not combat. This could be attributed
to lack of medical technology, prevention of disease and exposure
to elements. Before the war, the civilian population did not travel
and mingle with other people or other climates. During the war,
people were exposed to diseases that were new to them and to