A Decade of Turbulence

A Weapons Revolution

Infantry Tactics Transformed

All these innovations transformed infantry tactics, and more particularly the movements of armies on the field of battle, since during the same period siege and field artillery was also making remarkable progress. Armies still advanced in formation, but they had a longer shooting range. From that point on, cavalries ceased their great charges against infantrymen, but remained ready to exploit any disarray. Soldiers armed with modern weapons and properly sheltered in trenches proved to be highly effective against attackers, as demonstrated in the siege of Vicksburg, in 1863, where the South had 31,000 men killed and wounded, compared to only 4,500 for the North. With the horrifying Civil War in the United States and the terrible Mexican invasion, the whole of North America was being brought to fire and sword. Only Canada remained a peaceful haven. But could it last?