The Civil War The Civil War was caused by slavery and differences between the North and the South. The war started in 1881 with the battle of Fort Sumpter and ended five years later in 1885 at the Appomatix Court House. Abraham Lincoln, the prersident of the North at the time of the war, didnt like the idea of slavery and tryed to free the slaves, but this didnt go over well with Southeners. They believed that slavery was a neccesity to the way they lived and needed to be able to own slaves. Clara Barton, one of the first female nurses, worked hard to heal wounded soldiers in both the North and the South during the war. She also established an organization called Red Cross to help the wounded and ill.