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American Civil War

The American Civil War was a civil war in the United States from 1861 to 1865, fought between the northern United States and the southern United States. The civil war began as a result of the long-standing controversy over the enslavement of black people. War broke out in April 1861 when secessionist forces attacked Fort Sumter in South Carolina shortly after Abraham Lincoln had been inaugurated as the President of the United States; the loyalists of the Union in the North, which included some geographically western and southern states, proclaimed support for the Constitution. They faced secessionists of the Confederate States in the South, who advocated for states' rights in order to uphold slavery. Of the 34 U. S. states in February 1861, seven Southern "slave states" were declared by their state governments to have seceded from the country, the Confederate States of America was organized in rebellion against the U. S. constitutional government. The Confederacy grew to control at least a majority of territory in eleven states, it claimed the additional states of Kentucky and Missouri by assertions from native secessionists fleeing Union authority.

These states were given full representation in the Confederate Congress throughout the Civil War. The two remaining "slave states", Delaware and Maryland, were invited to join the Confederacy, but nothing substantial developed due to intervention by federal troops; the Confederate states were never diplomatically recognized as a joint entity by the government of the United States, nor by that of any foreign country. The states that remained loyal to the U. S. were known as the Union. The Union and the Confederacy raised volunteer and conscription armies that fought in the South over the course of four years. Intense combat left 620,000 to 750,000 people dead, more than the number of U. S. military deaths in all other wars combined. The war ended April 9, 1865, when General Robert E. Lee surrendered to General Ulysses S. Grant at the Battle of Appomattox Court House. Confederate generals throughout the southern states followed suit, the last surrender on land occurring June 23. Much of the South's infrastructure was destroyed the transportation systems.

The Confederacy collapsed, slavery was abolished, four million black slaves were freed. During the Reconstruction era that followed the war, national unity was restored, the national government expanded its power, civil and political rights were granted to freed black slaves through amendments to the Constitution and federal legislation; the war is one of the most studied and written about episodes in U. S. history. In the 1860 presidential election, led by Abraham Lincoln, supported banning slavery in all the U. S. territories. The Southern states viewed this as a violation of their constitutional rights, as the first step in a grander Republican plan to abolish slavery; the three pro-Union candidates together received an overwhelming 82% majority of the votes cast nationally: Republican Lincoln's votes centered in the north, Democrat Stephen A. Douglas' votes were distributed nationally and Constitutional Unionist John Bell's votes centered in Tennessee and Virginia; the Republican Party, dominant in the North, secured a plurality of the popular votes and a majority of the electoral votes nationally.

He was the first Republican Party candidate to win the presidency. However, before his inauguration, seven slave states with cotton-based economies declared secession and formed the Confederacy; the first six to declare secession had the highest proportions of slaves in their populations, with an average of 49 percent. Of those states whose legislatures resolved for secession, the first seven voted with split majorities for unionist candidates Douglas and Bell, or with sizable minorities for those unionists. Of these, only Texas held a referendum on secession. Eight remaining slave states continued to reject calls for secession. Outgoing Democratic President James Buchanan and the incoming Republicans rejected secession as illegal. Lincoln's March 4, 1861, inaugural address declared that his administration would not initiate a civil war. Speaking directly to the "Southern States", he attempted to calm their fears of any threats to slavery, reaffirming, "I have no purpose, directly or indirectly to interfere with the institution of slavery in the United States where it exists.

I believe I have no lawful right to do so, I have no inclination to do so." After Confederate forces seized numerous federal forts within territory claimed by the Confederacy, efforts at compromise failed and both sides prepared for war. The Confederates assumed that European countries were so dependent on "King Cotton" that they would intervene, but none did, none recognized the new Confederate States of America. Hostilities began on April 1861, when Confederate forces fired upon Fort Sumter. While in the Western Theater the Union made significant permanent gains, in the Eastern Theater, the battle was inconclusive during 1861–1862. In September 1862, Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation, which made ending slavery a war goal. To the west, by summer 1862 the Union destroyed the Confederate river navy much of its western armies, seized New Orleans; the successful 1863 Union siege of Vicksburg split the Confederacy in two at the Mississippi River. In 1863, Robert E. Lee's Confederate incursion north ended at the Batt

Jaguar XJR-8

The XJR-8 was a race car built by Jaguar for campaigning in the World Sportscar Championship and the 24 Hours of Le Mans as part of Group C. It was used during the 1987 season. In the 1980s racing expert Tom Walkinshaw and designer Tony Southgate, with support from the Jaguar company and a sponsor, Silk Cut, designed a car based on the Jaguar V12 to compete in the ultra-high performance Le Mans Group C class and the North American-based IMSA GT Championship in competition with Porsche and Mercedes. In all, sixty-four changes to the XJR-6 were made to create the XJR-8. Six cars were produced; the XJR-8 was similar to most of the previous XJR racers with the engine. Though it was what people believed to be a standard Jaguar V12 the displacement was increased to 7 litres and the power was cranked up to 720 horsepower. Maximum speed was once recorded at over 220 mph on the Mulsanne Straight at Circuit De La Sarthe, its higher-pitched exhaust sound made. It first appeared at the 1987 World Sportscar Championship.

The XJR-8 won at Silverstone, Nürburgring, Spa-Francorchamps, as well as taking 2nd place at Fuji. Jaguar won both the driver's title and the overall championship with Porsche and its vaunted 962 finishing 2nd. Three cars were prepared for competition in the international Le Mans, each with a low-drag configuration. Two out of the three cars failed to finish; the surviving car, in 2nd place at one point after 18 hours of racing, experienced gearbox trouble and finished 5th. The XJR-8 raced for one year, that being 1987. In its only year of racing, it won Autosport Racing Car Of the Year, its design was advanced to produce the XJR-9, identical to its predecessor, in the following year. One of the surviving vehicles is on display at the Beaulieu Motor Museum

The Cavern Club

The Cavern Club is a nightclub at 10 Mathew Street, England. The Cavern Club opened on 16 January 1957 as a jazz club becoming a centre of the rock and roll scene in Liverpool in the early 1960s; the club became associated with the Merseybeat music genre and, famously played host to The Beatles in their early years. The Cavern Club closed and opened in a new site on March 1973 and was filled in during construction work on the Merseyrail underground rail loop, it would be excavated and reopened on 26 April 1984. Alan Sytner opened The Cavern Club, having been inspired by the jazz district in Paris, where there were a number of clubs in cellars. Sytner returned to Liverpool and strove to open a club similar to the Le Caveau de la Huchette jazz club in Paris, he found a fruit warehouse where people were leasing the cellar. The club was opened on 16 January 1957; the first act to perform at the opening of the club was the Merseysippi Jazz Band. Local commercial artist Tony Booth created the poster artwork for the opening night, who shortly after became the original poster artist for The Beatles.

What started as a jazz club became a hangout for skiffle groups. Whilst playing golf with Sytner's father, Dr. Joseph Sytner, Nigel Walley—who had left school at 15 to become an apprentice golf professional at the Lee Park Golf Club—asked Dr. Sytner if his son could book The Quarrymen at The Cavern, one of three jazz clubs he managed. Dr. Sytner suggested as to assess their talent. After performing at the golf club Sytner phoned Walley a week and offered the band an interlude spot playing skiffle between the performances of two jazz bands at The Cavern, on Wednesday, 7 August 1957. Before the performance, the Quarrymen argued amongst themselves about the set list, as rock'n roll songs were not allowed at the club, but skiffle was tolerated. After opening with a skiffle song, John Lennon called for the others to start playing an Elvis Presley song, "Don't Be Cruel". Rod Davis warned Lennon that the audience would "eat you alive", but Lennon ignored this and started playing the song himself, forcing the others to join in.

Halfway through, Sytner pushed his way through the audience and handed Lennon a note which read, "Cut out the bloody rock'n roll". Paul McCartney's first appearance at The Cavern was with The Quarrymen on 24 January 1958. Sytner moved to London. Blues bands and Beat groups began to appear at the club on a regular basis in the early 1960s; the first Beat night was held on 25 May 1960 and featured a performance by Rory Storm and the Hurricanes. By early 1961, Bob Wooler had become the full-time organiser of the lunchtime sessions; the club hosted its first performance by The Beatles on Thursday 9 February 1961. Brian Epstein, The Beatles manager who secured the groups' first recording contract, first saw the group perform at the club on 9 November 1961. Inspired by the group Epstein made moves to take over their management; the Beatles made their first appearance at the club on 9 February 1961 after returning to Liverpool from Hamburg, Germany where they had been playing at the Indra and the Kaiserkeller clubs.

Their stage show had been through a lot of changes, with some in the audience thinking they were watching a German band as they were billed from Hamburg. From 1961 to 1963 The Beatles made 292 appearances at the club, with their last occurring on 3 August 1963, a month after the band recorded "She Loves You" and just six months before the Beatles' first trip to the U. S. By this time "Beatlemania" was sprouting across England, with girls demanding to see the Beatles and screaming just to get a glimpse of them, the group had to hide or sneak into concerts, the small club could no longer satisfy audience demand. After the Beatles' farewell gig on 3 August 1963, Bob Wooler gave their future dates to The Mastersounds, a local R & B band, led by Mal Jefferson; the Beatles had graduated from the club and had been signed to EMI's Parlophone label by producer George Martin. The amount of musical activity in Liverpool and Manchester caused record producers who had never ventured far from London to start looking to the north.

In 1963, young local band The Hideaways were signed up to the newly founded Cavern Club agency and became the resident group stepping in for last minute artist cancellations. The band performed at the Cavern the night prior to the club's closure, making them the last group to perform on stage along with disc jockey Billy Butler and doorman Paddy Delaney, who—with fans—barricaded themselves into the club prior to the authorities' arrival the next morning to gain access; the Hideaways were proactive along with local MP Bessie Braddock to reopen the Cavern, as a result they were the first group back on stage when club re-opened on 23 July 1966 with local MP Bessie Braddock and the Prime Minister Harold Wilson. The Hideaways hold the official record of over 400 Cavern Club appearances at both old and new venues and are now recognised and named on the wall of fame! In the decade that followed, a wide variety of popular acts appeared at the club, including The Rolling Stones, The Yardbirds, The Hollies, The Kinks, Elton John, Black Sabbath, The Who and John Lee Hooker.

Petula Clark references the club twice as "a cellar full of noise" in her 1965 hit record "I Know a Pl