Free And Slave States Map – State, Territory, And City Populations

Which states were free and which states had slavery?

How many slaves were there? How many black people were free? Which states did they live in?

How were the states and cities populated when the Civil War began?

Sometimes when learning about the Civil War it’s good to know the geography of the free and slave states, and how the free and slave states were populated. Provided here for reference is a map that shows the free and slave states, listings of the free, slave, and border states, tables of state and territory populations, a table of the total populations of the states and territories, and a table of the 10 largest cities in the United States in 1860.

In the times before and during the Civil War much of the United States was made up of farmland, unsettled territories, and lightly populated areas. Most people lived on farms or in small towns, but in contrast, there were cities like New York, Philadelphia, Boston, and New Orleans which were bustling with people, business, factories, and activity. The South had fewer people than the North, and the North had more enterprise than the South. The South was more rural with farms and plantations, and while the North had its farmers and rural places too, it had more cities. The division of slavery, the “peculiar institution,” would split the union of the states and bring on a Civil War that would end the lives of hundreds of thousands. A Civil War that would forever change the lives of the people and the landscape of the North and the South.

General Map Of The United States Showing Free States, Slave States, And Territories

1857 United States Map

Click/right click on map for larger image.

General map of the United States showing free and slave states, and the territories of the Union.

General map of the United States showing free and slave states, and the territories of the Union.

Map Color Key

  • Free states and territories colored green.
  • Dark green shows the free states.
  • Light gree shows the territories.
  • Slave-holding states colored red.
  • Slave importing states colored dark red.
  • Slave exporting states colored light red.
  • Boundary of the seceding states colored light gray.


Free States

  • California
  • Connecticit
  • Illinois
  • Indiana
  • Iowa
  • Maine
  • Massachusetts
  • Michigan
  • New Hampshire
  • New York
  • New Jersey
  • Ohio
  • Pennsylvania
  • Rhode Island
  • Vermont
  • Wisconsin


Slave States

  • Alabama
  • Arkansas
  • Delaware
  • Florida
  • Georgia
  • Kentucky
  • Louisiana
  • Maryland
  • Mississippi
  • Missouri
  • North Carolina
  • South Carolina
  • Tennessee
  • Texas
  • Virginia


Border States

These are salve states that remained in the Union.

  • Delaware
  • Kentucky
  • Maryland
  • Missouri


State Populations From 1860 Census

StateTotalWhiteFree BlacksSlavesIndians (a)
California379,994358,110 (b)4,086---17,798
New Hampshire326,073325,579494------
New Jersey672,035646,69925,31818 (c)---
New York3,880,7353,831,59049,005---140
North Carolina992,622629,94230,463331,0591,158
Rhode Island174,620170,6493,952---19
South Carolina703,708291,3009,914402,40688

(a) – does not include 294,500 Indians who kept their tribal character
(b) – 34,933 Asians included
(c) – Indentured servants
Data source: The Library of Congress Civil War Desk Reference


Territory Populations From 1860 Census

TerritoryTotalWhiteFree BlacksSlavesIndians (a)
New Mexico93,51682,92485---10,507
District of
Columbia (b)

(a) – does not include 294,500 Indians who kept their tribal character
(b) – Populations included: Georgetown (8,733), Washington City (61,122), rest of the District (5,225).
Data source: The Library of Congress Civil War Desk Reference


Population Totals States And Territories Combined

Total PopulationWhiteFree BlacksSlavesIndians (a)

(a) – does not include 294,500 Indians who kept their tribal character
Data source: The Library of Congress Civil War Desk Reference


The 10 Largest Cities Of The United States In 1860

New York, NY813,669
Philadelphia, PA565,529
Brooklyn, NY266,661
Baltimore, MA212,418
Boston, MA177,840
New Orleans, LA168,675
Cincinnati, OH161,044
St, Louis, MO160,773
Chicago, IL112,172
Buffalo, NY81,129

Data source: The Library of Congress Civil War Desk Reference


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Colt Model 1860 Army Revolver

A Civil War Sidearm

1860 Colt Model Army Model

1860 Colt Model Army Model

The 1860 Colt Model Army Revolver was a commonly used sidearm weapon in the Civil War. Cavalry, artillery, and infantry all used this revolver. It was a percussion weapon made by the Colt’s Patent Firearms Manufacturing Company in Hartford, Connecticut. Although varied pistols were used in the Civil War, the 1860 Colt Model Army Revolver was the official United States Army pistol.

Over 200,000 of the 1860 Colt Model Army Revolvers were manufactured from 1860 through 1873. From January 4, 1861 through November 10, 1863 the War Department furnished over 107,156 1860 Colt Model Army Revolvers. They became known as the New Model Army pistol and the previous 1848 version of the pistol was then called the Old Army Model.

A Revolver

The 1860 Colt Model Army Revolver was a cap and ball revolver that fired a .44 caliber cartridge with a round lead ball or a conical projectile, from an eight-inch barrel using a six-shot revolving cylinder with hammer. A rammer in front of the cylinder was used to load the sidearm. When fired, a brass percussion cap struck the hammer igniting a 30 grain black powder charge. This pistol was made of iron or steel and had a bronze trigger guard and front strap. It weighed 44oz.

The revolver’s fixed sights were usually set at 75 to 100 yards at manufacture, this being the accuracy range of the gun. Sometimes, this pistol would be adapted with a rifle-like shoulder stock, in order to improve steadiness of aiming and accuracy at further distances. At firing, the projectiles of the 1860 Colt Model Army Revolver achieved a muzzle velocity of approximately 750 feet per second.

Reliable And Popular

The 1860 Colt Model Army Revolver was the most used pistol by Union troops in the Civil War, and regarded as very reliable. It was popular with all troops in the Civil War, but was a favorite weapon of officers, cavalrymen, and artillerymen. The Confederacy recognized the capability of the 1860 Colt Model Army Revolver and produced its own knock-off version of the pistol.

The 1860 Colt Model Army Revolver’s main rival as a weapon of choice in the Civil War was the Remington Arms 1861 Remington .44 percussion revolver. The Remington looked very similar to the Colt, but it had a shorter barrel and the revolving cylinder of the Remington was enclosed.

Colt Model 1860 Army Revolver Demonstration


Colt Model 1860 Army Revolver From A Mosby Raider

Presented To A Union Cavalry Officer

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