General-in-Chief George B. McClellan develops a plan of attack and defends his military secrecy to increasingly skeptical politicians and subordinates.
The suspension of specie payments by the leading northern banks plunges the North into a financial crisis as the year ends.
Abraham Lincoln finally decides upon a course of action regarding Great Britain’s demands to release the Confederate envoys seized aboard the British steamer Trent.
News of the British reaction to the seizure of Confederate envoys James Mason and John Slidell reaches the U.S.
George B. McClellan rejects Abraham Lincoln’s proposal to send the Army of the Potomac into northern Virginia against Centreville and Manassas Junction.
The U.S. Congress begins debating on how to pay for the war, while the anti-war minority makes its voice heard.