The Anaconda Plan was part of the military campaign of the Federal Army against the southern states during the Civil War. It assumed the naval blockade of ports of the Confederacy as well as the establishment of control and transfer of troops along the Mississippi River. The name of the Anaconda Plan refers to the line of movement of the Union Army troops on the map, which looks like a big serpent.


This plan was developed by General Winfield Scott and was proposed at the very beginning of the Civil War. The purpose of the naval blockade by the military fleet of the Federal Army was the economic and food depletion of the Confederate forces. The fact is that Winfield believed that the war would last a considerable amount of time.

He also feared the participation of the forces of England and France on the side of the Confederacy. Many generals criticized him for the chosen strategy, requiring quick and decisive action.

Simultaneously with the blockade, small forces of the northern states were to be sent along the Mississippi River. Their goal was to capture enemy positions and provide a path for the main army. This strategy would divide the territories of the southern states and weaken their positions. The last point of the Anaconda Plan was a general battle with the Confederacy Army near New Orleans.

In reality, this plan met with specific difficulties in its implementation. By the beginning of the war, the Union Navy did not have enough ships to block the entire coast completely. Nor did the northern forces have suitable armed vessels for military operations along the Mississippi River. Many scientists still argue about the historical significance and strategic success of the Anaconda Plan.