On this day in 1861 Jefferson Davis is voted the first president of the Confederate States of America. As it turns out he ran unopposed, a noble victory indeed. He was the son in law of former US president Zachary Taylor, and was a decorated war hero, fighting in the Mexican-American war. Later he was the Secretary of War for Franklin Pierce. Upon being elected president it was his job to guide his infantile country to victory in the war of northern aggression. But he was unable to solicit outside aid, and thus lost in a war of attrition despite having far better leadership in his armies and the advantage of fighting on his own territory.
On this day in 1860 Abraham Lincoln was elected president giving the slave states the excuse they had been looking for when deciding on secession. Because the nation was divided Lincoln was able to win a close election by garnering a majority of electoral votes in the north. Had there not been such polarizing candidates the war might have been delayed another 4 years, but the split had started even before the ink was dry on the Constitution.
On this day in 1917 under the leadership of VI Lenin, the Bolsheviks launched a nearly bloodless revolution in Russia against the provisional government. After the murder of the Czar Russia was plunged into chaos, a vast country without a leader, ripe for a revolutionary mind to take over. Bolshevik Russia would go onto become the USSR and became a superpower in the world, spreading communism to other countries bored with capitalism.