North America 1863: French Intervention in Mexico
Bankrupt after its Reform War, Mexico had suspended its debt repayments in 1861, prompting Spain, France and Britain to occupy Veracruz. However when it became apparent that the French Emperor Napoleon III was really using the intervention as an excuse to conquer Mexico, the Spanish and British withdrew, leaving the French to continue the invasion on their own.
1 Jan 1863 Emancipation Proclamation▲
The American Civil War further complicated the legal status of slaves in the Confederacy. Because the Union Army risked inadvertently recognizing the Confederacy by appropriating slaves as contraband, President Abraham Lincoln circumvented the issue by proclaiming the freedom of slaves in the ten states of the Confederacy.
24 Feb 1863 Arizona Territory▲
United States split the Arizona Territory from the New Mexico Territory. Originally proposed in 1856 by the people of Tucson, Congress split the territory between east-west rather than north-south to avoid legitimizing the former Confederate Territory of Arizona.
4 Mar 1863 Idaho Territory▲
The United States formed the Idaho Territory from parts of the Washington, Dakota and Nebraska Territories.
15 Mar–17 May 1863 Siege of Puebla▲
French forces besieged and captured Puebla, Mexico.