Operations in Florida

War of the Rebellion: a Compilation of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF FLORIDA,
Transport Steamship Atlantic, April 15, 1861.

Lieut. Col. E. D. KEYES,

Secretary to the General-in-Chief Washington, D.C.:

COLONEL: I wrote you at Key West, reporting our arrival there, and took from Fort Taylor some guns and stores necessary for our expedition, and detached from the companies of the fort and barracks thirty-three men to fill up in part the companies of the command to their maximum organization, intending to take the balance from Fort Jefferson. These men are required to fill vacancies caused by desertion or other absence at New York.

We left Key West at daybreak yesterday morning (the 14th), and arrived at Fort Jefferson at 1 p.m. I found this post in the good order to be expected from its vigilant commander. The present armament of the fort is thirteen 8-inch columbiads and a field battery, and 104 barrels gunpowder, 608 shells, 150 shot, and a vessel now at the wharf is unloading thirty 8-inch columbiads and twenty-four 24-pounder howitzers, with carriages, implements, &c. complete, with 250 barrels of powder, 2,400 8-inch shells, 600 round shot, and a proportioned quantity of fixed ammunition, so that this post may be considered secure from any force that the seceding States can bring against it. The whole lower tier of this work may with little labor be prepared for its armament. Some flagging and the traverse circles are the principal work to be done. On the recommendation of Captain Meigs, chief engineer, I have directed Major Arnold to have four water batteries, mounting three guns each, to be erected on the adjacent keys. This being done, with the support of one or two ships of war, the whole anchorage will be within command of our guns.

I would respectfully recommend that at Fort Jefferson for the 42-pounders ordered 8-inch unchambered columbiads be substituted, and that the wooden carriages of all three forts be replaced at the earliest possible day by iron ones. I took from Fort Jefferson twenty negro laborers for the Engineer Department, thirty-one privates to fill up the companies, so that they are now full, a field battery and four mountain howitzers, with implements and ammunition, some bricks, and a large flat. We got under way at 8 o’clock p.m., and very soon lost the flat. Her lashing-rigs and hooks, not being sufficiently strong, drew out and left her adrift. Lieutenants McFarland and Reese, of the Engineers, on the advice of the chief engineer, have been attached to this command.

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

HARVEY BROWN,
Colonel, Commanding.

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Operations in Charleston Harbor

War of the Rebellion: a Compilation of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies

HEADQUARTERS PROVISIONAL FORCES, C S. ARMY,
Charleston, S.C., April 15, 1861.

SIR: We have the honor to submit the following report of our visit to Fort Sumter on the 13th instant for the information of the brigadier-general commanding:

After reporting to the general the execution of the orders with which we were charged for Morris Island, and in company with Colonel Wigfall reporting the surrender of Fort Sumter, and also its dangerous condition from the fire occasioned by the hot shot from Fort Moultrie, we proceeded, by order of the brigadier-general commanding, immediately to Southern warf where we embarked on board the steamer Osiris for Fort Sumter, accompanied by the chief of the city fire department, Mr. Nathan, with a fire engine and its company. On our arrival at Fort Sumter we were met by Dr. Crawford, surgeon of the fort, who directed us to avoid the wharf, as it was in danger of blowing up at any moment from its mines. The doctor conducted us into the presence of Major Anderson, on the opposite side of the fort from the wharf, we entering the fort through an embrasure. We found the barracks totally destroyed by fire, occasioned by our shells and hot shot. We stated to Major Anderson that we had been sent to Fort Sumter by General Beauregard with a fire engine, to offer assistance to extinguish his fire and to render any other assistance he might require, and also Surgeon-General Gibbes, South Carolina, and assistants were present to administer to any wounded he might have. The major replied that he thanked the general for his kindness, but that his fire was almost burned out, and that he had but one man wounded, and he not seriously. We asked him if the magazine was safe. He replied he thought the lower magazine safe, though it was amid the burning ruins, and that he had thrown about one hundred barrels of powder into the water from the upper magazine during the action, for the safety of his command. We again asked him if he did not think it best to use the engine which accompanied us on the steamer, which lay out in the stream. He replied no–that he thought everything had been consumed that would burn.

Major Anderson expressed great satisfaction when we told him that we had no casualties on our side, and again asked us to thank General Beauregard for his kindness; and, on leaving, the major accompanied us himself as far as our small boat. We returned to the city and reported the result of our visit to General Beauregard about 7 p.m.

All of which is submitted for the information of the brigadier-general commanding.

JAMES CHESNUT, JR.,

JOHN L. MANNING,

Aides-de-Camp.

A. R. CHISOLM,

Lieutenant-Colonel and Aide-de-Camp.

Maj. D. R. JONES,

Assistant Adjutant-General Provisional Forces, C. S. A.

_____

HEADQUARTERS PROVISIONAL FORCES, C. S. A.,
Charleston, S. C., April 15, 1861.

MAJOR On Friday, April 12, we received orders from General Beauregard to carry dispatches to General Dunovant, commanding on Sullivan’s Island. We were directed to communicate the purport of the dispatches, which were open, to Captain Martin, in command of the floating battery and the Dahlgren-gun battery; to Captain Hallonquist,  in command of the enfilade battery and a masked mortar battery near the same spot; and to Colonel Ripley, in command of Fort Moultrie–all of them posts on Sullivan’s Island. We set out on our mission at 9 o’clock a.m. and proceeded in a boat to Mount Pleasant. After communicating with Captain Martin we rowed over to and landed on the floating Iron battery. We found Lieutenant Yates actively engaged in returning the fire from Fort Sumter, which was then specially directed against his battery. The latter had been repeatedly hit, but had successfully resisted all the shot (32-pounders) which had struck it, with the exception of one, which had passed through the narrow, angular slope just below the roof.

After spending some time in this battery we proceeded to the Dahlgren-gun battery, where Captain Hamilton was commanding in person. Both the floating battery and the Dahlgren gun were directing their special attention to the dismounting of such of the guns en barbette upon Fort Sumter as the batteries could be brought to bear upon. The fire from both batteries was effective and well sustained. We next visited Captain Hallonquist’s enfilading battery, which was doing some admirable shooting. After remaining here a short time we proceeded to Captain Hallonquist’s mortar battery, and from thence to Fort Moultrie. Here we found an active, regular, well-sustained, and well-directed firing going on, which was being most vigorously returned by Fort Sumter. The quarters were pretty well fiddled, and the furnace for hot shot twice struck, but not materially injured.

After carefully watching the firing for some time we visited Captain Butler’s mortar battery, where we found General Dunovant and delivered our dispatches. We then returned to Fort Moultrie, and after spending about an hour there proceeded back to the cove, where our boat was awaiting us, and touching at the floating battery for a communication for headquarters we rowed over once more to Mount Pleasant, for the purpose of delivering a message from Lieutenant-Colonel Ripley (by request) to Captain Martin. We then returned to the city which we reached about half-past 4 p.m., and immediately reported verbally at headquarters to the brigadier-general commanding.

We cannot conclude our report without expressing the extreme pleasure and gratification which we felt at the coolness, spirit, skill, and alacrity which we witnessed at all points among the officers and men.

Very respectfully,

WM. PORCHER MILES,

JOHN L. MANNING,

Aides to Brigadier-General Beauregard,

Maj. D. R. JONES,

Assistant Adjutant-General, Provisional Forces, C. S. A.

_____

HEADQUARTERS PROVISIONAL ARMY, C. S. A.,
Charleston, April 15, 1861.

SIR: We have the honor to submit the following report of our visit to Fort Sumter on the 13th instant:

Informed about 1 o’clock that no flag was waving over Fort Sumter, General Beauregard detached us immediately to proceed to the fort and say to Major Anderson that his flag being down and his quarters in flames we were sent to inquire if he needed any assistance. When about half-way from the city to Fort Sumter we observed that the United States flag had been raised again. At once we determined to go back to the city, but had not proceeded far in return when, discovering a white flag floating from the ramparts of Sumter, we again directed our course to the fort. On landing we were conducted to the presence of Major Anderson, whom we informed that in consequence of the conflagration in the fort we had been sent by General Beauregard to inquire if he needed any assistance. Major Anderson replied: “Present my compliments to General Beauregard, and say to him I thank him for his kindness, but need no assistance.” Continuing, the major said: “Gentlemen, do I understand you have come direct from General Beauregard?” We replied in the affirmative. “Why,” returned Major Anderson, “Colonel Wigfall has just been here as an aide to and by authority of General Beauregard, and proposed the same terms of evacuation offered on the 11th instant.” We informed him we had just left General Beauregard in the city, and had come in obedience to his orders, charged with the message just delivered. The major expressed regret for the misunderstanding, and repeated that he had understood Colonel Wigfall to say he was direct from General Beauregard, and as one of his aides was authorized to propose terms of evacuation. We then inquired if he would reduce to writing the terms proposed by Colonel Wigfall. To which the major replied, certainly he would. Major Anderson then declared that he would, immediately run up his flag; that he regretted it had ever been taken down, and that it would not have been lowered if he had not understood Colonel Wigfall to come directly from General Beauregard to treat. We requested that, under the peculiar circumstances, he would not raise his flag until we could communicate to General Beauregard the terms of evacuation with which he had furnished us; he assented to the proposition, and we left the fort.

STEPHEN D. LEE,

Captain, C. S. Army.

ROGER A. PRYOR,

WM. PORCHER MILES,

Aides-de-Camp.

Maj. D. R. JONES,

Assistant Adjutant-General, Provisional Forces, C. S. A.

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The Secession of North Carolina

War of the Rebellion: a Compilation of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies

RALEIGH, N. C., April 15, 1861.

Hon. SIMON CAMERON, Secretary of War:

Your dispatch* is received, and if genuine, which its extraordinary character leads me to doubt, I have to say in reply that I regard the levy of troops made by the administration for the purpose of subjugating the States of the South as in violation of the Constitution and a gross usurpation of power. I can be no party to this wicked violation of the laws of the country, and to this war upon the liberties of a free people. You can get no troops from North Carolina. I will reply more in detail when your call is received by mail.

JOHN W. ELLIS,
Governor of North Carolina.

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“Well, you’ve heard the news? The Yankees out of Sumter! Isn’t it fine!”–William Howard Russell

My Diary North and South – William Howard Russell
Note: This particular diary entry—a document written in 1861—includes terms that are offensive to many today.  No attempt will be made to censor or edit 19th century material to today’s standards.

Sunday, April 14.—A night of disturbed sleep, owing to the ponderous thumping of the walking beam close to my head, the whizzing of steam, and the roaring of the steam-trumpet to warn vessels out of the way—mosquitoes, too, had a good deal to say to me in spite of my dirty gauze curtains. Soon after dawn the vessel ran alongside the jetty at Fortress Monroe, and I saw indistinctly the waterface of the work which is in some danger of being attacked, it is said, by the Virginians. There was no flag on the staff above the walls, and the place looked dreary and desolate. It has a fine bastioned profile, with moat and armed lunettes — the casemates were bricked up or occupied by glass windows, and all the guns I could make out were on the parapets. A few soldiers were lounging on the jetty, and after we had discharged a tipsy old officer, a few negroes, and some parcels, the steam-pipe brayed—it does not whistle—again, and we proceeded across the mouth of the channel and James’ River towards Elizabeth River, on which stand Portsmouth and Gosport.

Just as I was dressing, the door opened, and a all, neatly dressed negress came in and asked me for my ticket. She told me she was ticket-collector for the boat, and that she was a slave. The latter intelligence was given without any reluctance or hesitation. On my way to the upper deck I observed the bar was crowded by gentlemen engaged in consuming, or waiting for, cocktails or mint-juleps. The latter, however, could not be had just now in such perfection as usual, owing to the inferior condition of the mint. In the matter of drinks, how hospitable the Americans are! I was asked to take as many as would have rendered me incapable of drinking again; my excuse on the plea of inability to grapple with cocktails and the like before breakfast, was heard with surprise, and I was urgently entreated to abandon so bad a habit.

A clear, fine sun rose from the waters of the bay up into the purest of pure blue skies. On our right lay a low coast fringed with trees, and wooded densely with stunted forest, through which creeks could be seen glinting far through the foliage. Anxious-looking little wooden lighthouses, hard set to preserve their equilibrium in the muddy waters, and bent at various angles, marked the narrow channels to the towns and hamlets on the banks, the principal trade and occupation of which are oyster selling and oyster eating. We are sailing over wondrous deposits and submarine crops of the much-loved bivalve. Wooden houses painted white appear on the shores, and one large building with wings and a central portico surmounted by a belvedere, destined for the reception of the United States’ sailors in sickness, is a striking object in the landscape.

The steamer in a few minutes came alongside a dirty, broken down, wooden quay, lined with open booths, on which a small crowd, mostly of negroes, had gathered. Behind the shed there rose tiled and shingled roofs of mean dingy houses, and we could catch glimpses of the line of poor streets, narrow, crooked, ill-paved, surmounted by a few church-steeples, and the large sprawling advertisement-boards of the tobacco-stores and oyster-sellers, which was all we could see of Portsmouth or Gosport. Our vessel was in a narrow creek; at one side was the town—in the centre of the stream the old “Pennsylvania,” intended to be of 120 guns, but never commissioned, and used as receiving ship, was anchored—alongside the wall of the Navy Yard below us, lay the Merrimac,” apparently in ordinary. The only man-of-war fit for sea was a curiosity—a stumpy bluff-bowed, Dutch-built-looking sloop, called the “Cumberland.” Two or three smaller vessels, dismasted, were below the “Merrimac,” and we could just see the building-sheds in which were one or two others, I believe, on the stocks. A fleet of oyster-boats anchored, or in sailless observance of the Sunday, dotted the waters. There was an ancient and fishlike smell about the town worthy of its appearance and of its functions as a seaport. As the vessel came close alongside, there was the usual greeting between friends, and many a cry, “Well, you’ve heard the news? The Yankees out of Sumter! Isn’t it fine!” There were few who did not participate in that sentiment, but there were some who looked black as night and said nothing.

Whilst we were waiting for the steam ferry-boat, which plies to Norfolk at the other side of the creek to take us over, a man-of-war-boat pulled alongside, and the coxswain, a handsome, fine-looking sailor, came on deck, and, as I happened to be next him, asked me if Captain Blank had come down with us? I replied, that I did not know, but that the captain could tell him no doubt. “He?” said the sailor, pointing with great disgust to the skipper of the steamer, “Why he knows nothin’ of his passengers, except how many dollars they come to,” and started off to prosecute his inquiries among the other passengers. The boat alongside was clean, and was manned by six as stout fellows as ever handled an oar. Two I made sure of were Englishmen, and when the coxswain was retiring from his fruitless search, I asked him where he hailed from. “The Cove of Cork. I was in the navy nine years, but when I got on the West Ingy Station, I heerd how Uncle Sam treated his fellows, and so I joined him.” “Cut and run, I suppose?” “Well, not exactly. I got away, sir. Emigrated, you know!” “Are there any other Irishmen or Englishmen on board?“I should think there was. That man in the bow there is a mate of mine, from the sweet Cove of Cork; Driscoll by name, and there’s a Belfast man pulls number two ; and the stroke, and the chap that pulls next to him is Englishmen, and fine sailors they are, Bates and Bookey. They were in men-of-war too.” “What! five out of seven, British subjects!” “Oh, aye, that is—we onst was—most of us now are ‘Mericans, I think. There’s plenty more of us aboard the ship.”

The steam ferry was a ricketty affair, and combined with the tumble-down sheds and quays to give a poor idea of Norfolk. The infliction of tobacco-juice on board was remarkable. Although it was but seven o’clock every one had his quid in working order, and the air was filled with yellowish-brown rainbows and liquid parabolas, which tumbled in spray or in little flocks of the weed on the foul decks. As it was Sunday, some of the numerous flagstaff”s which adorn the houses in both cities displayed the United States’ bunting; but nothing could relieve the decayed air of Norfolk. The omnibus which was waiting to receive us must have been the earliest specimen of carriage building in that style on the Continent; and as it lunged and flopped over the prodigious bad pavement, the severe nature of which was aggravated by a street railway, it opened the seams as if it were going to fall into firewood. The shops were all closed, of course; but the houses, wooden and brick, were covered with signs and placards indicative of large trade in tobacco and oysters.

Poor G. P. R. James, who spent many years here, could have scarce caught a novel from such a place, spite of great oysters, famous wild fowl, and the lauded poultry and vegetables which are produced in the surrounding districts. There is not a hill for the traveler to ascend towards the close of a summer’s day, nor a moated castle for a thousand miles around. An execrable, tooth-cracking drive ended at last in front of the Atlantic Hotel, where I was doomed to take up my quarters. It is a dilapidated, uncleanly place, with tobacco-stained floor, full of flies and strong odors. The waiters were all slaves: untidy, slip-shod, and careless creatures. I was shut up in a small room, with the usual notice on the door, that the proprietor would not be responsible for anything, and that you were to lock your doors for fear of robbers, and that you must take your meals at certain hours, and other matters of the kind. My umbra went over to Gosport to take some sketches, he said; and after a poor meal, in a long room filled with “citizens,” all of them discussing Sumter, I went out into the street.

The people, I observe, are of a new and marked type, —very tall, loosely yet powerfully made, with dark complexions, strongly-marked features, prominent noses, large angular mouths in square jaws, deep-seated bright eyes, low, narrow foreheads,—and are all of them much given to ruminate tobacco. The bells of the churches were tolling, and I turned into one; but the heat, great enough outside, soon became nearly intolerable; nor was it rendered more bearable by my proximity to some blacks, who were, I presume, servants or slaves of the great people in the forward pews. The clergyman or minister had got to the Psalms, when a bustle arose near the door which attracted his attention, and caused all to turn round. Several persons were standing up and whispering, whilst others were stealing on tiptoe out of the church. The influence extended itself gradually and all the men near the doors were leaving rapidly. The minister, obviously interested, continued to read, raising his eyes towards the door. At last the persons near him rose up and walked boldly forth, and I at length followed the example, and getting into the street, saw men running towards the hotel. “What is it?” exclaimed I to one. “Come along, the telegraph’s in at the Day Book. The Yankees are whipped!” and so continued. I came at last to a crowd of men, struggling, with their faces toward the wall of a shabby house, increased by fresh arrivals, and diminished by those who, having satisfied their curiosity, came elbowing forth in a state of much excitement, exultation, and perspiration. “It’s all right enough!” “Didn’t I tell you so?” “Bully for Beauregard and the Palmetto State!” I shoved on, and read at last the programme of the cannonade and bombardment, and of the effects upon the fort, on a dirty piece of yellowish paper on the wall. It was a terrible writing. At all the street corners men were discussing the news with every symptom of joy and gratification. Now I confess I could not share in the excitement at all. The act seemed to me the prelude to certain war.

I walked up the main street, and turned up some of the alleys to have a look at the town, coming out on patches of water and bridges over the creeks, or sandy lanes shaded by trees, and lined here and there by pretty wooden villas, painted in bright colors. Everywhere negroes, male and female, gaudily dressed or in rags; the door-steps of the narrow lanes swarming with infant niggerdom — big-stomached, curve-legged, ruggedheaded, and happy—tumbling about dim-eyed toothless hags, or thick-lipped mothers. Not a word were they talking about Sumter. “Any news to-day?” said I to a respectable-looking negro in a blue coat and brass buttons, wonderful hat, and vest of amber silk, check trowsers, and very broken-down shoes. “Well, sare, I tink nothin’ much occur. Der hem a fire at Squire Nichol’s house last night; leastway so I hear, sare.” Squire, let me say parenthetically, is used to designate justices of the peace. Was it a very stupid poco-curante, or a very cunning, subtle Sambo?

In my walk I arrived at a small pier, covered with oyster shells, which projected into the sea. Around it, on both sides, were hosts of schooners and pungys, smaller half-decked boats, waiting for their load of the much-loved fish for Washington, Baltimore, and Richmond. Some brigs and large vessels lay alongside the wharves and large warehouses higher up the creek. Observing a small group at the end of the pier I walked on, and found that they consisted of fifteen or twenty well-dressed mechanical kind of men, busily engaged in “chaffing,” as Cockneys would call it, the crew of the man-of-war boat I had seen in the morning. The sailors were stretched on the thwarts, some rather amused, others sullen at the ordeal. “You better just pull down that cussed old rag of yours, and bring your old ship over to the Southern Confederacy. I guess we can take your ‘Cumberland’ whenever we like ! Why don’t you go, and touch off your guns at Charleston?” Presently the coxswain came down with a parcel under his arm, and stepped into the boat. “Give way, my lads;” and the oars dipped in the water. When the boat had gone a few yards from the shore, the crowd cried out: “Down with the Yankees! Hurrah for the Southern Confederacy!” and some among them threw oyster shells at the boat, one of which struck the coxswain on the head. “Back water! Back water all. Hard!” he shouted; and as the boat’s stern neared the land, he stood up and made a leap in among the crowd like a tiger. “You cowardly d—d set. Who threw the shells ?” No one answered at first, but a little wizened man at last squeaked out: “I guess you’ll have shells of another kind if you remain here much longer.” The sailor howled with rage: “Why, you poor devils, I’d whip any half dozen of you, —teeth, knives, and all—in five minutes; and my boys there in the boat would clear your whole town. What do you mean by barking at the Stars and Stripes? Do you see that ship?” he shouted, pointing towards the “Cumberland.” “Why the lads aboard of her would knock every darned seceder in your State into a cocked hat in a brace of shakes! And now who’s coming on?” The invitation was not accepted, and the sailor withdrew, with his angry eyes fixed on the people, who gave him a kind of groan; but there were no oyster shells this time. “In spite of his blowing, I tell yer,” said one of them, “there’s some good men from old Virginny abo’rd o’ that ship that will never fire a shot agin us.” “Oh, we’ll fix her right enough,” remarked another, “when the time comes.” I returned to my room, sat down, and wrote for some hours. The dinner in the Atlantic Hotel was of a description to make one wish the desire for food had never been invented. My neighbor said he was not “quite content about this Sumter business. There’s nary one killed nor wownded.”

Sunday is a very dull day in Norfolk—no mails, no post, no steamers; and, at the best, Norfolk must be dull exceedingly. The superintendent of the Seabord and Roanoke Railway, having heard that I was about proceeding to Charleston, called upon me to offer every facility in his power. Sent Moses with letters to post-office. At night the mosquitoes were very aggressive and successful. This is the first place in which the bedrooms are unprovided with gas. A mutton dip almost made me regret the fact.

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“It is said that Martial law will be proclaimed tomorrow morning…,”—Horatio Nelson Taft

Diary of US patent clerk Horatio Nelson Taft.

SUNDAY 14

A fine cool day. Went to church in the morning with all the children, wife staid at home and went in the afternoon. The excitement in the City increases all the time now the war has begun. But the reports from Charleston are mostly “bogus.” Maj Anderson has probably not surrendered, but there is fighting there. I left Willards about 1/2 past 10 this evening, never saw a more excited crowd. It is said that Martial law will be proclaimed tomorrow morning, and that the Prest has made requisition upon the States for 75,000 men or Volunteers to defend the Government. Think of sending my family out of the City immediately.

______

The three diary manuscript volumes, Washington during the Civil War: The Diary of Horatio Nelson Taft, 1861-1865, are available online at The Library of  Congress.

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Awful Times

Woolsey family letters during the War for the Union

Abby Howland Woolsey to Eliza Woolsey Howland.

April 14, 1861.

What awful times we have fallen upon! The sound last night of the newsboys crying till after midnight with hoarse voice, “Bombardment of Fort Sumter,” was appalling. Cousin William Aspinwall was seen at a late hour going into the Brevoort House — no doubt to give what little comfort he could to Mrs. Anderson. This storm, which has been raging a day or two at the South, and has just reached us, has scattered the fleet sent to reinforce and provision Fort Sumter, and the vessels can neither rendezvous nor co-operate with Major Anderson who is there without food, without help, and without instructions. Is Providence against us too?

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Rebel War Clerk

A Rebel War Clerk’s Diary at the Confederate States Capital, By John Beauchamp Jones

April 14th —Wrote all day for several journals.

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Operations in Florida – Confederate Correspondence

War of the Rebellion: a Compilation of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies

PENSACOLA, April 14, 1861.

Hon. L. P. WALKER:

Captain Adams, commanding the fleet, writes on 13th, just received. Subsequently to the date of your last letter, as you are probably aware,  re-enforcements have been placed in Fort Pickens, in obedience to orders from the United States Government. Lieutenant Worden must have given these orders in violation of his word. Captain Adams executed them in violation of our agreement.

BRAXTON BRAGG.

—–

PENSACOLA, April 14, 1861.

Hon. L. P. WALKER, Secretary of War:

Lieutenant Worden assured me he only had a verbal message of pacific nature. The re-enforcement of Pickens was preceded by signal guns from there. What caused it I cannot ascertain. Worden’s message may have had no connection with the move. He was in Pensacola when the move was made. Five thousand men here now, and two thousand more coming. Subsistence, forage, and transportation should be hurried. You can now spare the supplies from Sumter, which is ours.

BRAXTON BRAGG,

Brigadier-General.

—–

HEADQUARTERS TROOPS CONFEDERATE STATES,
Near Pensacola, Fla., April 14, 1861.

ADJUTANT-GENERAL C. S. ARMY,
Montgomery:

SIR: It is a matter of impossibility for me to keep you advised of the arrival of troops. They come under such various orders, and fail so often to report at all, that they are [here] for days sometimes before I hear of them. As near as I can ascertain this morning, by a visit of a staff officer to each camp, the inclosed statement of my present strength is very nearly accurate. I am obliged to receive them by order, and let the muster rolls be made afterwards.

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

BRAXTON BRAGG,

Brigadier-General, Commanding.

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Possession of Sumter — Confederate Records

War of the Rebellion: a Compilation of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies

CHARLESTON, April 14, 1861.

Hon. L. P. WALKER:

I have possession of Sumter. Anderson and garrison on Isabel going in morning. None killed; two wounded. Quarters in ruins. Interior of fort damaged. Armament still effective against entrance to channel.

G. T. BEAUREGARD.

—–

CHARLESTON, April 14, 1861.

Hon. L. P. WALKER:

Fleet still outside. Can spare no guns yet, but hope to do so soon.

T. BEAUREGARD.

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Captain J. G. Foster’s Journal of the Bombardment of Fort Sumter

War of the Rebellion: a Compilation of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies

April 14.–The Isabel went over the bar and placed the whole command on board the steamer Baltic, which started for New York.

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“At the black barber’s I was meekly interrogated by my attendant as to my belief in the story of the bombardment. He was astonished to find a stranger could think the event was probable.”— William Howard Russell.

My Diary North and South – William Howard Russell

April 14. (13th1)—The Eutaw House is not a very good specimen of an American hotel, but the landlord does his best to make his guests comfortable, when he likes them. The American landlord is a despot who regulates his dominions by ukases affixed to the walls, by certain state departments called “offices” and “bars,” and who generally is represented, whilst he is away on some military, political, or commercial undertaking, by a lieutenant; the deputy being, if possible, a greater man than the chief. It requires so much capital to establish a large hotel, that there is little fear of external competition in the towns. And Americans are so gregarious that they will not patronize small establishments.

I was the more complimented by the landlord’s attention this morning when he came to the room, and in much excitement informed me the news of Port Sumter being bombarded by the Charleston batteries was confirmed, “And now,” said he, “there’s no saying where it will all end.”

After breakfast I was visited by some gentlemen of Baltimore, who were highly delighted with the news, and I learned from them there was a probability of their State joining those which had seceded. The whole feeling of the landed and respectable classes is with the South. The dislike to the Federal Government at Washington is largely spiced with personal ridicule and contempt of Mr. Lincoln. Your Marylander is very tenacious about being a gentleman, and what he does not consider gentlemanly is simply unfit for anything, far less for place and authority.

The young draftsman, of whom I spoke, turned up this morning, having pursued me from Washington. He asked me whether I would still let him accompany me. I observed that I had no objection, but that I could not permit such paragraphs in the papers again, and suggested there would be no difficulty in his travelling by himself, if he pleased. He replied that his former connection with a Black Republican paper might lead to his detention or molestation in the South, but that if he was allowed to come with me, no one would doubt that he was employed by an illustrated London paper. The young gentleman will certainly never lose anything for the want of asking.

At the black barber’s I was meekly interrogated by my attendant as to my belief in the story of the bombardment. He was astonished to find a stranger could think the event was probable. “De gen’lmen of Baltimore will be quite glad ov it. But maybe it’l come bad after all.” I discovered my barber had strong ideas that the days of slavery were drawing to an end. “And what will take place then, do you think?” “Wall, sare, ‘spose coloured men will be good as white men.” That is it. They do not understand what a vast gulf flows between them and the equality of position with the white race which most of those who have aspirations imagine to be meant by emancipation. He said the town slave-owners were very severe and harsh in demanding larger sums than the slaves could earn. The slaves are sent out to do jobs, to stand for hire, to work on the quays and docks. Their earnings go to the master, who punishes them if they do not bring home enough. Sometimes the master is content with a fixed sum, and all over that amount which the slave can get may be retained for his private purposes.

Baltimore looks more ancient and respectable than the towns I have passed through, and the site on which it stands is undulating, so that the houses have not that flatness and uniformity of height which make the streets of New York and Philadelphia resemble those of a toy city magnified. Why Baltimore should be called the “Monumental City” could not be divined by a stranger. He would never think that a great town of 250,000 inhabitants could derive its name from an obelisk cased in white marble to George Washington, even though it be more than 200 feet high, nor from the grotesque column called “Battle Monument,” erected to the memory of those who fell in the skirmish outside the city in which the British were repulsed in 1814. I could not procure any guide to the city worth reading, and strolled about at discretion, after a visit to the Maryland Club, of which I was made an honorary member. At dark I started for Norfolk, in the steamer “Georgianna.”

1Note – There are two entries for the 14th and, comparing them to the previous entry, this one appears to be for the 13th.

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The Volunteers. — Fort Sumter

War Diary of a Union Woman in the South

April 13, 1861.—More than a month has passed since the last date here. This afternoon I was seated on the floor covered with loveliest flowers, arranging a floral offering for the fair, when the gentlemen arrived (and with papers bearing the news of the fall of Fort Sumter, which, at her request, I read to Mrs. F.).

______

Note: To protect Mrs. Miller’s job as a teacher in New Orleans, the diary was published anonymously, edited by G. W. Cable, names were changed and initials were often used instead of full names — and even the initials differed from the real person’s initials.
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Captain J. G. Foster’s Journal of the Bombardment of Fort Sumter

War of the Rebellion: a Compilation of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies

April 13.–At daybreak no material alteration was observed in the enemy’s batteries. The three U. S. men-of-war were still off the bar. The last of the rice was cooked this morning, and served with the pork–the only other article of food left in the engineer mess-room, where the whole command has messed since the opening of the fire. After this the fire was reopened, and continued very briskly as long as the increased supply of cartridges lasted. The enemy reopened fire at daylight, and continued it with rapidity. The aim of the enemy’s gunners was better than yesterday. One shot from the rifled gun in the battery on Cummings Point struck the cheek of an embrasure in the right gorge angle, and sent a large number of fragments inside, wounding a sergeant and three men. The spent ball also came in with the fragments. An engineer employee Mr. John Swearer, from Baltimore, Md. was severely wounded by pieces of a shell which burst inside the fort close to the casemates. One or two balls also penetrated the filling of the embrasure openings of the second tier, but fell entirely spent in-side–one of them setting a man’s bed on fire.

It soon became evident that they were firing hot shot from a large number of their guns, especially from those in Fort Moultrie, and at nine o’clock I saw volumes of smoke issuing from the roof of the officers’ quarters, where a shot had just penetrated. From the exposed position it was utterly impossible to extinguish the flames, and I therefore immediately notified the commanding officer of the fact, and obtained his permission to remove as much powder from the magazine as was possible before the flames, which were only one set of quarters distant, should encircle the magazine and make it necessary to close it. All the men and officers not engaged at the guns worked rapidly and zealously at this, but so rapid was the spread of the flames that only fifty barrels of powder could be taken out and distributed around in the casemates before the fire and heat made it necessary to close the magazine doors and pack earth against them. The men then withdrew to the casemates on the faces of the fort. As soon as the flames and smoke burst from the roof of the quarters the enemy’s batteries redoubled the rapidity of their fire, firing red-hot shot from most of their guns. The whole range of officers’ quarters was soon in flames. The wind being from the southward, communicated fire to the roof of the barracks, and this being aided by the hot shot constantly lodging there spread to the entire roofs of both barracks, so that by twelve o’clock all the woodwork of quarters and of-upper story of barracks was in flames. Although the floors of the barracks were fire-proof, the utmost exertions of the officers and men were often required to prevent the fire communicating down the stairways, and from the exterior, to the doors, window frames, and other woodwork of the east barrack, in which the officers and men had taken their quarters. All the woodwork in the west barrack was burned. The clouds of smoke and cinders which were sent into the casemates by the wind set on fire many boxes, beds, and other articles belonging to the men, and made it dangerous to retain the powder which had been saved from the magazine. The commanding officer accordingly gave orders to have all but five barrels thrown out of the embrasures into the water, which was done.

The small stock of cartridges now only allowed a gun to be fired at intervals of ten minutes. The flagstaff was struck by shot seven times during the day, and a fragment of shell cut the lanyard of the flag The part thus cut was so connected that the flag must have come down by the run had not the flag been, as it was, twisted around both parts of the lanyard. During the night I endeavored to remedy this by lowering the topmast so as to reeve a new halyard, but failed in consequence of the sticking of the mast, which was swollen by the rain. The most that could be done was to reeve the uncut part of the lanyard through a block attached to the topmast, as high up as a man could climb, so that if the flag untwisted and came down it could be immediately rehoisted as high as this block.

As the fire reached the magazines of grenades that were arranged in the stair towers and implement rooms on the gorge, they exploded completely destroying the stair towers at the west gorge angle, and nearly destroying the other.

At 1 o’clock the flagstaff having been struck twice before this morning, fell. The flag was immediately secured by Lieutenant Hall, and as soon as it could be attached to a temporary staff, hoisted again upon the parapet at the middle of the right face by Lieutenant Snyder, Corps of Engineers, assisted by Hart, and Davey, a laborer.

About this time information was brought to the commanding officer that Mr. Wigfall, bearing a white flag, was on the outside, and wished to see him. He accordingly went out to meet Mr. Wigfall, passing through the blazing gateway, accompanied by Lieutenant Snyder. In the mean time however, Mr. Wigfall had passed to an embrasure on the left flank, where, upon showing the white flag upon his sword, he was permitted to enter, and Lieutenant Snyder entering immediately after, accompanied him down the batteries to where some other officers were posted, to whom Mr. Wigfall commenced to address himself, to the effect that he came from General Beauregard to desire that, inasmuch as the flag of the fort was shot down, a fire raging in the quarters, and the garrison in a great strait, hostilities be suspended, and the white flag raised for this object. He was replied to that our flag was again hoisted on the parapet, that the white flag would not be hoisted except by order of the commanding officer, and that his own batteries should set the example of suspending fire. He then referred to the fact of the batteries on Cummings Point, from which he came, having stopped firing, and asked that his own white flag might be waved to indicate to the batteries on Sullivan’s Island to cease also. This was refused; but he was permitted to wave the white flag himself, getting into an embrasure for this purpose. Having done this for a few moments, Lieutenant Davis, First Artillery, permitted a corporal to relieve him. Very soon, however a shot striking very near to the embrasure, the corporal jumped inside, and declared to Mr. Wigfall that “he would not hold his flag, for it was not respected.”

At this moment the commanding officer, having re-entered through an embrasure, came up. To him Mr. Wigfall addressed nearly the same remarks that he had used on entering, adding some complimentary things about the manner in which the defense had been made, and ending by renewing the request to suspend hostilities in order to arrange terms of evacuation. The commanding officer desiring to know what terms he came to offer, Mr. Wigfall replied, “Any terms that you may desire–your own terms–the precise nature of which General Beauregard will arrange with you.”

The commanding officer then accepted the conditions, saying that the terms he accepted were those proposed by General Beauregard on the 11th, namely: To evacuate the fort with his command, taking arms and all private and company property, saluting the United States flag as it was lowered, and being conveyed, if he desired it, to any northern port. With this understanding Mr. Wigfall left, and the white flag was raised and the United States flag lowered by order of the commanding officer.

Very soon after a boat arrived from the city, containing three aides of General Beauregard, with a message to the effect that, observing the white flag hoisted, General B. sent to inquire what aid he could lend in extinguishing the flames, &c. Being made acquainted with the condition of affairs and Mr. Wigfall’s visit, they stated that the latter, although an aid of General Beauregard, had not seen him for two days.

The commanding officer then stated that the United States flag would be raised again, but yielded to the request of the aides for time to report to their chief and obtain his instructions. They soon returned, with the approval of all the conditions desired except the saluting of the flag as it was lowered, and this exception was subsequently removed after correspondence. In the morning communication was had with the fleet, and Captain Gillis paid a visit to the fort.

The evacuation was completed after saluting the flag, in doing which one man was instantly killed, one mortally and four severely wounded, by the premature discharge of a gun and explosion of a pile of cartridges. The whole command went on board a steamer which placed them on board the Isabel, where they remained all night.

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“Everybody much excited, and all will soon be compelled to “show their hands,” for or against the Union.”—Horatio Nelson Taft

Diary of US patent clerk Horatio Nelson Taft.

SATURDAY, APRIL 13, 1861.

This has been the most exciting day yet. The last report about the provisioning Ft Sumpter was untrue and today or early this morning news came that the Rebels were bombarding it and tonight the report is that Maj Anderson has surrendered, it being on fire. The last report is not generaly credited. Even if true, it is not astonishing. The Rebels have ten thousand men & nineteen Batteries. Anderson had 70 men only. I went on to the Ave after 3 o’clock, a great crowd round all the Printing or News paper offices. Everybody much excited, and all will soon be compelled to “show their hands,” for or against the Union.

______

The three diary manuscript volumes, Washington during the Civil War: The Diary of Horatio Nelson Taft, 1861-1865, are available online at The Library of  Congress.

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“…the sound of those guns makes regular meals impossible. None of us go to table. Tea-trays pervade the corridors going everywhere.”—A Diary From Dixie

A Diary From Dixie by Mary Boykin Miller Chesnut.

April 13th.—Nobody has been hurt after all. How gay we were last night. Reaction after the dread of all the slaughter we thought those dreadful cannon were making. Not even a battery the worse for wear. Fort Sumter has been on fire. Anderson has not yet silenced any of our guns. So the aides, still with swords and red sashes by way of uniform, tell us. But the sound of those guns makes regular meals impossible. None of us go to table. Tea-trays pervade the corridors going everywhere. Some of the anxious hearts lie on their beds and moan in solitary misery. Mrs. Wigfall and I solace ourselves with tea in my room. These women have all a satisfying faith. “God is on our side,” they say. When we are shut in Mrs. Wigfall and I ask “Why?” “Of course, He hates the Yankees, we are told. You’ll think that well of Him.”

Not by one word or look can we detect any change in the demeanor of these negro servants. Lawrence sits at our door, sleepy and respectful, and profoundly indifferent. So are they all, but they carry it too far. You could not tell that they even heard the awful roar going on in the bay, though it has been dinning in their ears night and day. People talk before them as if they were chairs and tables. They make no sign. Are they stolidly stupid? or wiser than we are; silent and strong, biding their time ?

So tea and toast came; also came Colonel Manning, red sash and sword, to announce that he had been under fire, and didn’t mind it. He said gaily: “It is one of those things a fellow never knows how he will come out until he has been tried. Now I know I am a worthy descendant of my old Irish hero of an ancestor, who held the British officer before him as a shield in the Revolution, and backed out of danger gracefully.” We talked of St. Valentine’s eve, or the maid of Perth, and the drop of the white doe’s blood that sometimes spoiled all.

The war-steamers are still there, outside the bar. And there are people who thought the Charleston bar “no good” to Charleston. The bar is the silent partner, or sleeping partner, and in this fray it is doing us yeoman service.

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Rebel War Clerk

A Rebel War Clerk’s Diary at the Confederate States Capital, By John Beauchamp Jones

April 13th — After breakfast I accompanied Gov. Wise to his room. He advised me to remain a few days before proceeding elsewhere. He still doubted, however, whether Virginia would move before autumn. He said there was a majority of 500 Union men then in the city. But the other Convention, to meet on the 16th, might do something. He recommended me to a friend of his who distributed the tickets, who gave me a card of admission.

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Re-enforcements thrown into Fort Pickens – Confederate Correspondence

Uncollected Letters of Abraham Lincoln © 1917, War of the Rebellion: a Compilation of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies

PENSACOLA, April 13, 1861.

Hon. L. P. WALKER, Secretary of War:

Re-enforcements thrown into Fort Pickens last night by small boats from the outside. The movement could not even be seen from our side, but was discovered by a small reconnoitering boat.

BRAXTON BRAGG,

Brigadier General.

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Operations in Charleston Harbor

War of the Rebellion: a Compilation of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies

HEADQUARTERS PROVISIONAL FORCES,
Charleston, S.C., April 13, 1861.

SIR: In obedience to orders from the commanding general, Beauregard, we left the wharf at 11.15 a.m., and proceeded in an open boat to deliver communications to Brigadier-General Simons, commanding on Morris Island, and passing under the batteries of Fort Johnson landed in the rear of Major Stevens’ battery. Our orders were specifically to ask information as to the condition of the batteries on the island, and any other facts necessary to be communicated from Brigadier-General Simons to the commanding general, and also to establish military communications by land from Morris Island to the city of Charleston. We were moreover instructed to learn the condition of Fort Sumter as far as practicable without unnecessary exposure, and if the bombardment and conflagration within had forced an evacuation by Major Anderson and his command.

At the period of passing Fort Sumter about 12 m. the firing from it had ceased, except occasional shots opposite Fort Moultrie, but was kept up with great precision and regularity by the batteries from Fort Johnson, Sullivan’s Island, and Morris Island. The conflagration of the officers’ quarters in the fortress appeared to be on the increase, and although the United States flag was still flying when we landed, there appeared no other evidence of the continuation of the contest.

After communicating with General Simons and establishing a land communication with the city, it was deemed advisable to send a flag to Fort Sumter and demand its evacuation, as at 1.10 p.m. precisely the United States flag had suddenly disappeared from its walls. While a white flag and the boat which bore us over was being made ready to take us, Colonel Wigfall, who had been detailed for special duties on Morris Island, thinking that no time was to be lost lest the garrison be destroyed, and accompanied by Private Young, of the Palmetto Guard, and two oarsmen, hastily entered a small skiff and pulled towards the fort with a white flag in his hand. Its size was too small to be distinctly seen by our batteries, and in consequence the discharge of neither shot or shell was discontinued by them, except those on Morris Island. His approach, therefore, to Sumter was one of imminent danger. We saw him after landing disappear into the fort through an embrasure. After the lapse of a short period of time he reappeared upon the pavement at the base of the fortification and re-embarked, directing his course to where we stood, at Major Stevens’s battery. Meantime the flag that had been erected after the flag-staff was cut away was taken down and a white flag run up in its stead. Before reaching the shore on his return Colonel Wigfall gave evidence that Major Anderson had consented to evacuate, which was soon after confirmed. He was received upon the beach by the troops, who for a moment rushed out to meet him, with strong evidences of admiration. We then took Colonel Wigfall with us in our boat, and returned to the city to report to the general commanding.

Brigadier-General Simons had no specific intelligence to communicate to the general commanding beyond the events narrated; but we take pride and pleasure in reporting the spirit, promptness, and energy which characterized the portion of his command inspected by us.

All of which is respectfully submitted for the information of the general commanding.

JAMES CHESNUT,  Jr.,

Aide-de-Camp.

A. R. CHISOLM,

Lieutenant-Colonel and Aide-de-Camp.

JOHN L. MANNING,

Aide-de-Camp.

Maj. D. R. JONES,

Adjutant-General Provisional Forces.

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Fort Sumter has unconditionally surrendered to the Confederate States

War of the Rebellion: a Compilation of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies

CHARLESTON, April 13, 1861.

Hon. L. P. WALKER, Secretary of War;

Officers’ quarters in Sumter burning. Part of roof supposed to have fallen in. Sumter firing at long intervals. Ours regular and effective. Six vessels outside in signals with Sumter.

G. T. BEAUREGARD.

—–

CHARLESTON, April 13, 1861.

Hon. L. P. WALKER:

Anderson has hauled down the United States flag on Sumter and run up white flag. Fort has been burning for several hours from effect of shells. Two explosions have been produced by shells. He has ceased firing some time, and fire of all the batteries has been continuous till now–3 o’clock. Aides have been sent by Beauregard to Sumter.

R. B. RHETT, JR.

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CHARLESTON, S.C., April 13, 18612 p.m.

President JEFF. DAVIS, Montgomery, Ala.:

Quarters in Sumter all burned down. White flag up. Have sent a boat to receive surrender. But half an hour before had sent a boat to stop our firing and offer assistance.

G. T. BEAUREGARD.

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CHARLESTON, S.C., April 13, 1861.

Gov. F. W. PICKENS, Present:

DEAR GOVERNOR: I have sent Major Jones, Captain Hartstene, and Colonels Miles and Pryor to Major Anderson to tell him that I offer him the same terms that I did on the 11th, and that a vessel or steamer would be sent to him in the morning to take him to the steamer outside, and that he must be responsible in the mean time for the fort; otherwise, I would put four companies of artillery in there to-night. I also told Captain Hartstene to go out to the fleet and tell them that the fort was now ours, but under the safe-keeping of Major Anderson, and that no attack could be made upon it by them.

In the morning I will order two of Colonel Ripley’s companies and two of De Saussure’s to take possession of Fort Sumter.

Respectfully, your obedient servant,

G. T. BEAUREGARD.

—–

CHARLESTON, April 13, 1861.

Hon. L. P. WALKER:

Fort Sumter has unconditionally surrendered to the Confederate States, represented by General Beauregard, Colonel Wigfall, his aide, receiving the surrender. The same terms just offered will be granted. Engines are about to go down to put out the fire. Fight expected on Morris Island to-night.

R. B. RHETT, JR.

—–

CHARLESTON, April 13, 1861.

Hon. L. P. WALKER:

Anderson surrenders to the Confederate Government unconditionally, but I have granted him the same terms as on the 11th instant: “All proper facilities will be afforded for removal of yourself and command, together with company arms and property and all private property, to any post in the United States you may elect.”

G. T. BEAUREGARD.

—–

HEADQUARTERS MORRIS ISLAND, S.C.,
April 13, 18616 p.m.

General BEAUREGARD, Commanding.

GENERAL: Brigadier-General Simons directs me to say that a boat from the fleet, bearing a white flag, and commanded by a lieutenant of  the U.S. Navy, has just communicated with him. He first inquired if Major Anderson had surrendered, to which (as informed by Colonel Wigfall, aide-de-camp) he was answered “Yes; unconditionally.” Second, if he could communicate with Fort Moultrie, to which he was answered “No.” (He evidently supposed the commanding general was at Moultrie, as he afterwards said.) Third, he asked if he could be permitted to come in, under a flag of truce, and take Major Anderson off. If not, whether he could come in with a merchantman and do the same. If not, that whether he could come in with his boats for the purpose. To these inquiries General Simons replied that transportation could be furnished for Major Anderson to the fleet, but that the commanding general was at hand, and could be communicated with at once, with the understanding that no hostile demonstration should be made during the night by the fleet. The lieutenant was informed that you would be furnished with his questions, and he might return for answers to-morrow morning, under a flag of truce. The lieutenant gave his personal guarantee that no hostilities would be attempted, and said he would return in the morning to hear your reply. He informed Major Whiting that their mission was not hostile, but one of peace.

Very respectfully,

W. H. C. WHITING,

Adjutant and Inspector General.

—–

CHARLESTON, April 13, 1861.

Hon. L. P. WALKER, Secretary of War:

We take possession of Fort Sumter to-morrow morning. I allow him the privilege of saluting his flag. No one killed on our side.

G. T. BEAUREGARD.

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MONTGOMERY, April 13, 1861.

General BEAUREGARD, Charleston:

Accept my congratulations. You have won your spurs. How many guns can you spare for Pensacola?

L. P. WALKER.

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HDQRS. FIRST BATTALION, THIRTY-THIRD REGIMENT,
SOUTH CAROLINA MILITIA,
April 13, 1861.

General D. F. JAMISON, Secretary of War:

SIR: Owing to the absence of Col. Charles Allston, jr., and being called on by the detachments stationed below this point to complete the chain of coast guard to the North Carolina line, in view of the emergency of the case (war having actually begun), I have taken upon myself to order out one hundred and forty-six men and twelve commissioned officers as follows: From Captain Daggett’s company, Waccamaw Light Artillery, twenty-six men and two officers, stationed as coast guard, from the redoubt at North Island to Murray’s Inlet; distance, twenty-five miles. From Captain Ward’s company, Watchesaw Riflemen, twenty men and two officers, stationed at the redoubt at Murray’s Inlet. From Captain Gillespie’s company, Carolina Greys, forty men and three officers, stationed as coast guard, from Murray’s Inlet to the redoubt at Little River, North Carolina line; distance, forty miles. From Captain Litchfield’s company, All Saints’ Riflemen, thirty men and three officers, stationed at the redoubt at Little River. I have also, by request, ordered a detachment of thirty men and two officers from Captain Johnson’s company, to take post at the redoubt at the entrance of Santee River, that post being unoccupied. Have also taken possession of thirty muskets for said detachment from a quantity here in store. Also, a quantity of army stores.

I have detailed Captain Daggett as bearer of this report, who will furnish any further information you may require as to the defense at this point.

All of which is respectfully submitted; and, hoping it may meet your approbation, I am, very respectfully, yours,

W. C. WHITE,

Major, Commanding.

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HEADQUARTERS ARTILLERY, S. I. AND M. P.,
Fort Moultrie, S.C., April 13, 1861.

Maj. D. R. JONES, Adjutant-General:

MAJOR: I have the honor to report that we have had only two personal casualties in the force under my command, both very slight, and are privates in Company A (Sullivan and Miller). The effect of the enemy’s fire upon this fort has been pretty effectually to demolish the quarters and to injure the hot-shot furnace to a certain extent. The effects of the Sumter, enfilade, Dahlgren, floating, and mortar batteries, has been to keep the enemy from his barbette guns. The direct fire has been quite accurate for the distance, several shots having passed through the arches of the second line of casemates, two or three into his lower embrasures, and many grazing the crest of his parapet and penetrating the roof of his quarters. Still, our direct fire is only annoying, and I have directed it to be economized, to look out and keep the men as fresh as possible for the channel fight, which, it is to be presumed, is impending. I note what has been said respecting the hot-shot furnace, and shall endeavor to attend to it, although it has three shot-holes in it, which has already rendered one bar inefficient. I have directed Captain Hamilton, and the floating battery especially, to be economical with their ammunition, and have to request that the latter be supplied with one hundred rounds of shell and one hundred cartridges, with appurtenances, by boat this evening from the city. All our 9-inch and 8-inch shells are defective, and Captain Hamilton has filled several with rice to use them as solid shot. It would be well to have the floating battery supplied also, if possible, with 42 and 32 pounder ammunition, as it will be especially effective in keeping out re-enforcements.

I also have to suggest that Captain Martin be supplied with one hundred and fifty shell and ammunition, with authority to practice as much as he pleases until he gets his shell in. All the mortar practice is wild, owing to the range and the effect of the wind. As I am sorely pressed for time, I have respectfully to request that such requisitions as are approved may be ordered from headquarters.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

R. S. RIPLEY,

Lieutenant-Colonel Artillery, Commanding.

P. S.–One of the rear transoms of Captain Hallonquist’s mortars, being made of pine, is split. I shall endeavor to have it repaired. The merlons stand very well, except the vertical palmetto logs, which collapse under our own fire. One 42-pounder shot entered the embrasure, but, being stuffed with a cotton bale, had no further effect than to take a splinter off a carriage. The new 8-inch columbiad carriages will not stand much.

Very respectfully,

R. S. RIPLEY.

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CHARLESTON, S.C., April 13, 1861.

Brig. Gen. JAMES SIMONS, Morris Island, S.C.:

MY DEAR GENERAL: The accumulation of troops on Morris Island requires that another general officer should be sent to the southern end of that island. General Bonham has consented to go there in command, until we can divide the forces into two brigades, when he will assume command of the whole as major-general, to act under my orders. In the mean time, should circumstances bring your commands together, he will necessarily assume the command; otherwise to attend only to his half (about) of the island, and you to yours, but to mutually assist and support each other, in case of need, and in the defense of our country and sacred cause.

Major Whiting will remain acting inspector-general of the whole island. He will communicate (as well as yourself) all the information in his possession to General Bonham. I will endeavor to be with you as soon as practicable, or whenever required.

Respectfully, your obedient servant,

G. T. BEAUREGARD,

Brigadier-General, Commanding.

—–

HDQRS. PROV. ARMY CONFEDERATE STATES OF AMERICA,
Charleston, S.C., April 13, 1861.

Brig. Gen. R. G. M. DUNOVANT,
Commanding Sullivan’s Island, S.C.:

GENERAL: Major Anderson will evacuate Fort Sumter to-morrow morning, when he will be sent to one of the United States vessels outside of the harbor. He will be allowed the privilege of saluting his flag on lowering it.

You will please direct that the ranking officers of Engineers and Artillery on the island accompany the detachment of one company already ordered out, as part of a garrison to Fort Sumter, who will make a report of the exact present condition of the fort and of its defenses.

You will also direct Capt. George S. James to hold his company at Fort Johnson in readiness to move for the same purpose, as soon as orders to this effect are extended to him.

I remain, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

G. T. BEAUREGARD,

Brigadier-General, Commanding.

—–

HDQRS. PROV. ARMY CONFEDERATE STATES OF AMERICA,
Charleston, S. C., April 13, 1861.

General JAMES SIMONS,
Morris Island, S. C.:

GENERAL: Major Anderson will evacuate Fort Sumter to-morrow morning, when he will be sent to one of the United States vessels outside of the harbor. He will be allowed the privilege of saluting his flag on lowering it.

You will please direct that the ranking officers of Engineers and Artillery on the island accompany the detachment of one company, already ordered out as a part of a garrison to Fort Sumter, who will make a report of the exact present condition of the fort and its defenses.

I remain, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

G. T. BEAUREGARD,

Brigadier-General, Commanding.

—–

FORT MOULTRIE, S.C.,
April 13, 1861.

General BEAUREGARD, Charleston, S.C.:

GENERAL: Fort Sumter has been set on fire, and as it is very important (with the vessels outside threatening to enter) to have all experience, I have determined to remain and avoid or prevent a re enforcement. I do not think that there are more than three vessels off. Colonel Ripley and myself will endeavor to prevent an entry here to-night. I will, as you said, make myself useful; more so, probably, than I could at any other point. I shall go out in a row-boat during the night, with signals arranged, and reconnoiter the entrance and give timely notice of any boats approaching. I think the fire-hulk inside of Sumter had better not be lighted, as it will probably dim our vision.

I have just made out the vessels off. They are the Pawnee, Harriet Lane, Nashville, Atlantic, and a merchant schooner. They cannot enter in their vessels. With a good lookout (for a lookout stationed here, and a boat off in the channel, together with their fire-hulks, which are still floating in a line around Fort Sumter), I think you need have no fear of an entrance here. They are all here, and in fine spirits. Ripley is a most valuable officer–cool: collected, and energetic. He keeps all in spirits and up to their work. I have all the batteries on this island, and give the best directions, as I think may be useful, particularly in regard to looking out for and firing at boats or shipping. The guns are all intact, and in fine working order.

Respectfully,

H. J. HARTSTENE.

—–

HEADQUARTERS MORRIS ISLAND, S.C.,
April 13, 1861.

General BEAUREGARD, Charleston, S. C.:

MY DEAR GENERAL: We require one thousand or twelve hundred men to re-enforce this position. Nothing should be left to chance. None have yet arrived, and this command will be worn out. The troops have been under arms all night. Six of the hostile ships are in the positions they occupied at dark last night. The two nearest are the Lane and the Pawnee. With these vessels so close to us, I cannot relax my vigilance  without such a force as would render a coup de main impossible. The men behaved very well and kept well on the alert. I visited the whole line last night (after midnight) and found everything quiet; but you are aware that this cannot last over such a long line of defenses, with an uncertainty as to the point of attack. Opinions differ as to whether anything got into Sumter last night. There may or may not. The night was dark, and occasionally stormy, and a heavy sea running. If anything did, it could not have been very extensive. Perhaps they desire to lay off, and send in one boat at a time or once a night. This is the most feasible plan, and that which I most fear. If it is in your power I beg you to come here for myself personally. I am nearly broken down for want of rest. The gentlemen you sent are very efficient. Quartermaster Hatch should send down tents for the general and his staff. We are without accommodations, and are temporarily in the hospital, which we may at any time be compelled to leave.

Very truly, yours,

W. H. C. WHITING.

[Indorsement.]

I hardly think the additional one thousand men could act on that island, and he ought to order the men to sleep in daylight and enforce it.

F. W. P.

—–

GENERAL ORDERS, NO. 3.

WAR DEPARTMENT,
ADJ’T AND INSPECTOR GENERAL’S OFFICE,
Montgomery, Ala., April 13, 1861.

In honor of the occasion, officially announced, that the United States colors have been hauled down at Fort Sumter and replaced by the white flag, a salute of fifteen guns will be fired in front of the Department this day at two o’clock.

By command of the Secretary of War:

S. COOPER,

Adjutant and Inspector General.


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Operations in Florida

War of the Rebellion: a Compilation of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF FLORIDA,
April 13, 1861.

Bvt. Maj. W. H.,
Commanding Fort Taylor, Key West:

SIR: You will use the forces of your command, if need be, for the protection of the officers and citizens of the United States on this island in the discharge of their public duties, and the pursuit of their legitimate private occupations. You will not permit on the island any person to exercise any office or authority inconsistent with the laws and Constitution of the United States, and will, if necessary, prevent any such exercise by force of arms. If unhappily rebellion or insurrection should actually exist at any time, you will then publish a proclamation, with which you will be furnished, suspending the writ of habeas corpus, and will immediately remove from the island all dangerous or suspected persons. You will before publishing this proclamation take the advice of the United States judge and attorney on its necessity and expediency (its legality has been determined by higher authority), and receive with deference their opinion, giving them that consideration and weight to which their patriotism and legal knowledge entitle them. In exercising the authority here vested in you the greatest conciliation and forbearance must be observed, that while the duty be rigidly performed it may always be done in a spirit of conciliation and kindness.

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

HARVEY BROWN,
Colonel, Commanding.

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Operations in Florida

War of the Rebellion: a Compilation of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF FLORIDA,
Key West, April 13, 1861.

Lieut. Col. E. D. KEYES,
Secretary to the General-in-Chief, Washington, D. C.:

COLONEL: We arrived at this place this afternoon. Captain Meigs and I have had an interview with Judge Marvin which has been entirely satisfactory. He, though anxious to leave the place, will remain, having now the assurance of support from the military authority. I have found great industry, intelligence, and enterprise in putting forward the works at the fort, and consider it quite secure against any force that can at this time be brought against it. Brevet Major French, the commanding officer, has been untiring in his labors, assisted ably by Captain Hunt, of the Engineers, and the officers of the garrison. He and all his officers are, I am happy to say, entirely devoted to the Union and the country, under any and all contingencies. I have issued General Orders in relation to the posts, copies of which will be forwarded by the first opportunity. Finding here some 10-inch mortars, I have taken three of them with the necessary ammunition, and also, there being here two 6-pounder field batteries, I have directed one of them to be put on board the Atlantic.

We sail this evening for Fort Jefferson, where we go to get a flat, some boats, and other indispensable articles.

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

HARVEY BROWN,
Colonel, Commanding.

—–

HDQRS. DEPARTMENT OF FLORIDA,
Key West, April 13, 1861.

GENERAL ORDERS

NO. 1.

In obedience to the instructions of the General-in-Chief, approved by the President of the United States, creating the Department of Florida, and assigning it to the undersigned, he hereby assumes the command of the same.

The department comprises the State of Florida and the contiguous islands in the Gulf.

The headquarters of the department will hereafter be announced. The following-named officers compose the staff of the department, and will be obeyed and respected accordingly:

Bvt. Capt. G. L. Hartsuff, assistant adjutant-general. Capt. R. Ingalls, assistant quartermaster.

Capt. H. F. Clarke, assistant commissary of subsistence.

Dr. John Campbell, assistant surgeon. Capt. M. C. Meigs, chief engineer.

First Lieut. G. T. Balch, ordnance officer.

HARVEY BROWN,
Brevet Colonel, Commanding.

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Operations in Florida

War of the Rebellion: a Compilation of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies

U. S. STEAMER CRUSADER,
Off Key West, April 13, 1861.

Hon. WILLIAM H. SEWARD,
Secretary of State, Washington:

DEAR SIR: We arrived here and anchored some three miles below the fort to prevent communication. Going to the fort in a boat Colonel Brown sent notes to Judge Marvin; to Colonel Patterson, the newly appointed Navy agent; to Mr. Howe, the new collector; and to Mr. Tiler, the late Navy agent. Mr. Clapp, whose commission as marshal we brought with us, we found at the fort. To these gentlemen the general policy of the Government in regard to the fort and island of Key West was explained, and the assurance of support from their Government was received with great satisfaction. I found that Colonel Patterson has lately made himself quite conspicuous by his Union sentiments, and their open avowal. The best feeling prevails between the gentlemen now appointed and the officers of the garrison, and I have no doubt that all will work harmoniously together.

The anxiety to which Judge Marvin has been subjected has preyed upon his spirits and he looks depressed, but he is ready to do his duty and stand to his post, at least until the Government is ready to relieve him. His presence for a time, and his influence are, I think, of much importance in eradicating the treasonable spirit which has lately had full and free sway here. He will be able as now supported, I think, to accomplish it without recourse to any harsh measures.

The officers here assure us that the reports spread through the newspapers of the demoralization of our troops in Texas are untrue. The troops are well disciplined, loyal, and ready to serve their country. At one time, when the administration then in power seemed to be allowing things to take their own course, and the Government seemed to be falling to pieces, the officers and men might have been inclined to look around for some refuge, but the first act of vigor satisfied them that they yet have a Government, and to it they will be true.

We yet have some 10-inch mortars which will be of use; some artillery for the land fronts, and a few other things which were needed to increase our strength.

The Brooklyn is supposed to have reached Pensacola about the 1st or 2d, and there is little doubt that as she carried the orders to the troops to land, they landed immediately upon her arrival.

Captain Craven, U. S. Navy, of the Crusader, informs me that Captain Adams had told off marines and sailors enough, in addition to Captain Vogdes’ company, to make the landing party five hundred strong; so that apparently it will be left for us only to strengthen the garrison, supply it with ammunition, artillery, and stores, and to put it in position to stand a long siege. This occupation of this stronghold, within one hundred miles of Montgomery, must have a great effect upon the rebellion.

As an instance of the spirit of the soldiers, Captain Brannan was directed to detail seven of his men to fill vacancies in the command on the Atlantic, and telling them that he wanted seven men for the purpose, and that, as they were to go where there would certainly be fighting, he would prefer volunteers, the whole company stepped forward.

The administration will find I trust elsewhere that as here Union men enough will appear as soon as supported and protected by their Government they can speak with safety and effect.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

M. C. MEIGS,
Captain of Engineers.

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Lieutenant Worden arrested – Florida Confederate Correspondence

War of the Rebellion: a Compilation of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies

MONTGOMERY, April 13, 1861.

General BRAGG Pensacola:

When you arrested Lieutenant Worden what instructions, if any, did he show you? Did he communicate to you that he had verbal instructions, and, if so, what were they? He is here under arrest, and it is important for you to reply fully.

L. P. WALKER.

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A Diary of American Events – April 13, 1861

The Rebellion Record—A Diary of American Events; by Frank Moore

—Fire from the enemy’s batteries was resumed at daylight, and from Fort Sumter at 7 A. M. At about 8 the officers’ quarters in Sumter took fire from a shell, and the work at the guns was necessarily somewhat slackened, as nearly all the men were taken away to extinguish the flames. Shells from Moultrie and Morris’ Island fell now faster than ever. Dense volumes of smoke still poured out of the barracks at 9, when the men were again sent to the guns. At 10 o’clock the halliards on the flag-staff were cut by a shell, and the flag ran down a little and stuck, so that it appeared to be displayed at half-mast. Several ships, one a large steamer, were in the offing at 10.30, and shots were fired at them from Morris’ Island and Fort Moultrie. About 11 o’clock the fire in the barracks again burst forth fiercely. Three piles of hand-grenades and shells, placed ready for use, became heated by it and exploded at intervals. The day was oppressively warm, and the heat of the fire added, made the atmosphere of the fort almost insufferable. At 12 the whole roof of the barracks was in flames, and soon after men were set to work to take the powder out of the magazine, lest the heat should reach and explode it there. Ninety barrels were rolled out and the doors closed. The fire of Fort Sumter was now almost entirely relinquished, though from the other forts it was rather increased. Cartridges were nearly all gone, and owing to the flying sparks no more could be made. Smoke from the fire was blown into the fort so thickly that the men could not see one another. As the fire in the barracks spread from the officers’ to the men’s quarters, it became necessary to throw overboard the powder that had been taken from the magazines. All was thrown over but three barrels, which were wrapped around with wet cloths and left. From these the garrison was soon separated by the fire, and now only the cartridges in the guns were left. These were fired now and then to indicate that the fort was not silenced. Thus in truth the work was held while there was a cartridge to fire or powder enough accessible to make one. The flagstaff, which had been hit nine times, was cut at about 1, and the flag was then nailed to the cut piece, and so raised upon the ramparts. At this time both officers and men were compelled to lie flat upon their faces in the casemates, and hold wet cloths to their months to escape suffocation. Soon after Ex-Senator Wigfall came to the fort with a flag of truce, which he wished held up while he spoke; but the batteries did not respect it. He, however, represented himself as an aid of General Beauregard, and agreed for the evacuation of Fort Sumter. It was afterward learned that he had spoken falsely, and had no authority whatever from General Beauregard.

At 12.55 P. M. the flag of Fort Sumter was drawn down, and the fort was surrendered soon after upon honorable terms; the garrison to carry away the flag of the fort, and all company arms and property, and all private property; and all proper facilities to be afforded for their removal to any post in the United States the commander might elect.

No men were hurt in Sumter by the fire of the enemy. It is reported by the secessionists that no men were either killed or wounded upon their side.

A boat from the United States squadron outside, with a flag of trace, arrived at Morris’ Island, with a request to be allowed to come and take Major Anderson and his forces.—(Doc. 52.)—Tribune, Times, Herald, and World.

—A despatch from Montgomery, Ala., says that Fort Pickens was reinforced last night.—(Doc. 53.)

—To-day the President expelled from the Federal army, for refusing to act on a particular service, Captain William B. St. Johns, of the Third Infantry, and First Lieutenant Abner Smead, of the First Artillery.

—The Legislature of Pennsylvania passed the war bill without amendment last evening. Previous to its passage, the news of the bombardment of Fort Sumter was announced, and produced a profound sensation. The bill appropriates five hundred thousand dollars for the purpose of arming and equipping the militia; authorizes a temporary loan; provides for the appointment of an Adjutant-General, Commissary-General, and Quartermaster-General, who, with the Governor, are to have power to carry the act into effect.—Phila. Enquirer.

—To-day the Virginia Commissioners were formally received by the President at Washington, when they presented the resolutions under which they were appointed.—(Doc. 54.)

—The attack upon Fort Sumter, and its surrender, instead of depressing, fires and animates all patriotic hearts. One deep, strong, overpowering sentiment now sweeps over the whole community—a sentiment of determined, devoted, active loyalty. The day for the toleration of treason—treason to the Constitution, defiance to the laws that we have made!—has gone by. The people have discovered that what they deemed almost impossible has actually come to pass, and that the rebels are determined to break up this Government, if they can do it. With all such purposes they are determined to make an end as speedily as may be.—(Doc. 55.)— Times, April 16.

—Bishop Lynch, Roman Catholic, at Charleston, S. C., celebrated the bloodless victory of Fort Sumter with a Te Deum and congratulatory address. In all the churches allusions were made to the subject.

The Episcopal Bishop, wholly blind and feeble, said it was his strong persuasion, strengthened by travel through every section of South Carolina, that the movement in which the people were engaged was began by them in the deepest conviction of duty to God; and God had signally blessed their dependence on him. If there is a war, it will be purely a war of self-defence.—Tribune, April 16.

—General Beauregard, in general orders to-day, congratulates “the troops under his command on the brilliant success which has crowned their gallantry, by the reduction of the stronghold in the harbor of Charleston.”— (Doc. 56.)

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War Diary of a Union Woman in the South – The Volunteers – Fort Sumter

Civil War, War Diary of a Union Woman in the South

edited by G.W. Cable

April 13, 1861.—More than a month has passed since the last date here. This afternoon I was seated on the floor covered with loveliest flowers, arranging a floral offering for the fair, when the gentlemen arrived (and with papers bearing the news of the fall of Fort Sumter, which, at her request, I read to Mrs. F.).

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