Wednesday, January 12, 2011

That Problem in Charleston Harbor-- Part 2

Major Anderson recognized the importance of Fort Sumter and wrote the War Department saying that South Carolina occupation of Fort Sumter would cause a problem for the Navy and would compel him to abandon Moultrie. The enemy would have "perfect command of this harbor."

Two days later, Dec. 11, 1860, Major Don Carlos Buell delivered a message from Sec. of War John B. Floyd that any attempt to take any fortification would be considered an act of hostility and Anderson had the choice of occupying any one of them as he deemed best.

After South Carolina's secession and with the threat of hostile action, Anderson transferred his garrison to Fort Sumter on the night of December 26, 1860.

The next day, South Carolina's governor Francis Pickens demanded Anderson return to Fort Moultrie which was refused so the governor ordered state militia to occupy Fort Moultrie and Castle Pinckney. Work on defensive positions around the harbor were also begun. On James Island, the long-abandoned Fort Johnson was reoccupied and guns mounted.

Meanwhile at Sumter, Anderson's command began mounting cannons and improving the fort's defenses.

Things Gettin' Mighty Tense. --Old B-Runner

No comments: