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newly gone. 
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ExECUTiTE Depabtmsnt, April 4, 1862. 

To W. A. Harris^ Esq., Columbia, S. G. : 

My Deab Sib : In conformity with yonr request, I haye compared the 
proof sheets yon sent me in relation to Fort Snmter, with the original docu- 
ments on file in this office, and take pleasure in stating that they are, in 
eyery respect, true and correct copies of the originals. 
I haye the honor to be, yeiy respectfully. 

Your obedient seryant, 

F. J. MOSES, Jb., 

PrirHJtte Secretary. 


Early on the morning of the 27th of December, 1860, the smok- 
ing ruins of Fort Moultrie, and the evident activity pervading Foi::t 
Sumter, gave evidence of the fact that Fort Moultrie had been 
deserted by the United States garrison, and that they had taken 
possession of Fort Sumter, as the key of the harbor of Charleston. 
The prompt orders instantly issued by Governor Pickens, that the 
South Carolina troops should take possession of Castle Pinckney 
and Fort Moultrie on the same day — the immediate capture of 
these forts in obedience to said orders — the hauling down of the 
stars and stripes for the first time in the history of our country — 
the running up in their stead of the Fblmetto banner — and the 
State of South Carolina thus defying the power of the United 
States — was the actual commencement of this great revolution. 

After these important movements, the approach of the " Star of 
the West" and her prompt repulse, and the attack on Fort Sumter 
by the South Carolina troops, are among the most interesting events 
of the commencement of this struggle. It certainly required the 
highest courage and the purest patriotism to take these prompt and 
defiant steps, for our Governor was opposed ' in them by many 
around him, but his large experience enp^bledhim to foresee the 
mighty consequences which would follow his action on these point*. 
He well knew, too, that in thus taking the first steps to establish 
South. Carolina as a free and independent State, he had severed 
forever the bonds of this stupendous republic. In sovereign conven- 
tion assembled, the people of South Carolina had calmly and de- 
liberately resolved to sever their connection with the United States 
Government, a portion of which Government, while professing to 
hold together the States which formed it in lasting bonds of amity 
and concord, was attempting to raise to the presidential chair the 
champion of a party which held as its watchword the extinction of 
the dearest institution of the Southern States. The flight of events, 
from the adoption of the Ordinance of Secession by the people of 
South Carolina, to the period of the inauguration of the Southern 
Confederacy, might be, perhaps, too rapid and startling to be re- 

corded in future history, were not a just and true record of those 
events kept as they occurred. The object of this pamphlet is to 
preserve for the coming historian a verified record of the action of 
the people of South Carolina in relation to Fort Sumter, from the 
time when she declared herself a free and independent State, up to 
the reduction of the proud fortress which frowned upon her in the 
harbor of Charleston. The action of our State in firing upon the 
" Star of tlxe West" was an event fully equal, in boldness and de- 
cision, to the resistance of Fort Moultrie, in the days of our first 
revolution. By the order of our firm and patriotic Governor, 
a hostile vessel, bearing supplies and armed troops to the fortress 
of the United States in the harbor of Charleston, was fired into 
and driven back, and was made to bear the message to an enemy's 
government, that the voice of the people of South Carolina was 
not to be looked upon as an empty paper ordinance, but was to be 
baptized in fire, and chri|fcened, if needs be, in a sea of blood. 

On the 12th of April, 1861, the first gun of the Southern Con- 
federacy against the United States was heard booming across the 
water, and on the 13th ofi April of the same year, the forces of 
South Carolina took possession of Fort Sumter. By the firing into 
the " Star of the West," the State of South Carolina commenced 
the revolution ; by the reduction of Fort Sumter, her people again 
recorded their verdict of independence; and in the war thus 
brought on. South Carolina is acting a noble and a gallant part. 

These pages form the record of these important events, and this 
pamphlet is commended to the people of South Carolina, as a last- 
ing memento of their gallant action. Many histories will hereafter 
be written. May the bravery ' of the South Carolinians in com- 
mencing the struggle augment in proportion to the continuance of 
the war, and may her people never have cause to weary of the 
Government which they alone inaugurated. 

The war is not yet over; around the boundaries of our sister 
States as well aa our own, it is still raging, with ever increasing 
bitterness. Let us not forget that the day is not yet come for us to 
lay aside our armor, but remembering that the favor of Heaven is 
ever with the right, let us gain new strength from every defeat, let 
us gather new energy from every victory. 



No. 1. Letter from Governor Pickens' to President Bnchanan, cfe- 

manding Fort Sumter 7 

2. Major Hamilton's explanation as to its delivery and with- 
drawal 8 

8. Colonel Trescott^s explanation as to the same , 9 

4. Gen. Cushing's mission^ with letter from President Buchanan 

to Governor Pickens 11 

5. Orders from Governor Pickens to Col. Pettigrew to take 

Fort Moultrie, &c... 12 

6. General Orders from Governor Pickens to Maj. Gen. Schnierle.. 12 

7. Orders to Maj. Gen. Schnierle to take command in person 14 

8. Gen. Simons' Beport upon the said Orders 14 

9. Governor Pidkens' Beply to Gen. Simons' Beport. 17 

10. Order to Gen. Simons to take command in person.. 19 

11. Beference of Gen. Simons' Beport by Governor Pickens to 

Messrs. Jones and Drayton, and their agreement therein 20 

12. Governor Pickens' endorsement on the same 20 

13. Governor Pickens' order to Messrs. Trapier, Gwynn and 

others, to report a plan to reduce Fort Sumter 21 

14. Beport of plan, in obedience to above order 21 

15. Account of the firing into the "Star of the West" 23 

16. Note from Major Anderson to Governor Pickens, demand- 

ing apology, and threat 24 

17. Governor Pickens' Beply, avowing the act 25 

18. Major Anderson's Note to Governor Pickens, expressing 

desire to refer the matter to his Government at Washington.. 27 

19. Governor Pickens' Communication to Major Anderson, 

through Messrs. Magrath and Jamison, demanding the 
delivery of Fort' Sumter... 28 

20. Major Anderson's Beply, refusing to comply with demand 28 

21. Communication from Governor Pickens to President Buch- 

anan by Hon. I. W. Hayne 29 

22. Instructions to Hon. I. W. Hayne from State Department 30 

23. Letter from Senators of Seceding States to Hon. I. W. Hayn^.. 33 


^ Page. 

No/24. Mr. Hayne in reply thereto 34 

'io. Extract from Message of Governor Pickens to the Legisla- 
ture of South Carolina^ in reference to the missions of 
Messrs. Fox and Lamon 35 

26. Notice from President Lincoln to G-ovemor Pickens, by Mr. 
CheW;. of his intention to supply Fort Sumter 36 

27. Endorsement thereon by Gov. Pickens and Gen. Beauregard... 36 

28. Letter from Major Anderson to Adjutant General Thomas, 
of the U. S. Army 37 

29. Secret Cabinet History in reference to Fort Sumter. 38 

30. Governor Pickens' Speech to the Citizens of Charleston, 
the night aflber the reduction of Fort Sumter 44 


No. 1. 


Columbia, December 17, 1860. 


My Dear Sir : With a sincere desire to prevent a collision of force, I 
have thought proper to address you directly and truthfully on points of deep 
and immediate interest. 

I am authentically informed that the forts in Charleston harbor are now 
being thoroughly prepared to turn, with eflfect, their guns upon the interior 
and the city. Jurisdiction was ceded by this State expressly for the pur- 
pose of external defence from foreign invasion, and not with any view that 
they should be turned upon the State. 

In an ordinary case of mob rebellion, perhaps it might be proper to pre- 
pare them for sudden outbreak. But when the people of the State, in 
sovereign convention assembled, determine to resume their original powers 
of separate and independent sovereignty, the whole question is changed, 
and it is no longer an act of rebellion. I, therefore, most respectfully urge 
that all work on the forts be put a stop to for the present, and that no more 
force may be ordered there. 

The regular Convention of the people of the State of South Carolina, 
legally and properly called, under our Constitution, is now in session, delib- 
erating upon the gravest and most momentous questions, and the excite- 
ment of the great masses of the people is great, under a sense of deep 
wrongs, and a profound necessity of doing something to preserve the peace 
and safety of the State. 

To spare the efiusion of blood, which no human power may be able to 
prevent, I earnestly beg your immediate consideration of all the points I 
call your attention to. It is not improbable that> under orders from the 
Commandant, or perhaps from the Commander-in-Chief, of the army^ the 


alteration and defences of tliose posts are progressing without tlie knowledge 
of yourself or the Secretary of War. 

The Arsenal, in the city of Charleston, with the public arms, I am in- 
formed, was turned over, very properly, to the keeping and defence of a 
State force, at the urgent request of the G-ovemor of South Carolina. I 
would most respectfully, and firom a sincere devotion to the public peace, 
request that you would allow me to send a small force, not exceeding 
twenty-five men and an officer, to take possession of Fort Sumter imme- 
diately, in order to give a feeling of safety to the community. There are 
no United States troops in that fort whatever, or perhaps only four or five, 
at present, besides some additional workmen or laborers, lately employed to 
put the guns in order. If Fort Sumter could be given to me as Governor, 
under a permission similar to that by which the Governor was permitted to 
keep the Arsenal, with the United States arms, in the city of Charleston, 
then I think the public mind would be quieted, under a feeling of safety ; 
and as the Convention is now in i^l authority, it strikes me that it could 
be done with perfect propriety. I need not go into particulars, for urgent 
reasons will force themselves readily upon your consideration. 

If something of the kind be not done, I cannot answer for the conse- 

I send this by a private amd confidential gentleman, who is authorized to 
confer with Mr. Trescott fully, and to receive through him any answer you 
may think proper to give to this. 

I have the honor to be, most respectfolly. 

Yours, tmly^ 

To THE President of the Unitsbd States. 

No. 2. 

[statement of colonel HAMILTON, AS TO THE DELIVERY OF GOVER- 

Charleston, February 1, 1861. 
To His Excellency Governor Pickens: 

Sir : In accordance with the request 1 have just received from you, to 
frimish you with a statement of my mission to President Buchanan, of the 
United States of America, bearing your letter of the 17th December, 1860, 


demanding that Fort Sumter should be delivered into the hands of the 
Executive of the State of South CaroliDa, I proceed to state that, in ac- 
cordance with your instructions, I proceeded to Washington with the utmost 
haste, and on Thursday, the 20th December, 1860, sought and procured a 
private interview with President Buchanan, through the aid of Mr. Wm. 
Henry Trescott, Assistant Secretary of State of the United States. The 
letter was read by President Buchanan in my presence, and to my request 
that an answer was desired at the earliest possible moment, he replied that 
an answer should be furnished on Friday, the 21st December, 1860. In 
the interim, however, Messrs. Bonham, McQueen and Trescott, without 
my knowledge or consent, telegraphed your Excellency to withdraw your 
letter to the President of the United States of America, demanding posses- 
sion of Fort Sumter. Nor was it until after your answer to the telegram 
' of these gentlemen, consenting to the withdrawal of the said letter, that I 
was informed such a telegram had been sent to your Excellency. The rea- 
son then assigned to me for such a course was, that the delegation from 
South Carolina had pledged themselves for South Carolina, that if the 
status of the forts within the harbor of Charleston was not changed, South 
Carolina would make no attempt to take possession of any of the said forts. 
My mission being thus terminated, I received the letter and restored it to 
your Excellency's possession. 

I am, sir, with sentiments of esteem. 

Very respectfully, your obedient servant, 

Major 1st Kegiment S. C. V. 

No. 3. 



Washington, December 21, 1860. 

To His Excellency F. W. Pickens, 

Chvemor of South Carolina : 

Sir : Your confidential letter to the President was duly delivered to him 
yesterday by D. H. Hamilton, Esq., according to your instructions. It was 
withdrawn (no copy having been taken) this morning by me, under the 
authority of your telegraphic dispatch. Its withdrawal was most opportune. 



It reached here nnder circumstances which you could not have anticipated, 
and it produced the following effect upon the President : 

He had removed Col. Grardiner from command at Fort Moultrie, for 
carrying ammunition from the Arsenal at Charleston; he had refused to send 
reinforcements to the garrison there ; he had accepted the resignation of the 
oldest, most eminent and highest member of his Cabinet, rather than con- 
sent to send additional force, and the night before your letter arrived, upon: 
a telegraphic communication that arms had been removed from the Arsenal 
to Fort Moultrie, the Department of War had issued prompt orders, by tele- 
graph, to the officer removing them, to restore them immediately. He 
had done this upon his determination to avoid all risk of collision, and upon 
the written assurance of the majority of the Congressional Delegation from 
the State that they did not believe there was any danger of an attack upon 
the forts before the passage of the Ordinance, and an expression of their 
trust and hope that there would be none after, until the State had sent Com- 
missioners here. His course had been violently denounced by the Northern 
press, and an effort was being made to institute a Congressional investigation. 
At that moment he could not have gone to the extent of action you desired, 
and I felt confident that if forced to answer your letter then, he would have 
taken such ground as would have prevented his even approaching it here- 
after, a possibility not at all improbable, and which ought to be kept open. 
I considered, also, that the chance of public investigation rendered the 
utmost caution necessary as to any communications from the State, and hav- 
ing presented the letter, and ascertained what the nature of the reply would 
be, you had all the advantage of knowing the truth, without the disadvantage 
of having it put on record. Besides this, the President seemed to think that 
your request was based upon the impossibility of your restraining the spirit 
of our people; an interpretation which did you injustice, and the possibility 
of which I deemed it due to you to avoid. He also appeared to labor under 
the impression that the representations of the members of Congress and your 
own differed essentially, and this, I thought, on account of both, should not 
be stated in any reply to you. I was also perfectly satisfied that the status 
of the garrisons would not be disturbed. 

Under these circumstances, if I had been acting under formal credentials 
froija you, and the letter had been unsealed, I would have delayed its presen- 
tation for some hours, until I could have telegraphed you, but that was im- 
possible. As Mr. Hamilton, therefore, had brought with him G-eneral 
McQueen and General Bonham, when he called upon me and delivered the 
letter, and had even gone so far as to express the wish that they should be 
present when he delivered it to the President, a proposition which they de- 
clined, however, I deemed it not indiscreet nor in violation of the discretion- 
ary confidence which your letter implied, to take their counsel. We agreed 


perfectly, and the result was the telegraphic dispatch of last night. The 
withdrawal of the letter was a great relief to the President, who is most 
earnestly anxious to avoid an issue with the State or its authorities, and I 
think, has encouraged his disposition to go as far as he can in this matter, 
and to treat those who may represent the State with perfect frankness. 

I have had, this morning, an interview with Gov. Floyd, the Secretary of 
War. No order has been issued that will at all disturb the present condi- 
tion of the garrisons, and while I cannot even here venture into details, 
which are too confidential to be risked in any way, I am prepared to say, 
with a full sense of the responsibility, that nothing will be done which will 
either do you injury or properly create alarm. Of course, when your Com- 
missioners have succeeded or failed to effect their negotiations, the whole 
issue is fairly before you, to be met as courage, honor and wisdom may 

My delay in answering your telegraph concerning Col. Huger, was caused 
by his absence from this place. He came, in reply to my telegraph, last 
night, and this morning I telegraphed you his decision, which I presume 
he has explained by a letter of this same date. As Dr. Hamilton leaves 
this evening, I have only time to write this hurried letter, and am, sir. 

Very respectfully, 


I enclose your confidential letter in this. 

No. 4. 


Washington, December 18, 1860. 
My Dear Sir : From common notoriety, I assume the fact that the State 
of South Carolina is now deliberating on the question of seceding from the 
Union. Whilst any hope remains that this may be prevented, or even 
retarded, so long as to allow the people of her sister States an opportunity 
to manifest their opinion upon the causes which have led to this proceeding, 
it is my duty to exert all the means in my power to avert so dread a catas- 
trophe. I have, therefore, deemed it advisable to send to you the Hon. 
Caleb Gushing, in whose integrity, ability and prudence I have fiill conr 


fidence^ to hold communioations with you on my behalf, for the purpose of 
changing or modifying the contemplated action of the State in the manner 
I have already suggested. 

Commending Mr. Gushing to your kind attention, for his own sake as 
well as that of the cause, I remain, 

Very respectfully, your friend, 

His Excellency Francis W. Pickens. 

No. 5. 

[orders to colonel PETTIGREW, DECEMBER 27 AND 29, I860.] 

Charleston, December 27th, 1860. 

Colonel Pettigrew: 

Sir : You are hereby ordered to assemble the Washington Light Infantry 

and the Meagher Guards at the Citadel. Arm them there, and then take 

measures for occupying Castle Pinckney. 


Headquarters, December 29th, 1860. 
To Colonel Pettigrew: 

Sir : Keep the strictest discipline possible — no entrance to the fort to be 
allowed, except with your permission. All the heavy guns towards Fort 
Sumter to be put in the best condition, with full supply of ammunition — 
the fort to be defended to the last extremity. I sent an order to render an 
inventory, and also orders to practice the men with the heavy guns. 


No. 6. 

[general orders to major general schnierle, second division 


Headquarters, December 81st, 1860. 
To Major General Schnierle : 

Sir : A detachment of infantry, and twenty men from an artillery com- 
pany, under Capt. King — ^all under command of Col. Pettigrew — ^are now 


in occupation of Castle Pinckney. They are ordered to defend it to the last 
extremity from any force, to keep up the strictest discipline, and to go on 
and put the fortress in the best condition for immediate defence. Lieuts. 
Gribbes and Reynolds, from West Point Academy, have resigned, and are 
so in Castle Pinckney, with orders to instruct the_] men in daily use of the 

[adpenpt^m to no. o.] 

To laEvx. Col. DeSa.ssuke : ^""*^^«^«'^' ^--''- ^7, 1860. 

dJr % t?^-K r "' *" '"* ''^^^ *^« ^"^"^^ discretion and pru- 
dence, and to let ,t be known that you take possession in the name of the 

Governor of South Carolina, and in consequence of the extraordin^ 
movemente executed last night in relation to Fort Moultrie, and with a 
view at present to prevent forther destruction of public property, a^d as a 
measure of safety also. r i' j, uu no » 


increuat; auu ovav/^j^vjuw^ ^ ^ 


Capt. Johnson, with a detachment of fifty men, is now in possession of 
Fort Johnson, with orders to prevent any communication from Fort Sumt^, 
and cut off" supplies. The orders given you have been to prevent all com- 
munication with Charleston, also from Fort Sumter, except to allow the 
officers at the fortress to have their mails, but nothing else. 

You will put yourself in communication, if necessary, with Quartermas- 
ter General Hatch and Commissary General Walker to assist you in anything 
in their departments, and also, with Col. Manigault, Ordnance officer^ wiih 


fideoce, to hold communications with you on my behalf, for the purpose of 
changing or modifying the contemplated action of the State in the manner 
I have already suggested. 

Commending Mr. Gushing to your kind attention, for his own sake as 

Wftll a..S tiha.t of the CaUS£*J[ remain. 


No. 6. 

[general orders to major general sohnierle, second division 
south carolina militia. issued on december 31, i860.] 

Headquarters, December 31st, 1860. 
To Major General Schnierle : 

Sir : A detachment of infantry, and twenty men from an artillery com- 
pany, under Capt. King — all under command of Col. Pettigrew — are now 


in occupation of Castle Pinckney. They are ordered to defend it to the last 
extremity from any force, to keep up the strictest discipline, and to go on 
and put the fortress in the best condition for immediate defence. Lieuts. 
Gibbes and Reynolds, from West Point Academy, have resigned, and are 
also in Castle Pinckney, with orders to instruct the^ men in daily use of the 
large guns. 

Lieut. Col. DeSaussure, with a detachment of one hundred and seventy 
men from an artillery regiment, and thirty men from Col. Pettigrew's rifle 
regiment, is in command of Fort Moultrie, with similar orders to those 
given the commandant at Castle Pinckney. Col. Gwynn, with Mr. Ramsay 
and Col. Calhoun as assistants, are also in Fort Moultrie as engineers, with 
orders to raise immediately merlins arid other works to protect some five of 
the heavy guns that command Maffitt's Channel from the fire of Fort 
Sumter if possible, and to urge this work forward as rapidly as possible. 
Temporary bridges and boats, under the direction of Col. Hatch, Quarter- 
master General, are put across the creek back of Sullivan's Island, that 
connect it with the main land, so as, in any great emergency, the force under 
Col. DeSaussure shall secure a retreat. If pressed too hard by the guns of 
Fort Sumter, they are directed to retire, but occupy the Island as long as 
possible in any event. 

A point for a battery has been selected by Col. Gwynn and Col. Manigault 
on Sullivan's Island, beyond Fort Moultrie, and out of the range of guns 
from Fort Sumter, and as soon as possible heavy columbiads are to b<B 
placed there, in order to endeavor to guard the harbor, and to prevent rein- 
forcements to the garrison in Fort Sumter. A point has also been selected 
on Morris' Island, beyond the guns of Fort Sumter, by the same officers, and 
a battery is ordered there ; and Major Stevens, of the Citadel Academy, 
with a detachment of forty Cadets, is ordered there now, to urge the erec- 
tion of the battery forward as fast as possible. A detachment or company 
of rifles, under Capt. Tupper, will be ordered there to-day, to assist in the 
same work, and also to defend it, if a force should be landed to take it. At 
present, two twenty-four pounders are sent there, with the intention to 
increase and strengthen them as soon as heavy guns can be got ready and 

Capt. Johnson, with a detachment of fifty men, is now in possession of 
Fort Johnson, with orders to prevent any communication from Fort Sumt^, 
and cut off supplies. The orders given you have been to prevent all com- 
munication with Charleston, also from Fort Sumter, except to allow the 
officers at the fortress to have their mails, but nothing else. 

Ypu will put yourself in communication, if necessary, with Quartermas- 
ter General Hatch and Commissary General Walker to assist you in anything 
in their departments, and also, with Col. Manigault; Ordnance officer^ with 


rank of Colonel of Artillery. These are the general outlines of what I have 
heretofore ordered and directed in the confusion of extraordinary and ex- 
citing events, before I had time to consult fully as to details, and when I 
was comparatively unacquainted with individual officers and with details. 

You are now ordered to see and attend particularly to the objects and the 
different commands I have detailed to you above, and for this purpose you 
are directed ta call into requisition and council the valuable aid and co- 
operation of Brigadier General Simons. 

The officers in command at the different posts will be ordered to report 
daily through General Simons and yourself to headquarters. 

Col. Cuningham is also in command and possession of the United States 

Arsenal in this city, with all the arms, &c., and is ordered to make a strict 

and detailed inventory of everything in it. 


No. 7. 

[order to major general sohnierle to take command, in person, 

op the forts.] 

Headquarters, January 1st, 1861. 
To Major General Sohnierle: 

Sir : You are ordered to proceed immediately to Fort Moultrie and take 
charge, in person, of the troops there, as well as at Morris' Island, Castle 
Pinckney and Fort Johnson, and defend those positions to the best of your 
ability, under all the circumstances of the case, according to the general 
orders issued to you yesterday morning; and for this purpose you are 
especially urged to call to your aid and immediate appointment all the ablest 
military ability in your reach. Lieutenant Colonel DeSaussure having ex- 
pressly requested to be relieved from his command to attend to his duties as 
a member of the Legislature, his request is hereby granted. 


No. 8. 

[general SIMONS* REPORT.] 

Headquarters, 4th Brigade, S. C. M., 

Charleston, January 1, 1861. 
Governor : I have carefnlly considered the orders extended to me by 
the Major General, which emanated from your Headquarters yesterday, and 


the plan of military operations and line of defence therein set forth. I can* 
not sacrifice to matter of etiquette, questions and issues of such momentous 
importance as now surround us. I feel it to be my duty to report to you my 
opinion of the military movements which have been initiated. 
First.— The line of operations embraces four points : 

1. Fort Moultrie. 

2. Castle Pinckney. 

3. Fort Johnson. 

4. Morris' Island. 

By the map which accompanies these papers, it will appear that your 
lines of communication with these, as at present established, are directly 
within the range and effective power of Fort Sumter — the citadel of the 
harbor — controlling every point. At the first return fire from Fort Sumter, 
yc^ur lines of communication are utterly cut off with every single post, ex- 
cept, perhaps, Castle Pinckney. Let me simply observe, that you are 
indebted to the forbearance of the enemy for the liberty of transporting the 
reinforcements and supplies, which you ordered at midnight, and which are 
to be sent this day, at two d* clock, to your battery, now in course of erec- 
tion on Morris' Island. A single gun from Fort Sumter would sink your 
transport, and destroy your troops and supplies* These lines of communica- 
tion are the prime consideration of a General. It is vain to say others will 
be adopted. It is enough that they do not exist now ; and, when the present 
resources fail, your troops will be wholly isolated, and cut off from each other 
and the main. 

Second. — Fort Moultrie* 

This post is wholly untenable. Lieutenant Colonel DeSaussure, a brave 
officer, gave you prompt notice of this fact on the morning after his 
occupation. His report, this morning, shows you the irrefragable proof of 
his first report, after nearly a week's occupation of the post. Moreover, he 
asks for supplies, which he applied to you for on the 30th ultimo. He 
urges me to# supply these wants at the earliest practicable moment. Sup- 
pose he has them, however, there is probably not a single man out of the 
whole force which he carried down, t^ho ever loaded a siege gun, or, per- 
haps, ever handled a single gun of heavy calibre, munition or implement, 
mentioned in the report. I know, and state as a fact, that there is no 
, ordnance force in his whole command. His post must, even under the 
most favorable circumstances, fait to the enemy, after a very short and 
bloody contest. 

Suppose they evacuate ihe post, where will they entrench themselves ? 
Shall they resort to the sandhills ? If the enemy be reinforced by two 
hundred and fifty United States artillery, as is reported, he can land two 
hundred men under the guns of Fort Moultrie, and attack Lieutenant 


Colonel DeSaussure's command — an unequal contest between disciplined 
veteran troops, commanded by educated and experienced officers, and raw 
militia, who never saw battle. 

In the event of discomfiture to these brave young men, how can they 
make good their retreat from these sandhills ? Will it be said, there will 
be a causeway to the mainland, or other communication ? The answer is : 
The communication does not exist now, and the issue will be upon us in less 
than thirty hours. 

Third. — Fort Johnson. 

This post is garrisoned by Light Infantry, or rifles, who never handled a 
heavy gun, if there be such a gun or any munitions in the dilapidated post 
they now occupy. At any rate, a few shells from the enemy at Fort Sumter 
will compel them to retire from their position. 

Fourth. — Morris' Island Battery. 

Suppose it completed, which it is not, nor will be in thirty hours. The 
armament is three twenty-four pounders. The force is the corps of 
Cadets from the Citadel, and a corps of rifles; and these, to be reinforced 
by two more corps of rifles, not one man of whom, probably, ever saw a 
twenty-four pounder manipulated or fired. 

When the Harriet Lane approaches, bows on, the Battery may fire a shot 
or two — never having been tried, the powder, the gun or the range — it is 
not even problematical whether they will strike the enemy. She will steam 
by, at fourteen knots per hour, and in fifteen minutes the reinforcements 
will be landed under the cannon of Fort Sumter. 

Why, then, all this preparation and expense, if the work cannot but 
terminate in disastrous failure ? 

Suppose, however, the enemy be reinforced, anii not fire a gun in reply to 
the Morris' Island Battery ? He can demolish our other posts when he 
pleases, from one of the most impregnable fortresses in the world, and so 
our posts live at his will, and remain in our possession at his sufferance. 

Suppose, however, we succeed in preventing reinforcements fwm entering 
our harbor? This will not prevent the United States Government from 
enforcing their revenue, for this can be done outside the Bar by a war 
steamer, as well as inside by the Harriet Lane. 

Suppose, however, all your plans succeed, and Fort Sumter were in our 
possession, how would we raise the blockade of the war steamers outside ? 

If the Harriet Lane is not fired into, the preparations are unnecessary ; 
and if she is fired into, we have commenced open war. 

I ask your perusal of the report of Colonel Grwynn, to me, this morning. 
I have no transport at hand to send him, and have so notified him. 

I feel it to be my duty, under all the circumstances above mentioned, to 
express my conviction of the inexpediency of commencing actual hostilities 


on oar side^ in our present wholly unprepared state^ with raw, undisciplined 
troops, without equipments, munitions or proper arms required to work 
armaments that need the highest skill and training — nothing but bloody 
discomfiture must attend the opening campaign. 

You will now require me, after this review, to offer a better plan. 
Deferentially, and with great diffidence, I recommend that a skilled and 
educated military man be selected for Major (General in Chief, to command 
all the troops, and that he should establish a plan of operations. Mean- 
while, I would recommend that amplification of the Ordnance and Engineer 
Departments be ordered, and a more effective organization of the Com- 
missariat and Quartermaster's Departments. 

With great respect, I pray your Excellency, at this moment of great 
peril, to take into consideration what has been herein submitted, and to lay 
the matter speedily before a Council of War, in accordance with the custom 
of armies engaged in active operations. 
I am, with great respect. 

Your Excellency's obedient servant, 

Brigadier General 4th Brigade of Infantry, S. C. M. 

To His Excellency Governor Pickens, 


No. 9. 


Headquarters, January 2, 1861. 
To Brigadier General Simons : 

Sir : Your extraordinary report I received last night, and have only to 
^y that I do not pretend that the orders and disposition of forces in 
Charleston harbor are at all perfect, or beyond the criticism of military 
rule. But, in the first place, there was, when I came to the city, a distinct 
pledge of faith, between the Government at Washington and those who 
had a right to speak for South Carolina, that everything in the harbor, 
and all the forts, should remain precisely as they then were, and that there 
should be no increase of force, or any reinforcements sent from abroad, 
until OUT Commissioners presented themselves at Washington, and made 
regular negotiation for the forts. I acted with confidence upon this pledge. 
Suddenly we were surprised, from the step taken by Major Anderson, now 


acknowledged and proclaimed by the late Secretary of War to be in open 
violation of the faith of the Oovernment. He abandoned Fort Moaltrie, 
and burnt and spiked the guns, and the first report was that he destroyed 
Fort Moultrie. He transferred the garrison to Fort Sumter, which^ of 
course, was the strong and commanding position. I had thus suddenly to 
take immediate steps to try and prevent the further destruction of public 
property ; and with this view, I ordered the occupation of Sullivan's Island, 
but not to occupy Fort Moultrie, unless it could be done without too much 
loss, and to reconnoitre and ascertain if there were mines, as reported. 
They found none } and to put out the fire and prevent ^irther destruction, 
they occupied the fort. And the same grounds were taken aa to Oastle 

All the orders issued expressed the objects aa above. Then the first step 
taken was to try and prevent reinforcements to Fort Sumter. With that 
view, orders were given to Colonel G-wynn, the most experienced Engineer 
I could find on the sudden emergency, and to Colonel Manigault, of the 
Ordnance Board, to examine and report if a place on Morris' Island could 
be selected to erect a battery, out of the reach of Fort Sumter, or pro- 
tected from its guns. They reported such a point, and I immediately, with 
the limited means in my possession, ordered that one should be erected, in 
order to try and protect the Ship Channel, so as to prevent reinforcements. 
This was the object of the battery, then recommended by the most skillful 
men I could, in the confusion, procure. Orders were also issued to throw 
up merlons at Fort Moultrie, and other works, in order to try and protect, 
for the present, some of the guns that bear on the Ship Channel from being 
silenced from Sumter. 

Colonel Gwynn, Engineer, and Colonel Manigault, Ordnance officer, 
again reported it a feasible measure, and every effort has been made to erect 
those works, and to endeavor to keep guns in position at Fort Moultrie to 
protect the channel, and, if possible, prevent the reinforcements. Our 
Commissioners at Washington telegraphed by all means to guard and pro- 
tect the channel and entrance at all hazards. Castle Pinckney was kept 
with a ¥iew, if possible, to protect the immediate vicinity of Charleston, 
and eveiything in my power was used to put the guns in some sort of 
position for that purpose. Colonel Manigault reported a proper place to 
connect Sullivan's Island with the main land, by the erection of boats as 
temporary bridges, so as to provide for the safety of the troops at Fort 
Moultrie, if compelled, by superior force, to retire. 

Fort Johnson was occupied merely because it was reported that there was 
public property there that required immediate protection, and in order to 
prevent the garrison in Fort Sumter from all communication, for the present, 
with that point, as they were taking coal and so forth from it. 


It was well known, and sadly felt, as you staie, that our troops were raw 
and inexperienced ; but, under all the circumstances, I had no alternative 
left but to do what has been done. And if we are to occupy no place^ 
because our troops are raw and inexperienced, then we will have to abandon 
the State, for the same reason, if forces that are regular are ordered to 
invade it. We calculated that if we were weak, so were our enemies, to a 
certain extent. Their regular force is not strong enough to admit of imme- 
diate division or transfer. They would be compelled to call for volunteers, 
also, in the progress of events, and, with the feeling in the country, there 
would be great difficulty in this operation. The question was, not whether 
we could maintain our position in Charleston harbor, with the certainty of 
assistance and reinforcements being thrown in immediately, but whether, in 
the present peculiar state of the country, and with a weak garrison as to 
numbers, who are incapable of being divided, or any detachment being 
sent out from it to occupy any post their guns might drive us from — 
whether, under all these circumstances, we were capable of maintaining 
our position for the present, so as to prevent reinforcemenUj and to sustain 
the direct and urgent request from our Commissioners at Washington, 
hoping that every day might change events, so as to enable us to protect 
■the State in the attitude she has assumed, of immediate independence. 
Colonel Pettigrew thinks if I had not occupied Castle Pinckney when I 
did, that it, too, in like manner, would have been destroyed, as Fort Moul- 
trie, so far as the guns, and so forth, were concerned. ' 


No. 10. 


Headquarters, Charleston, S. C, January 2d, 1861. 
To Brigadier General Simons : 

Sir : In consequence of the sudden illness of General Schnierle, you are 
ordered to proceed to Fort Moultrie immediately and take charge, in person, 
of the troops there, as well as at Morris' Island and Castle Pinckney, and 
Fort Johnson, and defend those positions to the best of your ability under 
all the circumstances of the case, according to the general orders issued to 
you yesterday morning ; and for this purpose you are especially urged to 
call to your aid and immediate appointment all the ablest military ability in 


yonr reach. Lieutenant Colonel DeSanflsore liaying ezpreeelj requested to 
be relieved firom his command in order to attend to his duties as a member 
of the Legislature^ his request is hereby granted. 


No. 11. 

[BSPOBT of BOABD of ordnance on general SIMONS' REPORT.] 

Charleston, January 2, 1861. 
To His Exoellenot Gov. F. W. Pickens, 

Charleston, S. C. : 
Dear Sir : We received, at a late hour last night, fi*om the hand of Aid- 
de^Camp J. J. Lucas, the report of General James Simons, on the Military 
defences of the harbor of Chai^leston, and, in accordance with your instruc- 
tions, beg leave to reply as follows : 

We concur generally in the military positions assumed by Brigadier 
General Simons, of the Fourth Brigade South Carolina Militia, together 
with the conclusions thence deduced, but leave the question of the appoint- 
ment of a Council of War to the discretion of your Excellency. 
We have the honor to be. 

Very respectfally, 

JAMES JONES, ) Mnr«l.n«, nf O^ "R^ 

THOS. F. DKAYTON, | ^^^^^^ ^^ O^' ^^' 
P. S. — ^Within you will also receive the report of Brigadier General 

No. 12. 
[governor's endorsement on the above report.] 


January 3, 1861. 

The Board concur in the military positions assumed by General Simons, 

together with the conclusions thence deduced, but leave the Council of War 

to the discretion of myself. " The conclusions" of that report, I consider, 

would be to order troops firom Fort Moultrie and Sullivan's Island and 


Pinckney) and to abandon tlie attempt to keep out feinforcementa, and; in 
fact, to yield, without a struggle, every point, and thus break down the sinrii 
of our people, and cover our cause with imbecility and probable ruin. 

I shall do no such thing, nor shall I yield to any Council of War that 
may drive me to such <^ conclusions/' 


No. 13. 

[obd£bs to b£port a plan fob the reduction of fobt 6umteb.] 

State of South Carolina, 
EXBOUTTVE Office, January 9, 1861. 
To Col. Gwynn, Col. White, and Col. Trapier, Engineers: 

You are ordered to come together, immediately, and consider and report 
the most favorable plan for operating upon Fort Sumter, so as to reduce that 
fortress, by batteries or other means in our possession ; and for this consul- 
tation you are authorized to have with you Colonel Manigault, the State 
Ordnance Officer. 


No. 14. 


Charleston, January 10, 1861. 
To His Excellency Governor Pickens : • 

Sm: In obedience to the order from Headquarters, issued yesterday, 
requiring us ^^ to come together immediately, and consider and report the 
most feasible plan for operating upon Fort Sumter, so as to reduce that for- 
tress by batteries, or other means in our possession, -^ we have the honor to 
submit the following : 

We are unanimously and decidedly of the opinion that— discarding all 
other methods of attack upon that fortress (whether by surprise, by op^ 


aasaolty or by stratigem), as nneertain in their lesnltBy and as, efen if sue* 
oefisfuiy inTolriiig probably much sacrifice of Ufe— our dependence and sole 
reliance must be upon batteries of heayy ordnance, at least until a de^ 
impression has been made upon the garrison, in its wkoraie as well as in its 
ph^siquey by an incessant bombardment and cannonade of many hoan^ 
duration. When this impression shall have been made, and a demand for a 
surrender refused, we are of i^pinion that, with its battlements mutilated, 
its embrasures beaten in, and its garrison weakened by casualties and dis- 
heartened by surrounding circumstances, this strong fortress would fidl, with 
comparatiye ease, before an asBaulting party. 

We therefiure submit the following plan of attack : 

Ist. We recommend that the dismantled battery at Fort Moultrie be re- 
stored, and protected by merl<His ; in other words, make of it an embrasure 

2d. That a mortar batteiy of two (2) moiiais be erected on Sullivan's 
Island, at a point West of Fort Moultrie, and as near Fort Sumter as pos- 

Sd. That a moitar b«tteiy of four (4) noctais be erected at Fort 

4th. That a mKHtar battery of two (2) monais be erected at Cmnming^ 
Point; and ako al this point a batteiy of three (^3) eigkt4nck CofaoabiadB. 

5th. That the implements and equipments and mountiDgs ftr these haifc- 
teiiesbe otdered forthwith. 

It is to be regretted that we hare not in our pcesesskn, at the p resc n l 
moment* a greater number of moitars. We foor that the eight — which are 
all that we haxe, and which we hare posted as ahoxe — may be inadeq[nafee 
to the task imposed i^pon them, and we ther^xe urgently recommend the 
porehase of seren (7) moie henTy len^n^ moilais^ 

Though noc pteciselT entering as an eiement in the subject-matter of the 
plan of attack i^pon Fort Sumtnr. still, as gomain to it. and as a meKaire of 
Tital inqwstanee in a future project, shouM our plan for reducing that pbee 
foil, we td^e the Hhi«y ro^KctfoLlly but eamesth* to reicommend the erec- 
tion, forthwith, of a gun bnttesr^ of henTx guu;. at about ooe ^bawaifed four 
hundred yards East ham Fort Moohrie. The point eoaiqpikaeh' eommandb 
the Madbt Channel: and sapposing ouor foiinre at Fort Sumtei^ aad fiiithin 
sippoang Feet Madbcde rendered unftenahie^ as the lesuk of ^br ranniiaaifa 
fram Fort Sumter. scilL by hbcking up all dw o^er channels t» ^is city 
except the MaJSst Channel, aad ddSending ^k ns abore reeonuaeKkd. tha 
slow (but sure) process of starvation would yet pot Fort Sumaer in our 

We ddsm it our duty, in tww of ^ foct tibaft efiMs are Wing m&ie 
thiL Gtfieiuaau at WasUngam «i Hnfone ^keir ^yEoaim at Fun 


an event which, of conise, wonld render the means of attack now at 01:^ 
command still more inadequate to the end in view — we venture still further 
to recommend and urge upon your Excellency the importance of immediate 
preparation for attack with the means we now have. 
All of which is respect^Uy submitted, 


Captain Engineers. 

Gohnel of Ordnance, 

No. 15. 

[account op the firing into the "star of the west," taken 


The first gun of the new struggle for independence, (if struggle there is 
to be,) has been fired, and Federal power has received its first repulse. 

About seven o'clock, yesterday morning, our citizens were startled by the 
firing of heavy guns in the direction of Sullivan's and Morris' Islands. It 
was at once surmised that the steamship " Star of the West," which had 
been reported by the special telegraphic correspondent of the Mercury as 
having left New York with reinforcements and stores for Major Anderson, 
had attempted to pass the battery on Morris' Island. Our reporters were 
immediately despatched to the entrance of the harbor, and, after visiting 
all the fortifications now occupied by our troops, the following facts were 
elicited : 

Particulars of the Affair. — ^Yesterday morning, shortly after 
'^ reveille," the sentries on Morris Island reported a steamship standing in 
for the Ship Channel. The long roll was immediately beat, and all the troops 
were promptly under arms. Lieutenant Colonel J. L. Branch, of the 
Regiment of Rifles, commanding. These comprised the Vigilant Rifles, 
German Riflemen, Zouave Cadets, and a detachment of forty from the 
Citadel Cadet corps. The last named body were at once marched to the 
battery, commanding the Ship Channel, which, at this point, passes within 
from one-half to three-quarters of a mile of the beach. At seven o'clock, 
when the " Star of the West" had reached a point within range of the 
gnnS; Major Stevens fired a shot across her bows, as a signal for her to heave 


to. After waiting three or four minuteS; no diminution in €ke speed or 
change in the coarse of the steamer could be noticed. A moment alto, 
the United States flag was run up at her foremast. The '^ Star of the 
Wesf ' continuing thus defiantly to pursue her course towards Fort Sumter, 
the order was given to the men at the Morris' Island guns to open fire. Five 
rounds were accordingly discharged in quick succession. Two of these are 
reported to have taken effect, one forward and the other abaft the wheel. 
At the sixth discharge, the ^^ Star of the West'' rounded to, and steered 
outwards towards the Bar. At the s%me time, the ensign, which she 
displayed immediately aft;er the warning gun, was lowered. Three more 
shots were fired firom Fort Morris and three from Fort Moultrie; one of 
these latter, it is thought, took effect. A gentleman on the island reports 
that after the ^^ Star of the West" had cleared the Bar and proceeded a 
considerable distance beyond, a steam propeller, of about three hundred 
and fifty tons burthen, joined her, apparently as a tender, and they steam- 
ed off together in an E. N. E. direction. 

Thus terminated the first attempt of the Federal Government to rein- 
force the great stronghold of coercion in our harbor. The approach of the 
" Star of the West" to Fort Sumter, taken in connection with the facts that 
her clearance was for New Orleans, and that her troops were smuggled 
aboard outside the harbor of New York, proves clearly enough that the 
President has chosen the coercion policy, and that his officials will not 
hesitate to promote its success. 

No. 16. 


To His Excellency, the Governor of South Carolina : 

Sir : Two of your batteries fired this morning upon an unarmed vessel 
bearing the flag of my Govwnment. As I have not been notified that war 
has been declared by South Carolina against the Government of the United 
States, I cannot but think that this hostile act was committed without your 
sanction or authority. Under that hope, and that alone, did I refrain &om 
opening fire upon your batteries. 

I have the honor, therefore, respectfully to ask whether the above-men- 
tioned act — one I believe without a parallel in the history of our country, 
or of any oth^r civilieed Government — ^was committed in obedience to your 
instructions, and to notify you if it be not disclaimed, that I must regard it 


as an act of war, and that I shall not; after a reasonable time for the return 
of my messenger, permit any vessels to pass within range of the guns of my 

In order to save, as far as in my power, the shedding of blood, T beg 
that you will ^ave due notification of this my decision, given to all con- 

Hoping, however, that your answer may be such as will justify a further 
continuance of forbearance on my part, I have the honor to be. 

Very respectfully. 

Your obedient servant, 

Major 1st Artillery U. S. A., Commanding. 
FoBT Sumter, S. C, January 9, 1861. 

No. 17. 

[the governor to major ANDERSON.] 

State of South Carolina, 
Executive Office, Headquarters, 
Charleston, January 9, 1861. 

Sir : Your letter has been received. In it you make certain statements 
which very plainly show that you have not been fully informed by your 
Government, of the precise relations which now exist between it and the 
State of South Carolina. Official information has been communicated to 
the Government of the United States that the political connection, hereto- 
fore existing between the State of South Carolina and the States which 
were known as the United States, had ceased ; and that the State of South 
Carolina had resumed all the power it had delegated to the United States 
under the compact known as the Constitution of the United States. The 
right which the State of South Carolina possessed to change the political 
relations it held with other States, under the Constitution of the United 
States, has been solemnly asserted by the people of this State, in Conven- 
tion, and now does not admit of discussion. 

In anticipation of the Ordinance of Secession, of which the President of 
the United States had received official notification, it was understood by 
him, that sending any reinforcements of the troops of the United States in 
the harbor of Charleston, would be regarded by the constituted authorities 


of tlie State of South Oarolina as an act of hostility; and, at the same 
time, it was understood by him that any change in the occupation of the 
forts in the harbor of Charleston would, in like manner, be regarded as an 
act of hostility. Either or both of these events occurring during the period 
in which the State of South Carolina constituted a part of the United States, 
was then distinctly notified to the President of the United States as an abt 
or acts of hostility ; because either or both would be regarded, and eould 
only be intended, to dispute the right of the State of South Carolina to that 
political independence which she has always asserted, and will always 

Whatever would have been, during the continuance of this State while 
a member of the United States, an act of hostility, became much more 
so, when the State of South Carolina had dissolved its connection with the 
Government of the United States. 

After the secession of the State of South Carolina, Fort Sumter con- 
tinued in the possession of troops of the United States. How that fort ,is 
at this time in the possession of the troops of the United States, is not now 
necessary to discuss. It will suffice to say that the occupancy of that fort 
has been regarded by the State of South Carolina as the first act of positive 
hostility committed by the troops of the United States within the limits of 
this State; and was in this light regarded as so unequivocal, that it 
occasioned the termination of the negotiations, then pending at Washington, 
between the Commissioners of the State of South Carolina and the Presi- 
dent of the United States. 

The attempt to reinforce the troops now at Fort Sumter, or to retake and 
resume possession of the forts within the waters of this State, which you 
have abandoned, after spiking the guns placed there, and doing otherwise 
much damage, cannot be regarded by the authorities of this State as 
indicative of any other purpose than the coercion of the State by the armed 
force of the Government. To repel such an attempt is too plainly its duty, 
to allow it to be discussed. But, while defending its waters, the authorities 
of the State have been careful so to conduct the affairs of the State that no 
act, however necessary for its defence, should lead to an useless waste of 
life. Special agents, therefore, have been off the bar, to warn all approach- 
ing vessels, if armed ; or unarmed and having troops to reinforce the forts 
on board ; not to enter the harbor of Charleston ; and special orders have 
been given to Commanders of all the forts and batteries not to fire at such 
vessels until a shot fired across their bows would warn them of the pro- 
hibition of the State. 

Under these circumstances, the Star of the West, it is understood, this 
morning, attempted to enter this harbor, with troops on board ; and having 


been notified that she could not enter, was fired into. The act is perfectly 
justified by me. 

In regard to your threat in regard to vessels in the harbor, it is only 
necessary to say, that you must judge of your responsibilities. Your 
position in this harbor has been tolerated by the authorities of the State. 
And while the act of which you complain is in perfect consistency with the 
rights and duties of the State, it is not perceived how far the conduct, which 
you propose to adopt, can find a parallel inlbhe history of any country, or be 
reconciled with any other purpose of your Government, than that of impos- 
ing upon this State the condition of a conquered province. 


To Major Robert Anderson, 

Commanding Fort Sumter. 

No. 18. 


Headquarters, Fort Sumter, S. C, 

January 9, 1861. 
To His Excellency, F. W. Pickens, 

Governor of the State of South Carolina : 
Sir : I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your communication 
of to-day, and to say that, under the circumstances, I have deemed it proper 
to refer the whole matter to my Government; and that I intend deferring 
the course indicated in my note of this morning until the arrival from 
Washington of the instructions I may receive. I have the honor, also, to 
express a hope that no obstructions will be placed in the way of, and that 
you will do me the favor to afford every facility to, the departure and return 
of the bearer, Lieut. T. Talbot, U. S. Army, who has been directed to make 
the journey. 

I have the honor to be. 

Very respectfdlly, 

Major U. 8. Army, Commanding. 

No. 19. 

[the governor to major ANDERSON.] 

State op South Carolina, 
Executive Office, Charleston, 

January 11, 1861. 
To Major Robert Anderson, 

Commanding Fort Sumter : 
Sir : I have thought proper, under all the circumstances of the peculiar 
state of public affairs in the country at present, to appoint the Hon. A. G. 
Magrath and Gren. D. F. Jamison, both members of the Executive Council, 
and of the highest position in the State, to present to you considerations of 
the gravest public character, and of the deepest interest to all who depre- 
cate the improper waste of life, to induce the delivery of Fort Sumter to the 
constituted authorities of the State of South Carolina, with a pledge, on its 
part, to account for such public property as is under your charge. 

Your obedient servant, 


No. 20. 


Headquarters, Fort Sumter, S. C, 

January 11, 1861. 
To His Excellency, F. W. Pickens, 

Governor of South Carolina : 
Sir : I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your demand for 
the surrender of this fort to the authoritief of South Carolina, and to say, 
in reply, that the demand is one with which I cannot comply. Your Excel- 
lency knows that I have recently sent a messenger to Washington, and that 
it will be impossible for me to receive an answer to my despatches, for- 
warded by him, at an earlier date than next Monday. What the character 
of my instructions may be, I cannot foresee. 

Should your Excellency deem fit, prior to a resort to arms, to refer this 
matter to Washington, it would afford me the sincerest pleasure to depute 


one of my officers to accompany any messenger yon may deem proper to be 
the bearer of your demand. 

Hoping to God that in thiS; and all other matters in which the honor, 
welfare and lives of our fellow-countrymen are concerned, we shall so act as 
to meet His approval ; and deeply regretting that you have made a demand 
of me with which I cannot comply, 
I have the honor to be. 

With the highest regard, 

Your obedient servant, 

Major U. S. Army, Commanding. 

No. 21. 
[the governor to the president of the united states.] 

State op South Carolina, 
' Executive Office, Headquarters, 

Charleston, January 11, 1861. 

Sir : At the time of the separation of the State of South Carolina from 
the United States, Fort Sumter was, and still is, in the possession of troops 
of the United States, under the command of Major Anderson. I regard 
that possession as not consistent with the dignity or safety of the State of 
South Carolina; and I have this day addressed to Major Anderson a com- 
munication to obtain &om him the possession of that Fort, by the authori- 
ties of this State. The reply of Major Anderson informs me that he has 
no authority to do what I required ; but he desires a reference of the demand 
to the President of the United States. 

Under the circumstances now existing, and which need no comment by 
me, I have determined to send to you the Hon. I. W. Hayne, the Attorney 
Greneral of the State of South Carolina, and have instructed him to demand 
the delivery of Fort Sumter, in the harbor of Charleston, to the constituted 
authorities of the State of South Carolina. 

The demand I have made of Major Anderson, and which I now make of 
you, is suggested because of my earnest desire to avoid the bloodshed which 
a persistence in your attempt to retain the possession of that fort will cause ; 
and which will be unavailing to secure you that possession, but induce a 
calamity most deeply to be deplored. 


If ooDsequences so unhappy shall ensue, I will secure for this State^ in 
the demand which I now make, the satisfaction of having exhausted every 
attempt to avoid it. 

In relation to the public property of the United States within Fort 
Sumter, the Hon. I. W. Hayne, who will hand you this communication, is 
authorized to give you the pledge of the State that the valuation of such 
property will be accounted for by this State, upon the adjustment of its 
relations with the United States, of which it was a part. 

To THE President of the United States. 

No. 22. 

[instructions from the state department op the executive 

office to hon. i. w. hayne.] 

State of South Carolina, 
Executive Office, State Department, 

Charleston, January 12, 1861. 

Sir : The Governor has conddered it proper, in view of the grave ques- 
tions which now affect the State of South Carolina and the United States, 
to make a demand upon the President of the United States, for the 
delivery to the State of South Carolina of Fort Sumter, now within the 
territorial limits of the State, and occupied by troops of the United States. 

The Convention of the people of South Carolina authorized and 
empowered its Commissioners to enter into negotiations with the Govern- 
ment of the United States, for the delivery of forts, magazinea, light 
houses, and other real estate within the limits of South Carolina. 

The circumstances which caused the interruption of that negotiation are 
known to you ; with the formal notification of its cessation, was the urgent 
expression of the necessity for the withdrawal of the troops of the United 
States from the harbor of Charleston. 

The interruption of these negotiations left all matters connected with 
Fort Sumter and troops of the United States within the limits of this State, 
affected by the fact tl^at the continued possession of the f6rt was |iot 
consistent with the dignity or safety of the State, and that an attempt to 
reinforce the troops at that fort would not be allowed. This, therefore, 
became a state of hostility in consequence of which the State oi South 


Carolina was placed in a condition of defence. During the preparation for 
this purpose, an attempt was made to reinforce Fort Sumter, and repelled. 

You are now instructed to proceed to Washington, and there, in the 
name of the Government of the State of South Carolina, enquire of the 
President of the United States, whether it was by his order that troops of 
the United States were sent into the harbor of Charleston to reinforce Fort 
Sumter ; if he avows that order, you will then enquire, whether he asserts a 
right to introduce troops of the United States within the limits of this 
State, to occupy Fort Sumter : and you will, in case of his avowal, inform 
him that neither will be permitted, and either will be regarded as his 
declaration of war against the State of South Carolina. 

The Governor, to save life, and determined to omit no course of proceed- 
ing usual among civilized nations, previous to that condition of general 
hostilities which belongs to war ; and not knowing under what order, or by 
what authority. Fort Sumter is now held ; demanded from Major Robert 
Anderson, now in command of that fort, its delivery to the State. That 
officer, in his reply, has referred the Governor to the Government of the 
United States at Washington. You will, therefore, demand from the Presi- 
dent of the United States the withdrawal of the troops of the United 
States from that fort, and its delivery to the State of South Carolina. 

You are instructed not to allow any question of property claimed by the 
United States to embarrass the assertion of the political right of the State 
of South Carolina to the possession of Fort Sumter. The possession of 
that fort by the State is alone consistent with the dignity and safety of the 
State of South Carolina : but such possession is not inconsistent with a right 
to compensation in money in another Government, if it has against the State 
of South Carolina any just claim connected with that fort. But the posses- 
sion of the fort cannot, in regard to the State of South Carolina, be com- 
pensated by any consideration of any kind from the Government of the 
United States, when the possession of it by the Government is invasive of 
the dignity and affects the sa^fety of the State. That possession cannot 
become now a matter of discussion or negotiation. You will, therefore, 
require from the President of the United States a positive and distinct 
answer to your demand for the delivery of the fort. And you are further 
authorized to give the pledge of the State to adjust all matters which may 
be, and are in their nature, susceptible of valuation in money; in the 
manner most usual, and upon the principles of equity and justice always 
recognized by independent nations, for the ascertainment of their relative 
rights and obligations in such matters. 

You are further instructed to say to the President of the United States, 
that the Governor regards the attempt of the President of the United 
States, if avowed, to continue the possession of Fort Sumter; as inevitably 


leading to a bloody issue, a question which, in the judgment of the Gh>Yer- 
nor, can have but one conclusion, reconcilable with a due regard to the 
State of South Carolina, the welfare of the other States which now con- 
stitute the United States, and that humanity which teaches all men,, but 
particularly those who in authority control the lives of others, to regard a 
resort to arms as the last which should be considered. To shed their blood 
in defence of their rights is a duty which the citizens of the State of South 
Carolina fully recognize. And in such a cause, the Grovernor, while 
deploring the stem necessity which may compel him to call for the sacrifice, 
will feel that his obligation to preserve inviolate the sacred rights of the 
State of South Carolina, justify the sacrifice necessary to secure that end. 
The Governor does not desire to remind the President of the responsibili- 
ties which are upon him. 

Respectfully, your obedient servant, 

To Hon. I. W. Hayne, 

Special Envoy from the State of South Carolina 

to the President of the United States. 

No. 23. 

[letter from the senators of seceding states to HON. I. w. 


Washington City, January 15, 1861. 
Hon. Isaac W. Hayne: 

Sir : We are apprised that you yisit Washington, as an Envoy from the 
State of South Carolina, bearing a communication from the Governor of 
your State to the President of the United States, in relation to Fort 
Sumter. Without knowing its contents, we venture to request you to defer 
its delivery to the President for a few days, or until you and he have consid- 
ered the suggestions which we beg leave to submit. 

We know that the possession of Fort Sumter by troops of the United 
States, coupled with the circumstances under which it was taken, is the 
chief, if not only, source of difficulty between the Government of South 
Carolina and that of the United States. We would add, that we, too, think 
it a just cause of irritation and of apprehension on the part of your State. 


Bnt we bfive also assnnmces, nptwithstandipg the circumstances under 
wbicli Major Anderson left Fort Moultrie and entered Fort Sumter with 
the forces under his command, that it was not taken, aiid is not held, with 
any hostile or unfriendly purpose towards your State ; but merely as property 
of the United States, which the President deems it his duty to protect and 

We will not disouas the question of right or duty on the part of either 
Governmei^t touching that property, or the late acts of either in relation 
thereto ; but we think that, without any compromise of right or breach of 
duty on either side, an amicable adjustment of the matter of differences 
may and should be adopted. We desire to see such an adjustment, and to 
prevent war or the sheddiqg of blood. We represent States which have 
already seceded from the United States, or will have done so before the first 
of February next, and which will meet your State in Convention on or 
before the fifteenth of that month. Our people feel that they have a com- 
mon destiny with your people, and expect to form with them, in that Con- 
vention, a new Confederation and Provisional Government. We must and 
will share your fortunes, suffering with you the evils of war, if it cannot 
be avoided; and enjoying with you the blessings of peace, if it can be 
preserved. We, therefore, think it especially due from South Carolina to 
our States — ^to say nothing of other slaveholding States — ^that she should, 
as far as she can consistently with her honor, avoid initiating hostilities 
between her and the United States or any other power. We have the 
public declaration of tbe President that he has not the constitutional power 
or the will to make war on South Carolina, and that the public peace shall 
not be disturbed by any act of hostility towards your State. 

We, therefore, see no reason why there may not be a settlement of exist- 
ing difficulties, if time be given for calm and deliberate counsel with those 
States which are equally involved with South Carolina. We therefore 
trust that an arrangement will be agreed on between you and the President, 
at least till the fifteenth of February next; by which time your and our 
States may, in Convention, devise a wise, just and peaceable solution of 
existing difficulties. 

In the meantime, we think your State should su£fer Major Anderson to 
obtain necessary supplies of fiood, ftiel or water, and enjoy free communica- 
tion, by post or special messenger, with the President; upon the under- 
standing that the President will not send him reinforcements during the 
same period. We propose to submit this proposition and your answer to 
the President. 

If not clothed with power to make such arrangement, then we trust that 
you will submit our suggestions to the Governor of your State for his 
instructions. Until you have received and oommunicated his response to 


the President, of course your State will not attack Fort Sumter, and the 
President will not offer to reinforce it. 

We most respectfully submit these propositions, in the earnest hope that 
you, or the proper authority of your State, may accede to them. 
We have the honor to be. 

With profound esteem. 

Your obedient servants, 

C. C. CLAY, Jr., 

No. 24. 



Washington, January, 1861. 

Gentlemen : I have just received your communication, dated the 15tli 
instant. You represent, you say, States wbicb have abeady seceded from 
the United States, or wiU have done so before the 1st of February next, 
and which will meet South Carolina in Convention, on or before the 15th 
of that month : that your people feel they have a common destiny with our 
people, and expect to form with them in that Convention a new Confederacy 
and Provisional Government : that you must and will share our fortunes, 
suffering with us the evils of war, if it cannot be avoided, and enjoying 
with us the blessings of peace, if it can be preserved. 

I feel, gentlemen, the force of this appeal, and, so far as my authority 
extends, most cheerftilly comply with your request. 

I am tvot clothed with power to make the arrangements you suggest, but 
provided you can get assurances, with which you are entirely satisfied, that 
no reinforcements will be sent to Fort Sumter in the interval, and that the 




public peace shall ru)t be disturbed by any act of hostility towards South 
Carolina, I will refer your communication to the authorities of South Caro- 
lina, and, withholding their communication, with which I am at present 
charged, will await further instructions. 

Major Anderson and his command, let me assure you, do now obtain all 
necessary supplies of food, (including fresh meat and vegetables,) and, I 
believe, fuel and water; and do now enjoy free communication, by post 
and special messengers, with the President, and will continue to do so, 
certainly, until the door to negotiation shall be closed. 

If your proposition is acceded to, you may assure the President that no 
attack will be made on Fort Sumter, until a response from the G-overnor of 
South Carolina has been received by me, and communicated to him. 
With great consideration and profound esteem, 

Your obedient servant, 

Envoy from the Governor and Council of South Carolina. 

No. 25. 

[extract from message op governor PICKENS TO TH|1 LEGISLATURE, 


After President Lincoln was inaugurated, he sent, in the latter part of 
March, a confidential agent, Mr. Fox, who was introduced by a gallant 
officer of our navy. He said he desired to visit Fort Sumter, and that his 
objects were " entirely pacific." Upon the guarantee of the officer intro- 
ducing him. Captain Hartstene, he was permitted to visit Major Anderson, 
in company with Captain Hartstene, expressly upon the pledge of "pacific 
purposes." Notwithstanding this, he actually reported a plan for the rein- 
forcement of the garrison by force, which was adopted. Major Anderson 
protested against it. I enclose with this a copy of papers, to be used under 
your wise discretion, which wilrplace these facts beyond controversy. 

In a very few days after, another confidential agent. Colonel Lamon, was 
sent by the President, who informed me that he had come to try and 
arrange for the removal of the garrison, and, when he returned from the 
fort, asked if a war vessel could not be allowed to remove them. I replied, 
that no war vessel could be allowed to enter the harbor on any terms. He 


said tie believed Major Anderson preferred an ordinary steamer, and I 
agreed that the garrison might be thus removed. He said he hoped to 
return in a very few days for that purpose. Then, on the 8th of April, Mr. 
Chew, an official in the State Department, was sent, in company with Lieut. 
Talbot, and read to me a paper, which the President of the United States, 
he said, had directed him to read to me, in relation to sending in supplies to 
the fort. He gave me no information as to anything, but only read the 
paper, and said he was not even directed to ask my reply. 

No. 26. 

[official notice from president LINCOLN OF HIS INTENTION TO 


I am directed by the President of the United States to notify you to 
expect an attempt will be made to supply Fort Sumter with provisions only, 
and that if such attempt be not resisted, no effort to throw in men, arms or 
ammunition will be made, without further notice, or in case of an attack 
upon the fort. 

No. 27. 


The above was communicated to us on the evening of the eighth of April, 
by Kobert S. Chew, of the State Department in Washington, and Captain 
Talbot stated that it was from the President of the United States, as did 
Mr. Chew, and was delivered to him on the sixth instant, at Washington ; 
and this was read in their presence and admitted. 



No. 28. 



Fort Sumter, S. C, April 8, 1861. 
To Colonel L. Thomas, Adjutant General U. S. Army : 

Colonel : I have the honor to report that the resumption of work yes- 
terday, Sunday, at various points on Morris' Island, and the vigorous prose- 
cution of it this morning, apparently strengthening all the batteries which 
are under the fire of our guns, shows that they either have just received 
some news from Washington, which has put them on the <iui vive, or that 
they have received orders from Montgomery to commence operations here. 
I am preparing, by the side of my barbette guns, protection for our men 
from the shells which will be almost continually bursting over or in our 

I had the honor to receive, by yesterday's mail, the letter of the Hon- 
orable Secretary of War, dated April 4th, and confess that what he there 
states surprises me very greatly — ^following, as it does, and contradicting so 
positively, the assurance Mr. Crawford telegraphed he was *^ authorized" to 
make. I trust that this matter will be at once put in a correct light ; as a 
movement made now, when the South Jias been erroneously informed that 
none such would be attempted, would produce most disastrous results 
throughout our country. It is, of course, now too late for me to give any 
advice in reference to the proposed scheme of Capt. Fox. I fear that its 
result cannot fail to be disastrous to all concerned. Even with his boat at our 
wdls, the loss of life (as I think I mentioned to Mr. Fox) in unloading 
her, will more than pay for the good to be accomplished by the expedition, 
^ which keeps us, if I can maintain possession of this work, out of position, 
surrounded by strong works, which must be carried to make this fort of the 
'least value to the United States Government. 

We have not oil enough to keep a light in the lantern for one night. The 
boats will have to, therefor^, rely at night entirely upon other marks. I 
ought to have been informed that this expedition was to come. Col. 
Lamon's remark convinced me that the idea, merely hinted at to me by 
Capt. Fox, would not be carried out. 

We shall strive to do our duty, though I frankly say that my heart is not 
in this war, which 'I see is to be thus commenced. That God will still avert 
it, and cause us to resort to pacific means to maintain our rights, is my 
ardent prayer. 

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

Major 1st Artillery, Commanding. 

No. 29. 

[secret OABINET history in reference to fort SUMTER.] 

State of South Carolina, 
Headquarters, August 3, 1861. 

I have every reason, from information received by me in the most con- 
fidential manner, (not forbidding publication, however,) and through. one 
very near the most intimate counsels of the President of the United States, 
to induce me to believe that the following article was submitted, as a proof 
sheet, to Mr. Lincoln and his Cabinet ; that a proclamation, in conformity 
with its general views, was to be issued ; and that a change in the decision 
of the Cabinet was made in one night, when exactly the contrary course was 
adopted. It is asserted in this article, (which, in all probability, is a proof- 
sheet from a confidential New York paper,) that if the President desired to 
excite and madden the whole North to a war of extermination against 
slavery, and in favor of the absolute plunder and conquest of the South, he 
had only to resolve that Major Anderson and his garrison at Fort Sumter 
should perish, as it appears was well known would have to be the case. 
Major Anderson and his men were to be used as fuel, to be thrown in to 
kindle the flames of fanaticism, and to force the Northern people into a 
united war, which would give the Abolition leaders absolute control over the 
Government and country. What must be the feelings of the civilized world, 
when it is known that the President of the United States and his Cabinet 
did so act, and with a view expressly to carry out this policy of exciting the 
whole Northern mind ? 

Major Anderson had officially informed the former Administration that 
he could hold Fort Sumter; and, of course, if the object of that Adminis- 
tration was to betray the Grovernment into the hands of the secessionists, aS/ 
is charged in the article, then Major Anderson must have been a party to 
the treason; and if he informed the new President, on the 4th of March, as 
is said to be the case, that he could not hold the fort, then he acted out his 
part fully in aiding to place Mr. Lincoln and his Cabinet exactly where they 
were, and to compel them to evacuate the fortress, or to use the garrison as 
victims, to be slaughtered on the unholy altar of blind fanaticism and mad 

I know the fact from Mr. Lincoln's most intimate friend and accredited 
agent, Mr. Lamon, that the President of the United States professed a 
desire to evacuate Fort Sumter, and he (Mr. Lamon) actually wrote me, 
after his return to Washington, that he would be back in a few days to aid 
in that purpose. Major Anderson was induced to expect the same thing, as 
his notes to me prove. I know the fact that Mr. Fox, of the United States 


Navy, after obtaining permission from me^ upon the express guarantee of a 
former gallant associate in the navy, to visit Major Anderson " for pacific 
purposes/^ planned the pretended attempt to relieve and reinforce the 
garrison by a fleet, and that Major Anderson protested against it. I now 
believe that it was all a scheme, and that Fox's disgraceful expedition was 
gotten up in concert with Mr. Lincoln, merely to delude the Northern 
public into the belief that they intended to sustain and protect Major 
Anderson, when, in fact, according to the article now published for the 
first time, they decided to do no such thing, and acted with the deliberate 
intention to let the garrison perish, that they might thereby excite the 
North, and rouse them to unite in this unholy and unnatural war, by which 
the desperate and profligate leaders of an infuriated and lawless party might 
gratify their vengeance and lust of power over the ruins of their country, 
and amid the blind passions of a maddened people. 

The document now published, and the peculiar circumstances, show the 
basest and most infamous motives that ever actuated the rulers of any 
nation, except, perhaps, in the days of the first French revolution, when 
history shows that wholesale murder was often planned by insurrectionists 
in Paris, under the deliberate guidance of malignant leaders, whose whole 
objects were universal plunder and murder, in order to exterminate one 
party and ride into power themselves. 

A moment's review of the line of argument pursued in the article, will 
show that the policy finally adopted in regard to Fort Sumter was intended 
and desired by Mr. Lincoln and his advisers to lead to a war, not to bej 
regulated by the rules and usages among civilized and enlightened people,/ 
but to one of rapine, murder, and utter extermination of the people against 
whom it was intended to be waged, founded upon no principle of right, 
seeking not to reestablish any disputed authority, or accomplish any other / 
object than to gratify a lust for power and revenge. y 

For the purpose of directly proving the motives and impulses of the 
United States Government in the inauguration of this war, it is only neces- 
sary to make several extracts jfrom the article in question, as they will serve, 
also, to direct the special attention of the public to those portions which 
most vividly prove the unhallowed purposes of President Lincoln and his 

One of the chief ends of the article seems to have been the proof of 
treason on the part of President Buchanan, and through all of it runs the 
oft repeated "alternative" left them by him, of "permitting Major Ander- 
son and his command to starve within fifteen days, or of ignominiously 
abandoning it to a nest of traitors," &c. This " alternative" is dwelt upon 
as if to direct special attention to it ; and this very " alternative" proves, 
above all the rest, the purpose which they had in view when they adopted 


their j^na? policy. It is argued, and very elaborately, too, that the purpose 
of President Lincoln was to " preserve peace," not to " make war ;" to 
^' protect the sacred Constitution'' confided to his keeping, and to gain over, 
by his avowedly peaceful objects, those who had defied that " Constitution'' 
and broken its laws. It is asserted that President Lincoln could not 
suppress the " tears" of anguish which his signing the order for the evacu- 
ation of Fort Sumter called forth, and it is said, too, that he desired to 
" discharge his duty to humanity ;" and yet he has chosen to ^' dischaorge'' 
that " duty" in the singular way of resolving on a policy which, in his <yum 
toords, he knew would " raise throughout the mighty North a feeling of 
indignation which, in ninety days, would have emancipated every slave on 
the continent, and driven their masters into the sea." 

The sacrifice was made; Anderson and his command were forced to 
become liable as victims of fanaticism ; Fort Sumter was wrapt in flames ; 
and yet, forsooth, they tell us that the only man who could have prevented 
it was '^ resolved to discharge his duty to humanity," and that his purpose 
was "peace" — ^his aversion "war." His "purpose" was changed, and he 
resolved to bring on this unhallowed war. It is a Government actuated 
with these feelings that we are to defend ourselves against; it is this kind of 
war, then, that the people cf the South are to meet ; and, under these 
circumstances, it becomes my duty to publish the article in question, for the 
information of the people of the Confederate States, and for the cool and 
unbiassed contemplation of the civilised world. 

A war thus inaugurated — from such motives and under such circum- 
stances — surely can never meet with the favor of Heaven. A people 
educated and trained up to constitutional liberty can never, for any length 
of time, sustain such a war. 




There are periods in the history of nations and individuals, when the 
force of even this proverb is illustrated. The law, or rather the dendands 
of justice, self-respect, national honor, and the vindication of our nationality 
in the eyes of Europe, all demand that we should retain possession of Fort 
Sumter at any and every sacrifice ; and no man in this nation is more deeply 
impressed with the paramount importance of so doing than is Abraham 
Lincoln, the President of the United States. He feels and recognizes his 
duty in the premises, but the law of necessity steps in, puts at defiance his 
wishes and his duty, and sternly forbids his attempting to hold or relieve 
the noble fortress so promptly snatched from the hands of the rebels and 


traitors of Cliarleston by the timely action of Major Anderson. Buchanai^ 
and his traitor Cabinet had deliberately planned the robbing of our 
arsenals under the superintendence of, and with the connivance of, the 
miserable fellow Floyd, whose portrait now hangs so conspicuously in the 
Rogues' Gallery of our city police; and we all know that when Major 
Anderson took possession of Fort Sumter, Floyd demanded its restoration 
to the rebels, and Buchanan actually yielded to the demand, until 
threatened with danger to his person if he ventured upon any such act of 
treachery. He yielded to a stern necessity ; but in yielding, he determined 
to accomplish by management and finesse what he had not the courage to 
do openly. He accordingly refdsed to permit the fort to be reinforced, as it 
could have been in those days, with the necessary men and stores to enable 
it to hold out for a year, at least, against any force which could be brought 
against it; and it was not until after Morris' Island had been fortified, that 
he sanctioned the abortive attempt at succor made by the Star of the West, 
and even countermanded that order before it was carried into effect. 

From Christmas until the 4th of March, the traitors and rebels of 
Charleston and the cotton States received every countenance and support 
from Mr. Buchanan which could be afforded them ; and when he retired 
from office, on the 4th instant, he gloated over the conviction that he had 
fostered rebellion and treason until they had become so rampant that they 
were beyond the control of his successor. And the one great source of his 
glorification was, that Fort Sumter was without provisions; and that of 
necessity, the garrison must surrender from starvation before it would be in 
the power of the Kepublican Administration to relieve and reinforce it. 

Of course Abraham Lincoln could know nothing of this treason ; and 
when in his inaugural he spoke of occupying the public forts and collecting 
the revenue, he little dreamed that his predecessor had treasonably 
arranged to make the abandonment of Fort Sumter a political necessity. He 
was soon apprised, however, that the treason of his predecessor had cun- 
ningly devised for him the most serious mortification that could be inflicted ; , 
and that he had presented to him the alternative of permitting Anderson 
and his command to starve, or promptly to withdraw them, and ignominiously 
permit the fort to fall into the hands of the rebels. To reinforce the 
garrison, or to supply them with provisions, are equally impossible, for 
James Buchanan and his associate traitors designedly* refused to do so while 
it was in their power to do it, and compelled the Commandant of the fort 
quietly to permit the construction of works in his immediate vicinity and 
under the range of his guns, which would effectually prevent his being 
relieved when an honest man assumed the Government, on the 4th of 
March. Buchanan's final act of treason has been consummated. He 
prevented the last Congress from passing a law giving power to the Execu- 


fcive to call for volunteers to occupy and re-capture tHe public forts and 
arsenals, and He designedly left Fort Sumter in a position which renders 
relief physically impossible without an army of from ten to twenty thousand 
men, and the employment of a naval force greater than we can command ; 
and he and his myrmidons now exultingly and tauntingly say to the 
Republican President: "Do your worst. We have designedly withheld 
from you the means of relieving and holding Fort Sumter, and we invite 
you to the pleasing alternative of permitting Anderson and his command to 
starve within fifteen days, or of ignominiously abandoning it to a nest of 
traitors and rebels, whom we have nursed into existence as the only certain 
mode of destroying the Kepublican party." 

Such are the simple facts of the case £ts they are presented to the new 
President upon his assuming the reins of Government; and we speak 
advisedly and from knowledge when we say that while the country has been 
wickedly made to believe that the time of the Administration has been 
occupied with the disposal of oflGices, four-fifths of all the hours spent in 
consultation by the Cabinet have been devoted to the consideration of the 
all-important question — how to save Fort Sumter, and avert from the 
Government the dishonor of abandoning it to the miserable traitors who, for 
months, have been in open rebellion against the authority of the Govern- 
ment. Generals Scott and Totten, and all the military and naval chiefs at 
Washington, have been consulted -, every plan which military science could 
conceive, or military daring suggest, has been attentively considered and 
maturely weighed, with a hope, at least, that the work of the traitor 
Buchanan was not so complete as he and his associates supposed. But all 
in vain. There stands the isolated, naked fact — Fort Sumter cannot be 
relieved because of the treason of the late Administration, and Major 
Anderson and his command must perish by starvation unless withdrawn. 

What, then, is to be done ? Could the President leave them to starve ? 
Qui bono ? Would the sacrifice of a handful of gallant men to the treason 
of thieves and rebels, have been grateftil to their countrymen ? But, says 
the indignant yet thoughtless patriot, "think of the humiliation and 
dishonor of abandoning Sumter to the rebels.'' We do think of it, and 
weep tears of blood over the humiliation thus brought upon the country by 
the traitor President who has just retired to Wheatland to gloat over his 
consummated treason.* And we are assured, too, and do not doubt the truth 
of the assurance, that when Abraham Lincoln was compelled to yield his 
reluctant consent to this most humiliating concession to successfril treason^ 
he did not attempt to suppress the sorrow and tears which it called forth. 
But he had no alternative. " Necessity knows no law ;" and to save the 
lives of the gallant men who have so long held Fort Sumter against- an 
overwhelming force of heartless traitors and wicked and unprincipled rebels, 



whose treason has been steeped in fraud and thefit^« vulgarly known sa 
" Southern chivalry/' the President' of the United States, in the discharge 
of a duty to humanity, has signed the order for the evacuation of Sumter. 

Had war, not peace, been his object — ^had he desired to raise throughout 
the mighty North a feeling of indignation, which, in ninet|^ days, would 
have emancipated every slave on the continent and driven their masters into 
the sea if needs be — ^he had only to have said : " let the garrison of Fort 
Sumter do their duty and perish beneath its walls ; and on the heads of the 
traitors and rebels of the slavery propagandists be the consequences." Such 
a decision would have carried joy to the bosoms of Phillips and Garrison 
and their fanatical associates, who so justly consider abolitionism and 
disunion synonymous ; but it would have! brought upon the country such 
scenes of horror as the mind shrinks from contemplating. Verily, the 
blood of the martyrs would have been the seed of " negro emancipation.'' 

For every patriot soldier thus sacrificed to the revival of the African 
slave trade and the establishment of a hideous slaveocracy at the South, ten 
thousand negro slaves would have been emancipated, and as many of their 
masters been driven into the ocean to expiate their crimes on earth. 

But Mr. Lincoln desired to rouse no such feeling of revenge among the 
people of the free States. He knew — no man knew better — that he had 
but to hold on to Fort Sumter, agreeably to the plainly expressed will of the 
people, and leave its gallant garrison to the fate prepared for them by the 
rebels and traitors, to insure an uprising which would at once wipe out 
slavery from the face of the country, and with it all engaged in this 
atrocious rebellion against the Government. But his purpose is peace, not 
war. His object is to restore, to re-build and to preserve the Government 
and the Constitution which enacted it ; and his great aim is, while maintain- 
ing the Constitution and enforcing the laws, to bring back good men to their 
allegiance, and leave the thieves, and rogues, and braggarts who compose 
the great mass of the rebels, under the cognomen of " Southern chivalry," 
to the uninterrupted enjoyment of their own precious society and the 
reflections which time must awake even in them. He is mindful of his 
oath, " registered in heaven," to preserve the Constitution and enforce the 
laws ; and he feels that his mission is to reclaim and not extinguish, or most 
assuredly he could have left Fort Sumter to its fate ; and that fate would 
have been speedy, certain and absolute annihilation to the traitors now in 
rebellion against the Government, and to the very existence of the institu- 
tion of slavery on the American continent. But he has been faithful to his 
oath of office and to the Constitution ^ and by yielding to the necessity of 
the case and listening to the cry of humanity, slavery has had accorded to 
it its last victory over freedom and the Constitution of the United States. 

The deed has been accomplished ', the sacrifice has been made ', traitors 


and rebels are a^iii' triumphant; and the Stars and Stripes are again to be 
dishonored in the sight of the nation and of astonished Enrope. The flag 
of the Union is to be pulled down, and the bloody banner of pirates, free- 
booters, rebels and traitors, is to be run up to wave triumphantly over 
Sumter and be saluted from hundreds of guns in the rebel camp, amid the 
cheers of thousands whose senseless gasconade and braggadocio vauntings 
have long since disgusted brave men and honest citizens. And yet, we 
approve the act. A traitor President rendered it a necessity ; and humanity 
demanded that Abraham Lincoln should sacrifice all personal feelings, and 
gracefully yield to that necessity and the deliberately planned treason upon 
which it is based. His countrymen will sustain him in this discharge of 
a humiliating but imperative duty ; but with him they feel tl^at the account 
is now closed with treason. There is nothing now to yield to traitors — 
nothing more to sacrifice in order to give slavery and the slave trade the 
odor of nationality. In future the President of the United States has only 
laws to enforce and a Constitution to sustain ; and woe be to them who 
thwart him in the performance of his duty, and to himself, if he dares to 
shrink from the performance of his whole duty. 

No. 30. 

[governor PIOKENS' speech to the citizens of CHARLESTON, THE 

G-ENTLEMEN : I am in very poor condition for speaking in this open air, 
in such a noisy place, with the passing of vehicles before us. But I thank 
you, gentlemen, for the very kind manner in which you have been pleased 
to welcome me. It is indeed a glorious and exulting occasion that has 
called you together. It is an occasion well calculated to awaken the proudest 
and most glorious feelings that can belong to any free people. The events 
of the last day or two are well calculated to fill the heart with gratitude to 
a superintending Providence for his kindness in protecting so many brave 
and good men from misfortunes incident to all. Although, fellow-citizens, 
I do not pretend to say that the triumphant and victorious results are in any 
degree scarcely attributable to any skill of mine, yet I will say that there 
has been no citizen in this wide spread land who, for the lasi three months, 
has felt such a deep and intense anxiety as I have. There* has not been a 
single day, nor a single night, which has passed over me, that has not filled 
my heart with the deepest anxiety for my beloved country. 


Wlien I reflected that so many brave and patriotio young men^ wlio^ 
called to the rescue of the State^ were placed somewhat under my care, and 
that they composed the flower, the hope and the pride of South Caro- 
lina, I confess to you that often, often at night, my heart has sunk under 
me with the deep responsibilities under which I labored. I know I have 
often been blamed by the impetuouS' and the zealous because I hare not 
been quick enough to attempt an attack upon Sumter, and to bring these 
young men under her raking fire. But, fellow-citizens, believe me when I 
tell you that I abstained because I clearly saw that the day was coming 
when we would triumph beyond the power of man to put us down. 

When I was called upon to preside over the destinies of this State, after 
an absence of three or four years from home, I felt that the heaviest and 
most painful situation of my life had come. But, so far as I^was concerned, 
as long as I was Chief Magistrate of South Carolina, I was determined to 
maintain our separate independence and freedom at any and at every 
hazard. I felt that the State was in a peculiar position; that we were 
immediately and at the first thrown upon the most scientific and expensive 
branches of modem warfare. We were then but ill-prepared to meet the sud- 
den issues that might be forced upon us, so that our cause had to present firm- 
ness and decision on the one side, with great caution and forbearance on the 
other. We were, inlPaot, walking alone over a dangerous gulf. The least 
misstep or want of coolness might have precipitated our great cause into 
endless ruin. With the heavy ordnance we had to procure, and the heavy 
batteries that we were compelled to erect, I felt under these circumstances 
it required time, exact calculation and high science, and it would have been 
madness, it would have been folly, to have rushed the brave and patriotic 
men in my charge upon a work that was pronounced the Gibraltar of the 
South. But when the proper time had come, when I knew we were pre- 
pared, there was not a moment that I was not anxious and ready to strike 
the blow for my State and the independence of my country, let it lead to 
what it might, even if it led to blood and ruin. Thank God the day has 
come — ^thank God the war is open, and we will conquer or perish. They 
have vauntingly arrayed their twenty millions of men against us ; they have 
exultingly, also, arrayed their navy, and they have called us but a handfril of 
men, a weak and isolated State full of pride, and what they call chivalry, 
and with the hated institution of slavery, as they supposed a source of 
weakness, too, but which, in fact, is a source of strength in war; and they 
have defied us. But we have rallied ; we have met them, and met them in 
the issues they have tendered in their stronghold, by which they expected 
to subjugate our country. We have met them and we have conquered. 
We have defeated their twenty millions, and we have made the proud flag 
of the stars and stripes, that never was lowered before to any nation on this 


earth — ^we have lowered it in humility before the Palmetto and the Con- 
federate flags, and we have compelled them to raise by their side the white 
flag, and ask for an honorable surrender. 

They have surrendered, and this proud fortress that was attempted to be 
a fortress for despotism, has now become, as its name indicates, a fortress for 
our independence. Besides, one of their most scientific officers, on the 26th 
of last December, escaped from what he called a weak and untenable fort, 
and went over to this strong and powerful position, because he could main- 
tain himself, and because it was pronounced the key of the harbor. He 
left Fort Moultrie because it was untenable and at the mercy of Sumter. 
He chose Sumter as his fprtress. We took the one he had deserted, and 
with it whipped him to his heart's content. And this proud fort of ours, 
BO consecrated in the history of our country, has again, on the 13th day of 
April, achieved our independence as it did in th^ memorable days of the 
revolution. Yes, it was exultingly proclaimed that we had not the power to 
do it. We were ridiculed, and we were held up as the chivalry of this 
country, and they attempted to throw upon us even scorn and contempt. 

Fellow-citizens, the danger may not yet be over, and I would be the last 
man to counsel any premature or extreme measures. I never would counsel 
my fellow-citizens in the day of proud victory to exhibit anything else but 
a noble forbearance and a manly generosity. The man who defended that 
fort has many of the attributes of a brave soldier. Let us not only show 
that we are a brave people^ but that we are also generous and magnani- 
mous, and that we would not use any extreme or exulting language cal- 
culated to be looked upon as unworthy of a high-toned and chivalrolis 
race. Remember that the danger is not yet over. We, perhaps, may 
have just commenced the opening of events that may not end in pur day 
and generation. Remember that there is now a hostile fleet of sevdn sail 
off your harbor, directed by bitter and malignant foes. They have come 
here proudly scorning and contemning your position. They may attempt to 
enter, but I say to them this night in defiance, let them come, let them 
come. If they do, although we may not wrap them in flames, as we have 
Sumter, we will wrap them in the waves and sink them too deep ever to be 
reached by pity or mercy. 

But three months ago I was ridiculed for attempting to fortify the 
Channel on Morris' Island, and I was ridiculed for attempting to hold Fort 
Moultrie under the fire of Sumter. I was ridiculed, too, for attempting to 
keep out what they call the United States Navy. Many men, although our 
best men, thought it was a fruitless undertaking. But in the short period of 
three months we have the Channel fortified, so that at this moment it defies 
the proud Navy of the United States. 

We have had a great many delicate and peculiar relations since the 20th 


of December last. We took the lead in coming out of the old Unionpand in 
forming this new Confederacy. We therefore had certain relations to 
those who were to come out and stand by our side. We owed a great deal 
to those who were expected to come with us. We were bound to consult 
their feelings and their interests, and it was due that we should be forbear- 
ing as well as free. We are now one of the Confederate States, and they 
have sent us a brave and scientific officer, to whom much of the credit of 
this day's triumph is due. He has led you to victory, and will lead you 
to more if occasion offers. 

I hope on to-morrow, Sabbath though it be, that under the protection of 
Providence, and under the orders of General Beauregard, Commander of 
our forces from the Confederate States, you shall have the proud gratifi- 
cation of seeing the Palmetto flag raised upon that fortress, and the Con- 
federate flag of these free and independent States side by side with it ; and 
there they shall float forever, in defiance of any power that man can bring 
against them. We have humbled the flag of the United States, and as long 
as I have the honor to preside as your Chief Magistrate, so help me G-od, 
there is no power on this earth shall ever lower from that fortress those 
flags, unless they be lowered and trailed in a sea of blood. I can here say 
to you it is the first time in the history of this country that the stars and 
stripes have been humbled. They have triumphed for seventy years, but to- 
day, on the 13th day of April, they have been humbled, and humbled before 
the glorious little State of South Carolina. The stars and stripes have been 
lowered before your eyes this day, but there are no flames that shall ever 
lower the flag of South Carolina while I have the honor to preside as your 
Chief Magistrate. And I pronounce here, before the civilized world, your 
independence is baptized in blood, your freedom is won upon a glorious 
battle-field, and you are free now and forever, in defiance of a world in arms. 

We have gone through, under the guidance of Providence, so far, 
successfully and triumphantly. We have met the danger and the peril 
amid the storm and the booming of cannon ; and yet, wonderftil to say, 
triumphant and glorious as the result has been, there has not been a single 
human being sacrificed in this cause so much identified with the liberty and 
the independence of our country. This must be the finger of Providence. 
We at first stood alone, but we are now in a new Confederacy of States, 
calculated to protect the peace and independence of our country, and at the 
same time to exercise a wise forbearance and generous and manly conduct 
towards all other nations. 

All we ask is plain justice, liberality, honor and truth from others, and 
all we ever shall submit to is, and, I trust, we ever shall extend to all others, 
the liberality, the justice, the forbearance and moderation which become an 
enlightened and a great people. 


In tke events whicH have developed themselves in the last few days, we 
are at least without blame. This fort was held up as the fortress by which 
we were to be subjugated and kept permanently under the control of a 
Government we had repudiated and that was odious to us. We made every 
advance that reasonable men could make to ask for its possession, and there 
was nothing but the desire to subjugate that cduld at all make it an object 
of such importance to be possessed by a Government from which we had 
withdrawn. It was peremptorily refused, and I was informed from the 
highest quarters that it was to be supplied, and that those supplies should 
be sustained, if necessary, by force. 

Under these circumstances, there was no alternative but to make the last 
sad appeal to arms and the God of Battles, and the result of this day has 
triumphantly shown that we were right and our opponents wrong. 

Now, fellow-citizens, go to your homes. Be moderate, and abstain from 
every act and every sentiment of extreme language or unworthy violence. 
Show that you are not only really free, but that you deserve to be free ; 
keep cool, keep firm, keep united. A brave people are always generous and 
always magnanimous. We can meet our foes clad in steel and make them 
feel the weight of our metal upon any field of battle, but at the same time 
we can treat them with that liberality and noble magnanimity that always 
belong to a generous and a brave people. 

I said, on the 17th of December last, on an occasion similar to this, that 
true, South Carolina stood alone, but in this there was nothing to fear, for 
she had on a memorable occasion previous to the declaration of independ- 
ence itself, stood alone and fought the battle of Fort Moultrie, where she 
had sunk the ships of one of the proudest nations of the earth. And I 
said to your that, on the bloody battle field of Churubusco, our noble 
regiment had marched across that field under a fiery storm such as has 
seldom been seen, and that if need be she could now stand alone again and 
fight alone for her independence and her liberty. And now, fellow-citizens, 
on this, the 13th day of April, 1861, she has again fought alone and 
defeated an arrogant and assuming power, and she has gloriously triumphed 
alone, and thus again Fort Moultrie, which was so dear in our independence 
of 1776, has again answered, and is consecrated and baptized over again in 
our independence and freedom of 1861. 

I studiously declined receiving volunteers, who so nobly and so gallantly 
offered themselves, from other States, because we had so many among our- 
selves who desired a place of danger and of peril, and demanded it as a 
right. I desired besides, as we had begun it first and alone without consul- 
tation, and as some said, rashly, I desired under these circumstances, that if 
we had to fight for our independence again that the battle should be fought 
and won by South Carolina alone, upon the same bloody field where she had 


fought for her independence in the days of her first revolution. True, true, 
we owe much to science and to the gallantry of Gen. Beauregard, who was 


sent to us by the President of the Confederate States. We do owe to him all 
honor and all gratitude for his high and manly bearing and noble conduct ; 
but as far as our own companies, our battalions, our regiments and our 
men were concerned, the triumphs of this day have been due literally 
to South Carolina troops alone. I do not mean to say this by way 
of exultation, but as due to the truth of history, and I say it because 
South Carolina has been peculiarly singled out, abused, traduced and 
sneered at as being too weak and too small to defend herself, and was 
accused, too, of arrogance and presumption. But this day shows that, weak ' 
as we were supposed to be, we have defied the power of our enemies, and 
defeated them upon their sought and chosen battle field. 

And now I here, in the name of South Carolina, return the gratitude of 
the State to those gallant and intelligent officers who have come forward 
and so generously served their State in this her day of trial. And they are 
too numerous even to mention in detail ; and I return the thanks and the 
gratitude of the State to those brave, true and patriotic young men who 
have left their business, who have sacrificed their greatest interests to come 
forward and to seek eagerly to defend their country when it was supposed 
that peril, danger, and even death, were inevitable. It is indeed to them 
not only a glorious day of triumph, but I, too, with feelings of deep 
gratitude, am enabled to return them back to their fond homes and kindred 
uninjured, and with the proud consciousness that the honor of their State 
has been unstained, and that their gallantry has been shown by the noble 
manner in which they have manned the batteries for their country's inde- 
pendence. It is to those men and those officers that we owe everything; 
and I do not pretend to claim anything myself, except that iny heart has been 
filled with deep anxiety, and I have spent my nights in painful and constant 
examination of all the details and all the points that might be necessary, not 
only tj save the lives of our brave men, but to defend the independence of 
my country, and when the day had come, at the proper time to strike, and 
to strike for her independence, at any and at every hazard, let the con- 
sequences be what they may. 

We have now taught a great lesson to this Confederacy. It is now clear 
that for all purposes of justice, of equality, and of common liberty, our 
American institutions are as strong as any that have ever been offered for 
the government of man. But when they are perverted to the purposes of 
injustice and fanaticism, of insult and wrong, that those same institutions 
are powerless ; and that when they lose that power which comes from right, 
that as far as the American people are concerned they are impotent and 
imbecile, because the heart, the great heart of the American people in 



reality, beats for what is right. We then stand upon the right. We stand 
upon the inalienable right of a people to choose their own institutions, and 
that all just government rests upon the consent of the governed, and that 
any Government that attempts to exercise power without this consent not 
only is unjust to a brave, true and patriotic people, but that people can defy 
that power, and they can conquer, and they can triumph. 

But let me say again, fellow-citizens, that I am in rather a poor condition 
to speak at this time of night, under the confusion that comes from a noisy 
street, and I return you my thanks, and hope that there may be no events 
to sadden the future, but that the present glorious day will ever be remem- 
bered and sink so deep into the hearts of a grateful people as to show that 
by virtue and firmness, they can not only be free, but can prove to the world 
that they deserve to be free. 

Note. — The above speech was delivered by Governor Pickens, from the 
balcony of the Charleston Hotel, on the evening of the surrender of Fort 
Sumter, to a large assemblage of the citizens of Charleston, and is pub- 
lished just as it was reported at the time for the Charleston Courier, with 
the exception of the long and continued cheering which greeted the speaker 
at every interval of the address. 


'JoA™ 8 733 _691 





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