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12 Series I Volume I- Serial 1 - Charleston

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Page 12 OPERATIONS IN CHARLESTON HARBOR, S. C. Chapter I.


Numbers 6. Reports of Major Robert Anderson, First U. S. Artillery, of the bombardment and evacuation of Fort Sumter.

STEAMSHIP BALTIC, OFF SANDY HOOK,

April 18, [1861]-10.30 a.m.-via New York.

Having defended Fort Sumter for thirty-four hours, until the quarters were entirely burned, the main gates destroyed by fire, the gorge walls seriously injured, the magazine surrounded by flames, and its door closed from the effects of heat, four barrels and three cartridges of powder only being available, and no provisions remaining but pork, I accepted terms of evacuation offered by General Beauregard, being the same offered by him on the 11th instant, prior to the commencement of hostilities, and marched out of the fort Sunday afternoon, the 14th instant, with colors flying and drums beating, bringing away company and private property, and saluting my flag with fifty guns.

ROBERT ANDERSON,

Major, First Artillery, Commanding.

Honorable S. CAMERON,

Secretary of War, Washington.

NEW YORK, April 19, 1861.

COLONEL: I have the honor to send herewith dispatches Nos. 99 and 100,* written at but not mailed in Fort Sumter, and to state that I shall, at as early a date as possible, forward a detailed reports of the operations in the harbor of Charleston, S. C., in which my command bore a part on the 12th and 13th instant, ending with the evacuation of Fort Sumter, and the withdrawal, with the honors of war, of my garrison on the 14th instant from that harbor, after having sustained for thirty-four hours the fire from seventeen 10-inch mortars and from batteries of heavy guns, well placed and well served, by the forces under the command of Brigadier-General Beauregard. Fort Sumter is left in ruins from the effect of the shell and shot from his batteries, and officers of his army reported that our firing had destroyed most of the buildings inside Fort Moultrie. God was pleased to guard my little force from the shell and shot which were thrown into and against my work, and to Him are our thanks due that I am enabled to report that no one was seriously injured by their fire. I regret that I have to add that, in consequence of some unaccountable misfortune, one man was killed, two seriously and three slightly wounded whilst saluting our flag as it was lowered.

The officers and men of my command acquitted themselves in a manner which entitles them to the thanks and gratitude of their country, and I feel that I ought not to close this preliminary report without saying that I think it would be injustice to order them on duty of any kind for some months, as both officers and men need rest and the recreation of a garrison life to give them an opportunity to recover from the effects of the hardships of their three months' confinement within the walls of Fort Sumter.

I have the honor to be, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

ROBERT ANDERSON,

Major, First Regiment Artillery, &c.

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*See April 10 and 11, "Correspondence and Orders," post.

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Page 12 OPERATIONS IN CHARLESTON HARBOR, S. C. Chapter I.

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