Bombardment

April 13, 1861[/b]
[size= 13px; line-height: 18px; font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]Throughout the day on April 12 and the morning of April 13, Confederate artillery batteries in Charleston Harbor kept up a steady fire on Fort Sumter. Too steady, in fact, for at one point Confederate General P.G.T. Beauregard beseeched his gunners to slow their rate of fire to conserve ammunition.[/size]

[size= 13px; line-height: 18px; font-family: Arial]Inside the Federal garrison, Major Robert Anderson and his men offered limited return fire. Anderson judged some of his guns as too susceptible to Rebel gunfire, so he didn’t even man them. Artlillermen used only six guns during the battle, firing less than 1,000 rounds.[/size]

[size= 13px; line-height: 18px; font-family: Arial]Confederate artillery, mostly solid shot, gouged and nicked Sumter’s exterior, but did little structural damage to the walls. After all, the United States had built them to withstand the fire from British warships.[/size]

[size= 13px; line-height: 18px; font-family: Arial]The real damage came within the walls, where Confederate shot ignited fires that burned wooden buildings. Oliver Lyman Spaulding, Jr., a captain in the Fourth U.S. Field Artillery, said the fires were especially dangerous as they approached areas where Anderson’s gunners stored gunpowder, and where they had spent the night hurriedly preparing cartridge bags for their guns. Working in the dark, they had spilled a lot of powder, and wind-blown flames threatened to ignite it.[/size]

[color=#ff0000][img]http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-DKXkNkjrK9I/TaWgym1t9FI/AAAAAAAAAOw/1jNlBbJZht0/s400/explosion-fort-sumter.jpg[/img][/color]
A Harper’s Weekly rendition of the chaos inside Fort Sumter.

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[size= 13px; line-height: 18px; font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]Anderson took in the situation, and he ordered all but a few barrels of powder and the prepared cartridges dumped in the water. Spaulding said the men choked on the smoke, and they covered they mouths with handkerchiefs and crawled to embrasures for air.[/size]
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[size= 13px; line-height: 18px; font-family: Arial]Recognizing the futility of this situation, Anderson conferred with some of Beauregard’s aides who[/size] had rowed out to the fort. He declared his intention to surrender unconditionally at 2:30 on the afternoon of April 13.

[size= 13px; line-height: 18px; font-family: Arial]“Anderson has hauled down the United States flag on Sumter and run up a white flag,” Confederate Secretary of War L.P. Walker reported to Beauregard.[/size]

[size= 13px; line-height: 18px; font-family: Arial]Beauregard would formally take possession of the fort the next day. For now, the first battle of the Civil War was over.[/size]


[size= 13px; line-height: 18px; font-family: Arial]Sources:[/size]
[size= 13px; line-height: 18px; font-family: Arial][url=http://ebooks.library.cornell.edu/cgi/t/text/pageviewer-idx?c=moawar&cc=moawar&idno=waro0001&q1=April+13%2C+1861&view=image&seq=324&size=150][i]Official Records of the War of the Rebellion[/i], Series 1, Vol. 1, p. 308.[/url][/size]
[size= 13px; line-height: 18px; font-family: Arial]Olivery Lyman Spaulding, [i][url=http://books.google.com/books?id=pe0tAAAAYAAJ&printsec=frontcover&dq=Oliver+Spaulding+fort+sumter&source=bl&ots=fXybc9w8En&sig=yPf-nYjvX9MladUKFV4lW6SU_Lw&hl=en&ei=fBKlTcqAGpDJswaIxKSWCA&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=1&sqi=2&ved=0CBgQ6AEwAA#v=onepage&q&f=false]The Bombardment of Fort Sumter, 1861.[/url][/i][/size]

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