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 Post subject: Re: The American Civil War, Day by Day
PostPosted: Mon Jan 03, 2011 1:37 am 
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January 3, 1861 Thursday
Sen. Crittenden proposed to the Senate that his compromise plan, which never got out of committee, be submitted to a public referendum. This unusual idea received some support but Republicans were opposed. Congressmen from fourteen border and mid-South states met and appointed a committee to consider compromise plans. The South Carolina commissioners left Washington for Charleston, their mission a failure. The War Department canceled the order to remove guns from Pittsburgh to Southern forts; the order had been issued by former Sec. of War Floyd. Meanwhile, rumors spread of armed bands being organized to capture Washington.

Elsewhere, the Delaware legislature rejected proposals that their state join the South, after hearing from a Mississippi representative. There had been little doubt that Delaware would remain with the North. Delaware was technically a slave state, but the institution was rare by 1861. There were 20,000 blacks living there, but only 1,800 of them were slaves--Delaware was industrializing, and most of the commercial ties were with Pennsylvania. In 1790, 15 percent of Delaware's population was enslaved, but by 1850 that figure had dropped to less than three percent. In the state's largest city, Wilmington, there were only four bondsmen. Most of the slaves were concentrated in Sussex, the southernmost of the state's three counties The State Convention of Florida assembled at Tallahassee. Georgia state troops under the command of Francis “Frank” Bartow seized Fort Pulaski near the mouth of the Savannah River. A strong fort planned for a large garrison, Pulaski was manned only by an ordnance sergeant and a civilian. The state had decided to take over this important post before there was any danger of Federal occupation.

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Blood 'n Guts hisself, a land lovin' pirate. Show me some arty tubes and we'll charge 'em.
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 Post subject: Re: The American Civil War, Day by Day
PostPosted: Mon Jan 03, 2011 8:57 pm 
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January 4, 1861 Friday
It was becoming the practice, now, for the deep Southern states to seize Federal forts and arsenals. The U.S. Arsenal at Mount Vernon, Ala. near Mobile was seized by Alabama State troops, on orders from Alabama Governor A. B. Moore. The Arsenal contained 20,000 arms, 1,500 barrels of gun powder (150,000 lbs.), several cannons, and a large amount of munitions.

Some citizens observed a fast day proclaimed earlier by President Buchanan.

Salmon P. Chase, prominent Republican from Ohio, arrived in Springfield at the invitation of Mr. Lincoln; the main subject, of course, was a discussion of Cabinet appointments.

South Carolina Convention appoints T. J. Withers, L. M. Keitt, W. W. Boyce, J. Chesnut, Jr., R. B. Rhett, Jr., R. W. Barnwell, and C. G. Memminger, delegates to the Southern Convention.

Delegates to the Florida Secession Convention met in Tallahassee on January 3rd to take up the question of secession. Edmund Ruffin of Virginia arrived on the 3rd to confer with Governor Madison Starke Perry and members of the convention. Governor Perry and his advisors on January 4 made the decision to seize Federal properties in Florida.

The U.S. Sec. of War had received the following report regarding the number of Federal arms located within the state of Florida:

SIR: I have the honor to acknowledge the reference to this office of a letter from the honorable Messrs. Yulee and Mallory, of the Senate, dated 2d instant, and, in compliance with their request, to report that there is only one arsenal in the State of Florida, and that is one of deposit only. It is called Apalachicola Arsenal, and is situated near the town of Chattahoochee, at the junction of the Flint and Chattahoochee Rivers. The arms, ammunition, &c. now at that post, are one 6-pounder iron gun and carriage, with 326 shot and canisters for the same, 57 flintlock muskets, 5,122 pounds of powder, 173,476 cartridges for small-arms, and a small quantity of different kinds of accouterments.

The ordnance and ordnance stores at the other military posts in Florida are as follows:

At Fort Barrancas. – Forty-four sea-coast and garrison cannon and 43 carriages, viz: Thirteen 8-inch columbiads and howitzers; two 10-inch mortars, and eleven 32, ten 24, five 18, and thre 19-pounder guns; 3,152 projectiles for the same; 20,244 pounds of powder, and 2,966 cartridge bags.

At Barrancas Barracks. – A field battery, consisting of four 6-pounder guns and two 12-pounder howitzers, with carriages, and six caissons, about 300 projectiles and 270 cartridge bags for the same.

At Fort Pickens. – Two hundred and one sea-coast and garrison cannon, viz: Four 10-inch columbiads and four 10-inch mortars, fifty 8-inch and flanking howitzers, and two 42, sixty-two 32, fifty-nine 24, six 18, and fourteen 12 pounder guns, and 128 carriages for the same; also 4,974 projectiles of all kinds; 3,195 grape-shot, loose; 500 24-pounder stands canister shot; 12,712 pounds of powder, and 1,728 cartridge bags.

At Fort Taylor. – Sixty sea-coast and garrison cannon, viz: Fifty 8-inch columbiads and ten 24-inch flanking howitzers, with caissons, and four 12-pounder field howitzers, mounted; 4,530 projectiles, suited to the guns; 34,459 pounds of powder; 2,826 cartridge bags; 962 priming tubes, and 759 cartridges for small arms.

At Fort McRee. – One hundred and twenty-five sea-coast and garrison cannon, including three 10-inch and twelve 8-inch columbiads; twenty-two 42, twenty-four 32 and sixty-four 24-pounder guns, with 64 gun carriages; 9,026 projectiles, and 1,258 stands of grape and canister, and 12,298 pounds of powder.

At Key West Barracks – Four 6-pounder field guns and carriages; 1,101 rounds of shot and other ammunition for the same; 171 pounds of powder; 158 cartridge bags; 538 priming tubes; 7 rifles, and 2,000 rifle cartridges.

At Fort Marion. – Six field batteries, of four 6-pounder guns and two 12-pounder howitzers, and twenty sea-coast and garrison cannon, viz: Four 8-inch howitzers and sixteen 32-pounder guns; also, six 6-pounder old iron guns, and 31 foreign guns of various calibers; 2,021 projectiles; 330 rounds of fixed ammunition; 873 priming tubes, and 931 pounds of powder. Also, 110 muskets, 103 rifles, 118 Hall’s carbines, 98 pistols, 147,720 cartridges for small-arms, and 15,000 percussion caps.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
WM. MAYNADIER,
Captain of Ordnance.

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 Post subject: Re: The American Civil War, Day by Day
PostPosted: Mon Jan 03, 2011 9:53 pm 
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Very important supplies for the Confederates.

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 Post subject: Re: The American Civil War, Day by Day
PostPosted: Tue Jan 04, 2011 12:58 pm 
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Also on this date, 150 years ago....

....the report of the hiring of the vessel "Star of the West" to be used for a covert operation to supply men and arms to reinforce Fort Sumter in Charleston Harbor:

"NEW YORK, January 4, 1861.

Lieutenant General WINFIELD SCOTT,
Washington, D. C.:

DEAR GENERAL: I had an interview with Mr. Schultz at 8 o'clock last evening, and found him to be, as you supposed, the commission, and together we visit Mr. M. O. Roberts. The latter looks exclusively to the dollars, whilst Mr. S. is acting for the good of his country. Mr. R. required $1,500 per day for tend days, besides the cost of 300 tons of coal, which I declined; but, after a long conversation, I became satisfied that the movement could be made with his vessel, the Star of the West, without exciting suspicion. I finally chartered her at $1,250 per day. She is running on the New Orleans route, and will clear for that port; but no notice will be put in the papers, and persons seeing the ship moving from the dock will suppose she is on her regular trip. Major Eaton, commissary of subsistence fully enters intro my views. He will see Mr. Roberts, hand him a list of the supplies with the places where they may be procured, and the purchases will be made on the ship's account. In this way no
public machinery will be used.

To-night I pass over to Governor's Island to do what is necessary, i.e., have 300 stand of arms and ammunition on the wharf, and 200 men ready to march on board Mr. Schultz's steam-tugs about nightfall to-morrow to go to the steamer, passing very slowly down the bay. I shall cut off all communication between the island and the cities until Tuesday morning, when I expect the steamer will be safely moored at Fort Sumter.

I have seen and conversed with Colonel Scott, and also saw your daughter at your house. After leaving you, I obtained the key of the outer door of the office, but could nowhere find the key of your door or of mine, so failed to get the chart. This is of little moment, as the captain of the steamer is perfectly familiar with the entrance of Charleston.

I telegraphed you this morning as follows:

Arrangements made as proposed; to leave to-morrow evening; send map.

I will now leave the office, where I am writing, to proceed to the island.

Very respectfully, General, your obedient servant,
L. THOMAS,
Assistant Adjutant-General."

Source: Official Records, Volume 1, pp 130-131

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 Post subject: Re: The American Civil War, Day by Day
PostPosted: Tue Jan 04, 2011 2:52 pm 
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So Winfield Scott had a son who was colonel in the regular army? I wonder what happened to him. I'm sure he must have risen to general in the war.

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 Post subject: Re: The American Civil War, Day by Day
PostPosted: Tue Jan 04, 2011 4:22 pm 
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Drex wrote:
So Winfield Scott had a son who was colonel in the regular army? I wonder what happened to him. I'm sure he must have risen to general in the war.


You raised an interesting question....I did some searching and found this in google book entitles "Civil War high commands By John H. Eicher, David J. Eicher"

http://books.google.com/books?id=Fs0Ajl ... &q&f=false

Henry Lee Scott (son-in-law to Winfield Scott? his daughter married into the same surname?) He was a Colonel in April 1861. "Alleged to have leaked Union war plans to the CSA" !!!!! The whole thing sounds really interesting.

[edit} as a side note - Winfield Scott had (3) sons, 2 died as children. The other was a son from his first marriage...but there appears to be little information on him and does not look like he was in the military. He had several daughters.

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 Post subject: Re: The American Civil War, Day by Day
PostPosted: Tue Jan 04, 2011 4:58 pm 
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I have to question that. I found a site at http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cg ... id=8055495 that has a photo of his impressive tombstone in Baltimore, Md. He lived from 1814 - 1886 and was his father-in-law's aide in both the Mexican-American and Civil Wars. When Winfield retired, Henry was made Colonel and Inspector General but served less than a year before retiring after 29 years of service. He was brevetted a brigadier in 1865 for "long and faithful service" but declined the honor. Not something done for someone who leaked secrets to the enemy. However, where there is smoke there might be fire.

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 Post subject: Re: The American Civil War, Day by Day
PostPosted: Tue Jan 04, 2011 9:44 pm 
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I found similar information.....makes me wonder what happened!

Sorry nsimms......for hijacking your thread!

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 Post subject: Re: The American Civil War, Day by Day
PostPosted: Wed Jan 05, 2011 12:42 am 
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No problem Mark - you're on target anyway.

January 5, 1861 Saturday
The merchant vessel Star of the West left New York for Fort Sumter with supplies and 250 troops. The ship had been substituted for the naval vessel Brooklyn.

Senators from Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, Texas, Arkansas, and Florida held a caucus in Washington, advising their states to secede and form a Southern Confederacy.

Meanwhile, the fear of attack in Washington had lessened due to defensive measures taken. Fort Washington, below the capital on the Maryland side of the Potomac, was garrisoned by a small force, 40 Marines from Washington Navy Yard under Captain Algernon S. Taylor, USMC.

The South Carolina Convention adjourned subject to recall. The senate of Missouri resolved that the Committee on Federal Relations report a bill calling for a state convention.

Alabama moved again. This time troops took possession of Forts Morgan and Gaines at the entrance to Mobile Bay, vital points for the protection of Mobile.

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 Post subject: Re: The American Civil War, Day by Day
PostPosted: Wed Jan 05, 2011 11:28 pm 
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January 6, 1861 Sunday
The Apalachicola, Fla. Arsenal was taken by Florida troops, was added to the list of seized Federal properties. Gov. Madison S. Perry of Fla. had learned on Jan. 4 that authorities in Washington had sent a telegram ordering Ordnance Sergeant Edwin Powell and his three man garrison at the Apalachicola Arsenal in Chattahoochee to destroy the more than 5,000 pounds of gunpowder stored there. He decided to launch an immediate move against the facility before such action could be taken. He summoned Col. William Gunn of the 7th Regiment, Florida Militia, to Tallahassee from his home in Quincy and hand-delivered written orders for what would become the first military encounter of the Civil War in Florida:

Sir: Reposing special confidence in your patriotism, discretion and integrity, I hereby authorize and empower you to raise a company of picked men and proceed to the Apalachicola River and seize and possess the arsenal, arms, ammunition, buildings and other property now in the possession of the General Government, and retain the same subject to my orders. You are requested to act with secrecy and discretion. You are further authorized to call out the Seventh Regiment Florida Militia for all aid in its power to render that you may deem necessary to retain occupation of said arsenal.

Gunn immediately returned to Quincy where, early in the evening of the 5th (150 years ago today), he ordered out the Quincy Young Guards, a local militia company:

...Whereupon the drum was beat soon after supper, & the Young Guard with Gunn, Lieut. Col. Porter Scott, Col. Stockton, Gillis (advocate), Robt. Booth (Surgeon), went off in hacks, carriages &c....

The Young Guards would soon become Company G, 1st Florida Infantry (C.S.), but their departure from Quincy on the night of the 5th was distinctly non-military. They were armed, but went off riding in a variety of horse-drawn conveyances.

Their objective, the Apalachicola Arsenal, had been built on high ground near the confluence of the Flint and Chattahoochee Rivers on the Florida-Georgia line in 1834-1839. It took its name from the Apalachicola River, which is formed by the convergence of the Chattahoochee and Flint, not the city of Apalachicola which is located downstream at the river's mouth.

The complex consisted of an armory, barracks, workshops, storage buildings, guard house and officer's quarters that surrounded a four-square acre parade ground. These were connected and surrounded by a 9-foot high and 30-inch thick brick wall that was pierced by gates at the centers of its east and west sides. In addition, two gunpowder magazines had been built a short distance away from the main quadrangle. For safety reasons, they were slightly away from the primary arsenal grounds.

The entire arsenal had been built using locally-manufactured bricks and was considered one of the finest pieces of construction in Florida. To protect the gunpowder, weapons and more than 173,000 prepared cartridges stored there, it was manned by an ordnance sergeant and three workmen.

Portions of the facility still survive today on the grounds of Florida State Hospital in Chattahoochee. (hopefully continued tomorrow as this Florida Civil War blog posts its updates later)

A pro-Union mass meeting, like many on both sides, was held in Chicago. Mayor Fernando Wood of New York proposed that if the Union were dissolved New York should become a free city, trading with both North and South. Gov. Thomas H. Hicks of Maryland strongly opposed secession in a message to the people. Lincoln, in Springfield, was concerned about the possibility of having as a Cabinet member Simon Cameron, Pennsylvania politician with a somewhat unfavorable reputation in certain quarters.

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Blood 'n Guts hisself, a land lovin' pirate. Show me some arty tubes and we'll charge 'em.
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 Post subject: Re: The American Civil War, Day by Day
PostPosted: Fri Jan 07, 2011 12:46 am 
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January 7, 1861 Monday
Fort Marion at St Augustine, taken by Florida troops, was added to the list of seized Federal properties. Most of these had been unmanned or, at best, occupied by an ordnance sergeant and/or caretaker. The Mississippi State Convention began deliberating at Jackson and the Alabama State Convention at Montgomery. It seemed only a matter of days before other “Gulf Squadron” states of the deep South would join South Carolina in secession. Gov. John Letcher of Virginia in a message to the legislature at Richmond criticized the action of South Carolina, but opposed allowing Federal troops to cross Virginia to coerce any Southern state. He called for a national convention. At Washington the House of Representatives passed a resolution approving Maj. Anderson’s shift from Fort Moultrie to Fort Sumter. A special session of the Tennessee legislature met to consider holding a secession convention.

The venerable John J. Crittenden spoke for his Compromise in the U.S. Senate. He saw wrong on both sides and strongly opposed secession. “I am for the Union; but, my friends, I must be also for the equal rights of my State under this great Constitution and in this great Union.” He proclaimed that residents of his state of Kentucky had as much right to take slaves into the territories as those who were opposed had a right to go without them.

Georgia Senator Robert Toombs gave his farewell speech to the U.S. Senate. In it, he warned that if northern states refused to grant southern states their constitutional rights, "We shall then ask you ’Let us depart in peace.’ Refuse that, and you present us war. We accept it; and inscribing upon our banners the glorious words, ’Liberty and Equality,’ we will trust in the blood of the brave and the God of Battles for security and tranquility."

Read the rest of the story on the seizure of the Apalachicola Arsenal at Chattahochee, Fla. at this excellent blog written by historian Dale Cox.
http://civilwarflorida.blogspot.com/201 ... icola.html

Union forces temporarily abandon Fort Fauntleroy, New Mexico Territory with Navajo Indian action nearby. 1st Lt W H Lewis led Company G 5th Infantry and Company A 10th Infantry into action with 4 Indians killed, 17 Indians captured. (Just for information purposes, there was a Capt. Nicodemus operating in the New Mexico Territory during this time period but there was no report of how scaly he was).

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Blood 'n Guts hisself, a land lovin' pirate. Show me some arty tubes and we'll charge 'em.
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 Post subject: Re: The American Civil War, Day by Day
PostPosted: Fri Jan 07, 2011 3:21 pm 
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FYI:

http://www.civilwarsignals.org/1st/nicodemus/nic.html

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 Post subject: Re: The American Civil War, Day by Day
PostPosted: Fri Jan 07, 2011 9:26 pm 
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January 8, 1861 Tuesday
Sec. of the Interior Jacob Thompson of Mississippi, last Southerner in the Cabinet, resigned because of Buchanan’s policies. He felt, also, that he had been kept in the dark as to Fort Sumter plans. But Thompson and others, learning of the sailing of Star of the West, telegraphed Charleston she was coming. Chief Clerk Moses Kelly filled out the term as Acting Secretary of the Interior.

President Buchanan sent a depressing special message to Congress. He felt the present situation was beyond Executive control and he commended the question to Congress, saying, “let us pause at this momentous point and afford the people, both North and South, an opportunity for reflection….Let the question be transferred from the political assemblies to the ballot box,” before the crisis ended in war. He called for prompt action by Congress. He advocated the Compromise of Crittenden, dividing the territories along the old Missouri Compromise Line.

Alabama Convention receives Commissioner from South Carolina. North Carolina Senate Bill arming the State passes the North Carolina House: yeas 73, neas 26. Virginia Legislature passes anti-coercion resolution.

Governor Madison Starke Perry of Fla. ordered the occupation of Fort Clinch (Amelia Island) by Florida troops. He also authorized Colonel William Chase to seize the Federal forts at Pensacola if he can. At Pensacola, Fla., Federal troops fired during the night upon about twenty men who had approached Fort Barrancas. The party fled. In the Secession Convention, the Ordinance of Secession was introduced for debate. The efforts of George T. Ward of Leon County and Jackson Morton of Santa Rosa County to defer secession until Georgia and Alabama have seceded were defeated.

The story continues from the Florida Civil War blog with the seizure of Fort Marion, Fla. on the 7th:

The Apalachicola Arsenal having been successfully taken on the morning of the 6th, Florida's military forces wasted no time in moving against other military facilities in the state. The next facilities to fall were St. Francis Barracks and Fort Marion in St. Augustine.

Fort Marion was the name applied during the 19th and early 20th centuries to the Castillo de San Marcos, a massive Spanish fortification that is now a national monument on the waterfront of St. Augustine. Begun in 1670, the fortress is the oldest masonry fort in the continental United States. Although it was nearly 200 years old in 1861, it was still a U.S. Army installation.

The seizure took place on the morning of January 7, 1861, when a company of state militia appeared at the St. Francis Barracks, now the headquarters of the Florida National Guard, and took Ordnance Sergeant Henry Douglas into temporary custody. They demanded from him the keys to the fort and magazine:

I demanded them to show me their authority. An aide-de-camp of the governor showed me his letter of instructions authorizing him to seize the property, and directing him to use what force might be necessary.
Ordnance Sergeant Henry Douglas
January 7, 1861

Perhaps the most surprising part of the move by state forces to seize the Castillo is that the U.S. Army had knowledge of the plan at least four days earlier, but took no action either to prevent or even to alert Douglas to the possibility.

On January 3, 1861, when the George militia moved to seize Fort Pulaski at Savannah, Captain W.H.C. Whiting, then at Fort Clinch in Fernandina and commanding the forts along the Georgia and Florida Atlantic Coast, learned that a move was also afoot to seize the fort at St. Augustine:

On Saturday, 3d instant, the regular mail-boat from Fernandina to this place (i.e. Savannah), by which I intended to travel, was taken off line by the governor of Florida and ordered, as I was informed, to St. Augustine, with a force to seize the ordnance mounted in the water battery of Fort Marion for the purpose of arming Fort Clinch.
Captain W.H.C. Whiting, U.S. Engineers
January 7, 1861

Whiting, who would later become a Confederate general, did not write a report describing the situation until the 7th, the same day that the state troops appeared in St. Augustine. While state authorities had taken control of the telegraph lines and he could not send a wire through to Washington, he made no effort to warn the ordnance sergeant commanding in St. Augustine that something was afoot.

As a result, Douglas was taken by complete surprise. Faced with an overwhelming force, he could only submit:

Upon reflection I decided that the only alternative for me was to deliver the keys, under protect, and demand a receipt for the property. One thing certain, with the exception of the guns composing the armament of the water battery, the property seized is of no great value. The gentleman acting under the governor’s instructions has promised to receipt to me for the stores.
Ordnance Sergeant Henry Douglas
January 7, 1861

The Florida troops quickly took possession of the fort and, despite Whiting's claim to the contrary, seized an impressive quantity of military ordnance and supplies in the process. Included were four 8-inch guns in the water battery, sixteen older 32-pounders, six field batteries made up of twenty-four 6-pounders and two 12-pounders, more than 300 muskets, rifles and carbines, 931 pounds of gunpowder, 15,000 percussion caps and 147,720 fixed cartridges for small arms.

Later that day the Florida Secession Convention reconvened in Tallahassee and, after considerable debate, passed the following resolution by an overwhelming margin:

WHEREAS, All hope in the preservation of the Federal Union upon terms consistent with the safety and honor of the slaveholding States, has been finally dissipated by the recent indications of the strength of the anti-slavery sentiment of the free States; therefore, be it Resolved, By the People of the State of Florida in convention assembled, that as it is the undoubted right of the several States of the Federal Union, known as the United States of America, to withdraw from the said Union, at such time and for such cause or causes as in the opinion of the people of each State, acting in their sovereign capacity, may be just and proper, in the opinion of this Convention, the causes are such as to compel the State of Florida to proceed to exercise that right.

The state would secede from the Union three days later.

As President Buchanan reaches the final turning point of his Presidency and the upcoming American Civil War, it is worthwhile to take a look at who he was and how he got there. This is from Wikipedia:

James Buchanan, Jr. (April 23, 1791 – June 1, 1868) was the 15th President of the United States, from 1857 to 1861, and the last president to be born in the 18th century. He is the only president from Pennsylvania and the only president who was a life-long bachelor.

Buchanan was a popular and experienced state politician and a very successful attorney before his presidency. He represented Pennsylvania in the U.S. House of Representatives and later the Senate, and served as Minister to Russia under President Andrew Jackson. He also was Secretary of State under President James K. Polk. After turning down an offer for an appointment to the Supreme Court, he served as Minister to the United Kingdom under President Franklin Pierce, in which capacity he helped draft the controversial Ostend Manifesto.

After unsuccessfully seeking the Democratic presidential nomination in 1844, 1848, and 1852, "Old Buck" was nominated in the election of 1856. Throughout most of Franklin Pierce's term he was stationed in London as a Minister to England and therefore was not caught up in the crossfire of sectional politics that dominated the country. Buchanan was viewed by many as a compromise between the two sides of the slavery question. His subsequent election victory took place in a three-man race with Fremont and Fillmore. As President, he was often called a "doughface", a Northerner with Southern sympathies, who battled with Stephen A. Douglas for the control of the Democratic Party. Buchanan's efforts to maintain peace between the North and the South alienated both sides, and the Southern states declared their secession in the prologue to the American Civil War. Buchanan's view of record was that secession was illegal, but that going to war to stop it was also illegal. Buchanan, first and foremost an attorney, was noted for his mantra, "I acknowledge no master but the law.”

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Blood 'n Guts hisself, a land lovin' pirate. Show me some arty tubes and we'll charge 'em.
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 Post subject: Re: The American Civil War, Day by Day
PostPosted: Sat Jan 08, 2011 2:30 am 
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Nicodemus never did mention service in the New Mexico Territory; interesting.

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 Post subject: Re: The American Civil War, Day by Day
PostPosted: Sat Jan 08, 2011 10:46 pm 
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January 9, 1861 Wednesday
Star of the West Fails To Relieve Fort Sumter
Mississippi Becomes Second State To Secede

At Jackson, Miss., the State Convention voted 84 to 15 to secede. Several opponents changed their votes when the overwhelming majority sentiment was expressed. A measure offered by a Whig anti-secessionist to attempt to settle things within the Union had been previously rejected 78 to 21. As the vote to secede passed, “A great wave of excitement swept the audience, and grave and dignified men, swayed by a common impulse, joined in the deafening applause. In an instant the hall was a scene of wild tumult” and outside a shout went up. An immense blue silk banner with a single white star was carried through the crowd. This flag was said to have inspired the patriotic song of the South, “Bonnie Blue Flag.” Comedian Harry Macarthy composed the verses. A second state had joined South Carolina.

At Charleston the scene was different. About midnight of Jan. 8 Star of the West arrived off Charleston Harbor with men and supplies for Fort Sumter. At daylight the vessel under Capt. John McGowan crossed the bar and steamed up the main channel toward the fort. A steamer ahead of them fired rockets and signal lights. About a mile and three fourths from Forts Sumter and Moultrie a masked battery on the north end of Morris Island opened upon the Federal vessel. Most of the shots missed, but a ricochet struck in the fore-chains. Lieut. Charles R. Woods, commanding the troops on Star of the West, said that, being unable to get to the fort, they had to turn about before they were cut off. The vessel pulled out of the harbor undamaged, and headed back for New York.

The first shots had been fired in Charleston Harbor and many considered them the first serious shots of the war, though there was actually no war yet. The flag on Star of the West was answered by running up the garrison flag at Fort Sumter. The men manned the parapets, ready for action. Some officers at the fort were incensed that Maj. Anderson did not let them fire; there was chagrin that the relief ship had turned away so readily. But the officers varied in their opinions. Anderson did protest to Gov. Pickens the firing of two batteries, Morris Island and Fort Moultrie, upon an unarmed vessel bearing the U.S. flag. Pickens replied that the sending of reinforcements would be considered a hostile act as South Carolina was independent now, and that attack must be repelled. Anderson immediately sent messages north. Charleston itself was in an uproar; it seemed for a moment that real war had come and many people welcomed it. But when it was over Fort Sumter was still in Federal hands and the problem remained much as it had been, only more agitated.

Thirty Marines from Washington Navy Yard under First Lieutenant Andrew J. Hays, USMC, garrisoned Fort McHenry, Baltimore, until U.S. Army troops could relieve them.

Virginia Legislature passes a resolution asking that the status quo be maintained.

Federal troops in Pensacola make ready to defend Federal forts against confiscation by Florida troops. In Tallahassee, the final debate on the Ordinance of Secession concludes in late afternoon. Delegates agree to postpone a final vote until tomorrow.

An Alabama statewide convention was secretly in session and voted to go open session with their proceedings.

Fort Johnson, N.C. was seized by citizens of Smithville.

_________________
Gen Ned Simms
1/1/XIV Corps/AotC
Blood 'n Guts hisself, a land lovin' pirate. Show me some arty tubes and we'll charge 'em.
VMI Class of '00


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