Countdown to the Civil War: April 5, 1861

The 1st Florida Infantry regiment was mustered into the Confederate services at Chattahoochee, Florida.  Their enlistment was for twelve months.

Union troops were evacuated from Fort Quitman in Texas.

Captain Mercer was given command of the steamers Powhatan, Pawnee, Pocahantas and Harriet Lane and ordered to provide assistance to Fox who had the task of delivering supplies to the besieged Fort Sumter. A further order directed a rendezvous off Charleston Bar on the 11th, to await a transport of troops and stores on the 11th.

However, there had been a conflict of communication in this instance. In order to fulfill the April 11th directive, all four steamships should have joined Mercer at the appointed spot. But Commander Gillis of the Pawahatan had earlier been ordered the aid of Fort Pickens in Florida, and by the time Lincoln directed Secretary Seward to countermand those orders, it was too late. Thus the president was trying to resolve this problem, while also seeking to maintain control of Fort Sumter.

Rachel Norcross’s diary, April 5, 1861:

I don’t believe Stuart knows much about farming. He shows no interest in planting. The weather has improved and surely the soil will dry out enough in the next week or so to begin plowing.  Of course, I’m no farmer either, but I worry that the seed we bought last fall will rot in the barn.

Published in: on April 5, 2011 at 6:00 am  Leave a Comment  
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Countdown to the Civil War: April 4, 1861

As dwindling supplies at Fort Sumter threatened the ability of the garrison to maintain their situation, President Lincoln ordered Naval Commander, Gustavus Fox, to re-supply the fort. Should he encounter resistance from the Confederates, he was to utilize U.S. naval ships to respond.  If they were permitted to deliver supplies to the Fort, no naval action should be taken.

Rachel Norcross’s Diary, April 4, 1861

Feeling blue.  While Stuart may have promised to stay until the baby’s born, I doubt I can hold him to it should war be declared.

Published in: on April 4, 2011 at 6:00 am  Comments (4)  
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Countdown to the Civil War: April 3, 1861

The New York Herald reported on this date that the struggle for dominance between the two confederacies (the Confederate States and the Union) had already begun.  The story mentions that Mr. Case had notified Northern customs official that the entry of goods destined for the secessionist states would no longer be accepted.

A Baton Rouge newspaper reported that the flag of the Confederacy had been flown on April 2nd.

A Confederate battery fired on the ship, Rhoda H. Shannon in Charleston Harbor and South Caroline ratified the Constitution of the Confederate States.

Rachel Norcross’s diary, April 3, 1861

The weather continues cool and showery. The only thing Stuart seems interested in is not whether we will go to war, but when! I don’t even have the comfort of visiting the Westbrooks since Elsa has come down with scarlet fever.

Published in: on April 3, 2011 at 11:21 am  Comments (3)  
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