Communications between Beauregard and Anderson

Lincoln orders the invasion

OFFICIAL RECORDS: Series 1, vol 1, Part 1 (Charleston Campaign)

Page 222 OPERATIONS IN CHARLESTON HARBOR, S. C. Chapter I.

[Inclosure Numbers 1.]

CHARLESTON, S. C., March 26, 1861.

Major ROBERT ANDERSON,

U. S. Army, Commanding at Fort Sumter, Charleston Harbor, S. C.:

MY DEAR MAJOR: Having been informed that Mr. Lamon, the authorized agent of the President of the United States, advised Governor Pickens, after his interview with you at Fort Sumter, that yourself and command would be transferred to another post in a few days, and understanding that you are under the impression I intended under all circumstances to require of you a formal surrender or capitulation, I hasten to disabuse you, and to inform you that our countries not being at war, and wishing as far as lies in my power to avoid the latter calamity, no such condition will be exacted of you, unless brought about as the natural result of hostilities.

Whenever you will be prepared to leave the fort, if you will inform Governor Pickens or myself of your intentions relative thereto, we will be happy to see that you are provided with proper means of transportation out of this harbor for yourself and command, including baggage, private and company property. all that will be required of you on account of the public rumors that have reached us will be your word of honor as an officer and a gentleman, that the fort, all public property therein, its armament, &c., shall remain in their present condition, without any arrangements or preparation for their destruction or injury after you shall have left the fort.

On our part no objection will be raised to your retiring with your side and company arms, and to your saluting your flag on lowering it. Hoping to have the pleasure of meeting you soon under more favorable circumstances,

I remain, dear major, yours, very truly,

G. T. BEAUREGARD.

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[Inclosure Numbers 2.]

FORT SUMTER, S. C., March 26, 1861.

General G. T. BEAUREGARD, Charleston, S. C.:

MY DEAR GENERAL: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your letter of this date, and hasten to say that I needed no denial from you of the expression attributed to you. The moment I heard that you had said that I should not leave this fort without surrendering I remarked that it was not true, and that I knew you had not said so. I am much obliged to his excellency the governor and yourself for the assurances you give me, but you must pardon me for saying that I feel deeply hurt at the intimation in your letter about the conditions which will be exacted of me, and I must state most distinctly that if I can only be permitted to leave on the pledge you mention I shall never, so help me God, leave this fort alive.

Hoping that you do not mean what your words express, and in

Page 223

case cordially uniting with you int he wish that we may have the pleasure of meeting under more favorable circumstances,

I remain, dear general, yours truly,

ROBERT ANDERSON,

Major, U. S. Army, Commanding.

***********************

[Inclosure Numbers 3.]

CHARLESTON, S. C., March 26, 1861.

Major ROBERT ANDERSON,

U. S. Army, Commanding at Fort Sunter, Charleston Harbor, S. C.:

MY DEAR MAJOR: I have the honor to acknowledge your letter of this date, and hasten to disabuse you as to any intention on my part of wounding, in any manner whatsoever, the feelings of so gallant an officer by anything I may have written in my letter of this morning.

I only alluded to the pledge referred to by you on account of the high source from which the rumors spoken of appeared to come, and which, in the eyes of many officers of high standing, might be considered a sufficient reason for executing orders which otherwise they would not approve of; but I regret now having referred to the subject.

I remain, dear major, yours very truly,

G. T. BEAUREGARD.

***************************

[Inclosure Numbers 4.]

FORT SUMTER, S. C., March 27, 1861.

General G. T. BEAUREGARD, Charleston, S. C.:

MY DEAR GENERAL: I hasten, in reply to your kind and satisfactory note of yesterday afternoon, just received, to express my gratification at its tenor. I only regret that rumors from any source made you, for one moment, have the slightest doubt as to the straight path of honor and duty, in which I trust, by the blessing of God, ever to be found.

I am, dear general, yours sincerely,

ROBERT ANDERSON,

Major, U. S. Army, Commanding.

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Page 226

FORT SUMTER, S. C., March 28, 1861.

General G. T. BEAUREGARD, Charleston, S. C.:

DEAR GENERAL: A military irregularity occurred yesterday, which I deem proper to mention to you. I heard, after your flag had returned to the city, that a parcel had been brought in the boat, and left, without my knowledge. Orders have been given which will prevent the recurrence of such an irregularity. Nothing should have been received from the boat except your letter. Trusting that in a few days we shall be placed in a position which will be more agreeable and acceptable to both of us than the anomalous one we now occupy,

I am, dear general, yours, truly,

ROBERT ANDERSON,

Major, U. S. Army, Commanding.

***********************

HEADQUARTERS PROVISIONAL ARMY CONFEDERATE STATES, Charleston, S. C., March 29, 1861.

Major ROBERT ANDERSON, U. S. Army,
Commanding at Fort Sumter, Charleston Harbor, S. C.:

DEAR MAJOR: Your note of yesterday has just been received. I regret to hear of the irregularity complained of. When I approved of the parcel referred to being carried to Fort Sumter, it was supposed, as a matter of course, that it would not be received without your consent. No further privileges of the kind will hereafter be granted.

Hoping that we may soon meet on the same friendly footing as heretofore, I remain, dear major, yours, very truly,

G. T. BEAUREGARD,
Brigadier-General, Commanding.

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EXECUTIVE MANSION, March 29, 1861.

Honorable SECRETARY OF WAR:

SIR: I desire that an expedition, to move by sea, be got ready to sail as early as the 6th of April next, the whole according to memorandum attached, and that you co-operate with the Secretary of the Navy for that object.

Your obedient servant,

A. LINCOLN.

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