December 27, 1860: Civil war begins? Castle Pinckney taken by force

Fort Sumter and Castle Pinckney
Fort Sumter (top), Castle Pinckney (bottom)

Telegram, dated Dec. 27, 1860 from Robert Anderson to Colonel S. Cooper:

This afternoon an armed steamer, one of two which have been watching these two forts, between which they have been passing to and fro or anchored for the last ten nights, took possession by escalade of Castle Pinckney. Lieutenant Meade made no resistance. He is with us to-night. They also took possession to-night of Fort Moultrie, from which I withdrew the remainder of my men this afternoon, leaving the fort in charge of the overseer of the men employed by the Engineer Department.

The capture of Castle Pinckney was the first time a federal installation was taken by southern military forces, although there was no actual armed conflict. Nevertheless, the threat of force was used. In a sense this could be regarded as the start of the Civil War.

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One Response to December 27, 1860: Civil war begins? Castle Pinckney taken by force

  1. Pingback: December 29, 1860: Governor Pickens says it’s war. | Seven Score and Ten

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