March 21, 1865: “Slavery is dead”, “Who owns him?”, “No one” – A “Grand Jubilee for Freedom” in Charleston

On March 20, 1865, and order went out to Lieutenant-Colonel Augustus G. Bennett, commanding the 21st USCT then garrisoning Charleston, South Carolina: By direction of the colonel commanding the city, you will have your regiment formed in line at 2 p.m. to-morrow to join in the procession of freedom.  Your regiment will have the right,Continue reading “March 21, 1865: “Slavery is dead”, “Who owns him?”, “No one” – A “Grand Jubilee for Freedom” in Charleston”

February 18, 1865: “The City of Charleston and its defenses came into our possession this morning”

While Federal attention was focused on attracting Confederate attention to Bull’s Bay, on Morris Island, Brigadier-General Alexander Schimmelfennig remained alert to the possibility that the Confederates would, as many assumed, slip out of Charleston. As had been the case since 1863, the Federal signal officers on Morris Island were watching, transcribing, and deciphering messages sentContinue reading “February 18, 1865: “The City of Charleston and its defenses came into our possession this morning””

March Haynes: Freed slave and scout for the Federals

While this story does not fit neatly in a sesquicentennial time line, it is mentioned in the 3rd Rhode Island Heavy Artillery’s regimental history alongside events from 150 years ago this month.  So now’s a good time to bring it up!  It involves this man: In 1861, March Haynes was a thirty-five year old slave. Continue reading “March Haynes: Freed slave and scout for the Federals”