September 28, 1864: Beauregard heading back to Charleston

On September 28, 1864, Brigadier-General Rufus Saxton passed along two intercepted messages from the Confederate lines at Charleston.  The second of these, from Beach Inlet to Battery Bee, read: Captain Smith requests that you will let us know when General Beauregard crossed the bridge. With this bit of information, Saxton asked his superior, Major-General JohnContinue reading “September 28, 1864: Beauregard heading back to Charleston”

150 years ago: Confederate engineers considering forensic ballistics

On this day (February 17) in 1864, Confederate engineer Captain R.H. Lucas provided this report: Charleston, February 17, 1864. Col. D. B. Harris, Chief Engineer of Department: Colonel: In obedience to your order I have just measured the angle at which the enemy’s shell penetrated the house No. 65 King street. I obtained access toContinue reading “150 years ago: Confederate engineers considering forensic ballistics”

Rearming of Fort Sumter continues with second three-gun battery

Last month, I detailed the design and construction of the first, often called the “right” three gun-battery at Fort Sumter.  With the start of the new year, Confederate engineers, at the urgings of the garrison commander Lieutenant-Colonel Stephen Elliott, began work on a second three-gun battery.  In this case, the battery would occupy casemates onContinue reading “Rearming of Fort Sumter continues with second three-gun battery”