Greek Fire shells at Charleston: Horrific incendiary or “humbug”?

One of the more controversial aspects of the siege of Charleston was the Federal use of incendiary shells, firing them into the city itself.  Major-General Quincy Gillmore ordered the use of 8-inch shells filled with “Greek fire” when the Swamp Angel bombarded the city in August 1863.   After the Swamp Angel burst, the Federals continuedContinue reading “Greek Fire shells at Charleston: Horrific incendiary or “humbug”?”

150 years ago at Fort Sumter: “The usual firing was renewed…”

For November 11, 1863, the journal entry from General P.G.T. Beauregard’s headquarters read: The enemy’s fleet inside the bar this morning have not materially changed, either in number or character of vessels, since yesterday. Last night a false alarm was created in Fort Sumter by the report of a blue light. The men got uponContinue reading “150 years ago at Fort Sumter: “The usual firing was renewed…””

“delay is annoying, failure would be more so.”: Secretary Wells weighs in on Charleston

November 2, 1863 was an active day around Charleston by any measure.  The Confederate President gave a speech in the city.  The Federals continued their bombardment of Fort Sumter.  One of the Navy’s ironclads suffered a premature explosion during the bombardment.  And just into the evening, a naval officer made a small reconnaissance of FortContinue reading ““delay is annoying, failure would be more so.”: Secretary Wells weighs in on Charleston”