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September 21, 2017, 6:33 am

Fort Sumter

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Fort Sumter

Fort Sumter

On April 12th, 1861, shots fired by Confederate soldiers could be heard for miles around Fort Sumter, and the Civil War began. Federal forces did not respond immediately as a result of being unprepared for such an attack. When they did fire the first shot on Confederate soldiers, they proceeded slowly and conservatively. With their supplies of ammunition and food diminished, the Union forces surrendered only thirty three hours after the battle began. Confederate forces occupied the fort for almost four years. For two consecutive years the fort was attacked by Federal ground and naval forces in an attempt to regain control of this crucial site of the Confederate defense. By 1864 no useful large cannon remained at the fort and a small battalion of Confederate infantry maintained resistance from the underground tunnels connecting the bomb shelters and the rifle stilts. By the time Charleston fell to Union troops and they regained control of the fort, nothing but smashed bricks and rubble remained.

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