-- Dilemmas of Compromise --

Friday February 15, 1861

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Confederate Government Resolves to Take Forts

[Stars and Bars]

The provisional Confederate government, after assuming responsibility for questions concerning forts, arsensals, and other federal property within the states of the Confederacy, resolved on February 15 that "immediate steps should be taken to obtain po ssession of forts Sumter and Pickens . . . either by negotiations or force." It authorized President-elect Davis to carry the resolution into effect. Under this authority, Davis took charge of the military operations in Charleston Harbor on February 22, 1861. Ironically, Davis and Anderson were old friends. During the Black Hawk War, the two young West Point graduates were in charge of guarding the captured Indian leader.

Bibliography: Rhodes, History, 3: 295; Long, Civil War, p. 36; Davis, Jefferson Davis, pp. 50-51, 292.

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