The Bombardment of Fort Sumter
Credit: National Park Service
Original Author: Unknown
Created: 1863
Medium: Engraving
Publisher: National Park Service

The Bombardment of Fort Sumter

Smoke rises from Fort Sumter, the U.S. garrison located in the Charleston, South Carolina, harbor, after it came under attack by Confederate forces under the command of G. T. Beauregard on April 12, 1861. After a show of resistance, the federal troops surrendered the next day, evacuating the fort on April 14. The following day President Abraham Lincoln issued a proclamation calling for 75,000 volunteers to put down the Confederate rebellion. The news sent shock waves throughout the country and engendered a mass outpouring of patriotic demonstrations in the North and defiance in the Confederate States. On April 17, delegates to the Virginia Convention of 1861—the body that had been debating for several months whether the state should secede—voted to leave the Union.