Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Southerners decide to withdraw from Congress

  • In Washington, US Congressmen and Senators from the South meet in Georgia Senator Albert Gallatin Brown's room to decide whether to wait until March 4 (Lincoln’s Inauguration Day) before leaving their seats and thus stop hostile legislation against the South or to go home now. They vote to withdraw immediately, and the Mississippi Representatives withdraw from the Congress. These Southern Congressmen and Senators were motivated primarily, according to Senator Thomas Bragg of North Carolina, by a sense of honor. They also discuss the formation of a provisional national government and agree that Senator Robert Toombs of Georgia will be president and Jefferson Davis will be general-in-chief of the Army. On the US Senate floor, Senator William Seward (R-NY) wisely wondered, “I do not know what the Union would be worth if saved by the use of the sword.”/1861
  • In Pensacola, Florida, the state military has seized all the military installations around Pensacola Bay including Fort Barrancas, its barracks, the naval yard on the mainland, and Fort McRee at the entrance to the Bay. The only installation left is Fort Pickens where Federal forces numbering 81 men under US Lieutenant A.J. Slemmer moved two days ago. Soon the Republic of Florida military will demand the surrender of Fort Pickens. This will create a second dangerous hotspot for the Federal government along with Fort Sumter./1861

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