Still more strenuously does he insist upon the value of Castle Pinckney. “Castle Pinckney, a small casemated work, perfectly commanding the city of Charleston, is in excellent condition with the exception of a few repairs, which will require the expenditure of about five hundred dollars.... It is, in my opinion, essentially important that this castle should be immediately occupied by a garrison, say, of two officers and thirty men. The safety of our little garrison would be rendered more certain, and our fort would be more secure from an attack by such a holding of Castle Pinckney, than it would be from quadrupling our force. The Charlestonians would not venture to attack this place [Moultrie] when they knew that their city was at the mercy of the commander of Castle Pinckney.... If my force was not so very small I would not hesitate to send a detachment at once to garrison that work.” So full of zeal was Major Anderson that the Government should without delay augment its moral and material strength, that in default of soldiers he desired to improvise a garrison for it by sending there a detachment of thirty laborers in charge of an officer, vainly hoping to supply them with arms and instruct them in drill, and hold the work until reenforcements should come. Having in detail proposed protective measures, he again, in the same letter, forcibly presents the main question of the hour to the Secretary of War, whose weakness and treachery were as yet unsuspected.
[Sidenote] Anderson to Adjutant General,
Nov. 23, 1860. W.R. Vol.
I., pp. 75-6.
Fort Sumter and Castle Pinckney must be garrisoned immediately if the Government determines to keep command of this harbor. I need not say how anxious I am—indeed determined, so far as honor will permit—to avoid collision with the citizens of South Carolina. Nothing, however, will be better calculated to prevent bloodshed than our being found in such an attitude that it would be madness and folly to attack us.... The clouds are threatening and the storm may break upon us at any moment. I do, then, most earnestly entreat that a reenforcement be immediately sent to this garrison, and that at least two companies be sent at the same time to Fort Sumter and Castle Pinckney—half a company, under a judicious commander, sufficing, I think, for the latter work.... With these three works garrisoned as requested, and with a supply of ordnance stores, for which I shall send requisitions in a few days, I shall feel that, by the blessing of God, there may be a hope that no blood will be shed, and that South Carolina will not attempt to take these forts by force, but will resort to diplomacy to secure them. If we neglect, however, to strengthen ourselves, she will, unless these works are surrendered on their first demand, most assuredly immediately attack us.
[Sidenote] Adjutant-General to Anderson,
Nov. 24, 1860. W.R. Vol.
I., p. 76.