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[323] Governor of South Carolina would also refrain from an attack upon it; but upon this being transmitted to the President, he at once authorized his secretary to state that Major Anderson had made no request for reinforcements, but should his safety require them, every effort would be made to supply them. On the 30th, Colonel Hayne presented his demand; but, as in the case of the commissioners originally sent by the State, the negotiations were not satisfactory, and an able and conclusive reply from the Secretary of War, Mr. Holt, was transmitted to the envoy of the Governor, which placed the whole subject beyond discussion.

It was now clear that the government at Washington intended to relieve Fort Sumter at its option. For the State, but one course, consistent with the attitude assumed by her, was to be pursued, and that was to close the harbor to all relief to the fort. Increased activity prevailed everywhere, and the scene that was daily presented from the parapet of Fort Sumter was well calculated to discourage all hope of peace. Troops and munitions of war moved to various points, and the garrison earnestly watched the daily progress of works intended for their destruction. The buoys had been taken up; the lights were extinguished, and pilots forbidden to bring ships bearing the United States flag into the harbor. Within Fort Sumter, as far as their limited means would allow, a similar activity was manifested by the garrison. Guns of heavy calibre were raised to the parapet, and placed in position; others were mounted in the casements below, and every resource was made use of to strengthen and arm the work, and to make effective the scanty material in their possession. Meantime, a provisional government had been organized by the States which had passed the Ordinances of Secession. Jurisdiction over the public property in the harbor of Charleston was assumed by it, and Brigadier General P. G. T. Beauregard, an officer of engineers, who had resigned his commission in the Army of the United States, was commissioned by the Confederate Government, and sent to Charleston to take command of the military operations. Daily reports were sent to Washington, by Major Anderson, of the condition of Fort Sumter and its garrison, and the government was fully informed of their pressing wants. On the 1st of February, 1861, in anticipation of the future, the women and children belonging to the garrison were sent northward. And thus, openly, without disguise of any sort, warlike preparations went on, from day to day, until the fort was surrounded by batteries, all bearing upon it and upon the channel by which any relief could reach it, and ready to open at any moment.

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