served, though mere boys, to the end of the war. Young Proctor
, after promotion to a lieutenancy for gallant conduct at Fredericksburg
, was wounded and lost a foot at the battle of Chancellorsville
. Governor Pickens
also presented a commission as first lieutenant in the 1st South Carolina Battalion of Light Artillery to the general's elder son, Rene T. Beauregard
, who was promoted, first captain and then major of that command.
He had previously served as a private in the Washington Artillery, from New Orleans, whose record throughout the war was surpassed by that of no other organization.
About the 5th of May General Beauregard
received a telegram from the Secretary of War
, requiring his immediate presence at the seat of government.
On his arrival at Montgomery
he was informed that the President
desired to send him to Pensacola
, to co-operate with General Bragg
, and assist him in the execution of a plan—much thought of at the time—the main object of which --was the taking of Fort Pickens
It must be remembered that no sooner had the State of Alabama
withdrawn from the Union
than the Federal
forces stationed at Pensacola
, in imitation of Major Anderson
, evacuated Fort Barrancas
, on the mainland, to occupy Fort Pickens
, on Santa Rosa Island
—a much stronger, and in every way a more inaccessible, work.
The fort being in Confederate waters, the authorities at Montgomery
feared that its occupancy by the enemy would imply weakness on the part of our government, and might possibly shake the confidence of the people.
It had, therefore, been determined to pursue a course towards Fort Pickens
similar to that which had been so successfully adopted against Fort Sumter
Hence the desire for the services and experience of him who, after thirty-three hours of bombardment, had forced the surrender of Major Anderson
and his command.
During a long conference held with President Davis
and the Secretary of War
, General Beauregard
stated his several objections to being sent to Pensacola
In the first place, General Bragg
, not having sought his assistance, might perhaps be offended at such apparent interference, and ask to be relieved from his command, which would occasion no small annoyance to General Beauregard
, and be very detrimental to the cause.
In the second place, he was strongly of opinion that there was no advantage to be gained by taking possession of Fort Pickens
; that to hold it