the ordinance of secession was adopted, and the president of the convention, ex-Gov. George W. Crawford
, briefly and impressively announced that the State of Georgia
was now free, sovereign and independent.
As soon as the result was announced to the great throng assembled outside, the people applauded, the cannon thundered a salute, and that night Milledgeville
was brilliantly illuminated.
Similar demonstrations occurred in all the large towns and cities of the State
Having resumed its original position as a sovereign, independent republic, Georgia
began preparing for the maintenance of independence by force of arms.
The presence of troops of the United States
within the State
's borders became inadmissible because they were a menace to its freedom.
The United States
property within the State
was a question for settlement between the governments, but soldiers in arms, subject to the orders of the United States
, must be withdrawn.
The arsenal, situated near Augusta
, consisting of a group of buildings on the summits of salubrious sand-hills, contained a battery of artillery, 20,000 stand of muskets, and a large quantity of munitions, guarded by a company of United States troops under command of Capt. Arnold Elzey
, of Maryland
The occupation of this arsenal was necessary.
The sentiment favoring the seizure was increased by the arrival, on January 10th, of an ordnance detachment, which had been ordered by Col. H. K. Craig
, chief of ordnance
, to report at that place after it had been ejected from the Charleston
arsenal by the State
authorities of South Carolina
. Captain Elzey
, in his report to Washington
of the transfer, said:
This movement on the part of Colonel Craig I believe to be wholly unauthorized by the war department.
It was injudicious and impolitic, added much to the excitement in Augusta, and was very nigh producing serious difficulties in this quarter, the people believing it to be