moved his force over to Fort Pickens
on one of the vessels in the harbor under Commodore James Armstrong
, commandant at the navy yard, and on January 12, 1861, the flag was lowered at the navy yard, which, with all the fortifications and munitions of war on the mainland, went into the possession of the State
The two vessels in the harbor, the Supply
, steamed out, remaining in the possession of the United States
The eighty men under Slemmer
at Fort Pickens
maintained a defiant attitude.
On the night of the 12th a deputation went to the fort, consisting of Captain Randolph
, Major Marks
and Lieutenant Rutledge
, and demanded the peaceable surrender of Pickens
to the governors of Alabama
, but Slemmer
declined to recognize the authority of those officials.
On the next night a small party of armed men from the mainland reconnoitered on the island, and a few shots were fired from the fort.
On the 15th Col. W. H. Chase
, who as an officer of the United States army had built the forts and was thoroughly familiar with all the defenses about Pensacola bay
, visited Pickens
in company with Capt. Ebenezer Farrand
, who had been second in command at the navy yard, and renewed the request for surrender, but this and a third demand a few days later were equally without success.
Nothing remained to the State
forces except to make an assault; but the Florida
senators in Washington
and other representative men, including Senator Jefferson Davis
, telegraphed advising that no blood should be shed.
In the meantime the government at Washington
was sending reinforcements to Forts Taylor
, and on January 21st Capt. Israel Vogdes
, with a company of artillerymen, was ordered to sail on the sloopof-war Brooklyn
to reinforce Fort Pickens
On being informed of the latter overt act, Senator Mallory
telegraphed to Mr. Slidell
that it would doubtless provoke an attack upon the fort by the force of 1,700 men then assembled at the land defenses under Colonel Chase
, and he urged