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[87] of Sumter, which he did on the night of December 26th. Robert Anderson was a Kentuckian, and a West Point graduate of the class of 1827, whose sympathies at the beginning of the war were rather on the side of the South. He continued to occupy with his little force this island fort, while Beauregard, who had resigned from the United States Army and was already commissioned by the seceding States, was building hostile batteries on every side. A crisis in this harbor was fast approaching. The Government of the United States decided to make an attempt to throw men and provisions into the fort, and when this became known, orders were issued from Montgomery for Beauregard to open his batteries. In the gray of the morning at half-past 4 on a certain Friday, April 12, 1861, a single shot fired from the Confederate batteries at Fort Johnson announced that the bombardment of a fort over whose grim walls floated the Stars and Stripes was about to begin. The report of the bursting of this shell startled the country from center to circumference. The Angel of Peace which for months had been hovering over the republic plumed his wings for flight and the Demon of War reigned supreme. President Lincoln followed this act of war by issuing a proclamation calling for seventyfive thousand troops. A prompt response was given to him by the governors of the Northern States; but those of Arkansas, Tennessee, Kentucky, North Carolina, Virginia, and Missouri declined in terms more or less emphatic. The secession of all these States from the Union followed, except Kentucky and Missouri, whose sympathies were divided, and their union with the Government formed at Montgomery, Ala., was speedily made. On April 17, 1861, the Ordinance of Secession was passed by the Virginia Convention, and the day following, Lee had a long interview with his old commander, General Scott. On the 20th the die was cast; his Rubicon was crossed, for the resignation 1 of his commission in the


Arlington, Washington City P. O., April 20, 1861.
Honorable Simon Cameron, Secretary of War.
Sir: I have the honor to tender the resignation of my commission as colonel of the first regiment of cavalry.

Very respectfully your obedient servant, R. E. Lee, Colonel, First Cavalry.

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