View of Charleston Harbor with Castle Pinckney

Object Number: 
Black ink and wash and graphite on paper
Overall: 5 x 7 3/4 in. ( 12.7 x 19.7 cm ) mat: 11 x 14 in. ( 27.9 x 35.6 cm )
Civil War Drawings Collection. Built in 1810, Castle Pinckney was, by the Civil War, part of a network of defensive positions in the harbor, which included the larger and more strategically placed Fort Sumter and Fort Moultrie. On December 27, 1860, one week after South Carolina seceded from the Union, the fort was surrendered to South Carolina militia by its small garrison, which retired to Fort Sumter. Castle Pinckney became the first Federal military position seized forcefully by a Southern state government. After the subsequent attack on Fort Sumter, the Charleston Zouave Cadets manned Castle Pinckney. One hundred and fifty-four Union Army prisoners of war captured during the First Battle of Manassas arrived at Charleston on September 10, 1861 and were kept at the Charleston City Jail until the lower casements of Castle Pinckney were converted into cells. According to the Charleston Mercury, Richmond officials had selected "...chiefly from among those who have evidenced the most insolent and insubordinate disposition". On September 18, prisoners from the 11th NY Fire Zouaves, 69th NY ("Irish") Regiment, 79th NY Regiment, and 8th Michigan Infantry were transferred to Castle Pinckney. They were allowed to wander during the day and were confined to cells only at night. The Castle quickly proved to be inadequate for permanent confinement and the prisoners were transferred back to the Charleston after only six weeks. After the prisoners were removed, the fort was strengthened. On December 12, the prisoners were transferred back to the island following a fire which had burned a large section of Charleston and damaged the jail. They remained for just over a week with many sleeping on the inner parade ground before being transferred.
Credit Line: 
James B. Wilbur Fund
John T. Kavanaugh Collection, Rutherford, New Jersey, 1945
Due to ongoing research, information about this object is subject to change.
Creative: Tronvig Group