With these three works garrisoned as requested, and with a supply of ordnance stores, for which I shall send requisitions in a few days, I shall feel that, by the blessing of God, there may be a hope that no blood will be shed, and that South Carolina will not attempt to take these forts by force, but will resort to diplomacy to secure them. If we neglect, however, to strengthen ourselves, she will, unless these works are surrender on their first demand, most assuredly immediately attack us. I will thank the Department to give me special instructions, as my position here is rather a politico-military than a military one.
I presume, also, that the President ought to take some action in reference to my being a member of the Military Academy Commission, which is to reconvene in the city of Washington in a few days.
Unless otherwise specially directed, I shall make future communications through the ordinary channels.
I am, colonel, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Major, First Artillery, Commanding.
Washington, November 24, 1860.
Major ROBERT ANDERSON,
First Regiment Artillery, U. S. A.,
Commanding Fort Moultrie, Charleston, S. C.:
MAJOR: The Secretary of War desires that you will communicate, with the least delay practicable, the present state o your command, and everything which may relate to the condition of the work under your charge and its capabilities of defense, together with such views as you may have to suggest in respect to the same. He desires to be informed whether, in view of maintaining the troops ready for efficient action and defense, it might not be advisable to employ reliable persons, not connected with the military service, for purposes of fatigue and police.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
CHARLESTON, S. C., November 24, 1860.
Colonel R. E. DE RUSSY,
Commanding Corps of Engineers, U. S. A., Washington, D. C.:
COLONEL: I have the honor to inform you that, yesterday, at the request of Major anderson, now in command of Fort Moultrie, I accompanied him on a visit to the other forts in the harbor, viz, Fort Sumter and Castle Pinckney, for the purpose of examining their condition and capacities for defense. Fort Sumter, having all the arches of the second tier turned, and a commencement made in laying the flagging; the traverse circle of the first tier reset; the flagging inside of the circles, on one face, laid ready for the guns to be mounted; preparations completed for mounting all the guns of this tier as fast as the flagging is laid; the floors in one barrack laid; officers' quarters completed; the whole of the barbette tier ready for the armament, presented an excellent appearance of preparation and strength equal to seventy per cent. of its efficiency when finished.
In the opinion of Major Anderson it is ready for, and ought to receive,