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Heritage Auction has a really poignant artifact for sale for their December Internet auction.  This Bible was carried by a soldier at Sailor’s Creek.

Here are images of the marker dedication ceremonies at Charleston this past weekend commemorating the life and legacy of escaped slave – turned Union Civil War hero – Robert Smalls.

Photos courtesy: Michael Boulware Moore

The above images appeared in the Fall 2011 issue of The Civil War Monitor.

One of my very favorite places to vacation in the South is Beaufort, South Carolina.  These pictures speak for themselves.

If you love American history – especially Revolutionary War and the American Civil War – then a visit to historic Charleston, South Carolina must be on  the top of your list. I vacation there frequently and it is very hard for me to go back home. Here’s a photo gallery of some of my recent historic Charleston pictures.

When visiting Charleston, South Carolina, make sure to stop and visit the gorgeous Magnolia Plantation and Gardens.

Their web site says:

Founded in 1676 by the Drayton family, Magnolia Plantation has survived the centuries and witnessed the history of our nation unfold before it from the American Revolution through the Civil War and beyond. It is the oldest public tourist site in the Lowcountry, and the oldest public gardens in America, opening its doors to visitors in 1870 to view the thousands of beautiful flowers and plants in its famous gardens. So join us here at Magnolia Plantation to experience the beauty of its gardens and its rich history today.

Here is a photographic gallery of a recent visit to Magnolia.

On a recent visit to Charleston visit our family stayed at the Andrew Pinckney Inn.  It is a very nice place and centrally located to everything downtown.  Their web site says:

The Andrew Pinckney Inn, in historic downtown Charleston, features 37 beautifully appointed guest rooms, 3 townhouse suites, and our majestic St. Philip’s Suite. Decorated in an elegant yet casual West Indies style, our rooms feature all of the modern amenities a distinguished traveler has come to expect.

Meticulously restored, the Andrew Pinckney Inn is a Charleston boutique hotel surrounded by over 300 years of history. The hotel gracefully couples old world charm and sophisticated amenities. Overlooking the historic Charleston market area in the heart of the historic district, the Andrew Pinckney Inn is truly “Charleston’s Historic Charm…Redefined”.

Here are some pics of the Inn.

A walk of historic Charleston would not be complete without stopping by to visit St. Michael’s Church. It has a rich history.


A visit to Fort Sumter is a must-stop for any Civil War buff when visiting Charleston. About Fort Sumter, the National Park Service says:

Decades of growing strife between North and South erupted in civil war on April 12, 1861, when Confederate artillery opened fire on this Federal fort in Charleston Harbor. Fort Sumter surrendered 34 hours later. Union forces would try for nearly four years to take it back.

One of the reasons I love Beaufort, South Carolina is because former slave and Congressman Robert Smalls lived in Beaufort before the Civil War, on 511 Prince Street. I love his true heroic story from the Civil War.

Robert Smalls (1839 – 1915) was born in Beaufort, South Carolina, on April 5th, 1839, in a slave cabin behind his mother’s master’s house on 511 Prince Street. In 1862 he escaped from Charleston harbor aboard a steamer called the Planter with his family and several friends too. The boat had to pass by five Confederate check-points and then surrender its contents to the northern Naval fleet out in the harbor where it was blockading the important southern port.

His escape succeeded and Robert would meet Abraham Lincoln personally a couple weeks later. Lincoln was quite impressed with a black man (slave) who had learned how to pilot and navigate the coastal waterways around Charleston. Lincoln rewarded Smalls handsomely with bounty-money and a commission into the Union Navy as a captain of a vessel – the Planter! He was the first black Captain of a U.S. Naval vessel.

Three months later Smalls would visit Abraham Lincoln in the Whitehouse to plead the opportunity for blacks to fight for the Union. Just days afterwards Lincoln approved the raising of the first black troops in the Blue uniform and Robert Smalls was instrumental in helping to start the 1st South Carolina Infantry of U.S. Colored Troops.

Smalls would go on to pilot the Planter for the Union cause and take pace in several important engagements around Charleston and the Sea Islands. After the Civil War he was elected among a few other blacks as they became the freshman class of blacks to serve as U.S. Congressmen.

Robert Smalls’s story is an amazing one of courage, determination, sacrifice, risk and reward – from slavery to Congressman!

Here is a photo gallery of various images I have taken related to Smalls and Beaufort.

Corner of Carteret and Craven Streets in Beaufort. Site of former slave mart.

Corner of Carteret and Craven Streets in Beaufort. Site of former slave mart.

Model of The Planter; the ship Robert Smalls escaped upon.

Desk belonging to Smalls as a Congressman.

Images of Robert Smalls.

Bust of Robert Smalls; Tabernacle Baptist Church in background.

Robert's master was John and Henry (s0n) McKee. They are buried in nearby St. Helena Parish in Beaufort.


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About CWG

The Civil War Gazette (CWG) is published by Kraig McNutt, Director of The Center for the Study of the American Civil War. The CWG was first launched on to the World-wide Web in 1995.

The Civil War Gazette allows the first-hand participants - both common soldier and civilian - to tell the story of their experience of the Civil War from their perspective; through letters, diaries, newspapers articles, and other authentic first-hand accounts.

Many items posted to The Civil War Gazette often corresponds to the exact day the item was originally written during the Civil War. Think of The Civil War Gazette as the daily newspaper for all-things Civil War with accounts from those who experienced this great war as participants.

What can one find on the CWG?

  • Many original letters from soldiers, their loved ones, and excerpts from diaries and journals.
  • Excerpts and selections from period newspapers and popular print resources.
  • Poems and literary excerpts, many authored by the soldiers themselves.
  • Excerpts from original documents and Official Reports.
  • Authentic pictures. photos, drawings, sketches and artwork of Civil War soldiers, camps, battlefields, buildings, etc.
  • Book reviews, web site reviews, reviews of software, multimedia, pop culture resources like movies, documentaries and even music.
  • Support battlefield preservation


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