Results 1-10of 16 Reviews
January 19, 2011
From journal A Young Couple Goes to Charleston
January 23, 2005
With the North’s withdrawal, the South held the fort until it was finally evacuated on February 17, 1865. During that time, the Fort experienced one of the largest sieges in modern warfare—46,000 shells, estimated at over 7 million pounds of metal, were fired at the fort. During this time, most of the walls were shattered and reduced to rubble.
The Army attempted to put Fort Sumter back together with improvements and additions. It served as a lighthouse station for 21 years, and during that time, the fort was back in disrepair. With the impending Spanish-American War, activity began again at Fort Sumter, including the construction of Battery Huger and installation of two long-range rifles. The fort was not used as a military establishment again until World War II. Afterwards, it became a tourist attraction and a national monument maintained by the National Park Service.
You get a feel for the history by taking a tour of the fort with a guide. A brochure will guide you through the different areas if you’d like to go on your own. At each of the sights, there are markers with lengthy descriptions. Fort Sumter today looks considerably different than it did when it was built. Not only are the walls and many of the rooms "a pile of rocks," as my friend described, but the battery’s size makes it the focus of the tour; and the battery wasn’t built until 1898.
The fort itself is large, and you will see such things as the barracks, cannons, casemates (gunrooms), brick walls, and various ruins. I was most struck by the huge flags flying. They include the U.S. flag, with 50 stars, 33 stars (1861), 33 stars (1865), First National Flag of the Confederacy (1861), South Carolina State Flag, and Second National Flag of the Confederacy (1863). Sadly, I found those to be the most interesting part of this tour.
There is a lot of information to absorb on this tour, so I recommend reading a little about the fort before going, although I’m not sure that would make the tour anymore interesting if you are not into forts, like I discovered while I was there! To get there, you take a 30-minute ferryboat ride where you can see the skyline of Charleston and part of the Battery. The ride itself is worth the price of admission, which is adults $12, seniors $11, $6 for ages 6-11, and free for 5 and under. The tour takes a little over 2 hours, start to finish. Call 843/881-7337 or visit Fort Sumter online.
From journal Charleston: The Big Little City of the South
Montgomery City, Missouri
March 28, 2003
From journal Good 'Ol Southern Hospitality
February 19, 2003
Fort Sumter is where the Civil War actually began. However, the original brick structure crumbled, so only parts of it remain intact. Several years ago, a battery was built in the center of the fort. In the battery now is a gift shop with souvenirs and informational books and videos about Fort Sumter, as well as a museum and restrooms.
In the museum is the original flag flown over Fort Sumter, as well as displays of how the Fort looked during the Civil War. Several artifacts were also displayed.
Around the grounds of Fort Sumter, cannons and other large artillery are on display. The fort also allows a beautiful view of part of Charleston. (While we were there, my daughters loved seeing all the dolphins that surrounded the fort.)
If you have any appreciation for history whatsoever, definitely stop at Fort Sumter. Even though most of the original structure no longer exists, it's still a neat experience to be at a place that holds such an important part of our country's history.
From journal Historic Charleston
by Nahali Croft
May 28, 2002
Confederate forces occupied the fort until 1865, successfully defying the Union's blockade and foiling Federal attempts to capture Charleston. Charleston remained a major port for the Confederacy throughout the Civil War because of the defence at Fort Sumter.
The fort still contains a few large cannons, and projectiles fired during the Civil War are still embedded in Fort Sumter's thick walls.
Park rangers give historical talks and answer questions after the visitors to the fort disembark from the ferry. Much of what the ranger said during the talks were the facts you learn in high school history classes. Nonetheless, many of the tourists who had taken the ferry acted like they were hearing this information for the first time. The ranger was also amazingly patient and composed when one tourist asked about the "Star-Spangled Banner." "No sir, that song was not written here. The battle you are thinking of happened during the War of 1812 at Fort McHenry in Baltimore," the ranger explained.
On the ferry ride back to Charleston, my mother spotted fins surfacing in the water next to us. Sure enough, these dolphins came to put on a show for the returning tourists.
Anyone interested in the Civil War needs to visit the spot where it all began. I appreciated being able to stand in the place that I had studied so many times in history classes.
From journal The Charms of Charleston
Scotland, Scotland, United Kingdom
August 4, 2012
Cedar Rapids, Iowa
August 3, 2003
From journal "Over the Harbor in Mt. Pleasant"
January 28, 2006
From journal Charleston in High Summer
Northern Va Suburbs of DC, Virginia
December 12, 2001
When the civil war ended Fort Sumter presented a very desolate appearance. The Army attempted to repair the walls. But it really wasn't used as a military institution.
It was used during WWI and WWII. In 1948 it was taken over by the Park Service and became a national monument.
From journal "Charming Charleston SC
July 7, 2003
From journal Loving the Lodge