Edited by Gerald Boerner
At the beginning of the American Civil War, the first shots were fired at a fast, steam-driven merchant vessel, the “Star of the West”, carrying both supplies and troops for the Union encampment at Fort Sumter. As they passed the Citadel, the were fired uopn and received several hits. The ship turned around to escape the Confederate fire. Fort Sumter would soon be taken and become a Confederate defense.
The siege had been a tactic used for centuries, especially against European and Middle Eastern cities and castles. During the Civil War, this tactic was extended to blockade most Confederate ports to prevent raw materials and supplies into the port while preventing the export of cash products like tobacco and cotton.
The Confederacy, in order to circumvent this blockade, hired “blockade runners”. These were fast, steam-driven merchant ships that were sometimes successful. But, like the “Star of the West”, they were generally turned away. It is a little ironic that the first case of blockade running should take place by a Union vessel trying to resupply a fort in Confederate territory.
The “Star of the West” ended up being captured by the Confederates an stationed in New Orleans. It eventually met its demise when it was scuttled to block a river to prevent Union crafts from joining the campaign against a southern stronghold.
So, it’s once again time to launch our exploration of today’s topic… GLB
These Introductory Comments are copyrighted:
Copyright©2010 — Gerald Boerner — All Rights Reserved
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Quotations Related to SIEGE:
“We remain essentially a nation under siege.”
— Theodore C. Sorensen
“I’m currently working on a Mind Siege for youth.”
— Tim LaHaye
“The shutting up of a place by troops or ships, with the purpose of preventing ingress or egress, or the reception of supplies; as, the blockade of the ports of an enemy.”
— Definition of Blockade