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Major General Robert Anderson Autographs, Memorabilia & Collectibles

Born: June 14, 1805 in Louisville, Kentucky
Died: October 27, 1871 in Nice, France
Biography | show moreshow less
Robert Anderson (1805-1871) was born in Kentucky to a prominent slaveholding Virginia family. It has been suggested that Secretary of War John B. Floyd - later a Confederate general, sent Anderson to command the federal garrison in Charleston harbor (November 15, 1860) in the expectation that he would readily surrender it. Everything in Anderson's background, including his wife's Georgia family and his friendship with Jefferson Davis, implied southern sympathies, but Anderson's sense of duty was stronger than these proclivities. When South Carolina seceded (December 1860), Anderson moved his troops from Fort Moultrie to the more defensible Fort Sumter. His situation grew steadily worse, but he continued to refuse to surrender. On the morning of April 12, 1861 South Carolina guns began firing on Fort Sumter. On April 14th, Major Anderson accepted the terms of evacuation offered by Confederate General Beauregard. Greeted as a hero upon his return to the North, Anderson was brevetted to brigadier general on May 15, 1861 and given the command of the Department of Kentucky which was merged into the Department of the Cumberland on August 15th. Ill health removed Anderson from field command (October 8, 1861). He retired from the regular army on October 27, 1863 and brevetted Major General. After the recapture of Charleston, on April 14, 1865, Major General Robert Anderson took part in a ceremony in which he raised the same Union flag he had lowered exactly four years earlier.

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