The Civil War, Day by Day

War Is Hell (detail)

Sherman Begins the Carolina Campaign

The first state to secede, South Carolina was considered the heart of the Civil War - and a lasting symbol of rebellion. In the words of a Union infantryman, the North was now determined that “South Carolina, having sown the wind, shall reap the whirlwind.”

Sherman conducted his Carolina Campaign in a manner similar to his “March to the Sea.” He confounded the rebels by splitting his army into two columns - headed respectively toward Charleston and Augusta - before converging them in the direction of Columbia, the state’s capital. Sherman’s objective, other than winning Columbia itself, was “to whip the rebels, to humble their pride, to follow them to their inmost recesses, and make them fear and dread us.”

Through ice, bogs and muddy rivers, Sherman’s spirited soldiers accomplished that mission. They blazed their own trails where no roads existed, torching and looting homes along their path. Indeed, Sherman’s army caused even more destruction in South Carolina than in Georgia.

Thanks to Sherman’s determination, most of Columbia lay in ashes by mid-February. Even Joseph Johnson, a former Confederate commander, admitted that “there had been no such army in existence since the days of Julius Caesar.”

February's Archived Features:

Wednesday February 1, 2017
Thursday February 2, 2017
Friday February 3, 2017
Saturday February 4, 2017
Sunday February 5, 2017
Monday February 6, 2017
Tuesday February 7, 2017
Wednesday February 8, 2017
Thursday February 9, 2017
Friday February 10, 2017
Saturday February 11, 2017
Sunday February 12, 2017
Monday February 13, 2017
Tuesday February 14, 2017
Wednesday February 15, 2017
Thursday February 16, 2017
Friday February 17, 2017
Saturday February 18, 2017
Sunday February 19, 2017
Monday February 20, 2017
Tuesday February 21, 2017
Wednesday February 22, 2017
Thursday February 23, 2017
Friday February 24, 2017



All illustrations by Mort Künstler. Text by Michael Aubrecht, Dee Brown, Henry Steele Commager, Rod Gragg, Mort Künstler, Edward Lengel, James McPherson, and James I. Robertson, Jr. - Copyright © 2001-2016. All Rights Reserved. No part of the contents of this web site may be reproduced or utilized in any form by any means without written consent of the artist.