On April 12, 1861, forces from the Confederate States of America attacked the United States military garrison at Fort Sumter, South Carolina. Less than two days later, the fort surrendered. Only one (U.S.) soldier lost his life. The battle, however, started the Civil War, the bloodiest conflict in American history.
 
Seven states, including South Carolina, had seceded from the U.S. months earlier. Attempts by President James Buchanan to supply U.S. troops at Fort Sumter had failed. When new President Abraham Lincoln (in office just over a month) told South Carolina’s governor that he, too, would try to supply U.S. troops at the fort, South Carolina demanded all U.S. troops evacuate Fort Sumter immediately. U.S. troops did not evacuate, but, met with overwhelming force, surrendered on April 14. 
 
The Confederate victory at the Battle of Fort Sumter resulted in enormous support for military action from both the North and South. President Lincoln called for 75,000 volunteers to “suppress the rebellion,” while four more states joined the Confederacy.
Civil War
Noun

(1860-1865) American conflict between the Union (north) and Confederacy (south).

Confederate
Adjective

having to do with the Confederate States of America (south) during the Civil War.

demand
Noun

quantity of a product that consumers are willing to buy at a particular price.

enormous
Adjective

very large.

evacuate
Verb

to leave or remove from a dangerous place.

fort
Noun

military outpost, area, or set of buildings.

garrison
Noun

military post, or the soldiers who are stationed there.

governor
Noun

elected or appointed leader of a state or area.

immediately
Adverb

at once or quickly.

military
Noun

armed forces.

overwhelm
Verb

to completely overpower.

rebellion
Noun

organized resistance to an authority.

secede
Verb

to withdraw from part of a union or alliance.

suppress
Verb

to end, prohibit, or not allow certain activities.

surrender
Verb

to give up.

troop
Noun

a soldier.