Fort Moultrie's history covers more that 220 years of seacoast defense, from the first decisive victory in the American Revolution, to protecting the coast from U-boats in World War II. Maj. Robert Anderson and eighty-five Federal soldiers occupied the fort, built in 1809, before they moved to Fort Sumter in December of 1860. During the first battle of the Civil War (April 12-13, 1861), Confederates at Fort Moultrie fired on Union troops in Fort Sumter. Confederate forces successfully used both forts to protect Charleston from a combined Union navy and army siege from 1863 to 1865. (Fort Moultrie is administered by the Fort Sumter National Monument).
Confederate and South Carolina troops, under the direction of Gen. P.G.T. Beauregard, bombarded the Union garrison commanded by Maj. Robert Anderson beginning April 12, 1861, signaling the start of the American Civil War.