In Voices of the Civil War, Episode 7, The Day of the Big Gun Shoot, we visit the Sea Islands of South Carolina, where cotton production flourished during slavery. As the Civil War unfolds, the islands become the site of the Battle of Port Royal on November 7, 1861. Armies attack, slave masters flee, and cotton and slaves remain, once again, left with the dust from where the cannon fire settles. The battle, originally a conflict over Southern seaports, becomes a training ground for future reconstruction and what to do with those enslaved.
Image Credit: Library of Congress, Prints & Photographs Division, [LC-USZC2-3134]