Southeastern North Carolina Lewises in the Civil War

North Carolina seceded from the Union on May 20, 1861, after President Lincoln requested the State to provide troops to quell the rising rebellion in South Carolina. Since North Carolinians had so many relatives in South Carolina, the response was a resounding "Hell No!" to the Union. Even before secession, many counties began forming companies of troops to support North Carolina's pending secession.

Just in the four counties identified below, more than twenty-five companies were assembled prior to the formal secession vote, offering more than 2500 men to the State as soon as the war started. These companies were assembled into North Carolina Regiments (ten companies or more, from various counties) and/or Battalions (less than ten companies). Some NC Regiments were provided to the Confederacy and ultimately assembled into Brigades. These Brigades fought all over the Confederacy, with most of the NC Regiments seeing action in Virginia, Tennessee, Mississippi, and South Carolina. Some NC Regiments and Battalions never left the State, providing excellent defense of North Carolina coastal areas.

In Southeastern North Carolina, there were many forts guarding the entrances to the Cape Fear River. In Brunswick County there were at least four key forts: Fort Anderson (originally named Fort St. Philips) at Brunswick Town, Fort Johnston in Smithville (now Southport), Fort Caswell at the mouth of the Cape Fear River, and Fort Campbell on present-day Long Beach. In New Hanover County, Fort Fisher guarded the other entrance to the Cape Fear River, keeping Wilmington as the very last Confederate port open until the bitter end, falling on January 15th, 1865, after a tremendous bombardment by Union Naval troops and attack by more than 20,000 Union army troops. 

 Brunswick County

New Hanover County

 Columbus County

Bladen County

Civil War Sites

Companies Formed

Companies Formed

Companies Formed

Companies Formed

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