Photo Courtesy of Army Quartermaster Museum, Fort Lee, Virginia.
On the afternoon of February 8, 1863 the six-gun sidewheeler Commodore McDonnough steamed up the Folly River and dropped anchor. A small band of soldiers, led by Major General John G. Foster, disembarked onto a narrow strip of dry sand called Folly Island. Slowly thrashing through a jungle of undergrowth and pine woods, the reconnoitered the Confederate positions on Morris Island, just north of Folly. Within a few months, this quiet, largely uninhabited island would become the camp of thousands of soldiers, determined to wrest Charleston from the South. The Union Army had come to Folly Island.