On Monday, April 8, 1861, R. S. Chew, Lincoln's emissary from the State Department, arrived in Charleston and fulfilled his mission, informing South Carolina Governor Francis Pickens that a relief expedition was coming to Fort Sumter. Pickens informed General P. G. T. Beauregard, who placed all Confederate forces in the harbor on alert. The supplies for the fort left New York harbor on this day aboard the Harriet Lane.
Meanwhile, Confederate Secretary of War Leroy Walker approved General Braxton Bragg's request to open fire if an attempt were made to reinforce Fort Pickens at Pensacola.
William T. Sherman had been offered a job in the War Department. On this date he had turned it down, leading many to believe that he planned to join the Confederate Army.