On March 15, 1862, the U.S. War Department issued General Orders, No. 26 announcing the creation of the Department of the South commanded by Major General David Hunter.
General Orders, No. 26
War Dep’t, Adjutant General’s Office,
Washington, March 15, 1862.
The States of South Carolina, Georgia, and Florida, with the expedition and forces now under Brig. Gen. T. W. Sherman, will constitute a military department, to be called the Department of the South, to be commanded by Major-General Hunter.
By order of the Secretary of War:
L. THOMAS, Adjutant-General.