The governor of South Carolina reached out to General Robert E. Lee, for help with defending S.C. General Lee, already engaged with General Ulysses S. Grant in Virginia, could not provide any reinforcements. General Sherman hated Columbia. Not only was Columbia the birthplace of secession, but it was also a major railroad hub, and distribution center. The old S.C. statehouse was burned by Sherman’s troops in 1865, and stars presently mark where shells hit the unfinished, new state house. Sherman’s attack on Columbia caused chaos, and the complete break-down of law and order.