Question of the Week: 2/7-2/13/22

How many Civil War forts (or fort sites) have you visited? Do you have a favorite?

24 Responses to Question of the Week: 2/7-2/13/22

  1. I’ve been to so many I’ve lost count. Fort Monroe is my favorite for its scenery and history, plus I got married there. I also really like Fort McHenry for how it is preserved and interpreted. One of the more underappreciated, yet key, forts is Fortress Rosecrans.

  2. I’ve been to many as well. Locally Fort Niagara and Fort Ontario are nice sites. No Civil War action occurred there. I have been To Fort Rosecrans and the others mentioned by Chris K. Fort Rosecrans is definitely under appreciated. It’s to bad that only part of it is extant.

  3. I have not had the fortune to see many forts but the one that stands out to me is Fort Macon in North Carolina. It is one of the coastal forts that Burnside captured in 1862. Most of the guns are aimed at sea to protect the channel into Beaufort and Morehead City and Union forces crept inside the range of the guns and were able to capture it. Very beautiful scene of the Atlantic from the top.

  4. I’ve been to a lot of forts, from all time periods, they are fun to explore. Favorite CW fort? Tough…. Maybe Ft Fisher NC, huge and impressive, and an incredible combat story there. Plus my friends at NCDAH do a great job there!

    1. I love Fort Fisher,too. Incredible to think that it was attacked twice before fianlly falling in early 1865. It would have been quite a site to see when it was in its full glory.

  5. I’ve also been to a lot of forts. The two near Savannah are favorites. Ft. Pulaski for its state of preservation and it still has the battle damage. Ft. McAllister is completely different from most forts, but it’s a great example of an earthen fort which successfully held off the Union Navy until Sherman captured it.

  6. Fort clinch on Amelia island, Jacksonville FL. West Point , NY is certainly a civil war fort. Also visited one in Buffalo NY and Toronto Canada . Also fort Ticonderoga (last 3 not civil war).

  7. Pickens, Barrancas, Morgan, Gaines (many times), Clinch, Pulaski, and Sumter. I guess my favorite is a tie between Gaines and Clinch. The former because it was my first and I’ve actually had the privilege of camping out inside the fort on several occasions, and subsequently, it’s the one I know the best. The latter because I visited during a living history weekend and it was so neat to see soldiers in blue doing drills on the parade grounds.

    1. Was about to respond, and then found that Sheritta’s list mirrors mine. The best preserved forts in Pensacola, and therefore my favourites, are Barrancas and its Water Battery, and the Advanced Redoubt.

  8. Forts — Donelson in Tennessee is fabulous!! And seemingly all of Vicksburg is a fortress, which I will return to next month — havent made Moble or Charleston but both are on the list!!

  9. My favorite, because it’s close to where I live, is Fort Point in San Francisco, it’s a brick fort built from 1853 to 1861. Never fired a shot in anger. Visiting takes one back to the civil war days. It was almost destroyed because the construction of the Golden Gate Bridge called for its removal. Instead the architect designed an arch in the bridge that went over the top of the fort. It’s scenic and impressive as the ocean waves crash upon the rocks surrounding the fort. On hot days it’s a great place to cool off as the water temperature cools the air.

  10. Two forts immediately come to mind: Fort Snelling, at the confluence of the Mississippi and Minnesota rivers. So much history of the American Indians and the Civil War. Secondly, Fort Morgan at the entrance to Mobile Bay.

  11. On the West Coast I have been to the Presidio in San Francisco, Fort Tejon, and Fort Drum/Drum Barracks. Just thought I’d remind folks there was an even farther western theater…

    1. …and it was at Melbourne, Australia where a Confederate-flagged commerce raider “just showed up” one afternoon and went into drydock at Port of Williamstown to “fix damaged propulsion machinery.” The sympathies at Melbourne were mixed: some folks favoured the Confederacy; others the Union. And zealots belonging to this latter group developed a plan to blow up the CSS Shenandoah… but the plot was not carried out.
      The main result of this “surprise visit” was the immediate construction of Third System-style forts at the entrance to Port Phillip Bay (Fort Queenscliff and Fort Nepean); and the neighbouring State of South Australia, which had not been host to the Shenandoah, but which HAD been visited by ships of the Russian Empire, also decided to construct forts to protect Port Adelaide (Fort Largs and Fort Glanville) AND purchased the gunboat HMCS Protector to operate in support of Largs and Glanville.
      I have visited Fort Glanville. It is the best-preserved seacoast fortification in Australia.
      Oh, sorry Meg. Did you mean California?

    2. Another CW era fort on west coast is Fort Point in San Francisco. It is an excellent example of a brick/mason fort, has good interpretive programs and offers glorious views.

      Side bar…. best descriptive name for a western US Army fort has to be Fort Fizzle near Lolo Mt.

  12. I attended the sesquicentennial reenactment inside Fort Sumter in April, 2011. Pulled sentry duty the second night I was there. It was foggy, and everything above the surviving ground level was invisible. Walking my post at 2:00 A.M., I felt myself slipping back in time to 1861 and that the upperlevels were still there but shrouded in fog. It was eerie to “see” the fort as it was before the first shot was fired. That image will remain with me always.

  13. Fort Harrison (Richmond)

    Fort Stedman

    Fort Sumter

    Fort Moultrie

    Fort Pulaski

    Fort McAllister

    Fort Frederica (Florida)

    Fort Jackson (New Orleans)

    Fort Donelson

    I’m sure I have missed a few minor ones.

  14. I’ve visited at least a dozen. Forts Sumter, Donelson and McAllister are my favorites, mainly because of their significance. (For those not familiar with McAllister, it was a small fort outside Savannah. Its capture by Sherman’s troops allowed him to hook up with the Union Navy and assure Lincoln that the March to the Sea was a success,)

  15. I did not say which was my favorite. I guess the obvious answer is Fort Donelson, because its capture by Grant really unhinged the Confederacy in the West, but I also have to mention the two Georgia forts, Pulaski and McAllister. Pulaski is simply a gorgeous site to visit, and the State of Georgia has done a good job with McAllister.

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