Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Some Notes from the Fort Fisher Walk

I went to Fort Fisher August 19th and went out on the 2 pm tour. This is a great way for those not as familiar with the fort's history to better understand what they're looking at, especially since so much of the fort is gone and that it was built of sand and not masonry (now that I know how to spell the word).

I was very appreciative that the guide always stopped in the shade to make his talks.

I wasn't expecting to learn much, but did, which made the walk even better.

Since the battle, many live oaks have grown up on the grounds and north of the site. Live oaks get their name because they don't lose their leaves and stay green during the winter. Their wood is very dense and was used in the construction of the USS Constitution, which got the name Old Ironsides because cannonballs would bounce off its sides.

Along with the garrison, slaves from area plantations also toiled on the fort. However, the garrison slept in the fort and the slaves' camp was located outside the fort. No excavation has been made of the site. I wonder if they even know where it is.

During the second attack, the naval guns from each ship were targeted on specific sections of the fort which proved much more effective than the pattern during the first assault. Most all of the fort's guns were knocked out of action.

The gun chambers (as the positions between the traverses were called) were all connected by a tunnel which stretched from Shephard's Battery by the Cape Fear River, all the way to the Northeast Bastion.

Interesting Stuff. --Old B-R'er

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