Friday, January 12, 2007

Fall of Fort Fisher

Today marks the anniversary of the start of the second battle of Fort Fisher. The first assault took place on December 24, 1864, and the fort withstood the attack. The second attack began today, and after 2 ½ days of bombardment, the fort fell to a land assault. The fort capitulated, and the last remaining harbor of the Confederacy was closed.

According to the park web site, only 10 percent of the original Fort Fisher remains.
I was in Wilmington this past May. I had a book signing for one of the local SCV camps. I took the family and we got to spend a few days at the beach. Fort Fisher was one of those places that we visited. I have now been to all three of the major fortifications that guarded the Cape Fear River area during the war.

Fort Caswell is a third system brick masonry fort on Oak Island. It is named for Governor Caswell. I’ve been to Caswell three times; once in 1995 when I was on a ramble, once a couple of year later, with a youth group. I got to spend a week at the fort and even slept in the WWII barracks. The last time was about four years ago for a conference.

Fort Anderson is an earthen fort on the site of old Brunswick town, north of Oak Island and Fort Caswell.. I visited this site during my last trip to Caswell. The earthworks at this fort are massive. Fort Anderson held out for several days after the fall of Fort Fisher.

Fort Fisher is another earthen fort, this one across the Cape Fear River and below the city of Wilmington. Very little of Fort Fisher remains today, but the site is marked with a monument. I like the area around Fort Fisher a lot. All park, no hotels. That is the way I like my beaches, clean.

For more information on events at Fort Fisher, please check their web site


Randy Sauls said...


It is a shame that Fort Fisher has been lost, especially given its importance in keeping the Confederacy's last port open for so long. At least it disapeared beneath the Atlantic instead of beneath a Wal-Mart. Seems fitting somehow. It's not related to Wilmington but my favorite fort has always been Macon. I fist visited Macon in 1963, when I was 6, and it sparked my interest in CW history that remains strong to this day.


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