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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Near Fort Washington in Prince George's County, Maryland — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

Fort Foote

Protecting the Nationís Capital

 
 
Fort Foote - Protecting the Nation's Capitol marker image. Click for full size.
By Richard E. Miller, October 28, 2007
1. Fort Foote - Protecting the Nation's Capitol marker
Inscription. High on a bluff, a hundred feet above the Potomac River, twelve heavy guns commanded the approach to the city. Smaller cannon were placed to protect Fort Foote from landward attack. Numerous buildings were constructed to house and support the large garrison of troops that built the fort and manned the big guns.

Construction of this Civil War earthworks began in 1863. It was the largest and southernmost bastion in a ring of 68 forts that were hurriedly laid out, armed and manned. Fort Foote continued as a defensive post after the Civil War and remained a garrison for artillery units of the Regular Army until 1878.

The fort was named in honor of Rear Adm. Andrew Hull Foote, who distinguished himself while commanding gunboat operations on the Mississippi River. He died as a result of wounds received during the river campaigns.
 
Erected by National Park Service.
 
Marker series. This marker is included in the Defenses of Washington marker series.
 
Location. 38° 46.071′ N, 77° 1.697′ W. Marker is near Fort Washington, Maryland, in Prince George's County. Marker can be reached from Fort Foote Road. Click for map. Fort Foote Park is a thickly forested area between Fort Foote Road
Entrance to Fort Foote image. Click for full size.
By Craig Swain, March 1, 2008
2. Entrance to Fort Foote
The informational sign and marker stand at the main entrance or sally port to Fort Foote.
and the Potomac River. Marker is in this post office area: Fort Washington MD 20744, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 2 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. King's Depression Carriage (a few steps from this marker); Northwest Bastion (within shouting distance of this marker); 15-inch Rodman Smoothbore (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); The Defenses of Washington (about 400 feet away); a different marker also named Fort Foote (about 400 feet away); Wasteland or Wetland? (approx. 1.4 miles away in Virginia); Colonial Fort (approx. 1.5 miles away in Virginia); Historic Jones Point (approx. 1.5 miles away in Virginia). Click for a list of all markers in Fort Washington.
 
More about this marker. The background of the marker is a drawing of the fort, keyed to a numbered reference list of structures of the fort complex:
1. Fort Foote
2. Officers Quarters
3. Enlisted Men's Barracks
4. Adjutant's Office
5. Ordnance Officer's Quarters
6. Sutler Store
7. Guardhouse
8. Hospital
9. Bakery
10. Storehouses
11. Carpenter's and Blacksmith shop
12. Stables and wagon shed
13. Boathouse
14. Storehouses
15. Wharf
 
Related markers. Click here for a list of markers that are related to
Civil War Defenses of Washington - 1861-1865 image. Click for full size.
By Richard E. Miller, October 28, 2007
3. Civil War Defenses of Washington - 1861-1865
this marker. Fort Foote Virtual Tour By Markers.
 
Also see . . .
1. Fort Foote. National Park Service site detailing the fort. (Submitted on December 12, 2007, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia.) 

2. National Park Service - Civil War Defenses of Washington. (Submitted on December 15, 2007, by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland.)
3. Fort Foote Virtual Tour by Markers. (Submitted on May 7, 2008, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia.)
4. Wikipedia entry for Rear Admiral Andrew Hull Foote. (Submitted on March 6, 2011, by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland.)
 
Additional comments.
1. Fort Foote Particulars
From "Mr. Lincoln's Forts: A Guide to the Civil War Defenses of Washington," by Benjamin Franklin Cooling III and Walton H. Owen II:

The perimeter of the fort was 472 yards. Armament as designed was two 15-inch Rodman guns, four 200-pdr Parrott Rifles, and six 30-pdr Parrotts. Eleven additional gun platforms were built, but not used. Over the years, well into the post-Civil War period, the armament was augmented to include 10-inch siege mortars, Gatling Guns, and additional field guns.

The fort was constructed by 2nd Battalion, 9th New York Heavy Artillery, directed by Colonel Henry Seward, son of
Rodman guns image. Click for full size.
By Richard E. Miller, October 28, 2007
4. Rodman guns
These 15-inch Rodman guns were left in place when the fort was abandoned in 1878. They lay forgotten and escaped the scrap drives of World War II. In the 1980s the Park Service cleaned up the site and began remounting the guns for display. Of some 322 produced from 1863 to 1871, only 25 exist today. The two here at Fort Foote were produced by the Cyrus Alger Company of Boston, Mass. in 1863-4.
William Seward, Secretary of State at the time. During the war, detachments from the 2nd and 3rd U.S. Artillery, Maine Coast Guard, 14th Pennsylvania Reserve Light Artillery, and 14th New York Artillery served at the fort. After the war several detachments of regular U.S. Artillery were posted to the fort.

Col. Seward and his wife often entertained guests at the fort, to include President Lincoln and even visiting Russian Naval officers. The massive 15-inch Rodman guns were demonstrated on many occasions, firing their 500-pound solid shot at targets in the middle of the Potomac.
    — Submitted December 12, 2007, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia.

 
Additional keywords. Defenses of Washington
 
Categories. Forts, CastlesMilitaryWar, US CivilWaterways & Vessels
 
View ot the Potomac now blocked by a century of forest growth image. Click for full size.
By Richard E. Miller, October 28, 2007
5. View ot the Potomac now blocked by a century of forest growth
15-Inch Rodman Cannon image. Click for full size.
By Craig Swain, March 1, 2008
6. 15-Inch Rodman Cannon
One of these massive seacoast defense guns left in their mountings for display at Fort Foote.
Rear Admiral Andrew Hull Foote image. Click for full size.
Wikipedia
7. Rear Admiral Andrew Hull Foote
Fort Foote image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, September 18, 2011
8. Fort Foote
Close-up of image on marker

1. Fort Foote; 2. Officers Quarters; 3. Enlisted Men's Barracks; 4. Adjutant's Office; 5. Ordnance Officer's Quarters; 6.Sutler Store; 7. Guardhouse; 8. Hospital; 9. Bakery; 10. Storehouses; 11. Carpenter's and Blacksmith shop; 12.Stables and wagon shed; 13. Boathouse; 14.Storehouses; 15. Wharf
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland. This page has been viewed 1,900 times since then and 12 times this year. Last updated on , by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland. Photos:   1. submitted on , by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland.   2. submitted on , by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia.   3, 4, 5. submitted on , by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland.   6. submitted on , by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia.   7. submitted on , by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland.   8. submitted on , by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland. • Craig Swain was the editor who published this page. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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