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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Alexandria, Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)
 

Profile of Fort

 
 
Profile of Fort Marker image. Click for full size.
By Craig Swain, March 1, 2008
1. Profile of Fort Marker
Inscription. This exterior view of the restored Northwest Bastion illustrates the effectiveness of an earthwork fort. The fort walls were 18-22 feet high, 12-14 feet thick, and slanted at 45 degrees.

To gain access to the fort an attacker would have to cross the field of fire (the open area to the front of the fort), penetrate the abatis (the line of felled trees that surrounded the ditch), enter the ditch, and scale the walls while the defenders were well protected behind the embankments.

These restored walls illustrate how the entire 818-yard perimeter of Fort Ward appeared in late 1864.
 
Erected by City of Alexandria.
 
Marker series. This marker is included in the Defenses of Washington marker series.
 
Location. 38° 49.865′ N, 77° 6.138′ W. Marker is in Alexandria, Virginia. Marker can be reached from West Braddock Road, on the right when traveling west. Click for map. Located in Fort Ward Historic Site. Marker is at or near this postal address: 4301 West Braddock Road, Alexandria VA 22304, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Northwest Bastion (within shouting distance of this marker); Powder Magazine and Filling Room (within
Bridge Walkway to the Marker image. Click for full size.
By Craig Swain, March 1, 2008
2. Bridge Walkway to the Marker
shouting distance of this marker); Rifle Trench (within shouting distance of this marker); Fort Ward (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); Bombproof (about 400 feet away); The Oakland Baptist Church (about 600 feet away); Oakland Baptist Church Cemetery (about 600 feet away); a different marker also named Fort Ward (about 600 feet away). Click for a list of all markers in Alexandria.
 
More about this marker. Above the text is a profile of the fort indicating the parapet, scarp (wall), ditch, and abatis. In the upper left is an engineering plan of the fort with the wall described in the text indicated in blue. A center caption reads Help preserve this historic site by entering the fort only via the bridge to the left. Please do not enter the ditch or climb upon the walls during your tour of Fort Ward.
 
Also see . . .  Fort Ward Historic Site. (Submitted on May 15, 2008, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia.)
 
Categories. Forts, CastlesWar, US Civil
 
Profile of the Fort Defenses image. Click for full size.
By Craig Swain, March 1, 2008
3. Profile of the Fort Defenses
Attacker's Perspective of the Fort's Defenses image. Click for full size.
By Craig Swain, March 1, 2008
4. Attacker's Perspective of the Fort's Defenses
Looking down the bore of a reproduction 6-pdr James rifle.
Defender's Point of View image. Click for full size.
By Craig Swain, March 1, 2008
5. Defender's Point of View
From one of the reproduction 4.5in Rifles. At the time of the war, the ground in front of the fort was much more open, without the modern buildings and trees. The surrounding area was mostly pasture, orchards, and farms in 1861-1865.
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia. This page has been viewed 1,679 times since then and 30 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on , by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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