Philadelphia in Philadelphia County, Pennsylvania — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
— ca. 1843 —
Report from the Fort
16 October 1844 • Major Brevet C. W. Thomas
The Quartermaster’s Store at 55 feet in length by 20 in width, is nearly new and sufficient for all wants of the post.
In 1842 the Quartermaster General’s Department of the U.S. Army was reorganized and given charge of all military supplies except food. This Quartermaster’s Store was built about 1843 to store and distribute to the soldiers at the fort all provisions that they would have needed for themselves and to maintain the site uniforms, shoes, bedding, shovels, pick axes, trowels, buckets and the like. Weapons and guns would have been stored in the Arsenal. Ammunition was stored in the Powder Magazines.
Structural evidence indicates the building was probably one large room that was open to the underside of the room. No doubt the interior looked like a large general store with a counter-top and walls lined with shelves and cabinets for the supplies. The building had been remodeled on the interior to meet the needs of the fort.
21 January 1802 • Major J. J. Ulrich Rivardi
A full description of the fort identified at least six buildings that have since been removed or replaced:
Old Officers Quarters. A small boarded building 42 feet by 12 containing two rooms with fireplaces and one without; that building is very indifferent and is occupied by Officers.
The Old Barracks, a building of wood, 50 feet by 20, has an excellent foundation of cut stones with good cellars, but the upper part is so decayed that the chimnies are all what prevents its falling in – it is now petitioned off for a deposit of provisions on one side, and a place for the Artificers (military mechanics) to work in on the other. A good building two stories high could be erected on the foundations and admit two rooms below 25 by 20 with three smaller ones above so that it would afford quarters for a whole Company – now it is not safe to let anybody quarter in it.
The Artificers Shop, (military mechanics’ shop) a wooden building 42 by 20 feet, lately fitted up for the accommodation of Izards Company and of the Artificers – two rooms below with fireplaces, a garret above without any. That building is tolerably good though old.
There are Three Small Sheds in the fort, one occupied by a soldier with his family
The wooden hospital was replaced about 1820 by the two-story brick building seen today. Rivardi also mentions a Shot Furnace on the water battery. An 1815 map identifies three other shot furnaces within the fort. Such furnaces were used to heat cannon balls before they were fired. Drawings from 1839 provide a record of what one looked like. The furnaces were useless after the introduction of rifled artillery and were demolished in the 1870s.
Another demolished building, the Guard House, formerly located next to the Quartermaster’s Store, is seen here in a photograph published in the Public Ledger in 1904. The building was probably built in the 1820s.
Erected by Fort Mifflin Historic Site.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Forts and Castles • Notable Buildings. A significant historical date for this entry is January 21, 1802.
Location. 39° 52.533′ N, 75° 12.754′ W. Marker is in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, in Philadelphia County. Marker can be reached from W Fort Mifflin Road, on the right when traveling east. Marker is along the Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Philadelphia PA 19153, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Casemates or Bombproofs (a few steps from this marker); Arsenal (within shouting distance of this marker); Soldiers’ Barracks (within shouting distance of this marker); Fort Mifflin (Mud Fort) on Mud Island (within shouting distance of this marker); Artillery (within shouting distance of this marker); Torpedo Casemate (within shouting distance of this marker); Citadel - 1796 (within shouting distance of this marker); What Makes Wetlands? (within shouting distance of this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Philadelphia.
More about this marker. The right of the marker contains a drawing of Shot Furnaces drawn by Henry Beliz in 1839, courtesy of the National Archives. Below this is a photograph of the Guard House ca. 1895 (demolished in the 1920s).
Related markers. Click here for a list of markers that are related to this marker. This series of markers follow the walking tour of Fort Mifflin.
Also see . . .
1. The Fort that saved America. The Official Website of Fort Mifflin on the Delaware. (Submitted on October 18, 2008, by Bill Coughlin of Woodland Park, New Jersey.)
2. Fort Mifflin Groundplan. Layout of Fort Mifflin, the Fort that saved America. (Submitted on October 18, 2008, by Bill Coughlin of Woodland Park, New Jersey.)
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. It was originally submitted on October 18, 2008, by Bill Coughlin of Woodland Park, New Jersey. This page has been viewed 862 times since then and 9 times this year. Photos: 1, 2. submitted on October 18, 2008, by Bill Coughlin of Woodland Park, New Jersey. 3. submitted on April 29, 2014, by Bill Coughlin of Woodland Park, New Jersey. 4. submitted on October 18, 2008, by Bill Coughlin of Woodland Park, New Jersey. 5. submitted on April 29, 2014, by Bill Coughlin of Woodland Park, New Jersey.