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Kittery Point in York County, Maine — The American Northeast (New England)
 

Welcome To Fort McClary

 
 
Welcome To Fort McClary Marker image. Click for full size.
By TeamOHE, June 3, 2019
1. Welcome To Fort McClary Marker
Inscription.  Forts at this site have protected Portsmouth Harbor since 1689 when some earthworks and a small blockhouse were built here at what was then called Pepperrell's Garrison after the area's most prominent settler, William Pepperrell. In 1715, the Massachusetts Bay Colony decided to build a permanent fort to protect the river and harbor. In 1720 a blockhouse named Fort William (also for Pepperrell) was built and there a Naval Officer was stationed to collect duties from all the ships entering the harbor.

The Pepperrell's were "Tories” or loyalists to the Crown, and when the Revolution came local "rebels” took over their property, including the fort, which was occupied by the New Hampshire Militia until 1779. In 1808 Massachusetts gave land to the Federal government to build a new fort named Fort McClary in honor of Major Andrew McClary, a New Hampshire native who was served at the Battle of Bunker Hill in 1775.

That fort consisted of two batteries of cannons; a semi circular wall protected a "Lower Battery” below the present blockhouse site, while an "Upper Battery” with accompanying, barracks, quarters,
Welcome To Fort McClary Marker image. Click for full size.
By TeamOHE, June 3, 2019
2. Welcome To Fort McClary Marker
a cookhouse, and powder magazine, all of brick, were built where the blockhouse now stands.

In 1844 the hexagonal blockhouse replaced the Upper Battery. The upper floors were used as Officer's quarters, and two brick rifleman's houses were built on either side. In 1846 the Federal government deactivated the fort.

In the midst of the Civil War, Confederate raiders captured and destroyed a ship in Portland Harbor raising the fear of attacks on the Maine coast. A granite bastion and powder magazine and a guardhouse and hospital were added to the fort at that time. Five years after the Civil War ended, work was suspended and the outer wall was never completed. Soon afterward, this style of fort was considered obsolete so Fort McClary was remained unfinished.

The buildings here today represent several different periods of construction as the fort was upgraded and modified to meet the area's defensive needs. The site was manned during five wars - The Revolutionary War, War of 1812, Civil War, Spanish-American War, and World War I. Like most other Maine forts, it saw little conflict. Be sure to enjoy the hiking area to your left and the picnic area across Pepperrell Road (Route 103). Fort McClary is open to visitors from Memorial Day through the end of September.

(sidebar)
Private Hannibal Hamlin
Shortly before the 1864
Welcome To Fort McClary Marker image. Click for full size.
By TeamOHE, June 3, 2019
3. Welcome To Fort McClary Marker
election, the Coast Guard unit in which Maine's Hannibal Hamlin served was called to active duty at Fort McClary. Hamlin reported for duty and served at the fort even though he was at that time Vice President of the United States.
 
Erected by Maine Department Of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry, Division of Parks and Public Land.
 
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Forts and CastlesWar of 1812War, US CivilWar, US Revolutionary.
 
Location. 43° 4.917′ N, 70° 42.533′ W. Marker is in Kittery Point, Maine, in York County. Marker can be reached from the intersection of Pepperrell Road (Maine Route 103) and Crockett Neck Road, on the left when traveling west. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Kittery Point ME 03905, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Fort McClary (within shouting distance of this marker); Resisting Naval Firepower (within shouting distance of this marker); Mines Building (approx. 0.7 miles away in New Hampshire); Portcullis (approx. ¾ mile away in New Hampshire); Fort William and Mary Commemoration Marker (approx. ¾ mile away in New Hampshire); Walbach Tower (approx. 0.8 miles away in New Hampshire);
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a different marker also named Walbach Tower (approx. 0.8 miles away in New Hampshire); Frost Cemetery (approx. 0.8 miles away in New Hampshire). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Kittery Point.
 
Also see . . .  Fort McClary State Historic Site. Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry (Submitted on December 6, 2020.) 
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on December 6, 2020. It was originally submitted on December 5, 2020, by TeamOHE of Wauseon, Ohio. This page has been viewed 33 times since then and 4 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on December 5, 2020, by TeamOHE of Wauseon, Ohio. • Bernard Fisher was the editor who published this page.
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Mar. 5, 2021