Youngstown in Niagara County, New York — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
Fort Niagara's Rifle Range
In the 1870s, the United States Army began training soldiers in marksmanship. Prior to this, soldiers were not regularly trained to fire for great accuracy. By the 1870s, however, repeating action rifles and simplified ammunition made shooting a popular sport, necessitating a change in military tactics. The National Rifle Association formed in 1871 to advocate marksmanship training nationally and counted many soldiers among its members. In the 1880s, the U.S. Army installed target ranges at many of its facilities.
Designed in 1883, Fort Niagara's rifle range was completed in 1886. Troops trained at Fort Niagara for the Spanish-American War in 1898 and for the Philippine Insurrection from 1899 to 1901. The range was also used in World War I and up until 1943, when the southeast corner of the existing army post was converted to a prisoner of war camp. In 1950, troops reoccupied the fort. The last active units left the fort in 1963, and by the late 1970s, soccer fields had already
The Morgan Rifle Range was named after Major Lodowick Morgan, who commanded a battalion of the First Rifle Regiment during the War of 1812. On August 3, 1814, Morgan and about 240 riflemen prevented a British raid on American supplies at Black Rock and Buffalo. Nine days later, Morgan lost his life in a skirmish at Fort Erie. An inscription on the monument in Buffalo's Forest Lawn Cemetery (Section N) that is pictured here commemorates Morgan and five other officers killed during the war of 1812.
To operate the targets, a soldier stood in a pit beneath each target. Once his partner had fired a shot, the soldier in the pit pulled the target down, marked the location of the bullet hole, and raised the target up again so the shooter could see where he had made a hit. A red flag was used in case of a missed target. The first target was then removed. While it was being repaired with colored stickers, a second target was put in its place. The targets were thus alternated until the shooter finished his allotted rounds, and then he and the man in the pit switched places.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Forts and Castles. A significant historical year for this entry is 1871.
Location. 43° 15.656′ N, 79° 3.094′ W. Marker is in Youngstown, New York, in Niagara County. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Youngstown NY 14174, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Fort Niagara's P.O.W. Camp (approx. 0.3 miles away); POW Camp - WW II (approx. 0.3 miles away); Erected to the Memory (approx. 0.4 miles away); To the Memory (approx. 0.4 miles away); Old Fort Niagara Lighthouse (approx. half a mile away); Old Fort Niagara Cannon (approx. half a mile away); Old Fort Niagara (approx. half a mile away); The Siege of Fort Niagara (approx. half a mile away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Youngstown.
Also see . . . Firing Range, Fort Niagara, New York. This is a link to information and a photograph provided on the Flickr website. (Submitted on August 7, 2013, by Dale K. Benington of Toledo, Ohio.)
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. It was originally submitted on August 7, 2013, by Dale K. Benington of Toledo, Ohio. This page has been viewed 476 times since then and 18 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on August 7, 2013, by Dale K. Benington of Toledo, Ohio.