Marker Logo HMdb.org THE HISTORICAL
MARKER DATABASE
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Sullivans Island in Charleston County, South Carolina — The American South (South Atlantic)
 

Harbor Defense 1809-1860

Fort Moultrie III and the War of 1812

 
 
Harbor Defense 1809-1860 Marker image. Click for full size.
By Craig Swain, May 3, 2010
1. Harbor Defense 1809-1860 Marker
Inscription. The War of 1812 saw Fort Moultrie III armed with 12-, 18-, and 24-pounder smoothbore cannon on garrison carriages designed to fire through embrasures in the parapet wall. British warships blockaded Charleston, but never came within range of Moultrie's guns.

Troubles with Britain caused Congress in 1807 to authorize a "second system" of forts on the Atlantic coast to guard harbors, river outlets, and seaports. Fort Moultrie III, completed in 1909, protected Charleston harbor.

Forts such as Moultrie were designed to defend against wooden sailing vessels armed with smoothbore cannon.

The fort had a hot shot furnace for heating solid shot. A red hot cannonball lodged in a ship's timbers could start a disastrous fire.

After the War of 1812, America updated its coastal forts. In the 1830s and 40s we modified Fort Moultrie's parapet, bricked up the embrasures, and replaced its old cannon with 18-, 24-, and 32-pounder cast iron guns. At that time the entire fort looked about as this northwest bastion does now.

(Diagram at the bottom lists the ranges of the various guns, but the text has faded)
 
Location. 32° 45.574′ N, 79° 51.493′ W. Marker is in Sullivans Island, South Carolina, in Charleston County. Marker can be reached
Harbor Defense 1809-1860 Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, August 3, 2013
2. Harbor Defense 1809-1860 Marker
from Middle Street, on the right when traveling east. Touch for map. Located at stop five of the tour of Fort Moultrie National Monument. Marker is in this post office area: Sullivans Island SC 29482, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Enlisted Men's Barracks (here, next to this marker); Powder Magazine (a few steps from this marker); Traverse c.1820 (a few steps from this marker); Building Forts (within shouting distance of this marker); Defending Charleston 1861-1865 (within shouting distance of this marker); Northwest Bastionet (within shouting distance of this marker); Move a 50,000 pound Rodman Gun (within shouting distance of this marker); Oceola / Patapsco Dead (within shouting distance of this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Sullivans Island.
 
Also see . . .  Fort Moultrie. National Park Service site. (Submitted on June 17, 2010, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia.) 
 
Categories. Forts, CastlesWar of 1812
 
Markers at Stop Five of the Tour image. Click for full size.
By Craig Swain
3. Markers at Stop Five of the Tour
32-pdr Smoothbore on Seacoast Carriage image. Click for full size.
By Craig Swain, May 3, 2010
4. 32-pdr Smoothbore on Seacoast Carriage
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on June 17, 2010, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia. This page has been viewed 481 times since then and 20 times this year. Photos:   1. submitted on June 17, 2010, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia.   2. submitted on August 22, 2013, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey.   3, 4. submitted on June 17, 2010, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia.
Paid Advertisement