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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Stevenson in Jackson County, Alabama — The American South (East South Central)
 

Fort Harker

 
 
Fort Harker Marker image. Click for full size.
By Phillip Goodson, February 24, 2010
1. Fort Harker Marker
Inscription. Constructed by the Union Army in the summer of 1862 and expanded in 1864, using soldiers and freed slaves, Ft. Harker was built on a broad hill a quarter mile east of town. It overlooked Crow Creek and was well within firing range of Stevenson's strategic railroad lines, supply depots and warehouses.

Ft. Harker was an earthen redoubt, 150 feet square, with walls 14 feet high, surrounded by an 8 foot deep dry moat. It contained 7 cannon platforms, a bomb-proof powder magazine, a draw-bridge entrance and an 8-sided wooden blockhouse at its center. Soldiers building the fort reported that "the soil is very hard, requiring the continual use of a pick." Despite that, Ft. Harker was critical to Union plans. The officer in charge was ordered by his commanding general "to work night and day" to complete the fort "as rapidly as possible."

One other large fort, two smaller redoubts and at least seven blockhouses were constructed along the railroad lines at Stevenson during the Civil War. No major fighting occurred here, but skirmishes and sniper attacks were common as territory traded hands between Union and Confederate forces.

Listed on the National Register of Historic Places 5/2/77
 
Erected by Alabama Historical Commission.
 
Location.
Cannon platform inside redoubt image. Click for full size.
By Phillip Goodson, February 24, 2010
2. Cannon platform inside redoubt
A photo from the inside of the fort. The cannon platforms are still visible as shown here.
34° 51.708′ N, 85° 50.383′ W. Marker is in Stevenson, Alabama, in Jackson County. Marker can be reached from Sawmill Road, on the right when traveling south. Touch for map. To reach the marker you just turn left on Main street (Alabama 117) at the intersection with Kentucky Avenue. Make a left onto River Road and then again onto Sawmill Road. Entrance to the fort site is a unnamed dirt road. Marker is in this post office area: Stevenson AL 35772, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 9 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Flight 800 Memorial (approx. 0.4 miles away); Stevenson Depot and Hotel (approx. 0.4 miles away); Union Army Headquarters (approx. 0.8 miles away); Wet, Wild, and Wonderful (approx. 0.9 miles away); Averyville (approx. 1.1 miles away); Crow Town (approx. 1.1 miles away); Rocky Springs Church of Christ (approx. 8.2 miles away); Bridgeport (approx. 8.7 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Stevenson.
 
Categories. War, US Civil
 
The town of Stevenson as seen from the top of the redoubt image. Click for full size.
By Phillip Goodson, February 24, 2010
3. The town of Stevenson as seen from the top of the redoubt
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on February 24, 2010, by Phillip Goodson of Grant, Alabama. This page has been viewed 1,824 times since then and 93 times this year. Last updated on May 28, 2015, by J. Makali Bruton of Querétaro, Mexico. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on February 24, 2010, by Phillip Goodson of Grant, Alabama. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.
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