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”
Fort Washington in Prince George's County, Maryland — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

Self-Destruction

Star-Spangled Banner National Historic Trail

 

—War of 1812 —

 
Self-Destruction Marker image. Click for full size.
By Don Morfe, July 30, 2016
1. Self-Destruction Marker
Inscription. Explosions at Fort Washington August 27, 1814, surprised British and Americans alike. A British squadron slowly making its way up the Potomac expected resistance from the well-positioned fort. Alexandrians, fearing they were next after Washington’s fall three days before, expected protection from the fort.,P. Samuel Dyson, U.S. Army captain in command, decided his 45-man garrison would be no match for the British. He ordered the fort destroyed and was later court-martialed for his decision.

Spoils of War
Defenseless Alexandria negotiated surrender, and the British confiscated tobacco and other property. As the enemy withdrew down the Potomac with their prizes, angry Americans shot from shore and dispatched fire-ships with little effect.

(Inscription beside the image on the lower right)
Americans sent burning vessels into the British fleet but failed to ignite any of the enemy’s ships.

“The garrison to our great surprise, retreated from the fort and a short time afterward Fort Washington was blown up, which left the Capitol of America and the populous town of Alexandria open to the squadron without the loss of a man.”
British Captain James Alexander Gordon, August 27, 1814.

(Inscription beside the image in the lower left)
As British ships approached, Americans destroyed

Self-Destruction Marker image. Click for full size.
By Don Morfe, July 30, 2016
2. Self-Destruction Marker
This marker is next to the Welcome to Fort Washington Waterside Trail marker with the lighthouse in the background
Fort Washington, leaving Alexandria without defense.
 
Erected by National Park Service US Department of Interior.
 
Marker series. This marker is included in the Star Spangled Banner National Historic Trail marker series.
 
Location. 38° 42.741′ N, 77° 2.194′ W. Marker is in Fort Washington, Maryland, in Prince George's County. Marker is on Fort Washington Park Road. Touch for map. This marker is near the Lighthouse. Marker is in this post office area: Fort Washington MD 20744, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Welcome to Fort Washington’s Waterside Trail (here, next to this marker); New Guns for an Old Fort (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); The Water Battery (about 400 feet away); Minefields (about 600 feet away); Shot and Shell (about 600 feet away); a different marker also named Water Battery (about 600 feet away); Counterscarp Battery (about 700 feet away); The Cisterns (about 700 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Fort Washington.
 
Categories. War of 1812
 
Fort Washington Park Lighthouse image. Click for full size.
By Don Morfe, July 30, 2016
3. Fort Washington Park Lighthouse
Ft. Washington Lighthouse with the fort in the background image. Click for full size.
By Don Morfe, July 30, 2016
4. Ft. Washington Lighthouse with the fort in the background
Fort Washington from the Chesapeake Bay's edge image. Click for full size.
By Don Morfe, July 30, 2016
5. Fort Washington from the Chesapeake Bay's edge
Sign at the entrance to Fort Washington Park image. Click for full size.
By Don Morfe, July 30, 2016
6. Sign at the entrance to Fort Washington Park
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on August 2, 2016. This page originally submitted on August 1, 2016, by Don Morfe of Baltimore, Md 21234. This page has been viewed 177 times since then and 38 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. submitted on August 1, 2016, by Don Morfe of Baltimore, Md 21234. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.
Paid Advertisement