Maryland
111
www.stateparks.com
Fort Washington National Park '' © Archie Riviera
upload your photos

view photogallery

USA Parks
Maryland
Region
Fort Washington National Park
FORT WASHINGTON NATIONAL PARK
FORT WASHINGTON NATIONAL PARK
Fort Washington National Park

History of the Area
The first Fort Washington was completed in 1809 and guarded the Nation's Capital until it was destroyed by its own garrison in 1814. Twelve days later Major Pierre L'Enfant was sent to construct new defenses but worked on the fort for only a brief period before Lieutenant Colonel Walker K. Armistead replaced him. The fort was completed on October 2, 1824. Extensive remodeling was performed in the 1840s and the first guns were mounted in 1846. The masonry fort was occupied by soldiers from the First, Third and Fourth U.S. Artillery during its early history. Except for a few guns at the Washington Arsenal, Fort Washington was the only defense for the Nation's Capital until the Civil War when a circle of temporary forts was built around the city. Battery Rogers and Fort Foote were the only seacoast forts in the system and armed with large Rodman and Parrott cannons. Fort Washington was garrisoned as the outer defense for the city. Companies of the First and Fourth Artillery as well as numerous state artillery units passed through the post during the war. In 1872 the garrison was removed and additional property purchased to construct a new defense system. Funds for the project was withdrawn and the post was abandoned for the next twenty years.A new defense system, consisting of rifled steel guns in concrete emplacements was authorized in 1886 and work began at Fort Washington in 1891. The next year ground was broken for Battery B, later named Battery Decatur and the guns were mounted in 1896. Eventually eight concrete batteries at Fort Washington and four at Fort Hunt made up the Potomac Defense Command. Prior to World War I Fort Washington was downgraded to harbor defense and the large guns removed. During the war the post was used as a staging area for troops being sent to France. The 8th Provisional Artillery Battalion was organized at the post and sent to France where they became the 53rd Railroad Artillery Regiment. After the war the 3rd Battalion 12th Infantry moved in and became the ceremonial unit for the Military District of Washington.In 1939 the post was abandoned and turned over to the Director of Public Buildings for use as a terminal point for a bridge across the Potomac and a parkway to be built along the shore. Before the transfer was complete the United States entered World War II. Fort Washington was returned to the army and became the home of the Adjutant General's School. After the war the Veterans Administration managed the post hospital and other government agencies occupied some of the buildings. In 1946 Fort Washington returned to the Department of the Interior.


Get directions
to this park:

by Town and state
OR
by zip code

Nearby Parks


Visitor Comments, Memories and Reviews
May 30 by Pat Baumann
Went to the fort, many times before it baecame a park. Great area.
October 4 impressive
Well preserved and visitor friendly. Wonderful view of the Potomac. Picnic areas are wonderful and CLEAN restrooms.


Area Fishing Related Businesses

Holiday Sports Bait & Tackle
4520 Saint Barnabas Rd
Temple Hills, MD
(301) 894-3322


Area Cabins and Lodges
Fairfield Resorts
1757 King St
Alexandria, VA
(703) 837-3400


Courtyard Springfield
6710 Commerce St
Springfield, VA
(703) 924-7200


Animal Resorts Inc
3208 Colvin St
Alexandria, VA
(703) 823-3647


Rosen Hotels & Resorts
908 King St
Alexandria, VA
(703) 780-4009


Fairmont Hotels & Resorts The
705 Avon pl
Alexandria, VA
(703) 299-6763


Best Western Arlington Inn & Tower
2480 S Glebe Rd
Arlington, VA
(703) 685-0051


Courtyard-Alexandria
2700 Eisenhower Ave
Alexandria, VA
(703) 329-2323


Silliman Thomas Associates
425 N Lee St
Alexandria, VA
(703) 548-4100


View
Photo Gallery
Share Your
Fort Washington National Park
Photos
(click here)
Weather Forecast, (22308)

USA Parks
Maryland
Region
Fort Washington National Park
© 2014 StateParks.com