Fort Independence Boston, Ma

History of Fort Independence


Kids Fun Facts At Fort

In this area, we will discuss fun facts about the Fort for Kids and Families to attract families to visit this historical site.
Castle Island began as a simple fort—mainly of mud walls and a few cannons—in 1634. A total of eight forts have been built here.

first fort 1634
First Fort built in 1634

1.) The British Army built the first permanent fort here; it was called Castle William, named for William III, King of England.

2. ) When the British fled in 1776, they destroyed Castle William. American soldiers rebuilt the fort.

3. ) Paul Revere, the Boston silversmith, is famous for his midnight ride to Lexington to warn the troops: “The Red Coats are coming!” Lt. Colonel Revere served as commander of the fort during the Revolutionary War.

4. ) In the early 1800’s, the first U.S. Army fort was built on Castle Island and named Fort Independence by President John Adams. During the War of 1812, this fort, with its 42 heavy cannons, defended Boston. Meanwhile, the British Royal Navy regularly fired on the undefended towns on the north and south shores.

5. ) About 15 years before the Civil War, a second Fort Independence was built, constructed of granite taken from quarries in Rockport, Massachusetts, and transported by boat to Castle Island.

6,) During the Civil War, more than 500 men were based at the fort. With all those mouths to feed, there was a busy bakery. The ovens where fresh bread was baked each morning have been rebuilt.

7. ) The fort was used for the training of infantry regiments. It had 96 mounted cannon, including 15-inch Rodman guns that could send a 450-pound shot more than three miles. The cannons were manufactured in South Boston

8, ) In 1892, a wooden footbridge was built to connect Castle Island with South Boston. It was replaced by an earth causeway in 1927. Soon cars were driving to Castle Island. The current Day Boulevard was opened in 1932.

9.) During World War I, the fort served as an observation and identification station. During World War II, the Navy used it as a degaussing station for de-magnetizing the hulls of their ships against German magnetic mines .

10, ) Despite its history of almost 400 years, it is believed the only shots ever taken against an enemy were by the British before they left Castle William in 1776.

Today, Castle Island is a Massachusetts state park. Fort Independence was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1970. On special occasions, such as the Fourth of July, the USS Constitution, known as Old Ironsides and the oldest warship still afloat, visits and fires its guns.

USS Constitution firing 21 gun slaute
8″ Siege Gun
Parrot Rifle Gun