Historic Fort Revere

 Posted by at 12:32 am  Nick's Blog
Apr 122020
 

Overlooked and unknown to visitors who come to Boston, Massachusetts to see the historic sites related to Colonial America and the American Revolution, the remnants of a fort on a small peninsula on the south side of Boston Harbor date back to the War for Independence.

The area now known as Telegraph Hill, in the present town of Hull, was fortified by patriots opposing British rule in 1776, and was originally called Fort Independence. The star-shaped earthen-work fort was established to protect Boston Harbor and armed with a variety of cannon, presenting a formidable obstacle to any enemy ships trying to enter the harbor.

The French were strong allies of the rebellious Colonies, and in August, 1778, a detachment of French Marines was stationed at the fort. Over the next two years they did a lot of expansion, adding new gun batteries, barracks, and a hospital.

In 1797, the name Fort Independence was transferred to another fort on Castle Island, which still goes by that name. The old fort on Telegraph Hill was abandoned and the local people simply called it “the French fort.” Telegraph Hill served as a semaphore station in the 1840s, and then later as a telegraph station.

In the late 1800s the United States was busy building a coastal artillery defense system, and a new military installation named Fort Revere, named in honor of Paul Revere, was established in 1897 on the peninsula, one of seven forts to ring Boston Harbor. The fort bristled with heavy guns, some with a range of well over a mile.

When World War I began, Fort Revere was quickly enlarged to include temporary barracks and storehouses, and in late 1917, some of its guns were removed to be transferred to Europe for duty on the Western Front.

Things slowed down at the fort after the war ended, and by 1927, its large 12-inch guns were considered obsolete and eventually replaced with an antiaircraft battery.

As happened with most of the Coastal Defense Forts, things fell into disrepair until the outbreak of World War II, when Fort Revere was again activated, new structures were added, and defenses were upgraded. As many as 50,000 troops spent time at the fort between the beginning of World War I and the end of World War II. In 1947, Fort Revere was deemed no longer necessary and decommissioned. Its guns were removed and the land was turned over to the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

Today an eight-acre historic site that includes a water tower and the remnants of the old fort are operated as Fort Revere Park. Listed on the National Historic Register, Fort Revere and its old bunkers are used for outdoor cultural events including concerts, plays, and military reenactments. A small monument honors the French forces who served and died at the fort during the American Revolution. People come to picnic, enjoy the beautiful views of Boston Harbor and its islands, and many of them are never aware of the significant role that Fort Revere played in our nation’s history.

The old fort’s 120 foot tall water tower, erected in 1903, was the first reinforced concrete water tower in the United States. The tower and the old Officer’s Quarters building, along with the rest of the buildings and gun emplacements, have deteriorated through lack of care and vandalism. A movement is underway to preserve them for future generations to enjoy, and to appreciate the sacrifices made so long ago to create and protect the country we live in today.

The next time you are visiting the Boston area, do yourself a favor and go to the village of Hull and check out Fort Revere Park. And while you are there, pay your respects to the brave patriots and their French allies who came before us.

Fort Revere Park is located at 60 Farina Road in Hull, Massachusetts, and is open daily from sunrise to sunset, year round. There are grills and picnic tables available. Parking is limited and not suitable for large RVs, so leave your rig at one of the area campgrounds and drive your tow vehicle when you visit the fort.

Free Drawing for a 3-year subscription (valued at $89.97, based on the one year rate) to www.OvernightRVParking.com donated by my friend Jim O’Briant. This is a great resource for RVers, listing well over 13,000 free places where you can park overnight, and it could be yours free if you’re our lucky winner. If the winner is already a subscriber, Jim will add 3 full years to their existing subscription. To enter, all you have to do is click on this Free Drawing link or the tab at the top of this page and enter your name in the comments section at the bottom of that page (not this one). Only one entry per person per drawing please, and you must enter with your real name. To prevent spam or multiple entries, the names of cartoon or movie characters are not allowed. The winner will be drawn this evening.

Today is your last chance to enter our Free Drawing for a 3-year subscription (valued at $89.97, based on the one year rate) to www.OvernightRVParking.com donated by my friend Jim O’Briant. This is a great resource for RVers, listing well over 13,000 free places where you can park overnight, and it could be yours free if you’re our lucky winner. If the winner is already a subscriber, Jim will add 3 full years to their existing subscription.. To enter, click on this Free Drawing link or the tab at the top of this page and enter your name (first and last) in the comments section at the bottom of that page (not this one). Only one entry per person per drawing please, and you must enter with your real name. To prevent spam or multiple entries, the names of cartoon or movie characters are not allowed. The winner will be drawn this evening.

Thought For The Day – Last week I bought a toilet brush. Long story short, I’m going back to toilet paper.

Nick Russell

World-Famous, New York Times Best Selling Author, and All-Around Nice Guy!

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