Fort Carroll (1)
Fort Carroll (1) (1848-1921) - Originally designed as a late Third System Coastal Defense fort constructed in the middle of the Patapsco River off Hawkins Point, Baltimore County, Maryland. Named 8 Oct 1850 for Charles Carroll (1737-1832), the last surviving signer of the Declaration of Independence at that time. Three Endicott Period batteries were completed in 1900. Officially abandoned in Mar 1921 and sold in 1958.
Third System (1816-1867)
Established to protect the entrance to Baltimore Harbor.
Construction began in 1848 under the supervision of Bvt. Col. Robert E. Lee of the Army Corps of Engineers. Lee continued to supervise the construction until Sep 1852 when he was called to duty as the Superintendent of the United States Military Academy at West Point.
Fort Carroll was a hexagonal fort on 3.4 acres of man-made island. The unprotected masonry walls were to be 10 foot thick and 40 foot high and they reached to the water's edge on all sides. The Fort was designed to mount 225 guns in three tiers of brick casemates and a barbette tier above that but difficulties with settling caused suspension of work before the walls reached their design height. Only one tier was completed and that was not fully complete in some places.
U.S. Civil War (1861-1865)
About thirty cannon were mounted at Fort Carroll during the U.S. Civil War to protect the entrance to Baltimore Harbor. Torrential rains flooded the fort’s magazines in April 1864 and the powder and ammunition were moved to Fort McHenry.
After the U.S. Civil War Fort Carroll was in caretaker status and deteriorated significantly.
Endicott Period (1890-1910)
Part of the Harbor Defense of Baltimore.
As a result of the Spanish-American War in 1898 and the Endicott Board recommendations, three Endicott Period batteries were constructed on two of the South facing walls of the fort. Construction began in 1898 and was completed in July and August of 1900. The fort was garrisoned by detachment from Fort McHenry during this period.
Click on Battery links below
|No.||Caliber||Type Mount||Service Years||Battery Cost||Notes|
|Battery Towson||2||12"||Barbette Carriage||1898-1899-1900-1918||$ 79,937||Guns to Fort Wadsworth,|
|Battery Heart||2||5"||Balanced Pillar Mount||1899-1900-1900-1917||$ 12,300||Guns to France|
|Battery Augustin||2||3"||Masking Parapet Mount||1899-1900-1900-1920||$ 7,600|
World War I (1917-1918)
During World War I the guns were removed from Battery Towson and Battery Heart for service elsewhere and by 1920 the guns from Battery Augustin had also been removed. The Army officially abandoned Fort Carroll in March 1921 and removed all remaining equipment to Fort Howard (1).
The Fort was sold to Benjamin N. Eisenberg in 1958 for about ten thousand dollars. Several entities leased the property from the Eisenberg family for various purposes but none proved viable and the property is unoccupied and decaying.
Location: In the middle of the Patapsco River off Hawkins Point, Maryland.
Maps & Images
Lat: 39.214757 Long: -76.519303
- Roberts, Robert B., Encyclopedia of Historic Forts: The Military, Pioneer, and Trading Posts of the United States, Macmillan, New York, 1988, 10th printing, ISBN 0-02-926880-X, page 377
- Weaver, John R. II, A Legacy in Brick and Stone: America Coastal Defense Forts of the Third System, Redoubt Press, McLean, 2001, First Printing, ISBN 1-57510-069-X, page 126-129
- Fort Carroll Story
- Fort Carroll
- Lighthouse Friends - Fort Carroll
- North American Forts - Fort Carroll
- The Building of Fort Carroll (Vol. I, Ch. 18 of Freeman's biography of Robert E. Lee)
- Coast Defense Study Group, CDSG Press, CDSG Digital Library