Fort Ethan Allen (2)
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Fort Ethan Allen (2) (1861-1865) - A U.S. Civil War post established in 1861 by Union forces in Arlington County, Virginia. Named for patriot Major General Ethan Allen who captured Fort Ticonderoga in May 1775. Part of the Washington DC Defense System. Abandoned at the end of the war in 1865.
Fort Ethan Allen (2) History
Fort Ethan Allen was also one of 33 forts on the Virginia side of the Potomac River that made up an outer defense line for Washington DC known as the Arlington Line.
Fort Ethan Allen was a large earthworks fortification built in September 1861 by volunteer troops from Vermont. The fort commanded the approaches to the Chain Bridge that crossed the Potomac River into Washington DC. The fort had a perimeter of 736 yards and garrisoned over 1000 troops. Armament included three 6-pounder guns, four 24-pounder guns, three 32-pounder guns, two 8-inch howitzers, three 10-pounder Parrott rifles, eleven 30-pounder Parrott rifles, six 12-pounder Napoleon guns, four 10-inch mortars and two 24-pounder Coehorn mortars.
A 17 May 1864 report from the Union Inspector of Artillery noted the following: "Fort Ethan Allen, Col. A. A. Gibson commanding.–Garrison, nine companies Second Pennsylvania Heavy Artillery–1 colonel, 29 commissioned officers, 1,346 men, and 1 ordnance-sergeant. Armament, nine 6-pounder field guns, three 10-pounder Parrotts, three 32pounder bronze howitzers, four 24-pounder siege guns, two 8-inch sea-coast howitzers, eleven 30-pounder Parrotts, six 24-pounder Coehorn mortars, four 10-inch siege mortars. Magazines, four; dry and serviceable. Ammunition, full supply and in good order. Implements, complete and serviceable. Drill in artillery, ordinary; needs improving. Drill in infantry, very indifferent; needs much improving. Discipline, indifferent. Garrison larger than necessary. Cavalry garrison, one company (E) Thirteenth New York Cavalry–2 commissioned officers, 78 enlisted men, 53 equipped, 52 horses."
Abandoned in 1865 at the end of the war.
Part of Fort Ethan Allen Park, Arlington County, Virginia. Overgrown earthworks are visible but no period cannons or mounts are in place.
USGS Geographic Names Information System (GNIS) Database Entry:
- Name: Fort Ethan Allen Type: Historical Class: Military ID: 1492064
- Location: Arlington County, Virginia, US, FIPS Code: 51013
- Latitude: 38.9244444, Longitude: -77.1236111, Elevation: 279 Map: Washington West
- As Of: 28 Sep 1979
- Source: U.S. Board on Geographic Names
Location: Fort Ethan Allen Park, 4311 Old Glebe Road, Arlington County, Virginia.
Maps & Images
Lat: 38.9244444 Long: -77.1236111
- Arlington Line - U.S. Civil War
- Washington DC Fort Ring
- Washington DC Defense System - U.S. Civil War
- Cooling, Benjamin F. III and Owen, Valton H. II, Mr. Lincoln's Forts: A Guide to the Civil War Defenses of Washington, Scarecrow Press, 2009, ISBN 0810863073, ISBN 9780810863071, 334 pages.
- 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 808.
Visited: 26 May 2013