Fort Putnam (1)

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Fort Putnam (1) (1778-18??) - First established in 1778 as a Revolutionary War fort at Fortress West Point, Orange County, New York. Established by Colonel Rufus Putnam, 5th Massachusetts Infantry and named after him. Rebuilt and enlarged in 1794 as a First System fort, abandoned as a military post sometime in the early 1800s. Not infrequently referred to in West Point literature as "Fort Put".

Fort Putnam Flag
Fort Putnam Magazine Ruins
Fort Putnam Parapet

Revolutionary War (1775-1783)

Fort Putnam Map Snippet 1883
Fort Putnam Entrance

Part of Fortress West Point.

Fort Putnam was a Revolutionary War fort built on Crown Hill at West Point to protect Fort Clinton and the plain below from a land attack. Construction began on 11 Apr 1778 as one of two principal forts, designed to withstand a 10 day siege. Ramparts originally constructed with dry stone masonry later reinforced with lime mortar. Interior included three casemates, two bomb proofs and a provision magazine. Garrison planned at 420 men most to be housed in tents and huts outside the fort. Armed in 1780 with five 18 pounders, two 12 pounder, two 6 pounders, one 4 pounder and four 5.5" mortars.

Abandoned as a military post sometime in the early 1800s.

Current Status

Must See! Located on the United States Military Academy at West Point, New York. Restored in 1909 and refurbished in 1975-1976. Current site is only accessible by guided tour. Site includes period cannons mounted in place on period carriages. Exceptional visitor center and museum located at the post entrance below. On active Military installation and access may be restricted.

Location: Crown Hill, United States Military Academy, West Point, Orange County, New York.

Maps & Images

Lat: 41.390288 Long: -73.963507

See Also:


  • 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 591.
  • West Point Fortifications Staff Ride Note Cards, 3rd ed, USMA History Department, January 1994 changed 1998 and 2008, Pdf, 82 pages, page 43-46.
  • USGS Geographic Names Information System (GNIS) Database Entry: 973235.
  • Cubbison, Douglas R., Historic Structures Report: The Hudson River Defenses at Fortress West Point, 1778-1783, U.S. Military Academy, West Point, New York, January 2005, pdf, 63 pages, illustrated, page 52.


Visited: 20 Aug 2010

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