Fort Mifflin of Philadelphia: An Illustrated History

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University of Pennsylvania Press, 1998 - History - 264 pages

Fort Mifflin of Philadelphia is the first comprehensive illustrated history of one of the only remaining examples of the oldest harbor defense fortification system in the United States. The site of Fort Mifflin, the Great Mud Island along the entrance of the Delaware River, was the natural barrier to protect early Philadelphia from maritime attack. Fort Mifflin of Philadelphia provides the most complete modern account of the crucial and heavily contested battles around the fortification during 1777, when the British and Americans realized the strategic value of the Great Mud Island as the key to control of the Delaware River, one of the busiest waterways in colonial America.

The fort was maintained as a first line of defense throughout the nineteenth century and was used also as a military prison during the Civil War. Declared a National Monument by Congress in 1906, it fell into disrepair and neglect until the 1960s, when the city of Philadelphia took administrative control of the site. With broad civic initiative, Ft. Mifflin was declared a National Historic Landmark in 1970. In addition to its engaging account of military history, Fort Mifflin of Philadelphia provides the only chronicle of the efforts in the late twentieth century to preserve and restore the site.

A Barra Foundation Book

 

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Contents

Fortiffing the Delaware 16261774
7
Fort Island 17751777
17
Defensive War on the Delaware 1777
31
Guarding the Nation Capital 17901800
69
A Democratic Fort 18011815
82
Decay and Renovation 18161853
94
Naval Magazine and Civil War Prison 18551865
109
A Simple Barbette Fort 18661945
124
Politics of Historic Preservation 19461997
152
Copyright

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About the author (1998)

Jeffery M. Dorwart is Professor of History at Rutgers University.

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