Fort Alden (2)
Fort Alden (2) (1778-1780) - A Patriot Revolutionary War Fort established in 1778 near Cherry Valley, Otsego County, New York. Named Fort Alden after the first commander, Colonel Ichabod Alden. Destroyed and abandoned in 1780.
History of Fort Alden
Established in 1778 and garrisoned with Continental Army forces under the command of Colonel Ichabod Alden in July 1778. The fort consisted of a strong stockade enclosing two blockhouses protecting settlement of Cherry Valley in the Schoharie Valley.
Cherry Valley was invaded on 11 Nov 1778 by a force some 200 Loyalists and more than 500 Indians under Captain Walter Butler and Mohawk chief Joseph Brant. The town and the fort were caught by surprise. The fort was repeated assaulted while Loyalists and Indians went through the village killing, pillaging, and burning dwellings.
Colonel Alden was killed along with 15 of his soldiers. Twenty-two settlers including women and children, were killed and 71 prisoners were taken. Most of the prisoners were released the next day.
The garrison was withdrawn in the summer of 1779 to support Sullivan-Clinton campaign against the Iroquois. This again left Cherry Valley exposed to the threat of raids. Cherry Valley was once again invaded on 24 Apr 1780 by a party of some 80 Indians led by 2 Loyalists. Eight people were killed and 14 were taken captive. The remaining structures from the 1778 raid were all put to the torch. The settlement was completely destroyed including the fort, the church, and the few remaining houses.
The site of Fort Alden is now mostly inside the Cherry Valley Cemetery, near the front entrance gate but also includes the road in front of the cemetery. Two large period mortars brace the front entrance gate and mark the site. Just inside the gate is a 1917 DAR Ground Level Marker. Just southwest of the fort site along route 166 is a roadside memorial to the fort commander, Colonel Ichabod Alden, on the spot where he was felled by a tomahawk.
Visited: 15 Jun 2016