Fort George (14)

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Fort George (14) (1626-1790) - A Colonial Fort first established as Fort Amsterdam in 1626 by the Dutch in present day Manhattan, New York County, New York. Named Fort George in 1714 by the British for King George I. Captured by Patriots at the beginning of the Revolutionary War but surrendered to the British in 1776 and held until they evacuated New York City in 1783. Demolished in 1790. See the name progression below.

A view of Fort George with the city of New York, from the Southwest (1731-1736)

History of Fort George

Redraft of the Castello Plan of New Amsterdam in 1660. Fort Amsterdam in the Upper Left.

Established in 1626 by Dutch colonists, at first it was simply a blockhouse encircled by red cedar palisades backed by earthworks. By 1642 a stone church was being built within the enclosure of the fort. In 1664 the fort mounted 20 guns, but was no match for the English expedition to which it was surrendered in that year. The English lost the fort one more time to the Dutch but in 1674 they retook it and began to name it for successive English and British monarchs beginning with King James and ending with George III. The British expanded the fort over the years and by the Revolutionary War it could mount some 90 guns.

Fort George Plan 1773

During the Revolutionary War the fort was first captured by the Patriots in 1775 but recaptured by the British in 1776 along with New York City. The British used the fort and the adjoining Grand Battery as their headquarters. The British evacuated the city on 25 Nov 1783 and the fort was returned to American control. In 1790 the fort was torn down to make way for what was to have been the residence of the President of the United States but by the time it was finished the Capitol had moved from New York to Philadelphia.

Name Progression:

Destroyed in 1790.

Current Status

Site is now the location of the U.S. Customs House, Manhattan, New York County, New York. A marker for the S.W. bastion of the fort is located in the Battery Park but this marker was removed from the actual location during subway construction and no longer marks the correct park. Fort George

Location: Manhattan, New York County, New York.

Maps & Images

Lat: 40.704333 Long: -74.013767

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