Fort Richardson (3)

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Fort Richardson (3) (1861-1865) - A Union U.S. Civil War Fort first established in 1861 in Arlington County, Virginia. Named Fort Richardson after Major General Israel B. Richardson, (Cullum 1096), 2nd Michigan Infantry, who died 3 Nov 1862 of wounds received at Antietam on 17 Sep 1862. Fort abandoned in 1865 at the end of the war.

Fort Richardson Gun Battery Drill circa 1861

History of Fort Richardson

One of the ring of Union fortifications surrounding Washington DC during the U.S. Civil War, see Washington DC Fort Ring.

Fort Richardson from the Parapets Showing the Tent Camp Outside the Walls

Fort Richardson 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.

Established in September 1861 as a detached redoubt with a perimeter of 316 yards and emplacements for 15 guns. Armament included six 24 pounder cannon, two 24 pounder field howitzers, three 30 pounder Parrott rifles, one 10" mortar, one 24 pounder Coehorn mortar and one 100 pounder Parrott rifle. The fort enclosed the 15 gun platforms, 2 magazines and a bombproof.

A 29 Mar 1862 report described the status of the post: "Nine guns, as follows: Two 24-pounder barbette; three 24-pounder siege guns; two 30- pounder Parrotts, and two 10-inch siege mortars. One of the mortars is unserviceable from its trunnions being too large for the bed. One magazine leaks slightly. In other respects fort in good condition as to guns, ammunition, parapets, and abates."

A 17 May 1864 report from the Union Inspector of Artillery noted the following: "Fort Richardson, Major Trumbull commanding.–Garrison, three companies First Connecticut Heavy Artillery–1 major, 12 commissioned officers, 1 ordnance-sergeant, 412 men. Armament, two 24-pounder field howitzers, six 24-pounder siege (smooth), one 100-pounder rifled Parrott, three 30-pounder rifled Parrotts, two 24-pounder Coehorn mortars, one 10-inch mortar. Magazines, two: dry and in good order. Ammunition, full supply and serviceable. Implements, complete and in good order. Drill in artillery, fair. Drill in infantry, fair. Discipline, fair. Garrison sufficient for the work."

The fort was abandoned in 1865 at the end of the war.

Current Status

Some remains including the fort's south wall parapets and ditches, roadside marker in Arlington County, Virginia.

Location: Memorial Drive at the Army Navy Country Club in Arlington County, Virginia.

Maps & Images

Lat: 38.85773 Long: -77.07783

  • Multi Maps from ACME
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  • Elevation: .....'

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