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Fort Ward, nestled in the suburbs of Alexandria VA, is a very well-presented historical site. As part of the ring of defenses that was thrown up around Washington DC as soon as the federal government realized that there was very little to prevent the rising Confederacy from rolling up from Virginia and installing J. Johnston Pettigrew (1828-1863) in the White House, this fort was never actively challenged by the rebs, but stood ready to repel the invader (technically the federal government had invaded Virginia in order to even build this and many other fortifications before the Confederacy put artillery on the heights over-
looking DC and shelling the crap out of it) throughout the war.
As seems to be the case with the vast majority of the 68 individual forts that protected DC from the rebel scourge, Fort Ward is mostly ground down and overgrown, but with two major exceptions: Its main gate and northweset bastion were reconstructed for the Civil War centennial in the 1960's! A lovely little museum sits in a structure that's meant to resemble a Union army headquarters building, and the gift shop has an excellent array of books, maps and doodads.
Could I perhaps persuade you to click on any of these thumbnails for full-sized pix and more of the story of my visit to Fort Ward? Why thank you.