Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Fort Donelson

Fort Entrance
Confederate soldiers and slaves built this 15-acre earthen fort over a period of seven months, using axes and shovels to make a wall of logs and earth ten feet high.  While a more permanent fort of brick or stone would have been more desirable, earthen walls were much quicker to build.  Properly constructed earthworks can provide better protection than brick or stone.  The fort’s purpose was to protect the Cumberland River batteries from land attack. At the time of the battle, all trees within 200 yards of the fort were felled, clearing the fields of fire and observation.  Tree branches were sharpened and laid around the outside of the fort to form obstacles called abatis.

SOURCE: 2010 Fort Donelson National Battlefield park brochure: Tour Stop 2.

Exterior of the Fort's Walls.
Exterior of the Fort's Walls.
Interior of the Fort's Walls.
Interior of the Fort's Walls

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