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The original item was published from 10/27/2016 3:58:42 PM to 11/3/2016 1:44:22 PM.

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Hampton History Museum

Posted on: October 27, 2016

[ARCHIVED] Forts in Hampton - 2nd Saturday Family Event

Fort Wool

The design, construction, history and life of two of the nation’s most historic military outposts—Fort Wool and Fort Monroe are the foundation for “Forts in Hampton,” a day of free family fun with living history, Legos, and other hands-on activities presented at the Hampton History Museum on Saturday, November 12, 11:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.

Three Civil War interpreters will bring to life the experience of soldiers at the forts, lead musket drills, and discuss what it was like living in the forts while being surrounded by the enemy. After learning some of the principles of fort design and construction, children can create their own impenetrable fortress from Legos. Staff from Fort Monroe’s Casemate Museum will bring reproduction Civil War items for children to handle and try out. Hampton History Museum volunteers will lead making dummy musket cartridges. Coloring activities round out the fun.

Fort Monroe
Hampton’s national monument, Fort Monroe, plays a large part in Hampton’s history. In 1607, the English explorer Captain John Smith came ashore near Fort Monroe. In 1609, colonial settlers built a wooden structure large enough to hold 50 men and seven mounted cannons, and called it Fort Algernourne. In 1619, it would serve as a landing place in the New World for Africans brought in as slaves; and later during the Civil War as a Union stronghold, as a refuge for African Americans who escaped enslavement to "Freedom's Fortress" seeking a new life.

Fort Wool
Located at the entrance to the Hampton Roads Harbor, Fort Wool, originally named Fort Calhoun, has been a patriotic symbol of freedom since its construction in 1819. Along with Fort Monroe, Fort Wool was constructed following the War of 1812 to protect Hampton Roads from the British and other would-be invaders of the era. Its position also denied access to the James River—a vital Union advantage during the Civil War. Fort Wool is both a state and national historic landmark.

Family activities are free of charge and take place in the museum’s Great Hall and courtyard continuously from 11:00 am. - 2:00 p.m. Admission to the museum galleries is a special $3.00 per person reduced rate on 2nd Saturdays.

The Hampton History Museum is located at 120 Old Hampton Lane in downtown Hampton. There is plenty of free parking in the garage across the street. For more information call 757-727-1102.

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