September 13 – Fort Bayard Park (ONP #256)

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Another entry in my Civil War forts of DC miniseries!

To many people (including me for most to of the 13 years I lived in DC) Fort Bayard Park is just a large, green hill with a playground, a small baseball field, and lots of open space for romping things (dogs, kids, etc.) to romp.

In actuality, however, Fort Bayard has a past life as an earthworks fort during the Civil War. It was a small post (part of a ring of 19 forts that surrounded DC to protect it from Confederate attack), but did see a little action during the Battle of Fort Stevens, when its troops rebuffed Confederate troops sent by General Jubal Early.

Today, the only things that needs rebuffing are mosquitos, and perhaps an over-friendly Golden Retriever.  None of the remains of the fort even exist.

I’m glad the National Parks Service is doing such a good job of preserving these spaces. So far that makes six Civil War sites (out of 19) that I have visited around DC. If you missed the others, they are Battery Kemble, Fort Bunker Hill, Battleground National Cemetery, Fort Stevens  and Fort Reno. Thirteen sites still to visit, and only about 100 more days in the One New Place year. I better get busy!