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Maps of Fort Pulaski

The Battle
    Strategic Situation
    Isolating the Fort
    The Build-Up
    The Aftermath

Then and Now

Order of Battle



fort pulaski header

          In the spring of 1862 Fort Pulaski, located on Cockspur Island in the Savannah River, guarded the seaward approach to Savannah, Georgia.  It was one of a series of fortresses designed in the first half of the 19th Century to protect the shores and waterways of the United States.  When Georgia seceded from the Union in early 1861 the fledgling Confederacy took the fort from Federal authorities.
          In late 1861 the Federal Army and Navy began a campaign to blockade the port of Savannah.  The central obstacle to this objective was Fort Pulaski.  First the fort was isolated and cut off from Confederate forces in Savannah.  Next, the Union army placed heavy rifled cannons and mortars on Big Tybee Island, just south of the fort.  Finally, the Federals bombarded the fort after the garrison declined a formal surrender offer.  After thirty hours of punishment, a portion of the outer wall collapsed, threatening a powder magazine at the opposite end of the fort.  To avoid further bloodshed, the Confederate commander surrendered the fort.  The fortress’s quick surrender shocked the world, and signaled the end of brick fortifications under the muzzles of rifled ordnance.  The Union army regained control of the fort, and used it to cut Savannah off from the outside world.
          Today Fort Pulaski is an excellent surviving example of an early 19th Century brick and masonry coastal fortification.  It exists in much the condition it did more than a century ago, and is well worth a trip to see it.

Fort Pulaski National Monument


From I- 95, take exit for I-16 about 15 miles west of Savannah.  From I-16, take U.S.Highway 80 East.  Follow signs for Fort Pulaski, Tybee Island and beaches. Fort Pulaski National Monument entrance is approximately 15 miles east of Savannah.


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