Fort Adams Circa Late 1930's. (Photo by J.L. Goodman.)


Your are Visitor Number since November 10th, 1998.

Please visit the Official Fort Adams Trust Website at www.fortadams.org.

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General Information History of Fort Adams
Fort Adams Links Related Websites Contact Information Tour Information

General Information About Fort Adams

A mighty Rodman cannon fires at Fort Adams in the late 1800's.

Fort Adams is the second largest masonry fortification in the United States, exceeded only by Fort Monroe in Virginia.

The site Fort Adams occupies was first fortified with an earthwork battery in 1776 during the American Revolution. The guns of this simple fortification were insturmental in driving British warships from Narragansett Bay in May of 1776.

In 1798 work was begun on the first Fort Adams which was dedicated on July 4th, 1799 and named after then President John Adams. This fort, mounting 17 cannon, was garrisioned during the War of 1812 and was active until 1821.

Construction on the current fort was started in 1824 and completed in 1857. Much of the fort's construction was conducted under the supervision of Colonel Joseph G. Totten - the leading American engineer of his day. The fort was designed to mount 464 cannon and be garrisoned by 2,440 soldiers in wartime.

The new Fort Adams was garrisoned in 1841 and was never attacked. It was ,however, in use during every major conflict while it was active. Fort Adams was deactivated as a coast artillery fort in 1950. In 1965 Fort Adams, and the surrounding lands were given to the State of Rhode Island for use as a state park. Fort Adams was open to the public from 1972 to 1980. In 1985 Fort Adams was designated a National Historic Landmark - one of fewer than 2,300 structures in the United States which have received this distinction.

For more detailed information on the fort's history please read the On-line History of Fort Adams.

In 1995 Fort Adams was re-opened for tours from May thru October. Fort Adams is the site of many special events including the world famous Jazz and Folk Festivals.

In 1997 Fort Adams was designated an Landmark at Risk by the National Park Service.

In June 1999 Fort Adams hosted a Colonial Field Artillery School hosted by the United Train of Artillery. The school is expected to return in the year 2001.

Fort Adams Bicentennial Flag

On Sunday, July 4th, 1999 Fort Adams celebrated the bicentennial of its commissioning as an active miltary installation. The Fort Adams Trust looks foward to the fort's use as a major educational facility, special events center and tourism destination for many years to come.


Fort Adams Links

Fort Adams circa 1850.

Official Fort Adams Trust Website

The History of Fort Adams Provides many historical details about Fort Adams with many historic images. Use theText Only Version for printing and faster downloading.

Professional Photographs of Fort Adams Eric Boutilier-Brown is a Canadien photographer with a keen appreciation of the artistic and functional beauty of masonry fortifications. His photographs of Fort Adams show more than meets the eye.

Fort Adams Picture Page Features about 20 recent photographs of Fort Adams emphasizing its architectural features.

Scenes from the June 2000 Colonial re-enactment at Fort Adams.

Dave Mann's Fort Adams Website An outstanding site - features many contemporary photos and much useful information about Fort Adams.

(Click the Map for Closer View.)

Directions to Fort Adams, Map and Tour Information Everything you need know about how to get to Fort Adams and when to take a tour.

Images of Fort Adams by Pete Payette. Mr. Payette is the creator of the North American Fortifications website which has a comprehensive listing of forts in North America.

Historic American Buildings Survey (HABS) Photographs of Fort Adams A collection of 98 photographs of Fort Adams taken in August of 1985. An outstanding resource. (Enter "Fort Adams" on the search engine and select item 14 from the results.)

More History of Fort Adams from the Rhode Island Division of Parks and Recreation. This annonymous history, although poorly organized and proof read, contains many interesting details relating to the design and construction of Fort Adams.

10-inch Disappearing Rifle at Battery Reilly, Circa 1910

Artillery at Fort Adams Provides detailed information about the armament of Fort Adams from the 1850's through the Second World War. Features images of the types of artillery pieces used at Fort Adams.

Colonel Henry A. du Pont was a member of a distinquished family of industrialists and earned the Medal of Honor during the Civil War. He was stationed at Fort Adams from 1870 to 1873.

Aerial Photograph of Fort Adams. Courtesy of Aerials Only.

Fort Adams Image Gallery is maintained by Dan Titus, an active member of the Fort Adams Trust. His website features many historic, rare and unique images of Fort Adams. A must see.

Newport on Line Features a panoramic view of Fort Adams and the surrounding waters at sunset.

Aerial Photograph of Fort Adams courtesy of Terraserver.com .

Index of National Archives motion pictures featuring Fort Adams


Fort Adams Trust Staff

President - Lee Whitaker
Fort Commandant - Colonel Frank Hale, RIM
Executive Director - Colonel Anthony Palermo, USMC (Ret.)
Executive Assistant - Mary Beth Smith
Treasurer - Jack Griechen
Senior Tour Guide - John Duchesneau
Tour Guides - Mark Simpson, Evelyn Wyatt, Tim Sullivan, Scott Skonic, Stephanie Beckett, Natasha Nixon.
Senior Tour Guide Emeritus - Stephen A. Ferris (Served 1995 - 2000.)
Webmaster - John M. Gould

Contact Information

Tour programs and fundraising for Fort Adams are conducted by the Fort Adams Trust, a private non-profit organization. The Trust may be contacted at -

Fort Adams Trust
Eisenhower House, Fort Adams
Newport, RI 02840
(401) 841-0707

Send E-mail Relating to Fort Adams to: info@fortadams.org.

Send E-mail Relating to this Website to: jmgould39@yahoo.com.

Related Websites

oso.com | how you spell Rhode Island on the Internet

Links to Rhode Island Websites

History of Fort Wetherill Built at the turn of the century, Fort Wetherill supplemented Fort Adams in defending Narragansett Bay in both world wars. Today Fort Wetherill's massive gun emplacements can be seen by the public in a beautiful natural setting. Satellite Image courtesy of Terraserver.

Newport Artillery Company The Newport Artillery Company was chartered in 1741 and is still and active unit of the Rhode Island Militia. The company was stationed at Fort Adams during the Civil War and the Spanish-American War.

Battery F, 1st Rhode Island Light Artillery is the Civil War Re-enactment unit of the Newport Artillery Company. It has hosted a number of events at Fort Adams.

Fort Jefferson, Dry Tortugas, Florida

The Center for Fort Preservation and Tourism features links to many other websites related to forts in the United States and around the world.

CDSG Data Base A listing of all coast defense batteries in the Northeastern United States from 1895 thru 1945.

Westerly Armory Restoration, Inc. WAR seeks to restore and utilize the historic armory of Westerly, Rhode Island.

New England Coast Defense Forts Provides links to websites relating to coast defense forts in New England.

Coast Defense Study Group An organization serving those interested in studying and preserving American coastal forts.

Fort Monroe

Unofficial Fort Monroe Homepage Dedicated to the only fort in the United States larger than Fort Adams.

Museum of Yachting When you visit Fort Adams please also visit the Museum of Yachting. It has many exhibits for both the seasoned yachtsman and the casually curious.

Newport County Convention and Visitors Bureau A wealth of information on where to stay, eat and have fun in the Newport area.


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