The 50 years before the American Civil War saw a boom in the construction of coastal forts in the United States of America. These stone and brick forts stretched from New England to the Florida Keys, and as far as the Mississippi River. At the start of the war some were located in the secessionist states, and many fell into Confederate hands. Although a handful of key sites remained in Union hands throughout the war, the remainder had to be won back through bombardment or assault. This book examines the design, construction and operational history of those fortifications, such as Fort Sumter, Fort Morgan and Fort Pulaski, which played a crucial part in the course of the Civil War.
The techniques of European warfare were transformed during the 15th and 16th centuries by the use of gunpowder and by substantial progress in the effectiveness and destructive power of artillery. The series of conflicts in the 1640s, known collectively as the English Civil War, was the first in the British Isles that reflected this new reality. Sieges that aimed at isolating and reducing fortified places became the dominant instrument for prosecuting the war and protective fortifications were vital, for both the besieged as well as the besieger. This title describes how both the Parliamentarians and the Royalists made use of new fortification techniques throughout the course of this conflict.
When war broke out between the United States and Great Britain in 1812, neither side was prepared for the conflict, as evidenced by their respective fortifications. The most sophisticated and modern fortifications were those built by the US Corps of Engineers to protect some of the main port cities. These included Fort Mifflin in Philadelphia, Fort McHenry in Baltimore and Castle William in New York. The British also heavily fortified their main harbor at Halifax and their main center of power at Quebec. However, elsewhere, especially in the interior, fortifications were old, neglected or only hastily erected. The forts at Detroit and Mackinac were much as the British had left them in 1796. This book covers all of the main fortifications of the conflict, those that faced the crashing of guns and those whose intimidation played a part in the grand strategy of the war.
Following the discovery of America by Columbus in 1492, European colonists brought their system of fortification to the New World in an attempt to ensure their safety and consolidate their conquests. French and British explorers came later to North America, and thus the establishment of their sizeable settlements only got under way during the 17th century. The inhabitants of New France built elaborate fortifications to protect their towns and cities. This book provides a detailed examination of the defenses of four of them: Québec, Montréal and Louisbourg in Canada, and New Orleans in Louisiana.
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