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Fort Fisher State Historic Site

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Address: 1610 Fort Fisher Blvd S, Kure Beach, NC 28449-3755
Phone Number: +1 910-458-5538
Website
Today
9:00 am - 5:00 pm
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Hours:
Tue - Sat 9:00 am - 5:00 pm
Description:

At the dawn of the American Civil War, the Confederacy took control of land...

At the dawn of the American Civil War, the Confederacy took control of land in southeastern North Carolina near one of the two outlets to the Atlantic Ocean from the Cape Fear River. Fort Fisher was the largest earthwork fortification in the Confederacy and was constructed to protect this vital opening. Ships running the Federal blockade of the port of Wilmington, known as blockade runners, supplied necessary goods to Confederate armies inland. By late 1863, the supply line through Wilmington was the last remaining supply route open to Robert E. Lee's Army of Northern Virginia.

The Federal Army and Navy attacked Fort Fisher December 24, 1864. After two days of fighting with little headway, Federal commanders concluded that the fort was too strong to assault and withdrew their forces. However, they returned for a second attempt on January 12, 1865. For two and one-half days, Federal ships bombarded the fort on both land and sea face. On the fifteenth, more than 3,300 Union infantry, including the 27th U.S. Colored Troops, assaulted the land face. After several hours of fierce hand-to-hand combat, Federal troops captured the fort that night.

The Confederate army evacuated their remaining forts in the Cape Fear area, and within weeks Union forces overran Wilmington. Once Wilmington fell, the supply line of the Confederacy was severed, and the Civil War was soon over.

This site has been declared national historic landmark. Along with a restored palisade fence, approximately ten percent of the fort still stands. Guided tours, outside panel makers and museum exhibits provide a historical point of reference. Shaded by gnarled live oaks, a scenic trail leads tourists from the visitor center past the gigantic earthworks and around to the rear of the fort. Visitors are invited to tour the remains of the fort's land face featuring an impressive reconstruction of a 32-pounder seacoast gun at Shepherd's Battery. Fort Fisher State Historic Site is located in Kure Beach on what was then known as Federal Point and today as Pleasure Island.

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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

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Educational and facinating

This was a very interesting site. The museum had several stations that provided both written details on that event in history but had actual artifacts from the battle. Our guide... read more

5 of 5 starsReviewed 1 week ago
bljh2014
,
Charlotte, North Carolina
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333 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 331: English reviews
Charlotte, North Carolina
Level Contributor
26 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 1 week ago

This was a very interesting site. The museum had several stations that provided both written details on that event in history but had actual artifacts from the battle. Our guide Steve provided interesting stories that encompassed that Era that you would not find anywhere else. Please stop and visit. Well worth it.

Helpful?
Thank bljh2014
United States
Level Contributor
58 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

Do stop and check out fort fisher when in the area. Nice little museum and the historical grounds sit between the Atlantic and cape fear river. Drive 4 miles down the road and take the car ferry to southport.

Helpful?
Thank bayoutraveler123
Oceana, West Virginia
Level Contributor
6 reviews
4 attraction reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 1 week ago

Family spent several hours wondering around the grounds of the old fort and looking through the museum. Really enjoyed it. Everything is well kept and there are plenty of signs which tell you the history of what your looking at. Fun, educational, and interesting.

Helpful?
Thank JimCook236
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 attraction reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 2 weeks ago

My oldest is a history buff. so he enjoyed walking around a reading and learning whatever he could learn. My youngest which is 6 went through it fast, he liked looking at everything but to calm for his taste :-) I really enjoyed myself, and the views outdoors was beautiful.

Helpful?
Thank Stephine W
Bowling Green, Ohio
Level Contributor
7 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 2 weeks ago

We learned a lot. Very informative and very sad. They have a lot of good displays both inside and outside.

Helpful?
Thank bestmom31
Level Contributor
10 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 3 weeks ago

We came here while visiting my mom and I had never heard of Fort Fisher before. This place was so interesting and so historical and important to the end of the Civil War. We paid for the tour, which took you up to the mounds. The historian was a little boring but he had a lot of knowledge of the... More 

Helpful?
Thank Carla H
Moncure, North Carolina, United States
Level Contributor
30 reviews
10 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 3 weeks ago

I really like Fort Fisher. So many interesting artifacts & stories. So much you can learn. I found the stories of the wives of the generals so interesting. I want to find a book about Daisy. This was so fascinating. The kids enjoyed seeing the fort & seeing the artifacts. Great place to take the kids for a real history... More 

Helpful?
Thank Donna B
Ellicott City, Maryland
Level Contributor
178 reviews
56 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed 3 weeks ago via mobile

We arrived at the military base in time to buy cocktails and enjoy them while watching the sunset. This is a beautiful location on the water; nice breeze.

Helpful?
Thank William J
Wake Forest, North Carolina
Level Contributor
208 reviews
36 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 62 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed 3 weeks ago via mobile

It's worth while simply because of the historical significance of the Civil War and the forts that protected major southern ports. The fort played an important part in keeping The port of Wilmington open until late in the Civil War. Not all of the original earth works are still there but enough to give you an understanding of the fort's... More 

Helpful?
Thank beachcomber1947
Fort Wayne
Level Contributor
50 reviews
15 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed 4 weeks ago via mobile

Our family visited on a very hot Sunday afternoon. I knew a little about the of history Fort Fisher area in the Civil War but learned more and found its strategic importance very interesting. Really think that this should part of National historic sites lists and Parks. There is an old but well done and interesting map showing the battle... More 

Helpful?
Thank J J

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Here's what previous visitors have asked, with answers from representatives of Fort Fisher State Historic Site and other visitors
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Jonesboro, Georgia
over a year ago

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  • Is there a restaurant or café onsite?