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The original item was published from 8/31/2020 1:28:10 PM to 8/31/2020 2:03:03 PM.

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* Hampton City News

Posted on: August 31, 2020

[ARCHIVED] Take the survey and help us envision the future for Fort Monroe


Aug. 31, 2020 - The Fort Monroe Authority, National Park Service, and City of Hampton want your help in advancing the vision for Fort Monroe when it comes to preserving the property, telling some of the fascinating stories behind the historic site, and seeking financial sustainability. You can go online to take a short survey and provide feedback on areas the organization will focus on in the near future.

For more than 400 years, the point of land in Hampton known as Old Point Comfort – which is part of Fort Monroe – has served as a key defensive site at the mouth of the Chesapeake Bay.

  • In 1607, an English colonist who helped found Jamestown wrote: “rowed over to a point of land where we found a channel and sounded six, eight, ten or twelve fathoms, which put us in good comfort. Therefore we named that point of land Cape Comfort.” It was later renamed Old Point Comfort.
  • In 1619 The first Africans brought to the North American colonies came through Hampton Roads at Old Point Comfort in 1619.
  • In 1730, a permanent fortification was constructed at Old Point Comfort, only to be destroyed in 1749 by a powerful hurricane.
  • In 1819, construction began on what’s now known as Fort Monroe, named for James Monroe, the fifth president of the United States.
  • From 1831-1834 a young Lt. Robert E. Lee was stationed at Fort Monroe and oversaw the final phases of construction.
  • During the Civil War, Fort Monroe remained a union stronghold. It became the birthplace of the Civil War-era freedom movement in 1861, when three enslaved men escaped the Confederacy in Norfolk and fled in a small boat across the water to Fort Monroe, where a Union general refused to return them to enslavement.

Although decommissioned as an active Army installation in 2011, Fort Monroe continues to be a vital link between the nation’s past and future. You can go online to learn more about Fort Monroe. The survey will be available through Sept. 9.

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