Fort Delaware.

Fort Delaware, Confederate Hellhole

Field review by the editors.

Delaware City, Delaware

Fort Delaware stands on Pea Patch Island in the Delaware River. It's a castle-like fortress surrounded by a moat. Originally built to protect Wilmington and Philadelphia, it became infamous during the Civil War as a jail for Confederate POWs. 33,000 were imprisoned, nearly 2,700 died from dysentery, scurvy, and smallpox (They're buried in a mass grave in New Jersey).

Summer days can still be as miserably hot and humid at the fort as they were in 1864, but today's tourists and costumed "living history" interpreters at least escape the medical maladies of yore. In September and October there are Haunted Fort tours, and every year in May the "Escape from Fort Delaware Triathlon" is run along the same path used by the Fort's 52 Civil War prisoners who managed to break out and swim across the river.

Fort Delaware, Confederate Hellhole

Address:
Pea Patch Island, Delaware City, DE
Directions:
The Fort is just offshore from Delaware City, reached via the Three Forts Ferry. I-95 exit 4A. Drive south on Hwy 1 for 7.5 miles. Take exit 152. Turn left onto Hwy 72. Drive east for four miles (Hwy 72 will become Hwy 9). Turn left onto Clinton St. and drive to the ferry dock.
Hours:
W-Su 10 am - 4 pm, summer only. (Call to verify) Local health policies may affect hours and access.
Phone:
302-834-7941
RA Rates:
Worth a Detour
Save to My Sights

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Most Historic Alley in DelawareMost Historic Alley in Delaware, New Castle, DE - 5 mi.
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In the region:
Cookie Jar House: A-Bomb Proof, Glendora, NJ - 31 mi.

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