Delaware's Forgotten Fort
is a Coastal Defense fort built during WW1 and was active until after WW2.
It is the last remaining example of it's design type in the United States.
Explore some information on Delaware's Forgotten Fort.
This website is focused on historical information about Fort Saulsbury, located six miles east of Milford, Delaware. Partly because of private ownership, it has become known as "Delaware's Forgotten Fort."
(** Please note that the fort property is privately held and any visitations or inquiries are greatly discouraged by the owner. **)
The website is under continuing construction and will be developed and improved during 2016. Check back and follow the progress.
LAST update: August 13, 2016
New feature: New aerial picture added on home page
Reference added to show last update. Grammatical errors corrected
The Fort Saulsbury website has been developed and is maintained by Everett Bennett
Comments are invited by sending e-mail to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Additional information about the author can be seen at www.everettbennett.com
The fort was across the marsh from where I grew up or about two and one half miles away. I was aware of the fort, but like many, really didn't pay much attention to it. I do remember being inside the fort as a youngster when it was used by the salvage company for storage. What I remember most were the huge bales of cardboard stacked inside of the bunker.
As time went on, I graduated from the University of Delaware and entered the Army as a 2 Lt. after having completed R.O.T.C training at Delaware. I entered the Air Defense Artillery branch and was assigned to the HAWK air defense missile segment of the branch.
Many years later, I became involved in the Civil Air Patrol and learned that, during WWII, the very first mission of the Civil Air Patrol was flown out of Coastal Patrol Base #2 at Rehoboth. It was by a chance invitation from the Sussex Squadron, that I was invited on a tour of the Fort Miles gun emplacement of Battery 519. It was during that tour that something "clicked" and I wanted to know more about the history of Fort Saulsbury. The connection was that two of Fort Saulsbury's guns were relocated to Battery 519 during WWII.
I began researching the information available on the fort and soon found myself totally involved with the project. While I have tried to focus only on Fort Saulsbury, I have learned of many other related topics. One interesting fact learned is that the Coast Artillery was the predecessor of the Air Defense Artillery, so I have that connection as well. One similarity is the branch insignia. For the Air Defense Artillery Insignia, a missile replaces the large shell on the crossed cannons on the Coast Artillery Insignia.
Battery Hall North Entrance
As I delved into the project, I soon learned that I had missed a lot of local history through the years. I knew many people that had some involvement with the fort, but sadly, I didn't think much about at the time. Now it is too late, since many have passed away. As an example, I knew the person that owned the land where the Fowler's Beach FC tower was built. The .51 acre was sold for $75.00. After the war, it was sold back to the individual for three times that amount. I realized that I could have learned so much more, if I had started the project a few years earlier.
It seemed to me that I should make every effort to preserve any information that I could find about the fort before more was lost due to the passing of time. One of my personal objectives is to preserve the local history for future generations. As a primary step, I developed a PowerPoint program about the history and have that available for public presentations. My plan is to write a book with the most complete and accurate information about the fort to date.
The book has been delayed as I continue to develop this website, which parallels the information in my PowerPoint program. It is my hope that the information is provided in such a way that it is interesting to the reader.
Enjoy the "tour" of Fort Saulsbury provided in this website.
Coast Artillery Insignia Air Defense Artillery Insignia
Using the magic of PhotoShop, I was able to "make" a couple of pictures of what it might look like today at the fort. I took two current pictures of the gun pad as it is today. I then added a picture of the gun as it was back then. The results are two mostly fictitious pictures of what it might have looked liked with the guns in place. With guns having been de-militarized, it is the best we can do today. See more pictures of the almost 100 year old fort under the "Army Surplus" Tab.
Here is a current aerial picture taken of the main area of fort. The view is in the general westerly direction and dated August 3, 2016. Battery Hall's bunker and two gun pads are mostly visible in the foreground. The identical Battery Haslet is mostly obscured by trees in the left portion of the picture.