Fort Stevens-1-
Fort Stevens was part of the extensive fortifications built around Washington, DC during the American Civil War. Ft. Stevens came under direct Confederate attack by troops led by General Jubal Early in the Battle of Fort Stevens on July 11-12, 1864.

According to a popular but possibly apocryphal account of the battle, Captain Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr. angrily told a tall, careless civilian to take cover and stay away from the firing zone, not knowing that the man was President Abraham Lincoln.

Fort Stevens in The Guns of the SouthEdit

Fort Stevens' guns fought fiercely against the Confederate invasion of Washington City, but it was all in vain. A Confederate shell hit the powder magazine, destroying the fort in a massive explosion, which turned night to noon and made as much noise as a thousand Fourth of July ceremonies packed into one.[1]

Fort Stevens in "Must and Shall"Edit

On July 12, 1864, President Abraham Lincoln rode out to Fort Stevens to observe Confederate General Jubal Early's attack, and was briefly under enemy fire before he was brusquely ordered to take cover by General Horatio Wright. Lincoln ignored Wright's order until U.S. Army Captain Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr. called for Lincoln to get down. This advice was in vain; as Lincoln headed for a ladder, a sharpshooter's bullet hit him in the head and killed him instantly.


  1. The Guns of the South, p. 172-176.