Civil War History under the Golden Gate Bridge

Would you have guessed one of the greatest memories from your San Francisco stay would be of a Civil War-era fortress? Maybe not, but trust us - you’ll want to visit Fort Point during your stay in our San Francisco hotel. In 1861, an abandoned Spanish fortress on the San Francisco coastline was repurposed and Fort Point was built over it, meant to defend the city from Confederate warships. It housed 140 soldiers and 65 cannons behind its 7-foot-thick walls yet not a single shot was fired, because the enemy never came. The fort exists today as a historic site, managed by the National Park Service and open to tourists for guided and unguided tours. Fort Point sits right on the edge of the water, underneath a massive archway of the Golden Gate Bridge, which was designed specifically to avoid a demolition and preserve the military stronghold when the new bridge was designed in the 1920s. A tour of the red brick structure reveals a glimpse into the life of enlisted Civil war soldiers: the barracks and officers’ quarters, a kitchen and powder magazine, uniforms, rifles and cannons. On display are also period photos documenting the history of the fort and its soldiers. Fort Pierce is a stunning structure on its own right and it has incredible views of the San Francisco bay, the city skyline and the intricate masonry of the Golden Gate Bridge. If you’re lucky, you might catch one of the occasional Park Ranger-led demonstrations of loading a cannon (right up until the firing part, of course). So if you want to catch a little bit of history, visit this historic site, located just minutes from our San Francisco waterfront hotel.

Fort Point, Maine Drive, San Francisco

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