Fort Constitution


“By the Dawn’s Early Light”

Fort Constitution, located in New Castle, New Hampshire is adjacent to the U.S. Coast Guard Station at the mouth of the Piscataqua River.

Originally named Fort William and Mary, after the King and Queen of England, the site was first established in 1631. In December 1774, Paul Revere rode to Portsmouth from Boston, Massachusetts to warn the colonists of British plans to reinforce the fort to protect its store of powder. The colonists however surrounded the fort and seized light cannon and 97 barrels of gun powder. Many consider the attack to be the first overt act of the Revolution, and it is believed that some of the supplies were used at the Battle of Bunker Hill.

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