Mel Elfin wrote in the introduction to Forest Hills, a history of the neighborhood published in 2006 by Arcadia Press, “…the most important role of Forest Hills during the Civil War was to keep open the lines of communication between Fort Reno and Stevens.”
Ann Kessler wrote in May that three sites in Forest Hills and Wakefield were “part of the extensive Civil War defenses of Washington, built very quickly after the first Battle of Bull Run in 1861 and then mostly deserted as soon as the war ended.”
One of these sites, Battery Terrill, is secured behind the gates to the Peruvian ambassador’s residence at 3001 Garrison Street. Those gates will open on Saturday, October 14th to a guided bus tour of the defenses used during the 1864 Battle of Fort Stevens.
Join the tour by the Alliance to Preserve the Civil War Defenses of Washington to get an on-the-ground perspective of the importance of Forest Hills during the fight – and a rare opportunity to see the remains of Battery Terrill.
Bus Tour of Civil War Defenses That Saved DC in 1864 – Oct. 14
The Alliance to Preserve the Civil War Defenses of Washington is holding a special guided bus tour on Saturday, Oct. 14, 8:30 am to 4:30 pm of sites related to one of the most historic moments in DC history, the defenses in upper NW Washington that were active during the Battle of Fort Stevens July 11-12, 1864. We will tour not only the sites federally owned and administered by the National Park Service, but also others on private land, most (but not all) of which are no longer extant because of development, but you’ll see where they were and the relationship they had with the other fortifications. You’ll also see a couple that aren’t even on the maps!
To top it off, we will be able to go inside the beautiful grounds of the Embassy of Peru (on Garrison Street NW, near Fort Reno), which still has some of the remains of Battery Terrill and adjacent rifle trenches, and which was adjacent to the former Fort Kearny. The Ambassador and his wife will be there to greet us – they are very interested in history and extremely enthusiastic about our visit. This is truly a unique opportunity!
Our tour is being assisted by grants from the Humanities Council of Washington DC and Walmart Foundation. Many individuals also provide financial and volunteer support. As a result, we are able to offer 10 seats on the tour at no cost to students – any grade from 8th through college. All we ask is that the student contact me by email and provide their name, parent(s) name(s), contact information, name of school and their grade, and a brief statement as to their interest in the Civil War and/or Battle of Fort Stevens. Please share this announcement with any students or teachers/educators who may like to attend. (Only the students, however, are eligible to attend free.)
The tour costs $65 per person. Visit our website for further information on the tour, access a fillable registration-disclaimer form, and make an online payment: www.dccivilwarforts.org.
Do register early, as our space is limited and this will be a popular tour!
Loretta Neumann, President
Alliance to Preserve the Civil War Defenses of Washington