Thursday, June 13, 2024

Fort Massac Visitor Center

The fort area has a long history starting in the 1540s when Hernando DeSoto and his soldiers  built a fortification to protect against attacks by the local Native Americans who understandably were not friendly. During the French and Indian War the French built Fort De L’Ascension. Fort De L’Ascension was abandoned in 1763 and burnt down by the Chickasaws. After the Revolutionary War, the fort was rebuilt by the US military. It provided protection for twenty years before being dismantled for timber. The last time soldiers were stationed on the grounds was during the Civil War when it was used as a training camp. 

In 2002 a replica of the 1802 American fort was constructed. The buildings need structural repairs and are not open but visitors can view them from the path. Continue on the path for a view of the river with evidence of the latest flood. The small visitor center has very good exhibits.

The visitor center is accessible. The paved path to the fort and river view is accessible with one damaged area that hasn't been repaired yet. The paved path to the outline of the 1757 French Fort and the statue of George Rodgers Clark is accessible until it reaches the grass. 

There are three large parking lots where any vehicle will fit.  Fort  37.14475, -88.71198


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