Monday, February 13, 2012

Fort Boykin Virginia

My Father at Fort Boykin
While Chasing the Family Ghosts in Virginia, my father and I had the opportunity to visit Fort Boykin, located near Smithfield, Virginia.  Fort Boykin was established around 1623 in order to protect the entrance of the James River from raiding Spaniards.  Fort Boykin provided early warning and protection for the early colonists who had settled along the James River,.  We found the Fort Boykin to be very well preserved and maintained … it was easy to make out the layout of the Fort which was a wooden and dirt structure.  Fort Boykin fronts the James River on the highest point of land in the area, at a point where the navigable channel is close to the shoreline, which would have forced all vessels traveling the river within firing range.   The fort is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, Virginia Landmarks Register, Virginia Civil War Trails, Captain John Smith’s Trail and the Star-Spangled Banner Geotrail. Fort Boykin was named after Francis Marshall Boykin who was a Virginia state senator, general in the state militia and owner of the property on which the fort was built.  The fort is open daily from 8 a.m. to dusk.  A link to the parks website:

The Fort's Cistern
We chose to visit this historic site due to the fact that it was active when the first Askew colonists came to the area.  While standing at Fort Boykin … it is easy to imagine the passenger and supply ships that passed by on their way to these Virginia colonist settlements.  Fort Boykin was absolutely essential to their survival and existence. 
The Entrance to the Fort ... it goes over the original ramparts

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