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Fort Wheaton:

Assessment of the Principal Earthworks:

The Federal "Fish Hook" Line, Petersburg, VA


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Description: Fort Wheaton (MAP) is a six-sided redoubt with faces of equal length (27 meters); positions for six field guns mounted en barbette in the angles; no magazine; length of parapet 148 meters, average relief 3.0 meters, average width 7.3 meters; outer ditch perimeter 221 meters, enclosing 3,609 square meters (0.9 acre); estimated 1,103 cubic meters excavated, requiring 207 labor days; prescribed garrison not stated.

History: originally constructed August 1864 as Confederate Fort Archer, captured September 30, 1864, in an incomplete state and renamed for Capt. J. H. Wheaton, 1st Michigan Infantry, killed at Peebles Farm; old sally port blockaded and new one pierced through opposite face; served as secondary line for Federals.

Situation: park boundary follows outer edge of ditch; logged right up to property line and adjacent property seeded with pines; good over story, a few large and many smaller trees inside fort; moderate undergrowth; parapet cover is leaf litter.

Condition: generally in fair condition, some blurring of angles and edges due to past erosion (not visibly active); area adjacent to gun 3 disturbed, old sally port eroded out, some compaction from visitation, though not recent.

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