Fort Stark Historic Site is located on a peninsula on the southeast corner of New Castle Island. It over looks the Piscataqua River, Little Harbor and the Gulf of Maine. Fort Stark was named in honor of General John Stark, commander of New Hampshire forces at the Battle of Bennington (1777). A former military installation, Fort Stark was one of seven forts built to protect the Portsmouth Harbor. Fort Stark, Washington, Constitution (William and Mary), and Dearborn (Odirone Point Start Park) in New Hampshire, and Forts Sullivan, McClary and Foster are in Maine. The earliest forts were built to protect the colonists. As the Portsmouth Harbor’s increased in importance and the Revolutionary shipbuilding industry grew the need for additional fortifications became important. The defense concept was to mine the harbors and erect gun batteries. The final fortifications occurred during World War II when batteries were added to Fort Foster, and Fort Dearborn was built.
Fort Stark provides beautiful views of the lighthouse, Piscataqua River, Little Harbor, and the Gulf of Maine. Majority of its buildings are tagged by graffiti, it was apparent where other have explored beyond the fences and barriers. Although tempting, we did not break any laws yesterday.