Last month the boy and I went to a wedding in Charleston and while there, righted a wrong in the boy’s life. Somehow, despite being a (nearly) life-long Civil War buff, he had never been to Ft. Sumpter. I did the research beforehand, got us up early on a Saturday morning, and we jumped on the ferry out to Ft. Sumpter!
The fort, in case your history is a little rusty, is actually an island in the mouth of the Charleston harbor. It was built following the war of 1812 (thanks Wikipedia) and switched hands twice during the Civil War.
The fort was hammered by Confederate bombardment on 3 sides during the opening battle of the Civil War, destroying sections of the fort. After the war, the fort was partially rebuilt to serve during the Spanish-American war, and of course to preserve it as a historic landmark, you can see the different stages of construction from the brick, to the early cement, to the modern reinforcement.
Because the boy is such a history buff, we opted out of the museum and guided tours and went around on our own. I learned more about canons than I ever thought I would know in life.
The ferry schedule gives visitors about 1.5 hours on the island, which was just about the perfect amount of time to leisurely walk around the entire fort and take some pictures. They warn you going out that the fort is about 10 degrees cooler than in Charleston and they. are. not. kidding. Not only is it 10 degrees cooler, but the wind is twice as strong. So an hour and a half is just about all you can take temperature-wise as well.
One more check off the bucket list, achieved!