FORT ASHBY - As the Friends of Ashby's Fort continue to care for and develop the 1755 fort into a community center for historic education and tourism, they are inviting the public to become a permanent part of the site.
By Liz Beavers
Tribune Managing Editor
FORT ASHBY - As the Friends of Ashby’s Fort continue to care for and develop the 1755 fort into a community center for historic education and tourism, they are inviting the public to become a permanent part of the site.
The group is constructing a brick walkway between the log structure and the Edgell and Irma Pyles Visitor Center next to it, and area residents are being invited to purchase a brick which will be inscribed with their name, the name of a loved one or of an organization supporting the program.
Each brick will measure 8 x 4 inches and can be inscribed with up to three lines of no more than 16 characters and/or spaces each.
Bricks may be purchased for $50 each.
The finished walkway will pass by a seating area with three benches, and supporters may also sponsor one of the benches for $1,000 each.
Ashby’s Fort was designed and ordered to be built by Col. George Washington in 1755, and was part of the frontier defense during the French and Indian War.
Under the command of Capt. John Ashby the fort is believed to be one of a string of approximately 69 forts built to defend the western frontier.
For two years approximately 21-56 men were stationed at Fort Ashby, until 1757, when Col. Washington ordered it abandoned.
In the 19th Century, the log building was used as a school and even a private residence, and in 1927, it was purchased by the local chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution for a mere $200
The DAR restored the fort, with the help of federal funding, and it was opened as a museum in 1939.
In 1970, it was placed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Ownership was transferred to the Friends of Ashby’s Fort in 2016. Also that year, the Friends received the adjoining property for the purpose of developing an interpretive and educational site relating to Washington and the French and Indian War.
Archaeological studies continue at the site, and have identified the actual footprint of the fort.
Those wishing to become a part of the history of the site can order a brick by visiting www.fortashby.org/walkway, or by calling 304-303-3366 for more information.