-Early Establishment-

Early Establishment Prior to the Constuction of Fort Massachusetts. 

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-French and Indian War


-Present Day Fort

-Ephraim Williams 



  The above image is a picture of Fort Massachusetts. Although the Fort seemed to be a sturdy structure, there was a long journey before the Fort had actually been established. In 1744, the Western part of Massachusetts was generally very quiet. Fort Massachusetts was built by the Massachusetts Bay Colony in 1745 because of King George's War and the French and Indian War. On May 6th, 1746, John Miles and Sgt. John Hawkes were attacked by natives while leaving the fort, and both of the men were injured. The western front was no longer safe and problems began to occur. On August 15th, 1746 fifteen scouts were followed by Champlain and arrived at the weakening fort, and the men began to get sick with "the flux." Sgt. Hawkes was then put in charge and the scouts were sent to Deerfield for supplies. Two days later, the fort was surrounded by 8-9 hundred French and Native Americans. The battle lasted for twelve hours. During the battle, Hawkes shot the chief of the St. Francois Tribe. The French continued to open fire but at eleven, their defenders surrendered. The French(allies included) lost a total of 45 men. For a while, all was quiet at the Fort. On May 25th, 1747 a large group of the French attacked the Fort but were defeated once again. On August 2nd in 1748, Ephraim Williams took control of the Fort. There was another attack of about 300 Natives and 30 French Soldiers occurred at the Fort. The English and French suffered the same number of casualties. By 1754, the French and Indian War was now known as the "Seven Year's War". The Fort was strengthened a great deal at this point and the Fort took up three acres of land, five blockhouses, and two cannons. In 1759, the War ended and the American Revolution began and this left the Fort in ruins. A man by the name of Clement Harrison purchased the land Fort Massachusetts was on. He drained the swamp, and began to use it for agriculture and farmland. In 1858, Professor A.L. Perry had an excavation on the Fort's well, called the "Perry Elm."