Fort Taber in New Bedford gets new life

By Bill Rappleye
Posted: Sep 16, 2014
The view of Buzzard’s Bay is unbeatable and it’s intentional.
During the Civil War, Confederate ships were prowling Buzzard’s Bay, and the major shipping port of New Bedford wanted defense.

The city got it in Fort Taber. The granite fort, some quarried in Fall River, and designed by a team that included Robert E. Lee, who went on to command the enemy of the Yankee stronghold.

But in recent years, the building has been off limits and just a massive stone edifice.

Soon the inside will be accessible with walkways around the top level, entry into where troops were quartered and access to all three levels.

An effort to restore the old fort has begun. Crews have started preliminary work to install gates, guardrails and lights.

Mayor Jon Mitchell said Fort Taber is a gem like Fort Adams or Castle Island, but believes it can be more than a walking attraction.

“It could be an extension for the military museum, or even a place for a Shakespeare-in-the-park kind of production,” Mitchell said.

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