Usually when you hear about “Fort Knox” you think about the well-known fort in Kentucky or Fort Knox Bullion Depository where the majority of U.S. gold is kept. What many don’t realize is that there is actually “another” Fort Knox that was built in Maine along the Penobscot River from 1844-1869. It was the first fort in Maine built of granite (instead of wood). Named after Henry Knox, the first US Secretary of War, who at the end of his life lived not far away in Thomaston, Maine, the fort was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1970.
Why do I mention it? Well for one thing I own an awesome black and white photo taken in the tunnels of the fort by Neal Parent titled “Where Soldiers Stood”. For another, this fort was the inspiration of the setting in Elizabeth Wilder’s novel, Granite Hearts. Meticulously researched, Wilder provides us with a snapshot of the fort’s creation through the wonderful tale of the Ryan family (first introduced in The Spruce Gum Box), as they survive and thrive along the emerging 1800s Maine waterfront. The photo? @eewilder snapped while vacationing in Maine this summer. She spent some time with the historians there and I think taught them a thing or two about the fort 🙂