Fort Pulaski, General Robert Edward Lee, Joseph King Fenno Mansfield, Kazimierz Michał Władysław Wiktor Pułaski of Ślepowron

Fort Pulaski – Named After A Revolutionary War Hero And Constructed Under The Leadership Of Army Engineers Robert Edward Lee And Joseph King Fenno Mansfield

Fort Pulaski, located in the Cockspur Island in Georgia, is named after an American Revolutionary War Hero, Kazimierz Michał Władysław Wiktor Pułaski of Ślepowron, who died at the Battle of Savannah on October 9th, 1779. In 1829, Robert Edward Lee, who recently graduated from West Point, was assigned to work as the assistant engineer for the construction of Fort Pulaski. Lee worked on the preliminary construction of the fort until 1831, the same year that he married Mary Custis, when Joseph King Fenno Mansfield, the Second Lieutenant of the Army Corps of Engineers in charge of building southern coastal defenses, took over the construction efforts. Mansfield oversaw the construction of Fort Pulaski, which was designed to mount 146 cannons, until its completion in 1847.

Author’s Note:

The year before Fort Pulaski was completed, Captain Robert Edward Lee was sent to fight in the Siege of Vera Cruz, during the start of the Mexican-American War, where Lee was frequently engaged in reconnaissance behind enemy lines and where he saved a wounded Mexican drummer boy who was trapped under the weight of a dying Mexican soldier.

During the Mexican-American War, Joseph King Fenno Mansfield served as the chief engineer for General Zachary Taylor, a future United States President. Mansfield was promoted to major for his service at Fort Brown, Texas. Later in the war, Mansfield was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel after he was wounded in his leg at the Battle of Monterey and he received a third promotion to Colonel after his service at the Battle of Buena Vista.

Photograph of Joseph King Fenno Mansfield during the United States Civil War.