Fort Monroe, Virginia, from the Air US Army Photo

Fort Monroe National Monument

Fort Monroe National Monument spans the American story from the 17th to the 21st centuries: Captain John Smith's journeys, a haven of freedom for the enslaved during the Civil War, and a bastion of defense for the Chesapeake Bay. A public planning process will determine future public services and programming at this new national park with a centuries-old tradition.

Fort Monroe National Monument is open year-round for outdoor activities like walking and exploring the grounds from dawn to dusk. Many of the buildings are currently occupied, please respect the resident's privacy by not peering into windows or opening gates. A full schedule of programming will take time to develop and will be influenced by the public planning process. Please continue to look for available programs here at Fort Monroe as we continue to expand our operations. Most of the daily public programs and facilities are currently operated by park partners.

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Image Credit: Fort Monroe, Virginia, from the Air US Army Photo

Hours

The Casemate Museum is open Tuesday - Sunday from 10:30 am to 4:30 pm; and daily Memorial Day through Labor Day from 10:30 am to 4:30 pm. The Casemate Museum is also open Memorial Day, Labor Day, and November 11, but closed Easter, Thanksgiving, December 24, December 25, December 31, and January 1.

Outlook Beach is open from 10 am to 6 pm.

(Note: Many places fill to capacity on busy, nice weather days, especially holiday weekends. Please call ahead or visit the official website to get the most up-to-date information before visiting.)

Fees

There are no fees to visit Fort Monroe National Monument.

Guided tours of the Casemate Musem for pre-formed groups of 10 or more (and school groups Grade 3 and above) are available with a fee of $3.00 per person, please allow a two-week notice when scheduling. Phone Number: 757-788-3391. Check out the Casemate Museum's Facebook page.

Activities

Picnicking, touring, dining, and fishing are all activities one can do while visiting the Fort Monroe National Monument.
Also be sure to visit the Casemate Museum. 

Facilities

  • Fort Monroe Casemate Museum
  • Picnic Areas
  • RV Park
  • Churches
  • Restaurants
  • Marina
  • Paradise Ocean Club
  • Chamberlin
  • Fishing Pier
  • Beach

Accessibility

The Casemate Museum is wheelchair accessible.

History

At the end of their second Chesapeake Bay voyage in September 3, 1608, Captain John Smith and his crew headed back to Jamestown. Their progress was slow, because there was no wind and they had to row for much of the journey.

By nightfall they managed to pull into the mouth of the Poquoson River, where they would be more sheltered. Before long, a thunder squall rolled in and the crew had to start bailing the boat.

Smith decided to take advantage of the strong wind shift and seek shelter further south. The constant lightening enabled them to see land and avoid the shoals on Poquoson Flats.

The explorers made a run for Point Comfort. Exhausted from the long night, they likely spent the next day relaxing and drying their clothes.
 

Weather

Last updated: April 24, 2019
Captain John Smith Chesapeake Trail
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