|Mount Vernon Arsenal in 1935|
With a history dating back to 1828, the Mount Vernon Arsenal was a unique horseshoe-shaped complex that featured a primary arsenal building, barracks, workshops, officers' quarters, stables and other structures. The entire complex was enclosed by a strong brick wall and had served as a major source for small arms during the Creek War of 1836 and the Second Seminole War (1835-1842). In addition to being a major depository for weapons, the arsenal also was a manufacturing point for small arms ammunition. As such, it was of critical importance to Alabama as that state moved closer to secession from the Union.
|Arsenal Wall in 1935|
On the same day, having received intelligence from Washington that the U.S. Army was considering moving additional troops to the Mount Vernon Arsenal and forts at Mobile Bay, Governor A.B. Moore of Alabama ordered state militia forces to take possession of the posts. Alabama forces arrived at the gates of the arsenal at dawn on January 4, 1861, 150 years ago today. The following report was filed by Captain Jesse Reno, the U.S. Army officer commanding the arsenal, to Captain William Maynadier of the Ordnance Bureau in Washington, D.C.:
|Aerial View of the Arsenal Today|