Fayetteville Arsenal

Fayetteville Arsenal

Fayetteville Arsenal

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The Fayetteville Arsenal in Fayetteville, North Carolina was built in 1838 because during the War of 1812 the United States government realized that the existing distribution of weapons and ammunition factories was not adequate for the defense of the country. A program was begun to provide more Federal arsenals which would be distributed so that no area of the country would be too far away from an arms depot. Bladen County Representative James McKay introduced House Resolution #374 for inclusion of an arsenal at Fayetteville.

The cornerstone for the Arsenal was laid April 9, 1838. It was constructed of brick and stone and at each of the four corners of its massive walls was an octagonal tower. Entry into the Arsenal was controlled by use of massive iron gates. Workshops, quarters and other buildings in the Arsenal were constructed of brick and wood.

Civil War

When North Carolina seceded from the Union, Governor Ellis commissioned Warren Winslow to bring about the peaceful, if possible, surrender of the Arsenal at Fayetteville. General Walker Draughon, then in command of the North Carolina Militia, was given the order to take possession of the Arsenal.

He mobilized the Fayetteville Independent Light Infantry (FILI) (the oldest private military organization in the State, having been organized in 1793) under the command of Major Wright Huske, and the LaFayette Light Infantry, commanded by Capt. Joseph B. Starr. Other troops were used as well, and the total number of troops...
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