The military fort at Alcatraz took on a new role in the Civil War. Being the only completed fort in San Francisco Bay, Alcatraz was responsible for defending the city. Early in the war, ten thousand rifles were moved to Alcatraz so that they would not fall into the hands of Confederate sympathizers. In addition to this role as defender of the San Francisco Bay, Alcatraz became the official U.S. Army prison for the western states and territories in 1861.
Wilmington, California | As U.S. Army Headquarters for Southern California and the Arizona Territory, the building protected the harbor, kept the peace, secured the area for the Union, and served as a supply depot.
San Francisco, California | Although its guns never fired a shot in anger, the "Fort at Fort Point" as it was originally named, has witnessed the Civil War, obsolescence, earthquakes, bridge construction, reuse for World War II, and preservation as a National Historic Site.
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