Fort Montgomery
Fort Montgomery is a former American military fort located on the northwestern end of Lake Champlain in New York State. The US federal government built the fort to prevent future military operations from British Canada.1 However, New York State and Quebec both claimed the territory where the fort was meant to be built.2 Construction ceased until the territorial dispute was settled by the Webster-Ashburton Treaty in 1842.3 The treaty, known for settling several major territorial disputes along the US-Canada border, pushed the territory of New York State northwards, allowing the construction of Fort Montgomery to continue.4
In the correspondences, Fort Montgomery is referenced during territorial disputes between British Columbia and the United States over the Gulf and San Juan Islands in the Strait of Georgia. For example, in this correspondence, Cartier and McDougall explain that the American Government, by contending for the third Channel, or that which is farthest from the Continent, show to the world that their object is not to secure possession of a few rocky islets in the Gulf of no commercial or agricultural value, but of the important military position of San Juan, where they may build a fortress that would lock up the Straits of Fuca and overawe British Columbia as effectively as Fort Montgomery, built on Canadian Territory, which was surrendered to the United States by the Treaty of 1842, now locks up Lake Champlain.5
  • 1. Millard, James P, Fort Montgomery Through the Years: A Pictorial History of the Great Stone Fort on Lake Champlain (United States: America's Historic Lakes, 2005), 16.
  • 2. Ibid.
  • 3. Ibid.
  • 4. Ibid.
  • 5. Cartier and McDougall to Granville, 30 December 1868, 60:34, no. 37, 321.
Mentions of this place in the documents