and Nancy Neilsen
A GIBRALTAR ON THE MISSISSIPPI:
"Early Exploration of the Walnut Hills"
Spanish were the first Europeans (in 1541) to discover what is today
called Fort Hill, the
second highest spot between Memphis and New Orleans. When
the French arrived in 1682, they laid claim to the region. The
Treaty of Paris in 1763 divided French possessions and this area was
ceded to Great Britain.
the end of the American Revolution, England granted this territory to
the United States. Spain, however, claimed the area by an early
treated with Great Britain. To assert her claim, Spain
established Fort Nogales (Spanish for "walnut") in 1790 as
an outlet for her Spanish Trading Company. A settlement called Walnut
Hills developed around the fort and residents supplied the soldiers
with meat and other staples.
lost control of the fort to the United States in a treaty signed in
1795 but continued to occupy the fort despite demands for
evacuation. In 1798, the United States was determined to remove
the Spaniards by force, but the fort was evacuated without incident.
fort was renamed Fort McHenry in honor of Secretary of War James
McHenry. The fort deteriorated and was abandoned in the early
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