Fort Brady, in its new location atop Ashmun Hill.
The decision to construct Fort Brady III was made on August 26, 1852,
granting land to the state of Michigan. The land consisted of the right
of way through Fort Brady military reservation and 75,000 acres of land
to build the Weitzel Lock and Canal. The canal was to be 100 feet wide
and 12 feet deep and the lock 60 feet wide and 250 feet long, with a
depth of 12 feet. The lock and canal would be defended by the National
Guard and monitored by Fort Brady upon the hilltop.
Move of Fort Brady
Fort Brady was moved to Ashumn Hill in the late 1880s and early 1890s.
The construction began in 1892 and lasted through the turn of the century.
Public Auction of Second Fort Brady
In 1893 a public auction was held for the Old Fort Brady Military Reservation.
The sale would include sixty-two (62) building lots and the greater part
of the reservation. The government wanted cash and would give the fort
to the highest bidder. Before the auction started an Auction Sale sheet
was handed out that contained a map of the sites for sale and a description
sheet. Some of these buildings are still in use today.
Fort Brady in 1894
In 1894 Fort Mackinac was closed and Fort Brady became the only fort
in Northern Michigan still in operation. The soldiers and supplies from
Mackinac were diverted to Sault Ste. Marie.
Fort Brady in 1898
In 1898 2,000 troops were stationed at Fort Brady for military training
before being sent to Cuba for the Spanish-American War.
More Construction in the 1930s
In the 1930s a barracks for WACS (Women's Army Corps) was constructed
as well as a gym and ammunition bunkers south of the fort.
20,000 Troops Stationed at Fort Brady
During World War II 20,000 troops were stationed at Fort Brady. A tent
city was built and temporary wooden structures were constructed to serve
as various warehouses, shops and offices. A heavy security fence was
placed around the fort and access was limited to one main gate.
World War II at Fort Brady
During World War II the fort was the main life of the Sault. Visit World War II History for more information.