Portland, Maine is known for lobster rolls, waterfront decks, and early American history. History is in every cobblestone of the Old Port and around every corner throughout the city. One historical site that cannot be missed but is often overlooked is Fort Gorges, an old military fort built on Hog Island Ledge at the entrance of Portland Harbor. This old stone fort welcomes the seafaring traveler to our city and is a fixture in the seascape of Casco Bay.
Fort Gorges was proposed following the War of 1812 to support the other forts protecting this vital port city. It was not funded until 1857 and construction began in 1858. As the Civil War broke out, construction continued until 1864. However, much like today, the technology of the time advanced quickly making the design and weaponry obsolete prior completion. The unfinished fort was used only for storage. No soldiers were every stationed there and no battles fought. Fort Gorges was last used during World War II to store submarine mines. The city of Portland acquired the fort in 1960, and it was added to the National Registry of Historic Places in 1973. Today, Fort Gorges is a public park. It can only be accessed by boat. Visitors are encouraged to explore safely and bring flashlights so that they may see hallmarks of a bygone era.
Over the years, Fort Gorges has fallen into disrepair. The unfinished third story is now covered in wild greenery. Its structural integrity is weakening. A local non-profit, the Friends of Fort Gorges is working to save the fort from collapse. The Friends of Fort Gorges are committed to the restoration and preservation of Fort Gorges. They are working diligently to ensure access and facilitate the fort’s educational and cultural potential for generations to come.
As a proud member of the Portland community, Rising Tide Brewing Company is thrilled to work with the Friends of Fort Gorges to release Fort Gorges India Pale Ale. Fort Gorges IPA is a part of our Island Series, a series of IPAs named after the many islands in Casco Bay. Fort Gorges is hazy and smooth with notes of tropical fruit and pineapple. It is the perfect addition to the start of spring and coastal adventures in Maine.
“We’re excited for the release of this beer and to support a local landmark,” said Co-Owner and Director of Business Operations Heather Sanborn. “Our team has visited the Fort and learned more about the Friends of Fort Gorges’s efforts and goals. We are eager to help save the fort.”
Rising Tide’s Fort Gorges IPA is a limited release, available starting March 2019. Don’t miss it!