The fort came under direct Confederate attack by troops led by Maj. Gen.Jubal Early in the Battle of Fort Stevens on July 11 and July 12, 1864.PresidentAbraham Lincoln rode out to the Fort on both days to observe the attack, and was briefly under enemy fire by sharpshooters. On July 12, he was brusquely ordered to take cover, mostly likely by Union Maj. Gen. Horatio Wright. A story has grown up, probably apocryphal, that future Supreme Court Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr., then an aide-de-camp to Wright, yelled at Lincoln, "Get down, you fool!" Another story attributes this quote to nearby resident Elizabeth Thomas. This is believed to have been only the second time in American history that a sitting president came under enemy fire during a war (the first being President James Madison during the War of 1812).