Fort Hancock, New Jersey

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Coordinates: 40°27′50″N 74°00′10″W / 40.46389°N 74.00278°W / 40.46389; -74.00278

Fort Hancock and the Sandy Hook Proving Ground Historic District
Ft Hancock.JPG
Fort Hancock Memorial Park
Location Sandy Hook, New Jersey
Built 1859
Architect US Army
NRHP Reference # 80002505
Significant dates
Added to NRHP April 24, 1980[1]
Designated NHLD December 17, 1982[2]

Fort Hancock is a former United States Army fort at Sandy Hook in Middletown Township New Jersey. The coastal artillery base defended the Atlantic coast and the entrance to New York Harbor. Between 1874 and 1919, Fort Hancock was operated in conjunction with the US Army's Sandy Hook Proving Ground. It is now part of Fort Hancock Memorial Park.

The Sandy Hook Light, the oldest working lighthouse in the United States, is located on the grounds of Fort Hancock.

In 1893, Fort Hancock installed the nation's first disappearing gun battery at Battery Potter.[3] In the late 1950s anti-aircraft missiles from Project Nike were based at the fort.[4]

Fort Hancock was decommissioned as an active U.S. Army installation in 1974. It is now part of the National Parks of New York Harbor under the National Park System. A museum is managed as part of the Sandy Hook Unit of Gateway National Recreation Area. In 2013, the Park Service introduced Nubian goats to the fort in order to clear away poison ivy that has been growing unchecked on the six-acre property for about 40 years.[5]

The NPS is soliciting proposals for renovation and use to the more than 35 buildings in the fort complex.[6]


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