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The forts of America varied in type from military posts, to fortresses established by fur trading companies, to private enterprises built solely to protect the pioneers within.

Most often when we think of forts, we imagine a high stockade type wall of sharpened logs that surround a number of buildings. Inside these walls are hardy pioneers and soldiers, valiantly defending themselves from hostile Indians on the outside. Though western films have perpetuated this idea, and sometimes forts were built in a stockade type manner, the purpose and style of forts varied widely and this "typical" scenario was the exception rather than the rule.

Alacatraz, CA - -Apartment Building

Alacatraz, CA - -Apartment Building

Alacatraz, CA - Gardens

Alacatraz, CA - Gardens

Alacatraz, CA - Officers' Club

Alacatraz, CA - Officers' Club

Alcatraz Island, CA

Alcatraz Island, CA

Alcatraz, CA - Administration Building

Alcatraz, CA - Administration Building

Alcatraz, CA - Administration Building Doors

Alcatraz, CA - Administration Building Doors

Alcatraz, CA - Approaching

Alcatraz, CA - Approaching

Alcatraz, CA - Barracks

Alcatraz, CA - Barracks

Alcatraz, CA - Buildings

Alcatraz, CA - Buildings

Alcatraz, CA - Cells

Alcatraz, CA - Cells

Alcatraz, CA - Lighthouse

Alcatraz, CA - Lighthouse

Alcatraz, CA - Lighthouse

Alcatraz, CA - Lighthouse

Alcatraz, CA - Officers Club Ruins

Alcatraz, CA - Officers Club Ruins

Alcatraz, CA - Power House Plant

Alcatraz, CA - Power House Plant

Alcatraz, CA - Recreation Yard

Alcatraz, CA - Recreation Yard

Alcatraz, CA - Warden's House Ruins

Alcatraz, CA - Warden's House Ruins

Angel Island, CA - Fort McDowell

Angel Island, CA - Fort McDowell

Angel Island, CA - Fort McDowell

Angel Island, CA - Fort McDowell

Angel Island, CA - Fort McDowell - 2

Fort McDowell, Angel IslandCAJamesRosenthal2002-3

Angel Island, CA - Fort McDowell Batteries

Angel Island, CA - Fort McDowell Batteries