The Forts of Colonial North America
British, Dutch and Swedish Colonies


Written by: Rene Chartrand
Illustrated by: Donato Spedaliere

This book is number 101 in Osprey’s Fortress series.

The author provides quite a bit of information in these 64 pages. He briefly discusses the physical structure and actual construction of these forts; their locations; and some of the historical events that took place at these forts. The photographs and illustrations add much interest and detail for anyone interested in this period of history or subject matter.

In the introduction the author provides a little information as to which countries were settling the North America and where they were settling and why there were varied types of fortifications. He mentions when the first permanent settlements were built in the early 17th century. There is a Chronology starting from 1528 through to 1763.

The body of the book begins with a brief history of the Early Forts. The author continues with the following sections:

· New Netherlands (5 pages long)

· New Sweden (2 pages)

· Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Connecticut (about 10 pages)

· New York (10 pages)

· Maryland, New Jersey and Delaware (2 pages)

· Pennsylvania and Virginia (8 pages)

· North Carolina, south Carolina and Georgia (5 pages)

· Nova Scotia, Newfoundland, Canada and Hudson’s Bay (5 pages)

The number of pages includes the text together with photographs and many excellent illustrations. He ends the book with “Life In The Forts” which is brief overview of a settlers life with their family; and the last section is “The Forts Today”.

These sections read somewhat like a history book giving dates and the names of the leaders of expeditions/communities, and the number of settlers. He discusses some of the obstacles the first settlers faced, such as the harsh weather, disease, and Indian attacks. The author does place an emphasis on the forts/garrison/housing. However, he does describe the construction types, which were basically determined by their surrounding location with regard to terrain, waterways and Indian conflicts. Plus he gives you a sense of what it was like live and fight within their “walls.”

This Fortress Series book is available from Osprey Publishing.

Paperback: $20.00