Description - *This information was provided by the Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection*
Built from 1839 to 1852, the fortification is one of a group of 42 forts which were constructed for the defense of the coast of the United States, and for defense of the harbors they guarded. This group of forts became known as the Third System of Fortifications. Fort Trumbull is unique in the "Third System" because of the Egyptian Revival features incorporated in the architectural design. The Fort is a wonderful example of its era, a masterpiece in stonework and masonry. The Fort contains informative markers and displays, a touchable cannon and artillery crew display, and gun emplacements. The fort interior features 19th Century restored living quarters, a mock laboratory, and a 1950's era office furnished to resemble a research and development lab at the facility. The public also has access to the ramparts for a spectacular view of the New London Harbor.
Since Colonial times Fort Trumbull served as the location of various military forts, schools and research facilities for the United States Army, Coast Guard and Navy. The first Fort Trumbull was built to protect the New London Harbor from British attack and later served as part of the country’s coastal defense system. The masonry fort (the third) that stands today was constructed between 1839 and 1852.
In 1915 the U.S. Revenue Cutter Service merged with the U.S. Lifesaving Service to become the U.S. Coast Guard. Therefore the Revenue Cutter Service Academy at Fort Trumbull became the first U.S. Coast Guard Academy, and all U.S. Coast Guard training took place at Fort Trumbull.
By World War II Fort Trumbull had become home to the Coast Guard, the U. S. Maritime Service Officer Candidate School, and the Columbia University Division of War Research Underwater Sound Laboratory was established there.
In 1970 the Navy merged the Underwater Sound Laboratory at Fort Trumbull with the Underwater Weapons Research and Engineering Station, at Newport RI, forming the Naval Underwater Systems Center (NUSC).
In 1991 the Naval Underwater System Center in New London was renamed the Naval Undersea Warfare Center (NUWC).
- Visitor Center-
The Center contains state of the art multimedia theaters, computer touch screen interactive exhibits, 3-D models, and extensive graphics and text panels. This one of a kind center depicts over 225 years of military history and technological advances from the Revolutionary War to the Cold War. Some of the main themes of the Visitor Center are the September 6, 1781 attack by the British under the command of Benedict Arnold, the U-boat menace during World War II, and the anti-submarine efforts during the Cold War.
Fort Trumbull State Park also offers the following facilities; bathrooms, conference center, fishing pier, onsite & on-street parking, visitor center, and a waterfront walk.
Recreation - Spectacular fishing opportunities abound with a one-of-a-kind fishing pier boasting over 500' of shore-based access to the major game fish of Long Island Sound. Saltwater anglers will find a unique combination of sport fish including striped bass, bluefish, weakfish and tautog as they feed on the variety of bait fish found at the mouth of the Thames River. In addition to 24-hour access, the pier offers bright lighting and individual pole holders for angler comfort; year-round restrooms and fresh running water.
Climate - The climate of this state involves a moderate amount of humidity, heat and cold. Summer highs reach 90 degrees F with low temperatures near 65 degrees. Evenings near the water can become cool and light jackets and sweaters are recommended. Winter temperatures average in the mid thirties during the day and in the teens at night. Rarely do temperatures dip to zero, especially in the southern portion of the state, where the water influences the more temperate weather.
Northbound on I-95 Take Exit 83 (Downtown New London). Go straight at light onto Huntington Street. Take right onto Jay Street. Go straight onto Truman Street, then left onto Blinman Street. Follow Blinman Street to Howard Street and go straight onto Howard Street. Then make left onto Walbach Street and right onto East Street. Park entrance is on the left
Southbound on I-95 Take Exit 84S (Downtown New London). Merge onto Eugene O’Neill Drive. Follow Eugene O’Neill Drive and take left onto Tilley Street. Make right onto Bank Street and then left onto Howard Street. Follow Howard Street and make left onto Walbach Street, then right onto East Street. Park entrance is on the left.