The Fort Wetherill Mine Observation Station is a fascinating abandoned structure in Jamestown, Rhode Island. There is not a lot of documented history behind this location, but some information can be extracted from historical records. Fort Wetherill was established during the Endicott Period in 1895. It remained active until 1945 and many changes occurred over the years. During World War 2, the fort started using mines to protect Newport Harbor and Narragansett Bay. There were over 300 mines planted on the east and west sides of Conanicut Island during WW2. To support the mines, a storehouse, wharf, and tramway were built. Also, this observation station was constructed.
This abandoned old building was a Mine Observation Station. It was situated at the top of a hill and offered lookouts sweeping views of the ocean, bay, and harbor. If any enemies were spotted, the lookouts could inform nearby guns and also control the mines deployed.
After World War 2 ended, the Fort Wetherill Mine Observation Station was decommissioned and abandoned. It has sat high on this hill for decades now. The structure itself is slowly degrading and being reclaimed by nature. It is a must-visit spot when in Fort Wetherill State Park!
- Year Established: 1942
- Year Abandoned: 1945
- Original Function: Observation station for the mines deployed during World War 2 at Fort Wetherill
- National Register of Historic Places: #72000021
- Address: Fort Wetherill Road
- Town: Jamestown
- State: Rhode Island
- GPS: 41.479580, -71.359104
- Parking Notes: There are parking lots located on both sides of the Fort Wetherill Mine Observation Station. To the east, there is the Fort Wetherill Scuba Diving Lot. To the west, there is the Battery Varnum parking lot. Parking is free at both lots.
- Parking Directions: HERE
- Location Directions: HERE
Such a great view of the ocean from the Fort Wetherill Mine Control Post!!
A view inside the Fort Wetherill Mine Control Post!
Found the old abandoned Fort Wetherill Mine Control Post on the top of this hill! So cool!
Sweeping ocean, bay, and harbor views from the inside of this old station