Picture of 16 inch gun at Fort Miles

Fort Miles Museum and Historical Area


Fort Miles Museum and Historical Area Overview

Lying amidst rolling sand dunes, on a high bank overlooking the Atlantic Ocean, is the Fort Miles Historical Area, home of the Fort Miles Museum. The central features of the museum include Battery 519, six barracks buildings, a fire control tower, an orientation building, and the Fort Miles Artillery Park. The museum tells the story of Fort Miles, a key piece of our nation's coastal defense, from World War II through the early 1970’s.

The history of Fort Miles exemplifies America’s call to action to stem the tide of war against German invasions along the Atlantic Seaboard that, at the onset of World War II, appeared virtually unstoppable. The gun batteries of Fort Miles, secret state-of-the-art installations built within the massive sand dunes of Cape Henlopen, were designed to defend against the powerful German navy.

With more than 2,500 soldiers stationed on high alert, the heavy guns, mine fields and searchlights of Fort Miles defended the vital trade centers of Wilmington, Philadelphia, and beyond. As America moved into the cold war, the role of Fort Miles shifted to highly classified missions defending against the threat of Soviet submarine operations off our coastline.

Fort Miles is a special place for history enthusiasts, veterans, families, or anyone interested in learning about Delaware stories, Delaware heroes and Delaware’s role in WWII. Take a guided tour, enjoy an interpretive program, visit the art gallery, take in a special event, and celebrate the "greatest generation" in our nation's history.

21 centimeter guns

Featured Program: Delaware Goes to War

On May 8, 1945 the Allies declared victory in Europe in World War II. Fort Miles will celebrate the victory in our annual living history event. See firing demonstrations, learn about garrison life at Fort Miles, see guest speakers, hear live music, and much more. The Fort Miles Museum will be open for $5 per person. For more information call (302) 644-5007. Saturday, April 27, 2019 at 10 a.m.

Add to Calendar 4/27/2019 10:00:00 AM America/New_York Featured Program: Delaware Goes to War On May 8, 1945 the Allies declared victory in Europe in World War II. Fort Miles will celebrate the victory in our annual living history event. See firing demonstrations, learn about garrison life at Fort Miles, see guest speakers, hear live music, and much more. The Fort Miles Museum will be open for $5 per person. For more information call (302) 644-5007. Fort Miles


The Fort Miles Museum

Museum exhibits and artifacts within Battery 519, a 15,000-square-foot fortified underground chamber, bring to life Delaware’s wartime stories of submarine encounters and surrender, daring actions of civilian pilots, and hometown heroes who sacrificed for our freedom. The Museum’s collection of armaments provides visitors a unique opportunity to experience first-hand how state-of-the-art technology from an earlier day was used to defend the homeland.

The grounds of the Museum are open 8 a.m. to sunset daily. The Museum Orientation Building is open on Fridays and Saturdays from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. March 3 – June 10 and Tuesday through Saturday June 13 – September 9. Public access to the museum is only available through guided tours and open houses.

Upcoming Events

Delaware Goes to War

Saturday, April 27, 2019

10 a.m.

On May 8, 1945 the allies declared victory in Europe in World War II. Fort Miles will celebrate the victory in our annual living history event. See firing demonstrations, learn about garrison life at Fort Miles, see guest speakers, hear live music, and watch a recreation of the surrender of U-858. The Fort Miles Museum will be open for $5 per person. For more information call (302) 644-5007.

Add to Calendar 4/27/2019 10:00:00 AM 4/27/2019 4:00:00 PM America/New_York Delaware Goes to War On May 8, 1945 the allies declared victory in Europe in World War II. Fort Miles will celebrate the victory in our annual living history event. See firing demonstrations, learn about garrison life at Fort Miles, see guest speakers, hear live music, and watch a recreation of the surrender of U-858. The Fort Miles Museum will be open for $5 per person. For more information call (302) 644-5007. Fort Miles