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Fort Hyndshaw, located in Middle Smithfield Township, Monroe County, Pennsylvania, was one of a number of forts in Colonial Pennsylvania built in 1755 and 1756 during the French and Indian War.

The need for fortifications.

In response to an increasing number of attacks in Pennsylvania by French troops in the western part of the state and by Indian hostilities close to Philadelphia, the Pennsylvania Legislature placed Benjamin Franklin and James Hamilton in charge to erect a chain of forts along the Blue Mountain (Pennsylvania) in the Minisink region .[1]

Franklin, via a letter dated January 12, 1756 to Captain James Van Etten, ordered him to “proceed immediately to raise a Company of Foot, consisting of 30 able Men, including two Serjeants, with which you are to protect the Inhabitants of Upper Smithfield assisting them while they thresh out and secure their Corn, and scouting from time to time as you judge necessary on the Outside of the Settlements.”[2]

Orign of the name

The Fort was named after Lieutenant James Hyndshaw (1720-1770), who was born in Ulster County, New York and was married to Maria Dupui/Dupuy, a niece of Nicholas Dupuy, one of the earliest European settlers of Monroe County, whose home became Fort Dupuy during the French and Indian War around the same time as Fort Hyndshaw.[3] Hyndshaw was second in command to Van Etten.

Structure and history

A 70-foot square blockade was built around Hyndshaw's home. The Fort was active for a little over a year, at which point it was apparently abandoned. Since the fort was made of wood, it deteriorated over time.[4] In 2003 a replacement historical marker was erected by the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission.[4]


  1. Benjamin Franklin and his tie to Monroe County’s frontier forts September 2012
  2. Monroe County’s frontier forts: Fort Hyndshaw. November 2012
  3. Depuy: The peaceful homestead that became a fort. Pocono Record, October 14, 2012. Accessed March 4, 2014
  4. 4.0 4.1 One of Monroe's 'forgotten' forts gets marked. Pocono Record, June 22, 2003.


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