During the French and Indian War of 1754-63 (known in Europe as the Seven Years War), Ft Frederick, on the western frontier of the American colonies, was the principal bastion of their defense in Maryland. It was named for Frederick Calvert, Sixth Lord Baltimore, who governed the Maryland colony at the time. With its thick stone walls, it played an important support role in the campaigns in the northwest territories. The fort also protected settlers during the 1763 Indian uprising, led by Chief Pontiac.
During the Revolution, it served as a POW camp for captured British and Hessian soldiers. It was sold to private developers in 1791. For many years, it stood vacant. But in the Civil War, Union troops were stationed here to defend the C&O Canal.
After that, it was abandoned and nearly forgotten. However, during the 1920s, resoration began, and it became Maryland's first state park. In the 1930s, the Civilian Conservation Corps continued the work. The work continued into the 1970s.
The park has not only the fort, but also some nice hiking trails along the old canal, and a campground for RVs. There is a modest gift shop, too.