Fun Facts about our Park
- During the 1930's, the United States Coast Guard created a Search & Recue Base here on Winter Island Park.
- The Frigate USS Essex was built and launched in 1799 from this location. It served General George Washington in the U.S. Navy.
- The three bunkers located in historic Fort Pickering once stored ammunition as early as the Civil War.
- Winter Island had Salem's first tavern and first shipyard. A fort was erected as early as 1643.
- In 1867, the War department "turned over" to the city "for public use" the part of the island not occupied by the fort, until it should be wanted for defense.
- On December 28, 1928, Salem's Park Department took formal possession of the island.
- The fort was renamed Fort Pickering, after Colonel Timothy Pickering, Secretary of State and War in Washington's Cabinet.