This overlook marks the site of a military fortification built during the Revolutionary War and the War of 1812. With its high, rocky ground, and expansive views that still can be experienced today, it’s clear why this was an important strategic position.
The British built a fortification here in 1776, following their invasion of Manhattan, as part of a defensive line extending west to the Hudson River. During the War of 1812, the Americans were concerned about a British attack on New York. They built a fortification in the same spot and named it Nutter’s Battery after Valentine Nutter, a local landowner. This was part of a fortification system that included two other forts, Fort Clinton and Fort Fish, which were connected by low earthen walls and linked to a gatehouse that controlled access to a local road. A series of blockhouses, of which one still remains in the Park, extended this defensive line.
This area was inaccessible to the public when the Park was built. As part of a project in 1945, paths to this spot were added and a low stone wall constructed to mark the site. The Central Park Conservancy rebuilt Nutter’s Battery in 2014, rebuilding the wall and adding new paving and plantings, with the goal of emphasizing the impressive rock outcrop at the center of the site, as well as the surrounding views.