This fortification was made after the Spanish withdrawal from Natchez district, as a frontier post near the demarcation of Spanish and American domains on the east side of the great river. The site was recommended by Capt. Guion after his arrival in the latter part of 1797, at the historic high lands known as Davion's Rock during the French period, and Loftus heights after the English took possession. The fort was built after Gen. Wilkinson arrived in August, 1798. It was completed in 1799, and comprised a strong earthwork, magazine and barracks. The engineering work was under the direction of Maj. Thomas Freeman, who had been acting theretofore as surveyor of the boundary line, under Commissioner Ellicott. It was named in honor of John Adams, then president of the United States.
Source: Encyclopedia of Mississippi History, by Dunbar Rowland.