Saturday, February 9, 2008

Fort Jefferson - Dry Tortugas, Florida


If you are fascinated with old forts, there really is no place else in the world like Fort Jefferson. Located 70 miles from Key West in Florida's Dry Tortugas Islands, the fort sits on tiny Garden Key and was the largest masonry fort ever constructed in the United States.
Work on the fort began in 1846 and 16,000,000 bricks and 30 years later, it was still unfinished when construction finally stopped. The advances in rifled artillery and armored ships had made the fort obsolete.
Held by Union troops through the Civil War, the fort's strategic but remote position at the entrance to the Gulf of Mexico protected it from Confederate attack. After the war, three of the alleged conspirators in the assassination of President Abraham Lincoln were imprisoned here. One of these, Dr. Samuel Mudd, had set the broken leg of John Wilkes Booth.
Fort Jefferson is now protected by the National Park Service as part of the Dry Tortugas National Park and is accessible by commercial tour boat or sea plane from Key West.
If you would like to read more about the fort or see additional photographs, please go to: www.exploresouthernhistory.com/fortjefferson1.

1 comment:

RoadDog said...

I believe I heard it is in bad shape with all the years exposure to the elements.