|Florida did not join the union until March 3, 1845, but it shares many of the same growing pains that were experienced in the original 13 colonies. We dealt with other nations holding our lands, the wars for independence, Indian uprisings, and many natural disasters. Many forts dotted our landscape during different periods in our early history.|
Battery San Antonio- Pensacola
Fort Annuttgeliea 1840 Hernando Co Seminole War fort.
Fort Arbuckle 1750 s/w Florida
Fort Barrancas 1787 Naval Air Station Pensacola Spanish (also "Fort San Carlos de Barrancas")
Fort Basinger/Bassinger Hwy 98 about 3-5 miles west of Ft. Drum
and used as a place of refuge
for the settlers of this community.
During Seminole Indian War 1855-1858.
Name changed to Bartow 1867
In honor of Confederate General
Francis S. Bartow
Daughters of the American Revolution
Fort Brooke 1823 U S Army Colonels George Mercer Brooke and James Gadsden commissioned to establish a fort at the mouth of the Hillsborough River. January 10,1824 four full companies from Pensacola's US 4th Infgantry Regiment arrived with Brooke to "Cantonment Brooke". In 1842 now a civilian town was called Tampa Town. Construction workers unearthed an old cemetery of both soldiers and Indians. The soldier remains were reinterred in military fashion and the Indian remains were turned over to the Seminole Indian Reservation for reburial. The Tampa Convention Center now towers over the old fort leaving nothing from the old days. Tampa -(1)From The Gazette-News, Daytona, Fl Jan 05, 1901 pg2 Six suits were filed in the United States Circuit Court Monday by the Hockley heirs to recover possession of the old Fort Brook military reservation, now valued at more than $300,000. The plaintiffs, about twenty in number are children and grandchildren of Robert T Hockley, the original settler of the land in 1823. The United States troops dispossessed him in order to use his house and clearing for a camping ground. Fort Brook became Tampa. Kennedy, History of Lake Co., 1929.
Fort Butler- on the opposite bank of the St. Johns near Volusia, was established after the latter was abandoned in hopes that it would prove healthy. But it turned out to be very unhealthy and was abandoned also. As “A Physician” says: “It would seem paradoxical that the miasmatic diseases of East Florida abounding as it does in large swamps and rich hammocks, and exposed to a tropical sun) should generally be of a milder form than those which prevail in more northern latitudes.” [signed] PHYSICIAN SECOND. The National Intelligencer, 8 Nov. 1843. Copied by Ann & Blair Huddart on 31 Oct 1996.NOTE: The site of Fort Butler would be on Route 40 east near the towns of Astor or Astor Park, about 4-5 miles south of Lake George in 1998.
Fort Caroline 1564 Jacksonville French
Fort CenterFort Christmas 1835 Christmas on State Road 50, twenty miles east of Orlando.
Fort Chokonikla (also “Fort Chokkonickla” and “Fort Chokhonikla”, now part of Paynes Creek Historic State Park) [1978 Bowling Green] was the first in the chain of forts constructed and was located near the Kennedy-Darling fort site. Chokonikla was the Indian word for "Burned House. None of the fighting took place here. Casualties were due to Malaria, fever, and sickness. The regimental band was garrisoned at one time. Another instance was when 153 of the 166 men at the fort were either sick, under arrest or on detached duty, leaving 7 men to man the fort. General Twiggs, commander of the federal forces, met at the fort in 1850 with Billy Bowlegs, Seminole Chief, trying to affect the removal of the Indians to the western United States. This was unsuccessful, the Seminoles never surrendered. A peace treaty with the United States and the remaining Seminoles was signed in 1936.
Fort Clarke, in present-day Gainesville, Second Seminole War [Rajtar.17.]
Fort Clinch 1736 Amelia Island
Fort Cooper State Park 1972 Inverness
Fort Cross, on Cape Sable, Third Seminole War
Fort Dallas 1836 Miami
Fort De Soto Park 1849 St. Petersburg
Fort Drum 1842 Okeechobee Co.
Fort Fannin, in Levy Co. was headquarters of the United States army in Florida during much of the Indian war.
Fort Foster 9 mi s. Zephyrhills
Fort Fraser 1837 between Lakeland and Bartow- not there nowFort Gadsden 1814 Franklin Co –Apalachicola River 2 ruined forts
Fort Gardner 1837 n. of Lake Kissimmee
Fort George: south Jacksonville, 1736 was built to defend the southern flank of Georgia when it was a colony.
Fort George 1788 Pensacola
Fort Heilman 1830’s
Clay County The
fort was named after
Brevet Lieutenant Colonel Julius F. Heilman, It was built at the spot
north and south forks of Black Creek met and was a temporary wooden
used during the First Seminole War as a quartermaster workshop and
depot. A small
village, Garey’s Ferry,
of log huts was constructed around the stockade. The fort was abandoned
the end of the Indian Wars. The
elementary school was built behind it on S. R. 21, Middleburg,
Fort Holmes is in the vicinity of the St. Johns, about fourteen miles from Palatka, on the road to Fort King. It was unhealthy. Lietenant Woodruff, 21 Infantry, died here in April 1841, of malignant dysentery. The post was abandoned early in the sickly season of that year.[signed] PHYSICIAN SECOND. The National Intelligencer, 18 Nov 1843.
NOTE: Fort Holmes was re-activated, apparently, as it is shown on a map in the National Archives, dated 1859. Source: Fort Holmes Mss Collection, Box 33.P.K.Yonge Library of Florida History, University of Florida.Copied by Ann & Blair Huddart on 31 Oct. 1996.
Fort Houston, in
Tallahassee, Civil War
Fort Jefferson 1513 Ponce de Leon was the first European there. He named the islands Tortugas meaning turtles. The park established in 1935 is about 68 statute miles west of Key West in the Gulf and has around 80,000 visitors annually. There are coral reefs with plenty of space to view the underwater history and aquatic life since the whole island is the fort. You might ever find sunken treasure or a shipwreck.
Fort King 1827 Ocala Colonel William King was honored by having this fort named after him. The fort, now designated as a U.S. National Landmark is near the corner of 39th Ave. and E. Fort King St.
Fort Kissimmee Cemetery
Fort Lawson burned by the Indians in March 1840.
Fort Matanzas National Monument
Fort Meade, Polk County played a minor part during the Third Indian War and the Civil War. The loction of the fort shifted over time. The first in mid-December 1849 until about December 1850 seems to have been only two buildings which housed around 230 men at some point. The buildings were very rudimentary and only covered about 22 feet by 38 feet. This site is now a golf course at Broadway and Hwy 98. It appears this site was torn down. The second fort used from the end of December 1850 until in the mid to late 1864 had some burned buildings left around the Heritage Park area. Neither of these locations had surrounding walls. For a view of the coinage and buttons found there visit metal.
Fort MellonFort Mitchell
Fort Mose Historic State Park
Fort Pickens was repaired in the late 1960's and reopened in 1976.
Fort Pilatka, Putnam Co., was established in 1838 in the town of Pilatka
(now called Palatka) after Indians attacked and burned the town in
1835 at the beginning of the Seminole War. It was necessary to control the water route to Central Florida
along the St. Johns
River. It was
later renamed Fort Shannon after Capt. Samuel Shannon. The fort
grew to 112 officers and enlisted men in September 1838 and was
abandoned September 19th of that year. The men were moved
down river to Picolata. Again, the fort was used in 1839. By 1841 there
were 408 soldiers stationed there and the fort had a garrison, supply
depot and a hospital. Later a military stable was added to
accomodate 400 horses as well as eight 30x100 feet block houses
utlizing the large virgin timber in the area. As happened often,
another fire ravaged the town in 1855. There is only one
building remaining of the original fort, the Officer's Quarters, which
was relocated to the west side of the Bronson-Mulholland House on
Madison St. in
Palatka. It now houses the Putnam Historical Museum.
Fort Ponsett, on Cape Sable, Second Seminole War
Fort Russell, on Key Biscayne, Second Seminole War
Fort Shannon, Putnam Co. [-see Fort Picolata
Fort St. Andrews
Fort St. Francis de Pupa
Fort San Carlos, Fernandina Beach, Second Spanish rule
Fort San Lucia
Fort San Marcos de Apalachee (also “Fort St. Marks”)
Fort San Nicholas
Fort Shannon see Fort Picolata above.
Presidio Santa Maria de Galve
Fort T.B. Adams
San Marcos de Apalache Historic State Park
Fort Walker (also”Fort Hogtown”, in present-day Gainesville,Second Seminole War [Rajtar.17]
Yellow Bluff Fort
Fort Zachary Taylor (also “Fort Taylor”
Temporary Fort at Wildwood In order to provide a safe place for the women and children a temporary fort and stockade were built upon the present site of Wildwood and here all the white women and children of the settlement were gathered and spent six months in daily fear of an attack from the Seminole Indians.
Volusia, six miles above Lake George, is on the right bank of the river St.Johns. It was one of the most sickly posts in Florida. The men were sick even in the winter, and the mortality in the sickly season of 1836 was dreadful. An officer of the army was dismissed without a hearing for not making a sortie with the Indians near the post. But he was afterwards reinstated and obtained a hearing before a court martial, by which he was triumphantly acquitted. He proved on the defence that there was a great sickness and mortality amonst the troops; that it was with difficulty his well men could bury the dead; and that he was hardly able, with a large company, to keep guard. This post was abandoned and never occupied after 1837. [signed] PHYSICIAN SECOND, the National Intelligencer, 18 Nov 1843. Copied by Ann & Blair Huddart on 31 Oct 1996.
Martello towers, Key West
Florida Board of parks and Historic Memorials p. 63
The Intelligencer of Washington, D. C. communications Aug-Nov 1843
· Fort Holmes Mss Collection, Box 33. P.K. Yonge Library of Florida History, University of Florida. Copied by Ann&Blair Huddart on 31 Oct. 1996.
· de Quesada, Alejandro M. (2006) "A History of Florida Forts." Charleston, South Carolina: The History Press. ISBN 1-59629-104-4
Rajtar, Steve. (2007) "A guide to historic Gainesville." Charleston, South Carolina: The History Press. ISBN 978-1-59629-217-8