This fort was built in the late 1600's on the water by the Spanish. In 1763, it went to English control, and then it went back to the Spanish in 1784. In 1821 the Americans gained control and used it as a prison for American-Indian wars.
This is a picture of the outside wall and moat. If you like old history, you'd love this place.
Take the tour of the fort. It's well worth the price and you will learn plenty of interesting fact about the early life of Florida.
Constructed started in 1672 and finished many years later. The coquina stone used for contruction was quarried on Anastasta Island.
Once inside with a good self-guided map, you can visit the different features of the fort: the courtyard, the chapel, the blacksmith and wood shops, and the four Bastions - the arrowhead-shaped projections from the four corners of the fort which jutted out serving to provide crossfire with other bastions.
The ramp was originally smooth to make it easier to pull cannons up. Steps were added in the mid 18th century. Also, you find the kitchens, ordnance and powder rooms, officer and soldier qurters, guard rooms, a British room (they held the fort for 21 years) and, of course , La Necessaria - the fort's toilets which used the tides to flush.
You enter the fort through the ravelin, a small fortification that prevented the enemy from firing directly therough the main entrance or Sally Port. The drawbridge took about 15 minutes to raise or lower.
Visit Castillo de San Marcos National Monument
This fort is the oldest masonry fort in the United States and for more than 3 centuries it has overlooked the nation’s oldest continuously settled European community. Construction of the fort began in 1672 and it was finished in 1695. The fort is built of coquina, which is a shell stone, which is quarried across the bay from St Augustine. Bombardment by canon caused little damage to the walls of the fort and a lot of frustration to the attackers! The British attacked the fort twice. In 1702 they captured the town and forced more then 1,000 people into the fort for a long siege. In 1740 they tried again without success. Spain though had more troubles coming as they lost the vital city of Havana to the British, and in order to regain this port they traded Florida to Great Britain. Britain only stayed in St Augustine for 21 years. The city and the entire Florida peninsula were returned to Spain as part of the negotiations ending the American War for Independence in 1783. Spain found it hard to lure Spaniards from Europe or other colonies though. Eventually, through a treaty signed in 1821, the fort and Florida went into American hands. The fort was later used for many tasks including service as a prison for Indians. The fort was decommissioned in 1900 and became a national landmark.
The Castillo de San Marcos was built 1672-1695. I enjoyed touring the fort. There are many nooks and crannies to explore, as well as the panoramic views of the bay from the upper level.
The oldest masonry fortification in the United States. Built in 1672 by the Spainish to protect St. Augustine from the English expansion.
On the Bastion of San Carlo, you see the tall belltower from which alarm was raised when the enemy was sighted or a cannon ball was on its way towards the fort.
Castillo de San Marcos
A very old Fort built from 1672 to 1692. The walls are 4 to 9 meters wide.