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Sunday, February 5, 2017

Touring Fort Zachary Taylor on key West

Key West has three 19th century forts.  Fort Mantello East, Fort Mantello West and Fort Zachary Taylor were built on Key West to defend Florida's southeast shoreline.  Fort Zachary Taylor is the southernmost fort.

Fort Zachary Taylor is a
four-sided fort.
(Photo from

I've visited many forts in eastern states and this one stands out because it's not five-sided.

The upper section of the
fort is painted black.

the fort was opened to the
public, to prevent vehicle

Fort Zachary Taylor was originally built 1,200 feet off shore.

 The fort was originally built with three floors.  
Today it has one floor.

Key West stayed in Union control during the Civil War.  Union soldiers and 140 cannons deterred blockade runners from supplying Confederate States while the war raged.

Eric stands next to
cannon balls.  

The Mess Hall 

One of two cells used
for disobedient soldiers.

Detainees were confined
in small rooms with
a window for sun &
After the Civil War, the top two tiers of the fort was removed.  Larger, more modern cannons with longer were brought in to defend the fort.

Fort Zachary Taylor was armed
to defend the coastline during
the Spanish American War
in 1898.

The window looks out
on the moat.

The Parade Grounds from
the top of the fort.

Eric looks out, toward
the water.

In 1947 the Army transferred control of Fort Zachary Taylor to the Navy.  A dredging project in the 1960s brought the fort inland.

Eric finds that he has
a lot in common with
this 150 year old fort.

In 1971 Fort Zachary Taylor was added to the National Registry of Historic Landmarks.

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