Our Day at Fort Clinch State Park

My boys attend Grace Lutheran and had off school the last 3 days of September for Fall Break.  Initially when planning for their fall break we thought we would take the boys camping.  However, there was threat of rain and the mosquitoes have been in full force.  I had no intentions of being caught in a tent, in a rain storm with mosquito welts on my body. *shudder* We decided instead of camping, we would take the boys to spend the day at the spot where we had picked to camp, Fort Clinch State Park.  The sun was shining bright in the sky and the temperatures were mild.  The boys were all chatter on they way to the fort.  “Mom what will we see?”  and “Where there be real cannons?”

We paid our park entrance fee at the gate and navigated our way up to the  fort.

Map of Fort Clinch

When you arrive at the actually fort, there is a visitors center (tourist store) where you can buy books, souvenirs and snacks.  The boys loved this table of the artifacts and creatures native to the area.

Fort Clinch Visitors Center

It was a short walk on a paved path to Fort Clinch.  We saw this sign to help us place our imagination to the time period of 1864.

Paved Path. Imagine Sign

We saw cannons!  We were able to walk the perimeter of the fort and see where Cumberland Sound feeds into the Atlantic Ocean.  We saw all the masonry of the fort and I must say it was stunning.  You really have to appreciate the construction of the fort.  I find it very fascinating the amount of work completed by the soldiers of that time period. They truly were building a great nation with their bare hands.

Collage of Fort Clinch

We were taken on a tour of the buildings from a gentleman acting as a union solider from 1864.  This guy did not break character the entire tour!  It was very neat.

Buildings of Fort Clinch

We had a wonderful day at the park.  It was so much fun watching my children “oh” and “ah” over the weaponry and tunnels.  It was a fabulous way to teach them about the history of Florida and have fun simultaneously.

Fort Clinch Tunnel

 I would urge you to support your State Parks!  I would like to point out, without getting on a political soap box, its important that we frequent the State Parks and support the history of the United States.  It has been discussed that State Parks could be privatized due to budget cuts.  We need to support them and take part in the programs set forth. By doing this we are showing by our actions that we find the parks important and worth of state funding.

Fort Clinch is a 19th century brick fortress begun in 1847 after the end of the Second Seminole War. It was named in honor of General Duncan Lamont Clinch, important figure in the First and Second Seminole Wars. The only battle to occur at Clinch was when Union troops recaptured the fort in 1862 after Confederate forces seized control the previous year. Fort Clinch served as the base of Union operations in the area throughout the Civil War.

In 1935, the State of Florida bought 256 acres (1.0 km²) that included the then-abandoned fort and the surrounding area. Fort Clinch State Park including the fort, opened to the public in 1938. –Wikipedia 

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