Trip Information

United States
Waterview (10)
Trip Date:2006-02-01 - 2006-02-06
# Photos:33 [View]
Countries visited:United States
Viewed: 2796
In a departure from my usual adventures, on this trip I confined my efforts to an urban area. After completing my business, I grabbed my camera and started walking around town looking for shots.

This Ancient City, as it's sometimes called has a distinctly old European feel with narrow brick and cobblestone streets. One of the first things I noticed was the variation of colors in the street. Looking closer I saw that there were many different bricks, many bearing the names of the manufacturer. One brand in particular was from Birmingham, I had to wonder Birmingham Enland or Alabama. I suspect that in this old city, once occupied by the British, either is possible. Many of the streets are very narrow, such as Treasury St, which at a point is only 7 ft. Wide. St. George St. was the main street of old town and runs from the city gate south trough town. During the first Spanish Period (1565-1763) the present St. George Street was known as "the street of the governor", or "the street that goes to the land gate. It was not until the British came (1763) that it was named St. George in honor of King George III.

Many of the buildings are constructed of a native stone called coquina, a virtually indestructible limestone comprised of broken sea shells and corals. Others are contructed of tabby, a 'concrete-like' material made from crushed shells, sand, lime and water. Because of this contstruction, some of the oldest homes have survived to present day.

The Castillo de San Marcos, built 1672-1695 is a cornerstone of old town. This old fortress offers a wonderful view of Mantanzas Bay, as well as, a taste for what military life might have been like in the old times. Constructed by the Spanish, later occupied by the British, then reclaimed by Spain, and finally left to the American Army when Florida was sold to the US. After the US took possesion, it was renamed Ft. Marion and served until 1900.