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Amelia Islander

Fort Clinch Union Garrison

May 30, 2014 02:00AM
If you haven’t been to Fort Clinch lately, remember, it’s not just for tourists! The first weekend of each month the fort conducts a Union Garrison, where history interpreters recreate life at Fort Clinch during the mid 1800s. Activities include powder artillery demonstrations, medical demonstrations, and soldier drills. You may hear Sergeant Frank Ofeldt and Henry Work on drum and fife, while chatting with soldiers about their garrison life. Additionally civilians also offer a glimpse into garrison life by taking up duty in the laundry, infirmary, barracks, and kitchen. The next Union Garrison will be held June 7 and 8.

A part of the park system since 1935, Fort Clinch is one of the most well-preserved 19th century forts in the country. Although no battles were fought here, it was garrisoned during both the Civil and Spanish-American wars. During the 1930s, the Civilian Conservation Corps began preserving and rebuilding many of the structures of the abandoned fort. Daily tours with period reenactors depicting garrison life bring the fort to life for visitors. Sunbathing, swimming, and beachcombing are popular activities at the beach. Anglers can fish from the pier or take advantage of excellent surf fishing. Hikers and bicyclists can enjoy a six-mile trail through the park. Self-guided nature trails provide opportunities to learn about and observe native plants and wildlife. A full-facility campground and a youth camping area provide overnight accommodations. For more information call (904) 27-7274 or visit www.floridastateparks.org/fortclinch.