04 August, 2008

Fort Massachusetts

Fort Massachusetts on Ship Island (Offically known as the Fort on Ship Island) is part of the interesting history of the fascinating barrier island. It was originally built after the war of 1812, and only saw actual battle once when confederate solders on the island engaged the Union Ship Massachusetts in the civil war. It is home to a mortar oven that was used by solders to heat cannon balls to red hot temperature and fire them at enemy ships in hopes of catching them on fire. The fort had once been the center of many military buildings that were once on the island, including a hospital barracks, and mess hall, all of those have since disappeared, and for a time all that remained were the fort and a replica of the Ship Island light house, Hurricane Katrina took care of the light house in 2005. The Fort has been out of service since 1903 and most cannons were removed in 1908. It is currently maintained by the National Park Service.

One thing that really fascinates me is that barrier islands grow longer and not wider, when the fort was originally built, it was in the middle of the island, and now it is on the edge of the water, and the National Park Service has the Army Corps of Engineers pump in sand when they have to dredge shipping channels, just to keep the waves from hitting the fort. But the island is a mile longer than when the fort was originally built.


the Albino Bowler said...

Hey. Just stumbled upon your blog as I was curious what else folks are writing about. Very nice. I live in New Orleans and will be visiting Tasmania in less than a month. I'll have four days there. What should I do and see?

uncertainhorizon said...

Tasmania! I hate you. lol There are tons of things to see is Tasmania, many national parks, Hobart is a nice town, so is Devonport... oh and taste the honey!!!


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