The Old Spanish Fort Built of Coquina Shells


Tiny Coquina Shells

Tiny Coquina Shells

It was quite an achievement for the Spanish to construct a fort made of tiny seashells. The Castillo de San Marcos stands on the shore of the intracoastal waterway in the historic city of St. Augustine, Florida and is a tourist attraction worth seeing. The builders had no idea if the enormous fort would stand strong against attacks when they used the coquina rock to build the thick walls. Coquina shells are tiny and numerous along the Florida coast, but you have to look as the surf recedes to see them digging into the sandy shoreline. The beach comes alive as the tiny Coquina quickly cover themselves again and again after the surf uncovers them. The sea birds love them as a meal and it looks to me like the shells are in a constant game of hide and seek – for their life!

The rock used to build the fort was brought in from an area just offshore and was cut to build the fort. When the first attack came, the Spanish were amazed at the way the cannonballs either bounced off or were embedded in the “rock” instead of crumbling it. Their hard work and choice of material had paid off.


Coquina Rock

Coquina Rock

castillo de san marcos fort

Inside the Castillo de San Marcos Fort in St. Augustine, Florida

About these ads

About Pam Carter

Artist, mother, Zazzler, writer, blogger, photographer.
This entry was posted in Florida, travel and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to The Old Spanish Fort Built of Coquina Shells

  1. Pingback: Pink and Purple Scallop Shells « New England's Narrow Road

  2. Margot Finley-aguilera says:

    We found coquina pieces of a building on the waters edge at Caps Restaurant in Vilano Beach, Florida. It has traces of old paint remaining on one side – a bit of old blue paint under red paint. We wondered if anyone had any ideas of what this may have come from? The kids hope it might be a piece from the original St. Augustine lighthouse :-)!

  3. Pingback: St. Augustine Photos « New England's Narrow Road

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s