Monday, April 21, 2014

The Fort and The Ferry

Fort Gaines is the Civil War era fort at the east tip of Dauphin Island best known for its role in the Battle of Mobile Bay. It and Fort Morgan, across the bay, were built to protect the entrance to Mobile Bay.

Self-explanatory - "Shell hit from U.S.S. Chickasaw". Not self-explanatory - this wall is the interior west wall of the fort. Meaning the cannon ball came from out in the bay, across the interior of the fort before hitting the wall.

The sign reads "Do not climb on cannon" - proof to the grandkids that I'm not the only one who doesn't mind the rules. (Reference the 'Please stay of the rocks' picture of me at Moundville.)

The ten-seater latrine, built so the tides 'flushed' everything out to sea..

The anchor from Admiral Farragut's flagship, the U.S.S. Hartford. It was after the ironclad U.S.S. Tecumseh struck a confederate mine and was sunk that Farragut famously ordered, "Damn the torpedoes, full steam ahead!" Or as Bud paraphrased, "Damn the mosquitoes, full steam ahead."

Boarding the ferry that would take us off-island and on toward our Florida destination. Crossing the bay on a ferry? Me?

But there were really only two choices - the ferry or going back across that bridge which can be just barely seen over my left shoulder. It was a warm and windy day. And if it looks like I was having fun, surprisingly I was. I actually enjoyed the 35-minute crossing.

Looking back at Fort Gaines. Good-bye fort. Good-bye Dauphin Island. It was a good choice by Bud. A fun and interesting side-trip.

Two of the oil rigs in the bay. We were also on the look-out for dolphins, but didn't see any.

Departing the ferry at Fort Morgan. We were coming in for a perfect landing.

And it looks as though this pelican was, too. Although the one in the middle may have had other ideas.

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