Fort Frederica National Monument near Brunswick, Georgia, provides a unique perspective on an often overlooked period in American history. When most people think of Georgia’s place in American history, the first thought is generally of the Civil War. But beyond the significant battles and Sherman’s march from Atlanta to the sea, Georgia played a key role in America’s colonial past. A key part of this past is displayed at Fort Frederica National Monument. Fort Frederica marked the southernmost boundary of the British Colonies in North America.
Fort Frederica was built in the late 1730’s as an outpost of British strength along its border with the colonies of Spain. Fort Frederica was an imposing sight in this era of American history being surrounded by a timber and earth wall standing over 10 feet tall. The wall was also surrounded by a moat offering a strong defensive protection to the fort and to the inhabitants of the fort. The Spanish would attack the fort and surrounding area unsuccessfully during a conflict in 1742. For a time Fort Frederica was an important military outpost. Life in the fort was bustling and civilians set up trade within the fort. However, after a treaty between the English and Spanish in 1748 the fort was abandoned.
Today archeologists are working to find clues about the fort’s past. Some of the areas of the colonial fort have been discovered but work does continue in this area. The Fort Frederica National Monument offers outdoor exhibits to help those visiting to gather a look into the past. The outdoor exhibits combine with a visitor center offering more exhibits, interactive audio / visual displays, and a short film to provide a deeper understanding into Fort Frederica’s past. There is also a self guided audio tour available of the fort’s grounds.
This is a great location for families looking for a unique family weekend or day trip. This is also a great place to stop on your way to or from the beach (or anyone passing through on Interstate 95) to add a little education to a family vacation. In addition to many spots in Georgia, Fort Frederica National Monument is a reasonable drive from Jacksonville, Florida, and other locations in Florida.
Near to Fort Frederica are many other sites of interests including, Okefenokee National Wildlife Reserve, Cumberland National Seashore, Jekyll Island National Historical Landmark, Hofwyl-Broadfield Plantation State Historical Site, and the Wolf Island and Blackbeard Island National Wildlife Reserve.
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