Viva Florida 500: Civil War Heritage Days Key West
February 5th, 2013
History buffs will have a chance to travel back in time at Fort Zachary Taylor, a Civil War–era fort on Key West’s Atlantic Ocean shore,February 8-10 during Civil War Heritage Days. The three-day event will re-create the era when Key West was the only Deep South port to remain in Union hands, much to the consternation of many residents at the time. Fort Taylor played a major role in the Union blockage of Confederate shipping along one of the most important open water channels in the United States. While Ft. Zachary remained in Union hands throughout the Civil War and never saw any actual fighting, the festival provides a fascinating “what if” scenario, playing out skirmishes between the forces, as if the Confederate troops had actually made it to Key West.
The grounds at the fort and surrounding state park will be transformed into both Union and Confederate camps, providing a glimpse into how the soldiers lived in the 1860s. Over 100re-enactors dressed in period costumes will play the roles of military personnel, merchants, craftsmen and civilians and provide living history demonstrations throughout the weekend. Of course, the most excitement will come during the land and sea battles, as patrol skirmishes offer artillery demonstrations and schooners face off on the ocean, cannons booming across the water. The event is free with park admission.
This event is part of Visit Florida's Viva 500 commemoration, honoring the anniversary of Ponce de Leon's landing in Florida. Find more events around Florida at Florida Travel + Life'snew events calendar.
Tags: Florida History | Florida Keys | Key West | Viva Florida 500
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