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I wonder if they are praying "I hope this doesn't blow up in my face" before they make the sign of the cross. ;D[/color]
 

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KABAR2 said:
I wonder if they are praying "I hope this doesn't blow up in my face" before they make the sign of the cross. ;D[/color]
Most likely: "Sancta Barbara, ora pro nobis."
 

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When Napoleon Couture and I visited here in 2005, we only allowed 3 to 4 hours on our travel plan. What a ridiculous estimation!! We have never been so completely underestimated a fort. "Oldest in North America", sure, sure, O.K. Great. "Changed hands 16 times over the centuries", so what, Winchester, Virginia changed hands about 75 times in 4 YEARS! Made of cannon ball proof super rock called Coquina, yea right, just give them blizzards of 24 pdrs at close range and watch it fold up!! We were unimpressed with brochure come-ons and internet site hype.....until we actually arrived.....then a truly subtle realization of the awesome nature of this fortress began to seep in. We have talked to quite a few jaded fort hunters and they all agree about placing this fort in the top three in the United States.

We sure do thank cannonmn for making this video link available. Visiting in November, we did not see the cannon-firing demonstration. However, this is an excuse to re-visit this fort and we will. It was really hard to limit our experiences here to four pics, but consider these just the very smallest, tiny piece of the iceberg's tip. This fort is NOT huge, but your experience here most certainly will be.

Visit this place!

Tracy and Mike



Napoleon Couture poses next to a real beauty. This Spanish mortar, cast in Barcelona, Spain in 1724 is capable of throwing a 15" shell weighing 390 pounds 2,100 yards. This huge mortar is part of the Yale University Art Collection and was placed at the Castillo on an indefinite loan in 1971. It was captured by the United States Army in 1898 as a result of an assault upon a fortress in Cuba during the Spanish-American War.




Mike and Tracy stand next to a large Spanish cannon at the Castillo. It has the bold relief adornment of similar Spanish pieces and is in excellent condition.




A replica of[/color] one the Confederate troops left behind. This is an unusual stand of grape. First, it's a 6 pdr munition, then it has very small shot weighing 1 oz each and a lot more of them than you would expect. The shot looked like iron to us.




An interesting exhibit of the fort's masonry is on display inside. You are encouraged to touch the large piece before you. It is really hard to describe the way this stuff feels. It looks like the shattered quartz we have in Colorado near Central City where lots of Gold was found. But it does not crumble like that rock. You can't really press your fingers into it, but it feels like you can, almost like a huge sponge made of uncounted millions of stone flakes. It's tremendous advantage during an artillery attack, is it's ability to absorb cannon balls without any disruption of surrounding stone. No radiating cracks, just a single isolated hole results from a hit. Penetration is deeper in this stuff than in granite, but you still have a wall standing there after 200 hits. Walls 10 to 14 feet thick are more than adequate.

 

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Well Bucko ;) , if you's do's go's ....I'm going too ! There is no doubt ..... ! 8)

I havnt been to Mertal (sp) beach since 1978 ....I gotta go see the ol carrnies ! ;D

yes I know the beach I knew is gone ........

But so's we can feel better about 'our situations' we can go see others suffer at Parris Island S.C.

There are open racks for us there as well . :) it's free too ! Damn win , win all around ...this is a great idea you had ! 8)

My only buddy from PI I've stayed in touch with lives in Anderson SC , and so , we can stay there as he owes me ....big time . ......

I cant wait .
Gary :eek:
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Nice writeup and photos as usual gents.

One small point, however, if you would idulge me for a moment-

One the Confederate troops left behind. This is an unusual stand of grape. First, it's a 6 pdr munition, then it has very small shot weighing 1 oz each and a lot more of them than you would expect. The shot looked like iron to us.
It sho' don't look original to me!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
If y'all want to take the cook's tour of Castillo, just push da lil' arrow. I made this so long ago it was still in the silent era of the movies. One of my favorite weapons in the whole world is shown right on the you'se tubes startup screen. Anybody remember what's special about it?

[yt=425,350]f3f1odh2UUk[/yt]
 

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Yes, you certainly are correct, John. I was thinking, "A replica of" preceding that photo's caption, but the fingers didn't do what the 'ol brain was thinking. We also got a call on this proving that you guys are sharp as usual. We liked your photo tour also; it brings back fond memories. Watching your photo tour made me realize that I forgot one important shot of the Castillo's south side.

T&M


This photo proves that your experience at The Castillo de San Marcos in Saint Augustine, Florida begins as soon as you step out of your vehicle in the parking lot. It's what you don't see that is important! You don't see much of the fort, because it is masked by a substantial 'Glacis'. This Glacis is a huge wedge-shaped ramp composed of millions of tons of soil and sand which protects the forts Ravelin and Curtain Wall against the effects of direct artillery fire from breeching batteries. All you see from any land approach route is cannon muzzles!! The defender's field of fire is unobstructed, of course, another advantage of a long sloping Glacis.

 

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I maybe stepping 'out of my bounds abit ' , and anyone who thinks so is proly right .

BUT...... that mortar that Mike is standing next to MUST be the prototype for the Wicked Witch Of The West's indirect fire guns . :eek:

They would be the guns from **** . uuooglier guns can almost not be imagined short of outright devil worship .

Are those ..??..ugly ascsed angled bent loop 'things' supposed to be ......even a tunna , that has been caught in a dolfin net ? ::) Why didnt they just cast them into the muzzle face !!!! ?? mercy :'( that piece of bronze is one big waste of Church Bells !!!

The guns posted latley from Peru are all over that ... ..... .... flower pottage thingage .

some things once seen can not be unseen !

gary so tell us what did you REALLY think of ...the ...it thing ...? :D

Thats my story and I'm stickin to it !
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Anyone new to GBBP board learns to first, understand (it may take a bit of effort for some) then appreciate (hopefully) that unique dialect found only in one isolated area of the far out West, yes, it is "Garese!" Teams of linguistic scholars have recently descended upon that tiny village with their video cameras and recorders to capture the dialect in its native environment before it is contaminated by encroaching civilization, and lost forever.

BUT...... that mortar that Mike is standing next to MUST be the prototype for the Wicked Witch Of The West's indirect fire guns .

They would be the guns from **** . uuooglier guns can almost not be imagined short of outright devil worship .

Are those ..??..ugly ascsed angled bent loop 'things' supposed to be ......even a tunna , that has been caught in a dolfin net ? Why didnt they just cast them into the muzzle face !!!! ?? mercy that piece of bronze is one big waste of Church Bells !!!

The guns posted latley from Peru are all over that ... ..... .... flower pottage thingage .

some things once seen can not be unseen !

gary so tell us what did you REALLY think of ...the ...it thing ...?
With all due respect to a guru and prophet, I mean where else could you get such totally original gems as

some things once seen can not be unseen !
I love it, Gary, hope you never change. If you ever decide to "go public" with your gift, I want to be your agent!
 

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Coquina is composed of coral and shells, which gives it a loose structure, keeping it strong but soft, so it absorbs a hit. I think I remember Fort San Felipe in the Dominican Republic also being made of it, though it's been more than 10 years since I was there.
 

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John , thank you for the complement !

If I ever do take my show on the road ,you have the job ;D .....I'm sure I can find suitable compensation in your cannon storage wharehouse 8) .

BTW What gun (bronze) would be THE ONE you would keep from your collection ? If you only could have one ?

I just saw you on mythbusters today John . :D

Just the part where they were shooting in your yard .
 

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cannonmn said:
This isn't my video but I saw this same demo firing when I was in St. Augustine 2 yrs. ago. It is much more impressive when you are there, of course.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bTi4tPEDnF4&feature=related
I have to ask, is the drill demonstrated in the video a replication of the original Spanish drill of the period or a modern exercise to safely fire a cannon for demonstration taken from the Park Service manual...which isn't bad.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
BTW What gun (bronze) would be THE ONE you would keep from your collection ?
It would probably be the falconet by Petrus Overney of Leewerden, Netherlands, dated 1685. The tube is about 4 feet long, weighs about 350 lbs., and has about as much decoration as any cannon I've seen. The original owner was a count who had four of them. He had a treasure house on his estate and these guns were to help defend the place. I found out quite a bit about him, he was one of those very successful Dutch merchants from the 17th. C, as I recall he owned a small fleet of trading vessels or something like that. Two of the guns are still at his estate which is now the Dutch National Carriage Museum. One is in the Victoria and Albert Museum in London. Other is mine. It is mounted on an original British 3 pounder field gun carriage, I guess because it just happens to fit. Sorry I have no pix of it with me, and it is one of those not in a photogenic location at present. Some day I'll get y'all a picture of it. One of you enterprising websearchers might find a pic of one of the other quadruplets if you are lucky.

One reason I like it is because Petrus Overney was a real master caster, and did a number of statues, cathedral doors, bells, etc., and his work is as good as it gets.
 
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