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Strategic Stability

Fort Jefferson, built on Garden Key of the Dry Tortugas, was constructed in the mid-19th century to protect the shipping lanes accessing the Gulf Coast of the United States. The deep-water anchorage nearby was critical for resupply and refit of vessels and shelter from seasonal Caribbean storms.


Although never actually completed, Fort Jefferson was the largest and most sophisticated in a chain of coastal forts situated along the U.S. coast from Maine to California, becoming a critical enabler to the Union Navy successfully blockading Confederate shipping during the Civil War. In addition to protecting the harbor, it became a prison for Union Army deserters and, for a time, Dr. Samuel Mudd - the physician who was convicted of aiding and abetting John Wilkes Booth.


A remote location, even today, it's hard to fathom the amount of labor and logistics involved in building and provisioning such a formidable structure with the level of precision and durability that allow us to continue to visit it in exceptional condition 175 years after the first bricks were emplaced.



Accepted for Display - MAR 2021 Darkroomers Photographic Club (Affiliate of Southern California Association of Camera Clubs {SCACC} and Photographic Society of America {PSA}).

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Taken on May 1, 2016