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The Stone That Saved Town Of Saint Augustine

Leaving the Hostel on Bridge Avenue, for my morning stroll and daily ration of individuals watching, I stopped along the bay to benefit from the water. Whereas I used to be checking O. C. Whites’ menu, an awesome place to eat overlooking the Bay in St. Augustine, I overheard a couple from Boston. They were engaged in an animated dialog about the city’s history. “If St. Augustine is the nation’s oldest metropolis,” she stated challenging her companion, “why do we now have so many buildings in the Boston space which can be so much older “

Seeing that her companion did not fairly know how to reply to her, I interrupted their dialog. Interrupting strangers in the middle of a conversation is a habit of mine. Not a behavior my husband significantly appreciates, and others have voiced as rude, nevertheless, it’s something I do to meet new and interesting individuals. I interjected, “The British burned the town down, and they weren’t the first to do it. The city has been assaulted by Indians, pirates and others.” I continued, “The British were the final to burn the town down in 1702 after a fifty day siege of the Fort, The Castillo de San Marcos. I assume they have been mad as a result of they couldn’t knock down the walls of the Fort after fifty days of cannon fire. That’s why there aren’t any buildings older than Boston’s”

I could see the eyes of her companion gentle up. “That is right,” he exclaimed. “After we visited the Fort, I remember listening to that the construction was fabricated from Coquina; an amazing stone that was quarried on that Island across the way in which. But I thought it was twenty days not fifty.”

I smiled broadly; I all the time get a kick out of how a lot history people pick up after they visit St. Augustine. “Also true,” I said, “nevertheless it was twenty-seven days of bombardment by Common James Oglethorpe in 1740. He gave up and left town; he didn’t burn it down. The reason the Coquina in St. Augustine’s Fort was so efficient towards cannon fire isn’t its hardness but its softness. Cannon balls would sink into it somewhat than shatter or puncture the walls of the Fort. The Coquina itself turned out to be a terrific deterrent of hostile forces.”

“That’s some stone.” she mentioned. “Where can we see extra of it ”
“There are lots of places to see it if you happen to look,” I responded. “You will notice it at town gates, in most of the buildings and stone fences round the Flock city. Solely a finite quantity was quarried, for the reason that builders discovered it was easier to re-use the stone from damaged buildings than quarry more of it. Then newer strategies began to be used. In fact, the first poured concrete construction in the United States is the Zorayda Castle over on King Avenue. The Coquina used for navy structures on the south finish of town was re-used to construct the Franciscan convent and then in the inspiration for the barracks, constructed on the same site.”

I’ve always found the usage of Coquina in St. Augustine an enchanting story. What I discovered over time is that Coquina is a mixture of mineral calcite and phosphate normally within the type of seashells or coral; in layman’s terms, compressed sea shells. This compression happened naturally at Anastasia Island in St. Augustine, the place early settlers built a quarry to retrieve the stone. It’s also found uncovered in many areas along the east coast of Florida from St. Johns to Palm Seashore stone island camo sweater counties. It may be discovered as far inland as 20 miles from Florida’s east coast.

When Coquina is extracted it is rather tender. Its softness makes it simple to harvest from a quarry and kind into various shapes together with block. Nevertheless, before it can be used as a constructing materials it should be left to dry for a number of years; it’s still smooth, however arduous sufficient to make use of in development.

Coquina is a unique material with an fascinating history; just considered one of the many attention-grabbing and distinctive features found in Saint Augustine. I’ve stone island camo sweater been coming to St. Augustine for the final six years and have learned many fascinating information that are specific only to this area, and I really like to find unwitting strangers to share my data with throughout my morning walks.