05 January 2008

Fort Cooper

Ok, so this is Fort Cooper state park. Let's just say I'm a little dissapointed. See the photo above? Yeah, the photos online of the park look just like it, giving a sense that there is in fact a reconstructed fort there. Well guess what, there isn't. It's just about 10 feet of reconstruction, seen above. Camera angle is a wonderful thing. Ah, but I digress... The following info is from the state park website: "In April 1836, during the Second Seminole War, Major Cooper was ordered to remain behind to protect the sick and wounded as General Winfield Scott marched south to present day Tampa. Major Cooper was left in the command of five companies of the First Georgia Battalion of Volunteers and a small artillery company. A field fortification was built on the western bluff of Lake Holathlikaha. Major Cooper was to hold this position as he waited for reinforcements.Seminole War Chief Osceola and his Indian warriors encamped themselves across the lake from Fort Cooper. There were several skirmishes with the Seminoles, but the volunteers held their own. On April 18, General Scott returned with supplies and reinforcements, leading the men of Fort Cooper from their frontier sanctuary and into new battles.The fort site was well chosen. The western bluff offered the strategic advantage of being nestled in the fringe of a hardwood hammock, while having access to a wagon road that was under the cover of longleaf yellow pine."
Above is Lake Holathlikaha, below is the military road. Remember the one Major Dade's command was on? They didn't get this far.

This was the site of Fort Cooper.
A marker (front and back) found nearby.

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