nd [1900-1910?]. Nine photos, most 4 1/2 x 6 1/2 in., mounted on stiff card stock. Depicted are the Forts Pickens (3), Barrancas (1), and "Readoff," (1) [sic- actually the 'Advanced Redoubt' built near Barrancas as an extra line of defense]. On the verso of one of the photos of Fort Pickens George Brown mentions "the old ruins caused from an explosion in the magazine." This explosion took place on June 20, 1899, when one of Bastion D's magazines ignited at the fort. The remaining four photos include: an image of a small steam powered boat in the harbor; a soldier in uniform wearing a cap with the insignia of two crossed cannons and the battery designation '2 / D' ("Robinson from Tenn." captioned on verso); two company cooks in the kitchen; and the group photo of Brown and his fellow battery mates sharing some whiskey and a keg of beer, each man's image numbered, and their last names written on the verso, identifying them all as "the booze fighters of the [D?] Battery. He also numbers and names the whiskey bottle and the keg. Brown's note on this picture is directed to his parents and apologetically signed. Some soiling and scuffing, but overall the images are clear. Item #63753
The three major forts in the area of Pensacola which saw action during the Civil War, Barrancas, Pickens, and McRee, were all built in the 1830s when the United States was working to strenghten its coastal defenses. Construction of the Advanced Redoubt at Fort Barrancas began in 1845. Fort Pickens was occupied by Union forces, and Forts Barrancas and McRee were in the hands of Confederate troops at the commencement of the war. Fort McRee was destroyed by Confederate forces when it and Fort Barrancas were abandoned in 1862. Forts Pickens and Barrancas, and the Advanced Redoubt continued to be used by the Army until 1947. Likely George Brown was stationed at Fort Pickens as a member of an artillery battery a few years after the explosion there.