Poplar Bluff, Missouri
July 8, 2007
Constructed in 1834 Fort Morgan was placed on the 10 most endangered battle sites in 2007. Located in the center of the fort was a 10-sided barracks called The Citadel where the enlisted men lived. This structure was destroyed by fire during the Battle of Mobile Bay. As we made our way around on a self-guided tour one room in the fort wall had been arranged as a barricks room might have looked. A young man in full confederate dress explained the daily life of a solider during the Civil War era. During the discussion on weapons he demonstrated how to load and fire a muzzle loader. It was interesting to watch and I can't imagine trying to accomplish the task while someone is shooting at you. From here we went to the ladies quarters. This was were civilian women who lived at the fort to wash and mend for the soldiers lived. Two ladies here were demonstrating how to make a fan from the palmetto leaves. They explained the lives of women at the fort and said the women actually made more than the soldiers because the government paid them for each solider they washed for. We purchased a fan for a small donation, I also picked up a hand embroidered stationary set for an extremely low price.
The front cover was a replica of the Sand Island Lighthouse. This was the last stop on our tour so we headed to the air-conditioned gift shop and museum building out front to look around. It was wonderful to discover they had the actual glass globes from the top of Sand Island lighthouse as well as the lighthouse that originally stood in front of the Fort Morgan inside the museum. I believe admission was $5 per person and we paid at the gate as we drove in from the ferry but if there is no one there you are instructed to go directly to the gift shop to pay the entrance fee.
From journal Dauphin Island Alabama - a bit of true southern hospitality