Fort San Juan del Bayou:  Photos & History of the Old Spanish Fort

Old Spanish Fort:  Resort & Amusement Park


Memories of the "Little Fort" & Sunny Schiro's Efforts to Save It

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The Past Whispers - Home

This lone grave, surrounded by its rusty enclosure, has been the basis for various romantic legends down through the centuries.  There's good reason to believe that a Spanish soldier by the name of Sancho Pablo, stationed at the fort during the time of Spanish rule, 1763 - 1800, sleeps beneath the ancient oaks, just outside of the fort itself.
These steps once led to a hotel constructed in 1823, adjacent
to a portion of the fort, after it had been decommissioned.
Above, a few of the ancient oak trees on the grounds.  Untold thousands of trees died after sitting in flood waters for 3 weeks or more, but the oak trees faired better than most and many survived.
The structure above, and another similar to it, is from the period when the fort was used as part of a resort area and, later, amusement park, between 1823 - 1926.  As far as I know, no one is sure of their purpose, but my guess is some type of water fountain.
Front wall of battlement, as seen from Bayou St. John.  Note the difference time has made, when you compare these photos with those taken in the 1930's, at the first link below.
The centuries come and the centuries go, but Sancho Pablo sleeps on.
Fort San Juan del Bayou - Old Spanish Fort Today
Bayou St. John at Lake Pontchartrain - Established 1701

I took these photos in December, 2007.  It was the first time I'd visited the fort since the levee failures in 2005.  Although what's left of the fort continues to deteriorate, as it has for the better part of a century, I was happy to see that the flood waters don't appear to have added extra damage to the structure.  The fort has such a long and significant history...it's sad to accept the fact that it will not be saved for future generations.  To see more photos and read about its history, follow the links to my other pages about the Old Spanish Fort at the bottom of this page.  
Nancy
Don Bourgeois has found a mystery brick at Spanish Fort with what looks to be the imprint of the word "D-I-A-N-A" on it.  If you have any idea what that might signify, he would appreciate it if you'd let him know.
E-mail Don.