Friday, March 25, 2011

Spanish Colonial Forts

When I was a child, I was always building forts -- snow forts, sand forts, tree forts, cardboard-box forts, you name it. I don’ know what this obsession stemmed from. Perhaps it had something to do with wanting to feel safe. Or maybe I had just seen too many pirate movies and Westerns. Whatever the reason, my love of forts followed me into adulthood, and it persists to this day. 

Not surprisingly, during my travels in Latin America, I have sought out and photographed forts of all kinds. The Spanish built dozens of them along the coasts of Mexico and Central America, as well as in the Caribbean. These imposing structures helped protect Spain’s colonies in the New World from foreign navies and raids by the likes of English and Dutch pirates. 

Below is a slide-show of forts in Latin America that I have explored. Each has a distinct personality. Some like the San Juan de Ulua fortress in Veracruz, Mexico, are forbidding and dungeon-like. Others are airy and even inviting like Acapulco’s Fuerte San Diego, whose sunlit interior has been painted bright yellow. However, all of these historical buildings have something in common: behind their high stone walls surmounted by rusty cannon lie stories begging to be told.

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Spanish Colonial Forts - Images by John Mitchell


Anonymous said...

Absolutely stunning pics,like you i have also always built forts,being Spanish myself i can truly appreciate the beauty of these pics and the forts photographed.Mucho Gracias.
Vaya con dios.

John Mitchell said...

Mil gracias, Mauricio. I'm happy that you like the fotos.
-John M