Fort Foster
established 1836
Photos supplied by Matt Overton
Fort Foster, replaced an earlier fort that was named Fort Alabama. It stands to guard the bridge that crosses the Hillsborough River on the Fort King Military Rd.
The Fort King Military Rd is an important artery connecting Fort Brooke at Tampa Bay to Fort King ( at present day Ocala).
Fort Foster's front gate
The Seminoles have tried many times to burn this bridge and generally harass the poor hard working soldiers of this fort. The soldiers are trying to keep the Seminoles south of the Hillsborough River as they agreed to do.
Bridge crossing the Hillsborough River on the Fort King Military Rd.
The fort is way to small for the amount of soldiers present.
Most of them have to sleep in tents outside the fort walls.
Life is very hard for these soldiers. They are harassed by the Seminoles and have to live in cramped quarters, a very damp environment, hot weather, and hoards of mosquitoes and flies, all add to their misery. It is generally a very unhealthy place. Lots of them are overcome by sickness and disease.
The soldiers bunk in the Blockhouse
Most of the soldiers sleep in tents outside the fort walls.
The enlisted men's blockhouse
Crossing the bridge on the Fort King Military Rd.
The sallyport faces the cannon toward the bridge.
View of the bridge from the fort
The Big gun
The Powder Magazine
It is said that when Fort Alabama was abandoned in April 1836 that before leaving the Alabama volunteers booby-trapped the powder magazine. They rigged a riffle to go off when the door was opened which in turn would set off a keg of powder. They say the soldiers had hardly gone two miles when they heard the explosion. They later learned that at least three Seminoles were killed by the blast.
The Quatermasters supply house
After much research Fort Foster and the bridge it protected have been authentically reconstructed by Florida's division of Recreation and Parks. It sits on the original site.
On special weekends the fort is garrisoned by soldiers performing their duties at the fort. Wearing authentic uniforms the soldiers will gladly share their personal views of the second Seminole War and their life as a soldier in a frontier Florida Fort. One such event is the Fort Foster Rendezvous, held each February, it is open to the public.
The Fort is part of the Hillsborough River State Park
For more information you can contact
Hillsborough River State Park
15402 US 301 North
Thonotosassa, FL 33592
(813) 987-6771
For more information about the Florida Frontier and the Seminole Wars check out these LINKS

Fort Foster Living History Garrison

Fort Foster Second Seminole War (1835-1842)

Seminole War Reenacting Forum

Tour of the Florida Territory during the Seminole Wars

The Florida Frontiersmen's Scouts at Ft. Foster