Fort Gaines, Dauphin Island, Alabama

Fort Gaines was established in the 1800’s and played a pivotal role in the Battle of Mobile Bay during the Civil War.  It was also used during the Spanish American War.

The fort has been well preserved and now functions as a museum.  Visitors can learn about the battles fought at the fort and how French culture influenced the area.

Dauphin Island, Alabama

Gwen and I went to Dauphin Island, which is located in Mobile County, Alabama.  It’s connected to the mainland by the Gordon Persons Bridge.

Dauphin Island was named after Louis XIV’s great-grandson.  He was the heir (the dauphin) and future Louis XV of France.

This is a beautiful place to visit, with white sandy beaches, Sea Lab – Estuarium, a military fort dating back to the 1800’s, Audubon Bird Sanctuary, walking trails, restaurants and places to shop.

Alligator Alley

Alligator Alley is an animal sanctuary near Mobile, Alabama.  The animals were rescued from poor living conditions and placed in the sanctuary.

As the name applies, there are a lot of alligators; however, they also have snakes, lizards, and turtles.

This is a fun place to visit.  You can feed the alligators, touch some of the animals, and learn a lot about reptiles in general.

 

Sitting in a Cemetery

The oldest graveyard in Athens, Alabama, is a block from the courthouse and is known as Old City Cemetery.  Most of the graves are unreadable and many have been damaged over the years.

However, the grave of John Craig received a new marker recently.  He was a soldier in the Revolutionary War, so his grave has been maintained over the years.

I was sitting in the cemetery looking at his grave and wondering about his life.  His world was filled with uncertainty.  The American Colonies were going to war with England (a world super-power at the time).

If the war was lost, he could be executed for treasonous acts.  If the war was won, his world would still be filled with upheaval and unknown circumstances.  He would be living in a brand new country that was trying to establish a government.

I wonder what he must have thought about his future possibilities.  Did he think about future generations and how much his actions would effect them?  Was he afraid of the unknown future?  Was he filled with feelings of invincibility and the optimism of youth?

John Craig was fighting for a country that was only a dream at the time.  He was willing to die, for the idea of a free and independent nation.

His willingness to fight and give his life, if necessary, is still honored today.