History and Nature compete for attention in the Dry Tortugas, a cluster of islands at the far tip of the Florida Keys where turtles swim in the shadow of Fort Jefferson, a massive 19th century coastal fort held together by more than 16 million bricks.
Dry Tortugas National Park, located 70 miles west of Key West, can be reached by boat or seaplane from Key West:
The SFNPT funds student field trips to Dry Tortugas National Park each year for students from the Florida Keys. In 2017, more than 278 middle and high school students, teachers and parent chaperones visited the park on curriculum-based programs led by National Park Service rangers and sponsored by the SFNPT, with support from the Rotary Club of Key West, the Community Foundation of the Florida Keys, the National Park Foundation and NPCA. Make a donation to support the Dry Tortugas Education Program (a donation of $100 will pay for one student to visit the park).
Dr. Samuel Mudd: Villain or Hero?
Fort Jefferson’s most famous resident, Dr. Samuel Mudd, was imprisoned at the fort in July 1865 for conspiring to assassinate President Abraham Lincoln. Sentenced to life in prison for his role in the conspiracy, Mudd was later pardoned by President Andrew Johnson.