Old Fort Park

This city park contains massive coquina stone ruins known locally as the "Old Fort" but which are most likely the remnants of an 18th century British period residential or commercial structure. In the 1850s, a large wooden hotel with about 60 rooms was constructed by John and Jane Sheldon on top of the old coquina foundation. During the Union navy's bombardment of the community in July 1863, the Sheldon Hotel was destroyed by the explosion of gunpowder that had been stored in the cellar. After the Civil War, the Sheldon family retuned to New Smyrna and rebuilt their hotel on top of the ruins. The hotel remained standing until 1896 when it was torn down.