INSPECTION OF OGLETHORPE BATTERY PARK
CITY OF ST. AUGUSTINE, FLORIDA
This small park, located on the east side of Arrendondo Avenue
between Oglethorpe Boulevard and Alcazar Avenue, is the site of
an artillery battery from which Gen. Olglethorpe bombarded
Castillo de San Marcos from June 27th to July 20th, 1740.
Three distinct features are located in the park. The first, a
hewn coquina shellstone monument in the form of an obilisk is
situated in the center of the northern portion; the second, the
remnant of an earthernwork artillery battery is in the center
section near the western edge; and the third, a hewn coquina
shellstone watch house is near the southeast corner of the
property. The obilisk and watch house were apparently constructed
by the St. Augustine Historical Society around 1938.
MONUMENT The shellstone obilisk rises from a stepped concrete
base which is, in turn, surrounded by a square poured concrete
slab. An area of red tile paving extends in four directions from
The coquina monument does not have a protective finish, and as a
consequence, exhibits extensive erosion of the surface from wind
and rain. A considerable amount of calcium carbonate has been
leached from the shellstone and redeposited, through evaporation,
on the stepped base. Repointing of the masonry joints is
extensive in the upper two-thirds of the obilisk.
The four bronze tablets, which are located on the lower portion
of the monument, do not show any signs of active corrosion.
The stepped base and surrounding slab are in good condition,
however the redeposited calcium carbonate presents a potential
hazard as it has created a very smooth and uneven surface.
The red tile paving is generally level, although some
displacement was noted in the western segment next to the slab.
EARTHENWORKS The remnant mounds are covered with bahia grass
mixed with a considerable amount of weeds. Several large trees
are located in the southeast sector. The earthenworks appear to
be stable with no evidence of recent erosion.
WATCH HOUSE This structure, which is circular in plan, has
three firing slots piercing the walls just below its intersection
with the domed roof. The walls are exposed coquina. They exhibit
some weathering, but not to the extent of the obilisk. The domed
roof has several cavities in its exterior. Exposed rebar is
evident in one of them.
The door on the southeast side is constructed of plywood. Some
deterioration is beginning to occur. The hardware is
inapporpriate and some of it is falling off.
A pump and associated controls for an automated sprinkler system
is housed inside the structure. A temporary-type electric pole
located adjacent to the house provides power via an underground
GROUNDCOVER The majority of the turf is bahia grass with some
St. Augustine present, especially along the east line from the
center south. It is in fair condition, with some weeds and bare
1. Remove the calcium carbonate from the base by mechanical and
2. Provide an impervious membrane to the exterior to prevent
further leaching and weathering. The most feasible and cost
effective at this time would be a three-coat portland cement
stucco. This would, however, alter the appearance of the
monument. An alternative to this would be to await the results
of the extensive testing being done on Castillo de San Marcos by
the National Park Service. This structure suffers from the same
problem, and a solution which would not alter the appearance may
be forthcoming in the next few years.
1. No work necessary at this time.
WATCH HOUSE -
1. Repair depressions in the roof. Match existing finish.
2. Replace door and hardware with more historically appropriate
3. Replace electric service pole with a more substantial one.
Relocate to a less conspicious place along the east property
4. Provide impervious membrane. See Monument recomm. # 2.
1. Removal of the existing sod and replacement with a suitable
St. Augusine variety would enhance the visual aspects of the
park, but would also increase the maintenance costs because of
the additional spraying and fertilizer required of this grass.
END OF REPORT
Robert H. Steinbach
December 28, 1988 OGP.RPT