Wondrously Weathered Fort Frederik Walls, St. Croix
When left to her own devices, Mother Nature often makes art out of anything manmade. The Fort Frederik walls in Saint Croix are one such example of this.
Wildly weather-beaten, the walls bore every ounce of their 260+ years when last I visited in April 2021. The fort and other Danish colonial-era structures within the Frederiksted Historic District always seem to need a bit of sprucing up. At the time of my visit, though, the need was greater than usual, thanks to Hurricane Maria (2017).
Wind-driven rain and saltwater left the walls bespeckled with decay. In certain sections, tufts of green ferns even poked through the cracks.
Some might deem the Fort Frederik walls an eyesore in this condition. I, on the other hand, found art in the irregular patterns brought on by the decay. They reminded me of the natural and historical shapes, colors, textures, and angles that have inspired amazing local artists like La Vaughn Belle and Debbie Sun.
Who knows, maybe they’ll make something out of images like this?
If they plan to, or if you want to find your own artistic inspiration within the Fort Frederik Walls, you’ll have to act fast. A US$6.2 million-dollar revitalization program to repair Fort Frederik was announced in January 2021. The completion date is slated for December 2025.