While this site is best known for its "old fort" ruins (a misnomer for the massive, intact coquina stone foundations of a commercial building constructed by 18th-century colonists at New Smyrna's Turnbull settlement), the park also contains an enormous shell mound. What we see today is the remnant of a much larger midden removed years ago for road fill. Excavations here have revealed deep deposits of shellfish-- mostly oyster--along with tremendous amounts of animal bone. In fact, fishbone recovered from this prehistoric landfill offers evidence of accomplished fisherfolk who caught a wide range of marine species.
Excavated pottery here suggests the site was first occupied around A.D. 500 and that it continued to be used well into the late-St. Johns period, about A.D. 1500.
Located at the Old Fort Park on North Riverside Drive, in the city of New Smyrna Beach. From U.S. 1 (Dixie Freeway) in the city of New Smyrna Beach, take Canal Street through downtown New Smyrna Beach (traveling east) to Riverside Drive; go left (north) on Riverside Drive one block to Old Fort Park, between Julia and Washington streets.