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Volume 4 Number 1 Fall 2004

The Florida Frontier Gazette is published quartely by the Historic Florida Mlitia Inc.

One mean ‘gator.

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COVER STORY: Mission Impossible: Envisioning the Calusa


COMMUNITY SPIRIT PARTNER: Historic Florida Militia


NATURE: Gators: A Trail from the Past


TRAVEL: Tin Can Tourists


MAMMA’S KITCHEN: Interpreting History Through Food


Habana Cafe Cookbook & The Crafts of Florida’s First People.


TALE: Less One Pearl

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HISTORIC SITE: Prospect Bluff


HISTORIC PRESERVATION: You don’t have to go to Russia to tour historic St. Petersburg.

Kayaking Salt Run

FEATURE: Pirate or Visionary: William Augustus Bowles

26 WEATHER: Hurricanes haven’t always missed Pinellas Hurricane! In the Eye of the Storm 28

EVENTS & EXHIBITS: 4 pages of fun filled weekends.


HISTORIC SITE: St. Augustine Light Museum.



This 12-13 ft. alligator was spotted taking a deer to lunch on March 4. Photo by Terry Jenkins, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

STAFF Grant Administrator: George Watson Editor: Elizabeth Neily Graphics: Hermann Trappman and all our special volunteer feature writers with a special thanks to our Proof Reader: Lester R. Dailey & our AARP Office Assistant: Jude Bagatti This publication has been financed in part with historic preservation grant assistance provided by the Bureau of Historic Preservation, Division of Historical Resources, Florida Department of State, assisted by the Florida Historical Commission. However, the contents and opinions do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of the Florida Department of State, nor does the mention of trade names or commercial products constitute endorsement or recommendation by the Florida Department of State.

Cover Story Mission Impossible: Visualizing the Calusa

Story and artwork by Merald Clark, Tallahassee

How does a design team produce a powerful artistic vision of the Calusa Indians of south Florida when few contemporary images of the Calusa exist? The designers and curators at the Florida Museum of Natural History wanted to create a fresh interpretation of the great cacique Carlos and his royal court in the year 1564. They began by reviewing historical accounts and the archaeological evidence. They began to put together a picture of this elusive culture by studying similar cultures, experimenting with artifact replication, and by artistic interpretation.

that seems not to have been the case here in southwest Florida, where the power of the caciques was supported by the seemingly limitless yields of the fishing grounds. The team decided that a diorama would depict a formal ceremony in which the “king” of the Calusa is seen to be affirming his political power. Spanish chroniclers in 1566 described how the Calusa acknowledged the power of their cacique. as the subject knelt with, “the palms of his hands turned up so that [the cacique] might place upon them the palms of his own hands. This act is the supreme tribute paid by these natives to their leaders” [Bartolomé Barrientos].

A Palmetto Palace

While a graphic designer at the Florida Museum of Natural History in Gainesville, I am proud to have worked with an excellent team of archaeologists and designers, including William Marquardt, Darcie MacMahon, and Dorr Dennis, as well as many others. Our challenge was to present the estuaries and ecosystems of south Florida, and the Calusa people who ruled there when Europeans first sailed these waters. My job was to provide the team with images of the Calusa that were fresh, accurate, yet original. Naturally one of the first things we did was to ask ourselves, “What is the primary message we wish to communicate? What activity is the diorama to show?” The central focus of the exhibit would be the estuaries of the Gulf coast. The bays, river mouths, and mangrove channels of southwest Florida teem with an amazing abundance of sea life that was efficiently harvested by the Calusa for food and raw materials for tools. The development of complex societies stratified into elites and commoners is nearly always associated with the rise of crop agriculture. But

The team’s first ideas were summed up in rough sketch form and then turned into artist’s conceptuals that were included with a grant proposal. One challenge we faced was that the Calusa royal court met in the house of Cacique Carlos, a structure that could hold 2,000 people, yet we had an exhibit space of only 20 by 25 feet. Ultimately we chose to build a royal chamber within the limited exhibit space, constructed and thatched on the model of Seminole chickees. I researched Native American architecture in the Southeast and the Caribbean for this reconstruction to contrast the size of our symbolic structure with how large Carlos’ actual palmetto palace might have been. With plans for at least five mannequins, we needed to determine what the Calusa nobility might have looked like. Before the 1980’s the Calusa were almost never illustrated for lack of original source images. So the 16th-century Timucua of north Florida have served for centuries as the usual illustration for any and all pre-Seminole peoples of Florida. An excellent drawing by Hermann Trappman in 1984, showed originality and extensive research.

The Setting

The team thought it important to establish a focal point in time and space. We decided to set the scene at the Calusa island capitol of Calos (today called Mound Key) not far from Estero Bay. Originally we intended to portray the Calusa court just before 1492—completely pre-European— but this would have been quite conjectural. Since we wanted to convey a greater sense of realism we settled on the year 1564, just two years before the arrival of the first official Spanish envoys to the Calusa court. 1

Reprinted witth permission from the artist, Merald Clark. Sketch for manneqin sculptors. This meant that we could choose our diorama’s characters from documented history. Our mannequins could represent actual individuals and we could keep the diorama essentially “preContact.” I started work on the diorama’s design in earnest. I considered Spanish descriptions of the Calusa throne area in conjunction with accounts of Native American interiors elsewhere in the American Southeast. I also went further afield, looking into such things as the layout of this modern leader’s house of the Kwakiutl people in far-off British Columbia. I produced a detailed sketch that allowed the team to evaluate whether we were all thinking along the same lines. Well, of course we weren’t, and I’d have been disappointed if we had. There followed a lively discussion about which details in the scene could be documented and which were more or less speculative. We tried to sort out the speculations that were both reasonable and aesthetic, which we kept. Then we eliminated details that were too speculative, or that just didn’t appeal to us.

The Photo Shoot

It was now time to pin down the exact postures and attitudes we wanted for each character. I set up a photo shoot with museum staff in the roles of the Calusa. Bill Marquardt posed as the wise Calusa shaman on the right. The photo shoot was valuable for allowing an exhibit team to have a diorama concept acted out, to see it come alive, which stimulates new ideas in ways that simple sketches cannot. For instance, I asked the models to take the pose exactly as I sketched


it. Then I asked them if it feels “right.” If they said it didn’t, I’d ask them to adjust their posture until it did feel right. I usually follow the model’s recommendations to achieve a greater naturalness. At the photo shoot there were a few spectators and everybody wanted to get into the act, but modeling roles were limited. The sketch called for only one woman’s role, and there was a good deal of light-hearted joking about the shortage of female mannequins. Then someone pointed out that Carlos’ sister, Antonia, had not been considered. She was one of the most prominent and interesting of the historical characters in the Calusa story. So our beloved project manager Darcie MacMahon allowed that perhaps we could afford a sixth manikin.... If she could take the stage and pose for the new character. ...Deal!

Cast of Characters

At last the basic composition of the scene and the characters were settled upon and I was able to draw up final mannequin sketches. They include: Carlos the king, or cacique, of the Calusa people and ruler of south Florida; Carlos’ young Queen, the first among his several wives; Carlos’ sister, who was baptized Antonia by a Spanish priest, Tequesta, a visiting cacique from across the peninsula; Carlos’ father, head Shaman of the Calusa, who many years earlier had politically maneuvered his son to the Calusa throne; and finally Felipe, the Calusa military leader who, it was later claimed, had been promised the throne as a boy, but who had been forced to give it up in favor of Carlos.

The Mannequin Sculptors

After the final sketches were approved I added notes and guidelines to the sketches of each of the six mannequins, including color sketches of the body paint patterns, and sent them off to Third Dimension, a company located in Vancouver. Third Dimension selected two groups of people—body models and face models. The body models endured the process of sitting for full body molds. The face models were photographed from several angles, then the artists sculpted the mannequin heads based on the photographs, and molds were made. The heads and bodies were cast separately, then attached before final painting. We were delighted when the mannequins finally arrived and we immediately set them in position inside the newly-finished thatched chamber.

Costume Accessories

As soon as I sent off the guidelines to the mannequin sculptors, I began work on the designs for the costume accessories, including detailed notes for particular pieces. We wanted to replicate as many south Florida artifacts as possible in the diorama. We were fortunate to find an artist, Reese Moore, who could produce convincing costume items in a wide variety of materials. These included featherwork, and carved and painted wood, as you see here in the king’s headdress, beadwork and carved shell, as in his gorget, and even metalwork, as in the queen’s golden necklace, specifically mentioned in Spanish chronicles and which the Calusa had undoubtedly obtained from shipwreck salvage. The shaman’s headdress is an example of how we tried to design even the more conjectural details with an eye toward documented facts. I borrowed several ideas and designs from varied sources in order to reconstruct an item of ceremonial costume that was both possible and plausible. The overall design (including his hairstyle) was inspired by a human figure painted inside a clamshell, and the projecting panels were based on artifacts found at Key Marco that archaeologist, Frank Cushing believed were headdress elements. In his site report, Cushing noted that these artifacts had been painted with bird images similar to the famous woodpecker painting, and I borrowed the concept for my reconstruction.

Illusions of Grandeur

The next step was to add interior decorating to make the barebones thatched house worthy of a royal court, for the Spanish claimed that Carlos’ chamber “was a fine one.” On the computer I created plans for the backdrop and canopy and provided them to our interior decorators, Sopchoppy Thatch, the company that also built the thatched house. Several illusions were planned that would increase the apparent size of the house through and beyond the exhibit walls. A triangular mirror at the very peak of the ceiling reflects the upper rafters, makes the ridge beam appear to continue deep into the great house of Carlos. Doorways on either side of the mound dais suggest the existence of rooms beyond, and so on. The final illusion of grandeur involved consultation with lighting experts. Dramatic lightning flashes light up what I call the “backstage area.” The decorated backdrop behind the king and queen will be looseweave matwork and, when lit up by the lightning flash, will reveal a false-perspective glimpse of the great house beyond. Two lines of Calusa men and women will be seen waiting to serve a feast consisting of “many kinds of very good fish, roasted and boiled; and oysters, raw, boiled and roasted, without anything else,” like the feast that will be served to the visiting Spanish two years in the diorama’s future [1566, Gonzalo Solís de Merás]. Designing a diorama of the human past is a delicate dance of cooperation that must be performed with scientific discipline and artistic vision. It was a challenging, but exciting, process to develop this diorama from the first conceptual sketches through to final delivery of the mannequins. The scientific and design team hopes the People of the Estuary exhibit will lead to greater understanding by the public for the early inhabitants of south Florida, a people worthy of remembrance.

For more on the Calusa people of South Florida visit theFlorida Museum of Natural History SW 34th St. & Hull Rd. Gainesville FL 32611 352-846-2000

Boiled cabbage and spit roasted wild turkey are just some of the delicious dinnersserved up at living history events Jackie Shaffer’s cooking has Turtle Woman on her knees begging for more. See story on page 9. Courtesy of Neily Trappman Studio


Community Spirit Partner by Robert Hall, CEO, a.k.a. Don Roberto


or most of the day, Spanish men-at- arms had been arriving in St. Augustine from all over Florida. It was winter, and a cold wind swept in from the Atlantic,

driving dark scudding clouds low overhead. From the fort, Castillo de St. Marcos, you could see the breakers foaming as they broke across the bar at the mouth of the inlet. A Spanish ship had just skirted the bar, carrying Pedro Menéndez de Aviles, Governor of La Florida. On the shore beside the fort, Spanish flags and banners snapped and popped in the wind. Soldiers in their cold armor watched the dark ship’s approach through narrowed eyes. A ship’s boat was launched. The oarsmen, bending at their oars, pulled the boat through the angry chop, the governor standing in the bow. Excitement rattled through the spectators. A band began to play. The bishop of St. Augustine and a priest joined those ready to greet the governor. From the ship a cannon fired a salute. It was answered from the shore. This was the kick-off to a spectacular weekend produced by the Historical Florida Militia and the City of St. Augustine Historical Trust in February 2004. For anybody who is enamoured by Florida’s history, the Historic Florida Militia is an absolute panoply of people who love pagentry and the feel of Florida history brought to life. HFM itself is a work of history. It began when I organized a Civil War event in Tallahassee in 1956. Then in 1960, I tried to talk up a “Castle Guard” for the Castillo de San Marcos but the Fort superintendent was not yet ready for living history interpretation. When I performed in the 1964 production of the Cross and Sword outdoor drama, the 16th Century Company finally took inspiration. (We would use the worn-out clothing from the production to start our Men of Menendez Company in 1982). But first came the rattle of drums for the Nation’s Bicentennial in 1974. The East Florida Rangers Company was formed. Inexpensive uniforms and muskets (Brown Bess) were acquied. We were unfamiliar with “drill” but with the help of an experienced Civil War reenactor, Tom Ledford, and enthusiasm from George Carroll, we prepared for the British period in Florida History. With those two, plus Ed Swanson and myself, the Historic Florida Militia was born as an umbrella organization for reenactment groups. The East Florida Rangers Company was enlisted and the 60th Regt. Royal Americans took shape as soon as Regimental coats could be afforded. Everyone pitched in—a catalog from


the Sutler of Mount Misery in one hand, and a drill manual in the other. My wife, Gudrun Hall,single handedly, produced 28 red coats for the 60th, supplying private, State and Federal needs. They were all worn on the field at Yorktown after some 400 events during the Bicentennial years. When the final event of the Bicentennual took place in St. Augustine in 1983, the door was finally opened for interpretation of the Spanish periods in Florida. The garrison at the time of the English invasion of 1740 was a natural choice. The Castillo, of course, had been active with living history during the Bicentennial and now knew that the vital interpretive need lay with the Hispanic connection. The uniqueness of the Conquistador image in the U.S. had special attraction but nothing to do with the Fort. As a result, the Men of Menendez formed at the Fountain of Youth Park. An archaeological dig has since proven this site to be the location of Menendez’s first fortification. Annual events continue to be held there including the living history encampment during Drake’s Raid. The attack on St. Augustine by Sir Francis Drake in 1586 is reenacted every year. Drakes’ Men fire cannons and clash with the Men of Menéndez in front of Government House. Spanish women run through the crowds of astonished onlookers telling them to “Run for their lives...the English are coming.” The women also act as crowd control as the battle rolls across the Square and up St. George Street to the Spanish Quarter. Recently, reenactments of some of the 17th Century pirate raids have also brought the old section of St. Augustine to life. Our World War II companies conduct several major events each year. Florida has not been our only playing field, as our companies have been active all over the Eastern Seaboard. Living history has a strong base with Historic Florida Militia. Historic Florida Militia is a Federal 501 (c) (3) educational organization, and a not-for-profit, with the State of Florida. Aside from grant eligibility and communications, an event insurance policy comes with company membership. Living history groups may apply for membership with five men-at-arms who can pass an authenticity and safety inspection by the Central Committee. Because our companies are spread out all over the state, business is conducted by phone and e-mail. The HFM annual meeting is scheduled for Sunday, December 4, in St. Augustine.

HistoricFlorida Militia Company Roster 16th Century

• Men of Menéndez-1555 Menéndez Landing, Drake’s Raid, Menendez Birthday. • La Compaqma de Calderon - 1539AD, Hernando DeSoto Expedition at De Soto National Memorial • Company of La Cruz -1528 AD, Panfilo de Narváez and Pedro Menéndez expeditions on Florida’s Gulf Coast, 1568 AD • Drake’s Men -1586AD, Raid on St. Augustine. • Heritage of the Ancient Ones - Prehistoic - 1500’s AD, interpreting Florida’s first people.

17th Century

• Capt. John Tilden’s Companie, 1600s • Prince Rupert’s Regiment of Foote -1640s • Searle’s Buccaneers - 1668

18th Century

• 42nd Highlanders - 1755 • Saint Augustine Garrison - 1740 • East Florida Rangers - 1776 • The 60th Royal Americans - 1755

Men of Menéndez stand guard at the Menéndez Birthday festival that takes place in St. Augustine every February. Courtesy of Neily Trappman Studio

So, when we talk about our car breaking down last week, it can become our “wagon.” When we went to the supermarket, we can say the “market at Burgos last year.” By helping each other feel as though we are living in the period that we are portraying, then we can turn to the onlookers and translate what is being said in 21st century terms. By habitually staying in character, we’ll be even more convincing to ourselves and to our visitors. It is a challenge, but a different mind set and lots of “homework” can transform our events.

What to wear?

Imagine that the Men of Menendez have just completed month voyage. They are not, for the most part, men Heritage of the Ancientaofthree Ones means. Standard for soldiers of the 16th century was one As soon as you don historic clothing you become an suit of clothes with an extra shirt and material to repair their interpretation of the past. That is what visitors expect of you and shores. What would their clothing look like in the New World? so you should strive to know what you are about. I think it would resemble some like what is called in theatrical The ideal impression as professional historians and actors circles—”distressed.” is that we can carry on totally “in first person” with visitors to These troops were on the tail end of a very long supply line. our events. But, I have concluded that this can only work in an Their clothes would be well worn but cared for. This is working sealed historic environment such as Plymouth Plantation. On men’s clothing. It would get torn from carrying things, going the other hand, we must work on the city streets, beside parked through brush, and from fighting. It would be carefully patched cars with tourists crowding in on us from all sides. and repaired. It would show fading on the shoulders and high We still want visitors to feel that they have “stumbled onto” spots. Grim and blood would build up on the fabric. Unlike their a different period in history. Unfortunately, reenactors too often English counterparts, the Spanish were known to be fastidious make the error by not being aware of their audience’s presence. in their personal hygiene. They had accepted the practice of How can they feel this “alteration of time” if we do not draw bathing during the Moorish rule. My guess is that they bathed them into it? We should, at the very least, attempt to create this and washed their clothes in rivers. atmosphere for ourselves.

Interpreting Ourselves

See Interpreting Ourselves on page 21



‘Gators, Trails from the Past by Hermann Trappman, Gulfport

Imagine a landscape very different from the one you now know. It was a world of beginnings, and dinosaurs were just starting their journey. The first crocodilians were starting down that road which would lead to the alligators we can still find in Florida’s lakes and rivers today. A lot has changed since those ancient times. Imagine 200 million birthdays ago, during the Triassic Age. Florida had emerged as a mountain chain in the center of the giant continent of Pangaea. Located just below the equator, Florida was built when North America crashed into Africa and South America. North America swept up some ancient islands along its way. The Avalon formation, which begins deep under southern Georgia, goes all the way to the Avalon Peninsula in Newfoundland. It is what remains of those ancient islands. The mountains of Florida were made up of the leading edge of Africa and South America as they folded up in the crash between ancient continents. Those mountains were far inland from the oceans. I imagine this place was very dry and dusty with steep desert-like mountains, strewn with sharp rocks. These mountains would have been very hard to scramble across. In looking for Florida’s first crocodilians, I don’t think that this landscape would’ve been a good place to start. All the crocodilians that I know of prefer aquatic habitats. In our quest, we would’ve had to travel either to the west or the east, toward the coastal regions and lowland swamps. We could happen upon some small crocodilians if we traveled east, into what is now France. Moving the thicket of ferns and horsetails aside, we could peek at one basking on a sandy bank. Its fossil remains are almost Right, this gavial resides at Alligator Farm in St. Augustine. About 8 million years old, a portion of the maxilla with four teethof a Gavialosuchus americanus was found at McGehee Farm Site, Alachua County. Collections of the F M N H. 6

Courtesy of Neily Trappman Studio

as long as its scientific name, Crocodilaemus (cro-co-dil-e-mus) robustus. Like modern crocodilians, its back was covered in protective, bony plates called scutes (s-cutes). As time passed, crocodilians would grow large enough to dine on dinosaurs. During the breakup of the ancient continent of Pangaea, Florida is shrouded in mystery. Its mountains eroded into hills and the hills sagged into swamps. Only one fossil from Florida’s Cretaceous Period, 100 million years ago, a fragment of turtle shell, was discovered in a coring, just north of Lake Okeechobee. The group of islands that would one day be pushed together to form Florida, probably looked much like the modern Bahamas. If it had swamps and coastal marshes, it could have been the home to some kind of crocodilian. We may never know. When the asteroid crashed into the Yucatan Peninsula 65 million years ago, Florida was less than three hundred miles away from the epi-center. Any islands with critters, would have been islands without critters after that cataclysmic blast. Turtles were the first animals to repopulate North America after that explosion. Crocodilians followed shortly on their heels. Today, alligators are native to China as well as to Florida. Alligators are better adapted to cooler climates than other crocodilians. Some students of prehistory believe that the American Alligator made its way from China. The trip would have been made during a time when the North American continent was closer to Asia and a little closer to the equator than it is today.

The first real evidence of Florida’s alligators was found in an excavation at the Thomas Farm site north of Gainesville. Alligator olseni is around 18 million years old. Eighteen million years ago, Florida had recently been pushed up against the rest of North America. Paleontologists from the Florida Museum of Natural History in Gainesville excavated, not only the alligator, but they even found some of its fossilized scat (coprolites). Florida was a jag-toothed landscape of bayous and islands sprawling out into the Atlantic ocean. In those days, the peninsula was populated by a strange menagerie that included tiny horses, giant hogs, the precursors to camels, and a small sheep-like creature called an Oreodont. Between 14 and 6 million years ago, alligators shared their environment with gavials or gharials (both names are currently in use). The gavial is an odd creature with a long, narrow snout. Drifting through the shadows of Florida’s shallow bayous, gavials stretched to 30 feet in length. During breeding season, we may have glimpsed them on the sandy banks at the mouth of rivers. Pulling their heavy bodies up onto the white sand, the females dug nests to lay their eggs. After covering the nest, they stayed close-by to offer protection from hungry egg-eaters. Today, indigenous to a few rivers in India, gavials live on fish. By the Pleistocene Period, two and a half million years ago, great changes influenced Florida. The Isthmus of Panama finally closed the gap between the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean Sea, and the Pacific Ocean to the west. A new series of glaciations really began to cool things down. Florida would be subjected to wide fluctuations in sea-levels. Although today crocodiles are native to the very southern tip of Florida, no fossil evidence has ever been found of the North American crocodile in Florida. It is assumed that it arrived only recently. When the first people discovered the Americas, Florida was twice as wide as it is today. Their impressions of our alligators may be forever lost beneath 300 feet of Gulf water. Later, Native Americans left evidence of interactions with and images of these impressive creatures. 2,200 years ago, Native Americans along the Gulf coast

were already living in large communities. Through communal labor, they heaped up large mounds in which to bury their dead. In a site on the inter-coastal waterway, just south of Sarasota, archaeologists found a very special burial of a big alligator. Buried among the human remains, an alligator had been placed with a dog on either side of it. Dogs seem to have been grave gifts. Those ancient people must have known how fond alligators are of eating dogs. The alligator and the two dogs buried with the remains of these ancient people suggests they believed in a mystical connection. In 1898 at the Key Marco site, archaeologist Frank Cushing found a sculpted alligator head and another painted on a carefully prepared wooden slat. Apparently the native people deeply revered these great reptiles. European settlers flocking to our shores brought a very different attitude toward alligators. Between 1930 and 1940 alone, more than a million alligators were killed in the State of Florida. Their numbers dwindled toward extinction, and by 1962, the state was forced to pass laws making ‘gator’ hunting illegal. The alligator’s successful recovery as a species, along with mushrooming human populations, has made ‘gator hunting legal once again. As the need for housing encroaches even further into the Florida wilderness, these amazing creatures, with their ancient past, hang on by a tenuous thread. I wonder, will our great grandchildren be able to marvel at Florida’s prehistoric residents? Can we learn to safely share our environment with these awe inspiring predators? Let’s wish them well.

Casting of Crocodilaemus robustus from the collections at the Florida Museum of Natural History.

1. What was the biggest alligator on record? 2. How long do alligators live? 3. How long can an alligator stay under water? 4. How hard can an alligator bite?


1. Killed in Louisiana in 1890, it was 19 feet 2 inches long! 2. Alligators can live 40 years in the wild, 50 years in captivity. On rare occasions, they have lived over 60 years in captivity. 3. An hour to several hours as long as it remains still or moves slowly. If the alligator is swimming vigorously, fighting or struggling it can stay underwater only a minute or so. Alligators wrestlers have accidentally killed alligators by keeping them underwater too long while wrestling them. 4. Up to 3000 pounds pressure per square inch!

Alligator Quiz



Florida’s First Trailer Parks Before World War I, Florida vacations were mostly for rich people who arrived by train, steamer or private yacht. But by the war’s end, Henry Ford’s Model T had brought affordable travel to the masses. Florida cities outdid each other building free camps to attract low-budget tourists. One of the biggest and best was in Tampa’s DeSoto Park. “The camp has electric lights, running water, city sewerage, shower baths and an enormous hot-water tank,” Kenneth L. Roberts wrote in Sun Hunting, his 1922 Florida travel guide. “About the only things that aren’t furnished…are free telephones, a free morning paper and free butler and valet service.” St. Petersburg fell into the tourist camp business in August 1920, when Mayor Noel Mitchell told a few squatters on a cityowned lot that they were welcome to stay. Word spread like wildfire, and 120 families soon showed up to enjoy the city’s hospitality. Mitchell added amenities and transformed the lot into a free tourist camp called Tent City. But the city council closed the camp in May 1921, after one of its residents bad-mouthed the city to the press. Mitchell dreamed of opening a new camp outside the city limits, but he never got the chance. He either forgot or didn’t care that Prohibition was the new law of the land when he held a booze party for his staff in his office, next to police headquarters. The cops, perhaps angry at not being invited, raided the party, and Mitchell was ousted from office in a recall election on November 15, 1921. The idea behind the free camps was that, instead of attracting a few big-spending rich people, the cities would lure large numbers of less affluent tourists who would buy their food and other necessities locally. But the plan backfired because they brought those things with them. There was canned food tucked into every nook and cranny of their Tin Lizzies, earning them the nickname “tin can tourists.” 8

by Lester R. Dailey, Largo They even had their own organization, the Tin Can Tourists of the World, founded in Tampa in 1919. Its members wore a white celluloid lapel button with the letters TCT in dark blue, and each wired a soup can to the radiator of his flivver as a recognition signal. When they passed each other on the road, they would wave and shout a secret greeting. The tin-canners gained a reputation for “squeezing a nickel until the Indian begged for mercy and the buffalo ran away.” It was only half-jokingly said that they “arrived in Florida with one shirt and a $20 bill and didn’t change either while they were here.” Some stayed long enough to enroll their kids in Florida schools. In those cities that charged tuition, the going rate was 50 cents a week or $25 a year. It wasn’t long before the camps began attracting a new type of resident: snowbird handymen who undercut the prices of local craftsmen while living rent-free all winter. “These automobile hoboes are about as welcome in Florida as a rattlesnake at a strawberry festival,” Roberts wrote. This was especially true when the Great Depression of the 1930s made jobs scarce everywhere. As the cities closed their camps, private ones took their place. But many tin-canners spurned the camps altogether and camped wherever they wanted until somebody ran them off. “Hundreds of tin can tourists camping at Clearwater Beach,” proclaimed the Feb. 27, 1933 edition of the St. Petersburg Times. The gas rationing of World War II put an end to true tin can tourism. There was a resurgence of low-cost Florida vacations after the war but those tourists towed trailers instead of staying in the “canvas manions” of real tin-canners. Unlike the tourists of the 1920s and ‘30s, who ate out of tin cans, the postwar tourists lived in them.


EDITOR’S NOTE: The Florida Frontier Gazette is delighted to have Jackie Shaffer join us as our food consultant. I have experienced her culinary expertise over the years I have known her and her husband, Johnny. Together they form an amazing team of highly skilled living history interpreters. Johnny rises before dawn to stir the lingering ashes of the cooking fire. He has helped Jackie out by digging a pit to roast a whole pig. He helped build a portable brick oven from which there is always a never ending supply of Jackie’s home made bread slathered with freshly churned butter. Visitors to Mamma’s Kitchen will delight in foods prepared the old fashioned way, with thoughtful attention to only the best ingredients and a great big dollup of love. Below is the first in a series of stories that Jackie has promised to deliver. We welcome you toMamma’s Kitchen.

Interpreting History Through Food by Jackie Shaffer I specialize in interpreting daily live skills for the 16th through 18th centuries. Among those skills I guess I enjoy interpretive cooking more than any other. This is not hard to understand when you stop to think that nothing invokes a memory more quickly than a smell or taste of food. And the best place in camp is usually around the cook fire. Also I’ve learned that no one in camp is treated better than the cook. Need fire wood, water, you have but to ask. Fifteen years ago when I started in living history, I, like most others , had no idea what I wanted to do. Like most others I tried a little of this and a little of that, trying to narrow it down. The opportunities were limitless; the resources boundless, and the trick was to figure it all out. Over the course of the next year I met many people who would eventually have a great influence on whom I was to become, as an interpreter. Perhaps one of those who influenced me the most was Nancy Robinson. It was my first exposure to the school of the 16th Century. I wanted to learn about cooking and was told Nancy was the lady to see. So I found her and volunteered to work in the kitchen with her. That was the year of torrential rains. It was the most exciting event I have ever attended, even to this day, but that’s a story for another day. I learned more in that weekend of “misery” about interpretive cooking than you could ever imagine. My goal in this column is to share the knowledge. I will be sharing personal experiences, research, sources, tips and tricks, stories, recipes and anything else you may request. We’ll look into the history of specific foods etc. Feel free to e-mail me your questions or requests. I will make every effort to answer them in the column. Be sure to make the subject of your e-mail “Mammas Kitchen”. In future articles we will explore several cooking techniques like slow cooking, boiling bags, baking techniques etc. We will also present tips for making butter, seasoning and caring for your wooden ware and cast iron. And don’t forget to send your questions, I look forward to conversing. Now back to interpretive cooking; remember Nancy? She gave me some excellent advice and I would like to pass it on. When it comes to the art of interpretive cooking there are three tips to success. First, be sure your information is correct; the recipe is authentic, and documented or easily explained by

the “authentic styles and customs” of the period. Second, in addition to authenticity, appropriateness is also necessary. The most authentic recipe will not make a winning presentation if it is not appropriate to the situation OR if the food used in it is not appropriate for the time of year or culture you are trying to express. A strawberry desert made from fresh strawberries in the dead of winter in Maine would not be an appropriate interpretation. It might look great, be interesting and even popular. But how in the world could you explain those strawberries. If you’ve got a good believable story to back it up, go ahead. The third tip Nancy gave me has had more impact on my success as an interpretive cook than any thing I have learned about interpretation.

Don’t forget that preparation is part of interpretation.

That is to say, preparing the food itself. You’ve got the tip, so everything after this is pure soapbox. Cooking a meal is an hours-long commitment to interpretation. It should not be like one of those cooking shows where you pull out the veggies already cleaned and chopped or substitute the fully cooked food for the food you just placed in the oven. I love to see the vegetables just the way they came from the garden; peas in the hull, corn in the silks and onions with the dirt still clinging to them. Take those veggies, clean them up, prepare them for the meal, cook them up, serve and eat them. Now that’s the demo from beginning to end. People are interested in seeing the food prepared. Children, especially, need to know, that golden-brown turkey was cooked right there on that spit and more than that, they want to see the techniques used outside the world of microwave ovens, food processors and state of the art culinary technology. Most just can’t believe their eyes; and that adds to their experience and makes your presentation a success.

Jackie Shaffer can be reached at: 9

Uncle Joe’s Fresh (from the can) Homemade Vegetable Soup by Jackie Shaffer, Havana

In the ‘50s, Uncle Joe, a confirmed bachelor, was always on the go, he moved around following the work. I guess you could call him a migrant carpenter. He lived out of the trunk of his car, sleeping in a tent and cooking over an open fire. Uncle Joe loved to cook. He only visited us once or twice a year but we could always depend on a big pot of soup and a cake of cornbread to go with it. Granny and Uncle Joe never saw eye to eye on soup. Granny said, “veggies must be fresh or frozen fresh from the garden”. Uncle Joe said, “Nope canned is good too.” Granny maintained that vegetable soup was just that, no meat or meat stock was to be used. Again Uncle Joe disagreed. He believed that vegetables were the main ingredient. However, the vegetables should be cuddled in a hearty beef broth or have some kind of meat. Here’s the recipe for Uncle Joe’s soup. Use as little or as much if it as you like.


1 large can tomatoes (diced works well or whole peeled in thick sauce) 1 can each: Green Lima Beans (unseasoned) Carrots

Okra Green Beans (not French style, use whole or cut) Field Peas Corned Beef 2 cans each: Whole Potatoes Whole kernel corn 1 large yellow onion (coarsely chopped) Add to taste: Salt, course black pepper, crushed garlic, basil In a large soup pot add the salt, garlic, onion and all the vegetables except the okra (don’t drain the vegetables, just add juice and all). Cut each potato in half as you add them to the pot and crush the whole tomatoes. Cook on a high boil, until the onions are transparent and the potatoes are well done (this takes about 30 minutes). Add the okra and corned beef. You may add a little water if necessary (some people like their soup thick with vegetables while others like it thinner—suit yourself here). Boil for about 10 more minutes. Add your favorite seasonings; I suggest black pepper and basil as a minimum. Reduce heat and simmer (don’t boil) for an additional 10 minutes. This soup is great served with hot cornbread or crackers.

One of many Tin Can Tourist Camps that popped up around Florida in the early part of the 20th century. Residents had to create their own recreational pastimes. Courtesy of the Pinellas Historical Society. 10

Books The Habana Café Cookbook by Josefa Gonzalez-Hastings University of Florida Press, $19.95 ISBN 0-8130-2737-3

Review by M. Magdalena Agosto, Gulfport The vibrantly colored cover of the Habana Café Cookbook, which shows two welcoming chairs placed before a flamboyant faux-painted backdrop, delivers what it promises: inviting and flavorful recipes with a Cuban twist. These are recipes steeped in the specific traditions and flavors of the author’s Caribbean home, a delicious melding of French, African, Spanish, Indigenous, and yes, even Chinese influence, so if you are looking for jalapeños, go to the Mexican cookbook section. Browsing through the table of contents will dish up expected Cuban fare such as Frijoles Negros (black bean soup), Cuban sandwiches (the author swears this family recipe is the real deal) and Carne con Papa (beef stew with potatoes.) What surprises is that these recipes, based on short, straightforward ingredient lists, also cover choices that comfortably fuse with the increasingly popular Nuevo Latino movement, such as Salmon with Mango Salsa or a Shrimp Bisque which adds a touch of Badia complete seasoning to lend it just the right spice, “I wanted to give the reader an option to pick what they want to go with,” explains Gonzalez- Hastings. The book offers autobiographical accounts and family photos that create a familial, nostalgic framework for these easy to execute home-style recipes. (Make sure you don’t miss the hilarious anecdote about Jut_a included in the introduction.) GonzalezHastings proudly admits to having learned her culinary skills at home under the loving tutelage of her mother and aunts, and brings this convivial attitude to the volume. She chronicles her recipes with animated stories and helpful suggestions throughout the book, gracefully echoing the lively exchanges that must have once accompanied her childhood cooking lessons. Gonzalez-Hastings is an award-winning chef; she was named one of Tampa Bay’s best in 2003. She is also the owner and head chef of the Habana Café in Gulfport, which was featured For those looking to experience the lifestyle of 12,000 year old cultures, Robin Brown’s sequel to Florida’s First People is an excellant hands-on guide. The Crafts of Florida’s First People is generously illustrated step-bystep instructions for making pottery, weaving baskets and cloth, mixing paint, and even lighting a fire.

in USA Today, where many of the cookbook’s recipes are served. Despite her impressive resume, she insists that a cookbook must be functional, but she also proves that function and excellence are not mutually exclusive, “…cookbooks have gotten away from encouraging regular people towards cooking,” she says. So be prepared for such atypical choices as Strawberry Soup and Endive with herbed Goat Cheese spread. If you are not sure about presentation you can find inspiration in the mouth-watering full color illustrations of dishes like Lobster Thermidor or Aunt Alina’s Paella. A glossary and full index make this book especially userfriendly, but nothing will compare to the warmth of family tradition and the everyday love of serving good food which is evident in the pages of the Habana Café Cookbook.

Jo Gonzalez-Hastings with a plate of fillet of fish breaded in plantain chips, recipe on page 34. Photo by Jennifer Holcombe. This is a “must-have” guide for teachers, camp councelors, and just about anyone would step into the world of primitive technology .

The Crafts of Florida’s First People

by Robin C. Brown Pineapple Press Sarasota, $9.95 ISBN 1-56164-282-7


Less One Pearl

by Charles Bears Road Dunning, St. Petersburg

There was a great man. This great man was called One Pearl. He was called that because he wore pearl necklaces around his neck. He owned more pearl necklaces than he could count. One Pearl wore pearl bracelets on his arms, and he twisted still more pearls around his ankles. The morning sun caught on One Pearl’s pearls, and the sun reflected from him. One Pearl shone like the sun. One Pearl had been a warrior and a war chief, but there had been no war for many years. One Pearl’s enemies had been driven away, or they had learned to move aside for One Pearl. As he grew old, his memories of war were buried under better ones. One Pearl became a voice for peace. One Pearl’s peace was good to the people who followed him. The people were his children. One Pearl’s children built a village on the ridge above the river that ran east into the Ocean Sea. They called themselves the Children of the Sunlight. The sun rose on them every morning. If it rained in the morning, the sun still rose, and the village sparkled in the rainbow that followed the rain. Young men who were born in that village did not remember One Pearl’s battles. These young men had grown up in good times and never followed the war trail. Fathers taught their sons to be fishermen. The fishermen paddled their long boats downriver and fished in the Ocean Sea. Young women who lived in that village never feared to lose their fathers, or their brothers on the war trail. There was no war. Mothers taught their daughters to break the earth and pull the soil of the river bottom into mounds with hoes made of conch shells. The women planted the mounds with seed, and squash, corn, pole beans and melons grew on the mounds. The Children of the Sunlight never went hungry. The sea fed them. The rich river bottom soil fed them. The river ran clear, and mussels and crawfish walked on the river bed. Stews were always cooking. Travelers who found that village never left with empty bellies. There was always time to sing and to dance and to listen to stories. There was time to be in love and time to raise children. There was time to walk the arc of the Circle. There was enough time for the Children of the Sun to be happy with all they had in their home on the ridge above the river. There were never people any more content than those people who lived in that village. This place was paradise. The village was never too hot. The river breezes blew the summer heat away in the afternoons. The village was never too cold. The warm winds from the Ocean Sea blew the cold away in the winter. One Pearl sat at the door of his house. He laughed with his


children. When he walked by the river One Pearl shone like the sun. One Pearl had a daughter. She was called Less One Pearl. Though it is certain that Less One Pearl had a mother who loved her I don’t know her mother’s name. But I do know that Less One Pearl’s mother loved her daughter. I think that’s enough to know. When she smiled, Less One Pearl smiled like the sun. The Children of the Sunlight who saw her smile smiled too. She was the heart of sunlight. Less One Pearl never learned to walk. Though she crawled and could even push herself up on her mother’s knee Less One Pearl could not walk. Her legs were stiff and twisted. Whatever spirit should have pushed her legs to stand, and walk, and run that spirit was not there. Less One Pearl smiled. Her smile melted her father’s heart. One Pearl wept for her when he was alone. One Pearl made two sticks for Less One Pearl. Her mother taught her to walk with them. She never learned to run on her sticks, but she always tried. Still, Less One Pearl always got where she was going. She might fall behind her sisters, and her brothers, and her cousins, but they never grumbled about having to wait for Less One Pearl. I know her mother loved Less One Pearl, because she led her down to the river shallows every day. Her mother took the little girl in her arms and waded into the current to teach Less One Pearl to swim. The little girl learned to swim as if she’d been born in the river. When she swam, Less One Pearl left her sticks on the beach. Not one of her sisters, or her brothers, or her cousins could keep up with Less One Pearl when she swam in the river. The sunlight sparkled, and the river ran east into the Ocean Sea. I know her mother loved Less One Pearl, because when it was still, she taught the baby to sing. Her mother sang in the baby’s ear when she held her. She sang to her when she walked with her on her hip. Her mother taught Less One Pearl all the songs her mother had taught her, and then she taught her more songs she had made herself. Less One Pearl was the heart of song. They called their chief One Pearl, and the sun reflected from his pearls. The villagers called themselves the Children of the Sunlight. The sun was good to them, and the sun’s spirit filled their village. Their lives were good. The sun rose in the east, and the sun was good to them. But late one summer a star rose in the western sky. The star that rose in the west was dark, and it didn’t sing in the night sky. It hung there and glared at the river. The night sky was filled with the dark star’s anger. The Children of the Sunlight built fires against the dark star. They sat in their doorways and looked at the dark star, and the star glared back at them.

A wind blew in from the Ocean Sea. The wind pushed clouds across the sky, and those clouds looked like smoke. The wind was Hur-a-ken. Hur-a-ken spilled the water from the river, and the river ran into the Ocean Sea and ran back again. The wind shredded the leaves that rattled in the grandmother trees. Hur-a-ken’s wind blew the leaves in circles. The grandmother trees’ roots twisted. The old trees lost their grip, and turned in circles, and were blown down. When the grandmother trees broke on the ground, their falling sounded like thunder. One Pearl shook his fist at the dark star, and Hur-a-ken tore his words away. One Pearl shook his old war spear at the storm, and the wind tore his spear away. The people hid beneath the broken trees. Hur-a-ken’s wind blew the village into the river. The houses washed into the river water and were lost in the Ocean Sea. The dark star poured its anger onto the village of the Children of the Sunlight. Hur-a-ken passed. The dark star set, and the sun rose over the river. The village’s spirit was gone. It had drowned in the Ocean Sea. The torn leaves blanketed the people hidden beneath the fallen trees until the sun returned. One Pearl shook off the leaves he had hidden beneath. He called his people out from under the trees. The Children of the Sunlight looked at where the village had been, but the village was gone. They looked for their houses, but the houses were gone. One Pearl held his daughter on his shoulder. He looked at his children sitting on the broken trees. Their hearts’ loss was written on his children’s faces. One Pearl passed among those children. He pulled off his necklaces and his bracelets and bangles. He hung his pearls on the men and women who sat on the broken grandmother trees. The morning sun lived in the old man’s smile. His smile shone brighter than his pearls. One Pearl gave Less One Pearl to her mother. He began moving fallen tree branches. The people watched the old man pushing branches by himself, and they fingered the pearls he had given them. Then men did what they saw One Pearl doing. Soon the day was filled with men pushing fallen trees and piling broken branches. The men tied branches into frameworks for houses. A new village rose from the broken trees. The women searched through the broken branches and found their cooking pots where the wind had blown them. The women scrubbed their pots with the river’s clean sand. The women pulled blankets and clothes from the branches where the wind had hung them. They spread them out to dry. Fires were set in the new houses, and stews began to cook. The smell of stews cooking rose into the sunlight. Some boats were found. They were hidden in the trees where the Hur-a-ken left them. Others sat on the river’s bed. Some of the long boats were salvaged and patched back together. New paddles were carved, and the fishermen paddled the long boats down the river and onto the Ocean Sea. The fishermen went fishing. Soon women filled racks with fish to dry. Less One Pearl hung onto her mother’s hand. She sang every song she knew. Then she sang them again. Her songs flew on the sun that filled the village on the ridge over the river. The Hur-a-ken had blown away the gardens. The squash, and corn, and the pole beans, and melons were lost. The women

pried roots from the ground. The sisters and brothers and cousins searched the river banks and picked all the berries they could find there.

Days passed, and the cold came.

When the fishermen paddled back up the river from fishing they were sent to climb trees to find birds’ eggs. There was food for the winter, and winter passed. The warm winds from the Ocean Sea blew the cold away. Spring came again, and planting time came with it. The women tasted the soil and squeezed and rolled it between their hands to see if it was ready for seed. When the gardens were ready, the women took their hoes, which had been made from conch shells, and they mounded up the river bottom soil. The women built their garden mounds and brought their seeds out to their gardens. A night came when the dark star rose in the west again. The star filled the night with its anger. His children gathered around One Pearl. The old man watched the dark star all night long while his children and their children slept. He held Less One Pearl on his knees. She sang to him until she slept. The sun rose that morning, and the dark star set, and the people held their breath. A feather of dust rose in the west. That feather became a cloud, and the cloud was filled with thunder. The thunder came to One Pearl and his people waiting on the ridge above the river. The thunder became the sound of drums and voices, and the voices screamed in the morning sun. The cloud came near, and One Pearl saw men riding in the cloud. Those people

rode on the backs of dancing dogs. The dogs were as big as bears. The bear-dogs screamed, and the people riding on them screamed, and their screaming was the thunder. More men on foot beat on drums. Their drums were thunder. One Pearl had never seen people like these before. He had never seen dancing dogs as big as bears. The people in the cloud rode down upon the village. The men who rode on the dancing bear-dogs were dressed in skins, and those skins shone like the sun. Their heads were covered with skins, and those skins reflected the morning stars. Beneath the shining skins the bear-men’s faces were white. They carried long sticks in their hands. The sticks were spears and carried tips of worked stone. Those stone tips were sharp, and they were barbed, and feathers flew from the spear shafts. Other riders carried burning sticks in their free hands. The bear-dogs rode down onto the village. The white-faced riders stopped the dancing dogs in front of One Pearl and his children who hid behind him. The riders shook their spears at One Pearl. The bear-dogs danced in circles and screamed. Their feet looked like stone. One Pearl faced the riders, and the dog-riders stared at the old man. Their eyes were shaded by smoke from the burning sticks they carried in their free hands. The old man tried to speak to the dog-riders, but the bearmen said nothing. Their eyes stared out from their white streaked faces. The men rode on the bear-dogs, and the dogs danced along 13

the avenue that ran through the village on the ridge above the river. The dog-rider, who had been first to enter the village, threw his burning stick at a house. The house was thatched with leaves bound on a frame of branches. The fire gripped the house. The house shook in the flames. That fire was a signal, and all the white-faced riders threw their burning sticks at the houses. The village was filled with flames, and the dancing bear-dogs were everywhere. When One Pearl’s children tried to stand between the riders and their houses they were speared with the barbed spears. Their bodies were dragged behind the dogs until the spears snapped. The first rider screamed again while the village burnt. The white-faced men turned those dancing dogs in a circle and rode away behind him. They rode up the river bottom. The men on foot marched behind them. The cloud passed, and the houses burned. The living Children of the Sunlight tried to quench the fire on their burning houses with the river water they carried in conch shells. But their hearts were broken, and the fires burned on way past dark. His children gathered around the old man to sleep. The

night gave them rest. Morning came. The sun returned. The Children of the Sunlight rose. Women scrubbed their pots with the river’s clean sand. They bundled together the few blankets that hadn’t been burned. The men packed their tools, and nets, and fishing gear in the long boats, and the people paddled down the river to the Ocean Sea. They knew they weren’t coming back. The old man held Less One Pearl on his lap. She held his hand and sang. The long boats passed the ridge where the house frameworks still burned. The Children of the Sunlight paddled until they reached the Ocean Sea. They steered their long boats into the sea and paddled to a mangrove island sitting on the water. As the sun set, the men drew the long boats onto the island beach, and that night the Children of the Sunlight slept hidden in the shadows beneath the mangroves’ roots. The old man sat in the stem of a long boat and watched over the people as they slept. Less One Pearl slept on her father’s lap, curled up with her cheek snuggled into his chest. She held his hand in her sleep.

Courtesy of artist, Hermann Trappman

On his father’s side, Charles Bears Road Dunning’s ancestry includes both Shawnee and Cherokee blood. In addition to his family’s native heritage he inherited blood lines of escaped African slaves and delinquent Scot-Irish indentured servants who found their way deep into the Appalachian Mountains sometime before 1700. Yona, as his friends know him, was not raised Indian, but his father did follow many of the old ways. “My father taught my brothers and me how to hunt and to fish and to see, the Creator in the bark of trees and in the moss beds on granite boulders long before we learned to drive. We always had a freezer stocked with venison, rabbit, partridge, trout, and pike, and life was good.” 14

One Pearl sat and waited for the sun to tell him what to do. Morning came. The sun rose. The Children of the Sunlight left the shade of the roots and sat in a circle on the beach beneath the mangroves. The old man stood in the center of the circle. They sang to the sun as it rose, and wept, and sang through their tears. The feather of dust returned, and the feather became a cloud. The cloud was full of thunder. The villagers had heard that thunder before. The thunder they heard was the voice of men with white faces. The thunder they heard was the voice of the dog-men’s drums. Their drums sang at the sun. The riders on the dancing bear-dogs filled the beach. The dogs danced in the Ocean Sea. The dog-riders laughed at the Children of the Sunlight across the water. The bear-men sat on the dogs, and the water lapped against the bear-dogs’ bellies and covered the riders’ feet. The riders’ empty eyes stared out from behind their white streaked faces. The Children of the Sunlight stayed on the island. They turned east, and the old man held his arms out toward the sun. He sang, and Less One Pearl and her mother sang with him. The morning sun climbed into the sky. The dog-riders rode into the sea until the tide forced them back onto beach. The drummers marched on the beach. The bear-dogs danced and screamed. The riders shook their spears at the island where the old man sang to the sun.

One Pearl sang all through the day. The sun crossed above the Ocean Sea and began to work its way west. One Pearl sat in the sand with his children. He had done all he could do. The Children of the Sunlight waited.

Less One Pearl balanced herself on her sticks. She stopped singing and let go of her father’s hand. She held onto her mother and turned and looked at the people who were sitting on the sand. Less One Pearl hugged her father and kissed him. She turned away from the circle and walked into the Ocean Sea. When Less One Pearl had waded far enough into the Ocean Sea for the water to carry her she laid her sticks on the waves. She began to swim. As she swam the water began to rock, and the waves rose. The water gathered itself around Less One Pearl as she swam, and it foamed around her. The Ocean Sea picked up Less One Pearl, and the waves became a pillar of water hanging in the air.

Less One Pearl sang. She sang more sweetly than a voice can sing. She balanced on the pillar of waves, and Less One Pearl grew straight, and tall, and strong. A tall woman stood in the place of the little girl with the twisted legs. Her raven wing hair flew over the sea, and Less One Pearl sang to the Children of the Sunlight.

The riders on the dancing dogs were silent. They pulled their bear-dogs out of the water. They lined the beach and stared. Less One Pearl sang. The Children of Sunlight stood and left the circle and walked into the Ocean Sea. First her sisters, and her brothers, and her cousins waded toward her, and Less One Pearl sang to them. Then the grown men and the grown women and the grandparents walked into the water, and Less One Pearl sang to them as they waded in the waves. They listened to her singing, and they sang with her. Then her mother walked into the Ocean Sea, and last of all, the old man, One Pearl, stood and threw his arms out to the sun and walked into the water until he was chest deep. He dove into the Ocean Sea. As One Pearl dove into the water his legs became flukes, and his arms became fins. His long white hair fell away, and his skin flashed like silver as the old man swam beneath the waves. Then her mother followed the old man. She became a dolphin too. Then the grown-ups and the grandparents smiled. They dove into the Ocean Sea and swam beneath the waves. One Pearl’s children became dolphins. The dolphins caught the sun on their splashing flukes. Finally, her sisters, and her brothers, and her cousins all laughed, and they dove into the water. They dove into the Ocean Sea and became a school of dolphins. The dolphins turned cartwheels beneath the waves. Less One Pearl finished singing. She watched the sun above the mountains. She arched her back and then Less One Pearl flew over the sea and became a silver dolphin. She swam on the waves of the Ocean Sea. The Children of the Sunlight swam under the sun and beneath the stars. They swam all that day and through the night and into the rising morning sun. They were the Children of the Sunlight, and the Ocean Sea was enough for them. The sea was full of light. The sun sparkled on the waves. There was enough time in the sea to sing and to dance and to listen to stories. There was time to be in love and time to raise children. There was time to swim in the arc of the Circle. There was enough time for the Children of the Sun to be happy with all they had in their home on the waves filled with dancing sun. There were never people any more content than those people who swam in the Ocean Sea. Though the bear-men on the dancing bear-dogs inherited the land, and the dark star still rises, and the dark wind blows when it wants to blow, the Children of the Sunlight have the Ocean Sea. The dolphins swim in the Ocean Sea, and they sing to the morning sun. I have been told that Less One Pearl sings with the sweetest voice the Ocean Sea has ever heard. I think that’s enough for me.

So it happened in the beginning, the same as it is now. And that is how that story is told.


Kayaking Salt Run at Anastasia State

Turtle Woman of Heritage of the Ancient Ones, [Wynne Tatman] and Cooter rest a moment to take in thebeauty of this St. Augustine waterway. At low-tide Cooter chasesthe shore birds that hunt the shallows. Right, a snowy egret is just one of the many birds you’ll see along the tidal flats. Osprey wheel and soar overhead. Ahead, just out of sight on the right, is the famous St. Augustine Lighthouse Museum. Boaters, tourists,and locals stop by the Lighthouse Restaurant for Sunday brunch. Originally called Sea Gull Bait & Tackle, the reataurant is leased by the City of St. Augustine. Ferral cats roam the lighthouse and restaurant grounds, charming visitors for handouts (see story on page 31). 16

near St. Augustine

THE TREE I once asked an ancient willow tree, Why was I chosen, how can it be? That I alone must do it all, To answer to the Spirit’s call?

Turtle Woman offers educational programs for all ages with hands-on activites about Flordia’s first people.

The wise old tree spoke to my soul, With the wisdom of vast ages told. He said, “You do not have it all to do, Just do the part they gave to you.” Soon afterwards cruel saws took away this tree, Yet evermore his words live on with me. - White Turtle Woman

Contact HOTAO at

© 1998


PIRATE or VISIONARY? William Augustus Bowles by Christopher Kimball, Naples Much folklore surrounds this forgotten character that had an important part in Seminole history. Here is the real story of his life. Each year there is a festival commemorating Bowles in Fort Walton Beach called the Billy Bowlegs Festival. What goes on at the festival is far from what really happened, and they even get the name wrong. Billy Bowlegs was the name of three different Seminole chiefs, none of whom spent time around the panhandle. And there is no evidence that William Bowles spent much time around the Fort Walton Beach area either. One thing that is not widely recognized is that Bowles started 60 years of conflict between the United States and the southeastern Creeks and Seminoles. The southeast after the American Revolution was an area 18

Courtesy of artist, Hermann Trappman, Gulfport

of complicated uncertainty and turmoil. Parts of the region were claimed and controlled by Spain, France, Britain, and the United States. Creeks, Seminoles, Choctaws, Cherokees, and other southeastern tribes far outnumbered the non-Indian populations. It would not be until the War of 1812 and Jackson’s campaign against the Creeks that the final fate of the region would be determined. Britain was still trying to control the area, and relied on friendly Seminoles and Creeks to occupy the territory it claimed. Enter the flamboyant William Augustus Bowles, who tried to turn the southeast into a free Indian nation. William Augustus Bowles was born in 1763 into a wealthy Maryland Tory family. William had an extensive education and excelled in acting, music, art, chemistry, and many other fields. Bowles started his military career with the British Army at age 13 during the American Revolution. He was a navy ensign

by age 15. In December 1778 he landed at Pensacola, but missed the return boat back to his ship. When he returned, he was immediately dismissed from service for derelict of duty without a trial. Stranded at Pensacola at age 15, he joined the Creeks who frequented the area. He spent the next two years between the Florida gulf coast and the Creek towns on the Chattahoochee. He lived a nomadic life and spent the time fishing, hunting, and working in a bakery. Bowles had two wives: a Cherokee, and a Hitchiti Creek daughter of the prominent Chief Perryman. His new Creek father-in-law was the leader of a town along the Chattahoochee where William spent much of his time. William’s sons by both wives became important leaders among the Creek and Cherokee

England, the Bahamas, and Creek country along the Chattahoochee, where he gained support for a free state of Muskogee. At Coweta in late 1791, he assured the Creeks and Seminoles of British support for the Indians. He obtained free access to ports in the West Indies when ships flew the Muskogee flag, and support for a Muskogee army and navy. But Britain looked on it less as a free nation than as a buffer from Spain and the United States. On 16 January 1792, Bowles with a large band of Creeks took over and looted the Panton, Leslie, and Co. store in San Marcos (St. Marks). He then tried to negotiate with the Spanish over the establishment of a Muskogee state. The Spaniards turned the tables on him and captured him instead. He was a prisoner in Cuba, Madrid, and Manilla in the Philippines. The Spanish wanted to remove him as far away from Florida as they could. While being returned to Spain, Bowles escaped and took charge of a ship to Africa, and eventually made his way back to Florida after stopovers in England and Nassau to regather his British supporters.

Scholar Christopher Kimball portrays an early 19th century Seminole warrior at Seminole War events. He is a park ranger at Seminole Collier State Park near Naples. Courtesy of Neily Trappman Studio

people during the Trail of Tears. During the Spanish attack on Pensacola in 1781, Bowles mustered a Creek force to fight the Spanish. Although the city fell to Spain, William’s bravery in combat put him back in favor with the British after being dismissed from the navy three years earlier. He even received a pension from the British because of his heroic defense of the city. After the American Revolution, Bowles fled to Nassau in the Bahamas. There he gained support of prominent businessmen and Governor Lord Dunmore, who saw him as the perfect individual to usurp Panton, Leslie and Company, which had a trading monopoly with the Creeks and Seminoles. Bowles now became the agent of the Miller and Donamy trading firm to challenge the Panton hold on the southeast, and growing American influence in the southeast. Bowles tried and failed in 1788 to capture Panton’s St. Johns River store. His Seminole supporters deserted him soon after landing at the Indian River. The Seminoles tricked him into staying away by saying that there were Spanish troops in the area. They did not want to lose the trading post; the source of their economic livelihood. Bowles soon became a fugitive, running from the Spanish in Spanish Florida. Bowles was not deterred from his failure, and was actively raising support among the Indians for his idea of Creek Indian nationalism. He proposed that the Indians in the southeast were sovereign in the land that they lived, and had been guaranteed by treaty the right to remain as lawful inhabitants by Britain and Spain. His idea of an Indian nation included all the tribes of the southeast, including the Choctaw and Cherokee. Bowles spent the next few years between Nova Scotia,

In the fall of 1799, an American survey party found Bowles on St. George Island in Apalachicola Bay, where his ship became stranded in the shallow waters. When the Americans arrived in San Marcos, they alerted the Spanish that Bowles was back. The commanders at San Marcos and Pensacola petitioned the Spanish governor of Louisiana and West Florida for an army to chase after Bowles. By the time any force could be organized, Bowles was long gone. Bowles’ Indian supporters and American Indian Agent Benjamin Hawkins were already expecting Bowles’ return to Florida. Back in Florida, Bowles conducted a campaign of piracy against the Spanish in West Florida. Bowles made himself “Director General and CommanderIn-Chief of the Muskogee Nation.” On 31 October 1799, Bowles issued a proclamation declaring the 1795 treaty between Spain and the United States void because it ignored the Indians’ sovereignty over Florida. (The 1795 Treaty of San Ildefonso ceded all of West Florida above the 31st parallel to the United States.) Bowles had the support of the Seminoles and Chattahoochee Creeks because of his generous supply of gunpowder, and of his promises to get more when he captured the Panton-Leslie store at San Marcos. The Spanish attacked and captured Bowles’ camp on the Ocklockonee River and captured much of his personal effects, so Bowles moved his operations to the town of Miccosukee, near Tallahassee. On 5 April 1800, Bowles declared war on Spain. Bowles finally came up with a successful plan to capture the fort and Panton-Leslie store at San Marcos. Since there was no cover for a direct attack, he raided the supply ships coming up the river instead. One ship was captured by Bowles, which induced the garrison commander to surrender on 10 May 1800. Bowles had won with little effort. On 23 June 1800, a large Spanish force sailed up the St. 19

Marks River and recaptured San Marcos. Bowles escaped with his few white supporters who were left; the Indians had already gone home before the attack. For the next two years, the Spanish at San Marcos were on constant alert of attacks from Bowles and his Indian supporters. But the Spanish commander was familiar with the local Indians, who agreed to live peacefully with the Spanish. Several of the local chiefs provided the garrison with food, and even Bowles’ father-in-law gave 33 cattle to San Marcos. Bowles then decided to take on the United States, which he always considered a more important challenge than Spain. He demanded that the U.S. return Indian land, and that the treaty with the Creek Chief McGillivay was illegally imposed on the Indians who did not support it. He demanded U.S. recognition of the State of Muskogee or he would declare war upon the United States. Bowles made Miccosukee his new capital, a large town complex around Lake Miccosukee, northeast of present day Tallahassee. The town chief, Kinache, was Bowles’ father-inlaw and strongest ally, and was Chief of Miccosukee from 1770 until Andrew Jackson burned it in 1818. The State of Muskogee also had a flag and motto, “God save the State of Muskogee.” Several ambitious Englishmen from the Bahamas with shady

were a strong force and gave heavy fire, but would have been more deadly if they had cannons. Twice, one of the Spanish ships approached and destroyed a series of trenches dug by the Seminoles. The Spanish inside the fort were not in great enough number to attack Bowles, and could only defend the fort. The only thing that prevented Bowles from capturing San Marcos was heavy fire from the ships, and more ships arriving. Also, news was received that the war between Spain and England was over. The siege ended after about 10 days. Bowles was discredited when he failed to take San Marcos. Finally, on 20 August 1802, the neighboring Seminoles signed a peace treaty with the Spanish. Even Bowles’ strongest supporter, Chief Kinache of Miccosukee, signed. Bowles’ war with Spain failed, and he no longer had British support. Britain had declared peace with France and Spain, and now considered Bowles a troublemaker, his state an illusion, and his supporters nothing more than pirates. Spain started to blockade the coast and choke an important trading supply line of Bowles. By May 1803, both America and Spain were conspiring against Bowles. America wanted to get rid of him because he opposed Creek land cessions in Georgia. The Spanish wanted to get rid of him because of his raids against ships and plantations in the area. Bowles opposed the pro-American Muskogee Creek

The State of Muskogee had a flag. It is described as being rectangular, with a broad blue cross with white outline. The left upper and lower quarters, and the lower right quarters are red. The upper right quarter is blue, with the sun having a face on it. backgrounds became Bowles’ government and administrators. The State of Muskogee was never clearly defined. National borders were a foreign concept to the Indians, and there was no unified or central government. Bowles did manage to create an army and navy. (The Navy consisted of three ships.) Spain suddenly found her ships on the Florida gulf coast subject to Muskogee pirates. Bowles enjoyed great support from the free blacks, Black Seminoles, and many Red Stick Creeks. Seminoles who rebelled against the Muskogee Creek leadership were also big supporters. In August, a large Spanish force arrived at San Marcos. Their mission was to pursue Bowles and destroy Miccosukee. On 17 August 1800, a well-armed force of 272 Spaniards and mulattos set out to destroy Miccosukee. They ran into disaster from the beginning, and returned to San Marcos two days later. Even though Miccosukee was only 30 miles away, they did not have good guides and were unfamiliar with the area. On the first day they were only able to go 3 miles; not much of a surprise attack, and with only 6 days’ rations. The soldiers were already overheated and getting sick, and would be in very poor fighting condition by the time they reached Miccosukee. Bowles continued his pirate activities, capturing Spanish ships and preparing for a return attack on San Marcos. Although the size of the Spanish garrison at the fort had been reduced, they had two river galleys stationed there with heavy artillery. On 5 January 1802, Bowles took a large force of Seminoles (Miccosukees), Negroes, white pirates, and deserted Spanish soldiers from Pensacola, and laid siege to San Marcos. They 20

families of McGillivray and MacIntosh, and American Indian agent to the Creeks, Benjamin Hawkins. The latter upon whom he declared a death sentence. Benjamin Hawkins eventually laid a trap that put an end to Bowles. On 24 May 1803, there was a conference at the Creek town of Tukabatchee between Hawkins and his Lower Creeks supporters, and a general council of the Seminoles, Creeks, Cherokees, Chickasaws, and Choctaws. That day Bowles declared himself king of all the Indian nations present. The next day Hawkins had gained enough supporters to have Bowles captured and placed in irons, and delivered him as prisoner to the Spanish governor in Pensacola. Bowles was taken to Morro Castle prison in Havana, where he died in 1805. In the end, William Bowles and the State of Muskogee turned out to be the worst possible thing for the Seminoles. It started the domino effect on the Seminoles’ removal from Florida. When Spain proved unable to capture or defeat Bowles on Spanish territory, it was obvious to all that Spain had minimal control of Florida. Weak Spanish influence encouraged Andrew Jackson to lead a campaign to capture Pensacola from Spain during the War of 1812 and the First Seminole War. The Seminoles could no longer run to a safe haven away from the United States. The last coffin nail in the casket of the State of Muskogee was during the First Seminole war in 1818, when Andrew Jackson destroyed the town of Miccosukee. It was only a matter of time before the United States would gain control of Florida. The U.S. believed that the Seminoles could not peacefully co-exist with settlers that needed to move

into Florida. Even worse, runaway slaves from Georgia were finding shelter with the Florida Indians, being a big threat to the southern plantation economy. Since the Indians would not adopt the white American ways, then they had to be removed. For the next 100 years, the policy of the U.S. towards the Indians in Florida was removal. In the year 2000, Creek descendants of North Florida

Pine Arbor Town sent a letter to the government of Mexico apologizing for the attack on Mexican ports by Bowles’ navy. They said that they would have apologized earlier, but with removal and dispersion, they had other matters requiring their attention for the last two centuries. For more on the Seminole Indians Wars visit the www at

Intreperting Ourselves continued from page 4.

Secrets to Looking Distressed

Faded areas can be created naturally by hanging your clothing outside. In six months to a year, they will start to look just right. But if you are not that patient, then a light dusting with a matte white paint spray will do the trick. Fabric paint is best, but regular hardware store paint will do too. Flat black paint can be dusted over the knee and elbow areas to simulate dirt. Put your garments on and have someone else spray them. Use some brown and black shoe polish to the areas where hands frequent. Powder burns and blood stains may also help to put your clothes back 400 years. Soldiers dressed mostly in blues and greens according to the fabric purchases for the voyage. Wide-brimmed hats were probably more common for the common soldier than helmets. Padded armor was worn more often than steel. The world of the 16th century would have seemed very gray compared to today. Smoke permiated everything, and whites were rarely truly white. Courtesy of Neily Trappman Studio

Left, unidentified reenactor, carries a barrel as a ship off-loads supplies. Center, Alan Gerrel wears padded armor, popular with the early armies to explore Florida. It deflected arrows better than steel armoor. Right, veteran reenactor, Ron Custer stops to help a fallen comrade after a battle. He looks every bit the part of a frontier soldier. 21

Historic Site

Prospect Bluff - Fortress of Fear Story by Hermann Trappman Photos by Neily Trapman Studio

The ramparts are worn with age. It’s been almost 200 years since events swirled around this place in a brief and terrible tornado. So many gamblers came here; African slaves fighting for freedom, American Indians fighting for a chunk of land they could call their own, officers of the British Royal Marines in a last ditch effort to topple the newly born United States of America, and our Federal government fighting for its very existence. In the west, the sun sinks toward the dark silhouetted forest on the opposite bank. That sunset flashes fire across the mirrored surface of the Apalachicola River. Here, in the ruins of this fort, tree shadows crawl across the remaining earthworks. In the spreading twilight, darkness seems to fill the moat. The ghosts which occupy these shadows belong to all of us. The smoke from that terrible explosion sweeps across the intervening years, seeping into the fabric of our collective story. Prospect Bluff, 15 miles up the Apalachicola River from the Gulf of Mexico, July 27th, 1816, 4:00 am. Nights breath seemed to pause in its deepest sleep as the hulls of gunboats 149 and the 154 drifted past. Only a few crickets chirped from the inky darkness of the forest close on their port side. Sailing Master Jarius Loomis, understood the power of stealth and surprise. This fort, this Negro Fort, held very real danger for the men aboard the boats. Four of their friends had already lost . their lives on the voyage up river. Designed by the best British military 22

Map of the British fort at Prospect Bluff, known as the Negro Fort. Courtesy of Fort Gadsden State Historic Site

science, the fort sported 12 cannon. The stars still filled the sky as the gunboats neared the fort. A flash, and the thunderous roar of a cannon split the night. Another and another flared from the forts dark ramparts. Iron cannon balls crashed through the branches of the sleeping forest. In the boats, artillery crews leapt to their station. The blast from their cannon illuminated the crew for a second and then the sailors scrambled again in darkness. By the sound of the cannon balls impact, they

the biggest explosion anyone had ever seen. Of the 320 Africans and American Indians inside the fort, only 50 lived. Outside the fort, more than a thousand defenders fled east through Florida’s dense forests, toward the slanting rays of the rising sun. An African American man named Abraham may have been among them. Freed from the service of a Spanish Doctor in Pensacola by Lieutenant Colonel Nicholls, of his Majesty’s Marines, Abraham may have witnessed that blast. From the banks of the Apalachicola, he made his way to the Suwannee River. In 1818 he would meet the U.S. military again as they raided Bowlegs Town. His courage in a rear guard action, allowing African and Seminole women and children to escape, won him the name of “Suwannee Warrior.” Abraham participated in the Dade battle in 1835 and became one of the chief negotiators during the second Seminole war. A free man living in the Oklahoma territory, he returned to Florida to negotiate a settlement of the Third Seminole War, the Billy Bowlegs War. Some of Abraham’s people eventually moved to Mexico. Some, became Buffalo Soldiers fighting for our Federal Government. They may have passed through Tampa on their way to Cuba during the Spanish American War. I wonder, where their

Abraham, Suwannee Warrior. Courtesy of artist HermannTrappman.

knew if they hit earth or wooden stockade walls. Like distant lightning, flashes tore the growing cloud of smoke enveloping the fort. Aboard ship, tongs drew a glowing cannon ball out of an oven. As the hot shot left the mouth of the gun, it sparkled on its short path to the fort. Then there was a muffled rumble. A concussion followed by a growing angry roar. Suddenly the early dawn was rent by a terrible eruption. The fort disintegrated into fiery splinters and wreckage arching high into the sky. A roiling fireball climbed above the scene as human body parts rained down. Burning debris splashed hissing into the river . The ninth shot, fired from the gunboats, had fallen directly into the fort’s magazine of almost 700 kegs of powder. It was

descendants are now? Sunset colors have faded to grays. The stories and ideas which struggled here have found meaning in millions of distant lives. Most have forgotten their connection to this incredible place, and I suppose that’s all right too. For the best description of the struggle over Fort Negro, read Old Hickory’s War by David S. Heidler and Jeanne T. Heidler. ISBN 0-8117-0113-1

Fort Gadsen State Historic Site is located 6 miles south west of Sumatra, off Florida I-65. Thank you to the City of St. Petersburg, Boyd Hill Nature Trail and the Florida Museum of Natural History, Gainsville, for providing the opportunity to research this article for the exhibit, A Treasured Legacy.

NEXT ISSUE The Florida Frontier Gazette will feature the Dade Battle of 1835 and Abraham’s Old Town, or Pilaklikaha, as it was called by its residents. Black Seminoles lived here between 1813 and 1836. During that time they successfully engaged in agriculture and other frontier activites. Left, Ralph Smith, pictured on the right,portrays Abraham at the annual reenactment of the Dade Battle.The Dade Battlefield Historic State Park, is located in Bushnell at 7200 CR, 603 South Battlefield Drive. 352-793-4781 23

Historic Preservation

You don’t have to go to Russia to tour historic St. Petersburg

The 1919 Alexander Hotel, at 535 Central Avenue, was designed by Atlanta architect Neel Reid and was typical of many small hotels for winter visitors. It is now used for offices.

The mention of historic St. Petersburg often conjures up visions of Russia, the splendor of the Winter Palace and the treasures of the Hermitage. But Florida has its own historic St. Petersburg, on the sunny shores of Tampa Bay. Pinellas County’s largest city, with a population of 350,000 today, didn’t really get started until late in the 19th century. Sure, a few hardy pioneers had eked out a living, fishing and farming, on the southern end of the Pinellas Peninsula in the decades immediately before and after the Civil War, and Gen. John C. Williams of Detroit had bought 1,700 acres of what is now downtown St. Petersburg in 1875.

by Lester R. Dailey, Largo Photos by Neily Trappman Studio

Above, the 1925-’27 Kress Building, at 475 Central Avenue, was built for the Kress 5 & 10 cent store but now houses offices. Right, the 1974 Municipal Parking Garage, on the northwest corner of Central Avenue and Third Street, features a sculpture by Tampa artist Harrison Covington which honors the six cultures that shaped Florida history. Below, the 1917 Open Air Post Office, at 400 First Avenue North, was the first of its kind in the world. Local architect George Stewart designed it so people could access their post office boxes 24/7. Inset - Lamp on post office.

Above, the 1928 Snell Arcade, at 405 Central Avenue, typifies the city’s 1920s Boom-era oppulence. It was built by developer Perry Snell, using a design by Atlanta architect Richard Kiehnel. 24

But it wasn’t until the Orange Belt Railway came to town in 1888 that St. Petersburg was literally put on the map. One of the railroad’s four owners, Pyotr Alexievich Dementyev, an immigrant Russian nobleman who Anglicized his name to Peter Demens and wanted to honor his homeland, suggested the name. In the first half of the 20th century, the city attracted winter visitors, less affluent than the Palm Beach crowd, who sat on the city’s famous green benches during the day and mostly slept in small hotels at night. But, in the second half of that century, urban decay, crime and competition from suburban shopping malls took their toll on downtown. The famous Webb’s City drugstore closed, and the snowbirds stopped coming. But the historic downtown core has recently made a comeback and is on the National Register of Historic Places. It is bounded by Fifth Avenue North on the north, Central Avenue on the south, Dr. M.L. King (9th) Street North on the west and Tampa Bay on the east and contains more than 400 buildings, 80 percent of which are considered historic. The best way to see it is on foot, either on your own or with a guided tour, so put on your walking shoes and prepare to step back in time.

MIRROR LAKE BRANCH OF THE ST. PETERSBURG PUBLIC LIBRARY, 280 Fifth Street North, was built in 1915 with a $12,500 grant from the Carnegi Corporation. It was designed to hold 16,000 books, event though the city’s entire book inventory at that time consisted of just 2,600 volumes.

St. Petersburg Shuffleboard Club, below, was built in 1924.

The old 1919 St. Petersburg Public High School, at 709 Mirror Lake Drive North, can be seen across Mirror Lake, formerly Wier Lake, which supplied drinking water to the city’s early residents and to Cuba-bound troops during the Spanish American War of 1898. The St. Petersburg Chess Club has operated at the St. Petersburg Shuffleboard Club, 559 Mirror Lake Drive North, since 1931. At 93, Steven Bates, left, is the oldest member, but he still gives Arthur James Siemers stiff competition.

The Coliseum, at 535 Fourth Avenue North, has had people dancing to big band music since 1924.


Hurricanes haven’t always missed Pinellas


Friday, Aug. 13, 2004 was Pinellas County’s lucky day. Instead of following its predicted path through Florida’s most densely populated county, home to almost a million people, Category 4 Hurricane Charley made a right turn into Charlotte Harbor, 75 miles south of Pinellas. Charley’s near miss reinforced the perception that, when it comes to hurricanes, Pinellas is bulletproof. But that perception is not just dangerous; it’s also dead wrong. The last hurricane to score a direct hit on Pinellas roared ashore with 100 mph winds on Oct. 25, 1921, before hurricanes were named. Two bridges between the barrier islands and the mainland were washed away and, in downtown St. Petersburg, the bandstand in Williams Park was flattened.

On Egmont Key, the waves undermined the two-year-old $7,000 lighthouse and caused it to tilt. As water filled their house, lighthouse keeper Marvel Edwards and his family piled into a rowboat and rowed it to the center of the island, where they tied it to a cabbage palm and rode out the storm. The 120-foot-tall lighthouse was later rebuilt at a cost of $16,000, but Edwards wasn’t its keeper. As soon as the storm abated, he had rowed his family to Tampa and quit his job. Two local men, Joe Silva and John Levich, were returning from New Orleans, where they had just sold a boatload of green turtles, when the hurricane hit on Saturday, Sept. 22. Seeing storm clouds gathering, they went ashore to wait out the hurricane.

The flooding around the St. Petersburg Yacht Club after the 1921 hurricane gave new meaning to waterfront property. Of course boaters could tie up much closer to the facility. Courtesy St. Petersburg Historical Society.

On Hog Island, off Dunedin, fisherman Al Garrison and his wife, Estelle, saw the nine-foot storm surge approaching and ran for their lives. Estelle carried their youngest child, and Al had the older two by the hand. A falling tree struck Estelle, knocking the youngster from her arms. Al let go of the other kids and tried to help Estelle. But just then, the wall of water struck, washing away all three children. Their bodies were found in present-day Palm Harbor three days later, accounting for half the county’s death toll of six. Property damage in the then-sparsely populated county totaled $3-million. That’s more than $30-million in today’s money. The storm cut Hog Island in two and literally wiped it off the map. The northern half was renamed Honeymoon Island, and the southern half was called Caladesi Island. The new, 20-foot-deep channel between them was given the accurate, if unimaginative, name of Hurricane Pass. But the 1921 storm wasn’t the first hurricane to cut a pass through an island off the coast of the Pinellas Peninsula. The fierce hurricane of 1848 divided Palm Island into halves named Pine Island (now Tierra Verde) and Cabbage Key, and rearranged much of the geography of the southern barrier islands. 26

By Sept. 27, they decided it was safe to resume their journey. But as they approached Pinellas shores, they thought they were in the wrong place. Nothing looked the same as it had when they left. The biggest difference was that there was now an 830-footwide channel where they had remembered only miles of sandy beaches. Investigating, they found that the new pass was a handy shortcut into Boca Ciega Bay. Levich claimed the naming rights, and the channel they discovered is still known as John’s Pass. Today, it’s a major tourism and commercial fishing center, although it is believed to have shifted almost a mile south of its original 1848 location. Across the bay, in Tampa, the storm wiped out Fort Brooke, the Army’s base of operations for the Second Seminole War of 1835-’42. That has made it easy for modern archaeologists. They just dig down until they hit a two-inch-thick layer of white sand, deposited by the 1848 hurricane, and know that the artifacts just below it date from the fort era.

  

The roof of a native style building may blow away, but there is always plenty of free raw material to fix it. Courtesy Neily Trappman Studio.

built the way they did. The Florida Indian architecture could be very large. Upon his return from trek by Hermann Trappman through Florida, in 1528, Cabéza de Vaca described a building at the landing site of the Narváez expedition on the central Gulf coast. He reported that it could comfortably hold 300 people. In south Florida, the Calusa people had a single room building that could hold two thousand. The Calusa used Without history there could be no technology. How to build woven mat partitions to divide their rooms. The roofs were tall a bird’s nest is imbedded in a bird’s brain as instinct. But we have and thatched with sabal palm. The high roofs of these large to use our history, or rather, our knowledge of our use of natural buildings would have drawn the heat upward, away from the resources and resourcefulness passed down from one generation occupants. Another description by Father Rogel in 1565, states of to the next. We write and draw with a lot of stuff, on a lot of that in the morning the buildings were very damp inside. This stuff. We do not have the plans for building a house imbedded suggests that the tall roofs drew in the damp, night air from the in out brains. surrounding water. I wonder, if they hadn’t developed this roof People all over the planet have adapted technologies to deal design as a kind of air conditioning system? with the difficulties of the world around them. Japan is the home It seems to me that more than anything else, they had to frequent earthquakes. For generations, most Japanese people designed “blow-away roofs” for the eventuality of hurricanes. built the walls of their homes out of paper. The collapse of paper While the occupants sought shelter inland, the thatch simply blew walls did not threaten to crush the buiding’s inhabitants. In areas off, leaving the frame behind. When the Calusa returned, the prone to flooding, stilt houses were built. most pressing thing facing them was re-roofing. With far fewer When we think about the people who lived in Florida, before personal possessions than we tend to collect, their response to the coming of the first Europeans, we often look at their thatched Mother Nature was realistic. Guess they were’t so “primitive” buildings as being rather primitive. A deeper comprehension of after all. their construction methods may begin to make sense of why they


In the Eye of the Storm: Charley Hits Randell Research Center

The Randell Research Center in Lee County took a direct hit from the storm as the eye of Hurricane Charley passed directly over the island. RCC is a research and education program operated by the Florida Museum of Natural History Pineland Site Complex. Archaeologist/ethnohistorian John E. Worth, who manages the center, says, “The Ruby Gill house, the site headquarters, sustained the most damage when it lost its roof. The carpet has to be thrown out.” There was some good news. The new education pavilion, interpretive center on top of the Indian mound, and public washrooms sustained very little damage.” “The major work will be in cleaning up the property. Over half of the trees on the 52 acre tract have been lost. The green canopy is completely gone with the exception of the palms. Even the mangroveswere stripped of their leaves.

“We need volunteers with their own chainsaws, rakes, etc. to help out. We are also taking donations to help defray the cost of rebuilding the center.” says Worth. He estimates that there is at least two months worth of work to get the site ready for the Calusa Trail opening in December. The opening was originally scheduled for September 10. Worth says that they need lots of helping hands but that you should call first so they can schedule workdays. To help with the clean-up, call 239-283-2062 or e-mail Please make your donation payable to: Friends of the Randell Research Center and send to: Randell Research Center, PO Box 608, Pineland, FL 33945. 27

October 1 OCALA STATE FOREST Earle and Evelyn Byers Weekend. WWII Vehicle ethusiasts campout, trail ride and swap meet. Bring a side dish. No weapons or ammo allowed in the Forest. Charlie Hildebrant E-mail:

Events & Exhibits OCTOBER 2004

Thru October 10 LARGO Commemorating the 50th Aniversary of Brown v. the Board of Education. Special exhibits and programs explore the landmark Supreme Court decision that led to the desegregation of public schools. Program sponsored by SunTrust and the Pinellas County Historical Society. Exhibit Features: “Stony the Road: Desegregating America’s Schools,” the national story, produced by the Black History Museum & Cultural Center of Virginia and “Brown v Board of Education 50 Years Later: The Long and Winding Road,” the Pinellas County story, produced by the Pinellas County African American History Museum. Exhibit Activity Guide. Special Group Tours available on Saturdays & Sundays or by appointment. Bring your adult, teen or youth group for a special program. Group program features: tour of the exhibition, exhibit activity guide, group discussion with Pinellas people involved in local desegregation efforts, multi-media presentation of those recalling this era of our recent history and focused tour of three structures at Heritage Village that share in this story. October 2 Reflections, Remedies and Resolve, 1 p.m. Come with your questions, opinions and ideas. Professor Robert Bickel, Stetson College of Law, facilitates a roundtable discussion presented by local historians, educators and individuals who integrated Pinellas County Schools. Program will encourage audience participation and interaction with the featured panelists. Call (727) 582-2426 to schedule a group tour. 11909 - 125th Street N. E-mail: Heritage October thru May 2005 DELRAY BEACH Morikami Museum - Yamato Colony Centennial Celebrations! Visitors are surprised to discover a century-old connection between Japan and South Florida. It is here that a group of young Japanese farmers created a community intended to revolutionize agriculture in Florida. Admission: Adults $9 - Seniors $8 - Children $6 + tax. From Geisha to Diva: The Kimono of Ichimaru (Exhibit) Ichimaru (1906 - 1997) was an accomplished and highly sought-after geisha whose singing voice propelled her into a successful career as a popular recording artist in the 1930s. Organized by the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria, the exhibit features over 20 spectacular kimono once owned by Ichimaru. Furniture, musical instruments, parasols, wigs, hair ornaments and combs, record albums, and photos of Ichimaru offer a rare look into Japan’s geisha culture. October (all month) DUNEDIN Dunedin Historical Society Museum - BLAST OFF: Florida and the Space Program. Located on Main Street at the Pinellas Trail. 727-736-1176. 28

October 2 TAMPA Cracker Country - How the Civil War Shaped Florida’s History (Living History) 10am-4pm. Living historians and reenactors portraying the soldiers’ daily life; learn about cooking of the period and get a look at Florida’s role in the Confederacy. Rural Florida Living History Museum - Cracker Country at the Florida State Fair Grounds. 813-627-4225 E-mail: October 2-3 FERNANDINA BEACH Fort Clinch State Park - Fort Clinch Federal (Union Army) Garrison and Living History. Admission: Living Historians free. Spectators: $3.25 per car to park and $2 each to Fort. Ask at gate about candlelight tour on Saturday night. Candlelight tour admission is $3 for spectators. 902-277-7274. October 2, 9, 16, 30 LARGO Heritage Village - Rug Hooking. 10 am-2 pm. (see Septermber for details). October 16 Heritage Village - Guided Walking Tours 1-3 pm. Put on your walking shoes to experience the stories and architecture of Heritage Village. $3 The Doodlebugs – A Getaway to the Past Meets every third Saturday 1 pm-3 pm Living history adventures abound in this club for kids ages 5 - 8. Each Saturday they take a different trip back in time and grab a handful of history. Hands-on fun and a new way to enjoy learning about the history of where they live. Fee. October 30 Pulp Reality - The Series: the Art of Making Paper, & a Very Impressive Gift. 10 am -2 pm Class 1: Paper maker, artist Robert Thompson leads this creative workshop to make paper using tropical plants. Class 2: Ideas and techniques for making cards, stationery, notebooks and framed pieces using the paper made in Class 1. Fee: $50 for the series, includes supplies plus a take-home kit. 11909 - 125th Street N. E-mail: October 2 ST. PETERSBURG Abasi Ote & Friends present Rhythms from the Earth (acoustical improv) 1:00 pm. Love Offering. Native Earth Cultural Center at Indian Stuff. 1060 4th Street N. 727-821-81-86 October 8 ST. PETERSBURG The Pinellas Chapter of FNPS - “Landscaping and Gardening with Florida Native Plants” 2:00 pm. Florida Birding Festival and Nature Expo at Eckerd College. October 9 ST. PETERSBURG T h e Healthy Landscape” 2:00-5:30 pm. Florida Audubon Assembly, Hilton Hotel, downtown St. Petersburg. October 9 GULFPORT Gulfport Historical Society Museum - Birthday Bash at Museum. 10 am-3 pm. Birthday Cake, craft tables, entertainment. 5301 28th Ave. S. 727-327-0505 October 9 Sarasota Folk Music Festival. 11:00 am - 6 pm.


Crowley Museum & Nature Center 16405 Myakka Road. 941-322-1000 Website: www.crowleymuseumnature October 9-10 ORLANDO Pine Castle Folk Art Center - 31st Annual Pioneer Days Family Festival Sat. 10 am-5 pm; Sun. 9am-4 pm. Celebrating arts, crafts, music & tradition. Sponsored by Pine Castle United Methodist Church. 731 East Fairlane Ave. 407-855-7461

October 9-10 FERNANDINA BEACH Fort Clinch Confederate Garrison and Living History. Admission: Living Historians free. Spectators: $3.25 per car to Park and $2 each to Fort. Ask at gate about candlelight tour on Saturday night. Candlelight tour admission is $3 for spectators. 904-277-7274. October 10 ST. PETERSBURG “Landscaping and Gardening with Florida Native Plants” Florida Birding Festival and Nature Expo, Eckerd College. October 14 ST. PETERSBURG Finding Lost & Hidden Native Roots with genealogist, Lauri Beth Roman. Love Offering. Native Earth Cultural Center at Indian Stuff, 1064 Street,N. 727-821-8186. October 16 LAKELAND 5th Annual Lake Mirror Classic Auto Festival. 10:00 am - 5:pm. Line-up 7:00 - 9:30 am. E-mail: . October 16 BLOUNTESVILLE Blountstown Goat Day & Pioneer Day. Pioneer village, crafts, making soaps, blacksmithing, greased pig chasing, penny digs, arts & crafts, entertainment. $1 admission. 340 B East Central Ave. 850-674-4519


October 22-24 CRYSTAL RIVER School of the Infantry, Artillery, Cavalry and Medical. Reenactors school, not a battle reenactment. No civilian spectators, please. Contact Gen. Goodrich E-mail: October 23 ST. PETERSBURG The Monster Bash Ball, 6:30-10 pm. at the Haunted Hilton, 333 1st Street S. Dress to scarefor this Science Center Guild fundfraiser. Dinner, silent auction, costume contest. RSVP by Oct. 13. Tickets start at $90. 727-384-0027 October 23 TAMPA 4th Annual National Hispanic Scientist of the Year Award. 7-10 pm. The 2004 recipient of the award is Dr. Antonia Coello Novello, current New York State Health Commissioner and former Surgeon General of the US Public Health Service. Tickets are $125 per couple or $1,000 per sponsor table of 8. The proceeds will fund scholarships to employ Hispanic boys and girls in MOSI’s YES! Team (Youth Enriched by Science). 4801 E Fowler Ave. 813-987-6313 October 27 MOSI, Lunar EclipseWatch. 9 p.m. – 1 am. 4801 E Fowler Ave. 813-987-6313 E-mail: Website: October 30-31 ST. PETERSBURG Pinellas Pioneer Settlement - Halloween Event. Boo! 2900 - 31st Street S. 727-866-6401 or 727- 893-7326 October 30-31 TALLAHASSEE Knott House Museum - Fear Knott - Halloween Event. Boo! Activities include special tours, performances, and more. 850-922-2459.

October 16 ST. PETERSBURG The Pinellas Chapter of FNPS -” Landscaping and Gardening with Florida Native Plants” Weedon Island Preserve Cultural and Natural History Center. 1500 Weedon Island Drive NE. 727-453-6500 www. October 22-24 BRADENTON 97th Pennsylvania Annual Civil War Reenactment - The Battle of Hunsader Farm, battles, sutlers, etc. School Day on Friday. A school day will be held on Friday, Oct. 29th and volunteers are needed to help with the approx. 1,000 school kids that are expected to attend. A $1.00 registration fee for all reennactors will be charged to help pay for the firewood, hay, water, and more. Due to insurance restrictionss, no mounted cavalrymen at this event. Take I-75 South to Exit #42 (SR 64). Travel 10.5 miles East on SR 64 to CR 675. At CR 675 go South for 2.5 miles. Sutlers contact Dave Krieger: Reenactors contact Tom Aloisio: October 19 ST. PETERSBURG Hearth’s Breath Flute Circle, 7:00 pm. Learn to play the native flute. Free. Native Earth Cultural Center at Indian Stuff 1064 4th Street N. 727-821-8186 October 18 TAMPA MOSI - 29th Annual “Nikon Small World Competition.” Excellence in photography through the microscope. Visit Nikon at www. 4801 E Fowler Ave. 813-987-6313

COVER YOUR EARS! Second Seminole War reenactors fire their muskets to the delight of visitors to the Old Florida Festival at the Collier County Museum in Naples.



November (All Month) DUNEDIN Dunedin Historical Society Museum - BLAST OFF: Florida and the Space Program. 349 Main Street at the Pinellas Trail. 727-736-1176 Website: November (all month) DELRAY BEACH Morikami Museum - Sharaku. Sharaku was a master of the ukiyo-e woodblock print whose known body of work dates only from a 10-month period between 1794-5, and whose personal life remains a mystery. His portraits of kabuki actors are recognized the world over. E-mail; Reiko Nishioka or Sharon Friedheim. 561-495-0233, Ext. 225. November 4 CLEARWATER The Pinellas Chapter of FNPS - “Landscaping and Gardening with Florida Native Plants” 7:00 pm. Tampa Bay Sierra Club, Moccasin Lake Nature Park. 727-462-6024 November 5-7 NAPLES Collier County Museum - Old Florida Festival. Prehistoric Indians, Spanish Conquistadors, Cracker Florida, British Florida, Second Seminole War, American Civil War, Spanish American War, Cowboys, WWII and lots of storytelling, demonstrations, crafts, food. School Tours Friday. 3301 Tamiami Trail E. 941-774-8476 www.colliermuseum. org November 6 LARGO Heritage Village - Pulp Reality - The Series - the Art of Making Paper, & A Very Impressive Gift. 10 am -2 pm., 11909 - 125th Street N., 727-582-2127 E-mail: November 6-7 BARBERVILLE Pioneer Settlement for the Creative Arts - 25th Fall Jamboree & Arts & Crafts Show. 9 am-5 pm. Sat. and 9 am-4 p.m. Sun. Folkart, blacksmithing, folkways, antique auto, entertainment, living history displays, farm animals, children’s stage and hands-on area, pioneer food and an arts and craft show. Admission is $3, children ages 5 to 15 $2, children younger than 5 and members free. State Road 40 just west of U.S. 17. 386-749-2959 November 6-7


Fort Clinch State Park - Fort Clinch Federal (Union Army) Garrison and Living History. (See Oct. listing). November 12-14 DADE CITY Riverhawk Music Festival. Americana, Jamgrass, Bluegrass, Reggae, Roots Rock Alternative, Rockabilly, Zydeco, Cajun, Celtic, and more. Great fun, food, crafts, camping & more! Sertoma Youth Ranch. See website for directions. E-mail: Website: November 12-13 TALLAHASSEE Tallahassee Museum of History and Natural Science - Big Bend Folk Life Days. Fri: 10 am-2 pm. Sat: 10 am-4 pm. Learn about the cultures and traditions of the diverse Tallahassee and Big Bend Region. Food, music, dance traditions, and crafts and artwork of many resident communities including the African American, Asian, Hispanic, Native American, and Greek. 1880s farm with cane milling, blacksmithing, pony rides, candle making, weaving, quilting & more. Admission free 30

to members; admission for non-members: $7 adults; $6.50 seniors (65+) and college students (with valid ID); $5 children 4-15; and free for kids 3 and under. 3945 Museum Drive. 850-576-1636 or 850-575-8684 November 14 LARGO Guided Walking Tours, 1-3 pm. Put on your walking shoes to experience the stories and architecture of Heritage Village. Fee: $3. 11909-125th Street N., 727-582-2127 November 16 The Doodlebugs – A Getaway to the Past (Living History) Every third Saturday. 1 pm-3 pm. Program Fee 11909 - 125th Street N., 727582-2127 E-mail: November 16 ST. PETERSBURG Hearth’s Breath Flute Circle, 7:00 pm, Native Earth Cultural Center at Indian Stuff, 1064 4th Street N. 727-821-8186. November 19-21 PALATKA Battle of Horse Landing. (Living History) Held at Rodehever’s Boy’s Ranch, south of Palatka, FL on Highway 19. Friday is Living History Day and students from all schools in the area are invited to this educational event. Period battles take place on Sat. & Sun. 904-328-1281 E-mail: November 20 ST. PETERSBURG Pinellas Pioneer Settlement - Five Centuries of the Military. Military Impressions from 1501 to 2004. Weapons Demos; Military Encampments & Vendors. 2900 - 31st Street S. 727-866-6401 or 727- 893-7326 November 24-25 DADE CITY Thanksgiving Blue Grass Festival, all proceeds benefit SERTOMA YOUTH RANCH. Info - thanksgiving November 27-28 FERNANDINA BEACH Fort Clinch State Park - Fort Clinch Confederate Garrison and Living History. (See Oct. listing). November 25-December 5 KEY WEST Pirates in Paradise Festival. Relive the magical Golden Age of Sail as over 150 combative stuntmen, historic re-enactors and improvisational actors invade Key West and its Historic Seaport. Two weeks of pure piratical escapades for both young and old alike, including Pirate Invasions & Tall Ship Sea Battles, Village Market & Sea Shanty Songfest, Literature & the Sea Symposium, Maritime Art Exhibits, Scavenger Hunts, Living History Pirate Encampments and Fight Circles. 305-296-9694 November 27 TAMPA MOSI & Color Me Mine - (pottery painting and pizza party) 11:30 a.m. Kids and adults will enjoy pizza and sodas while painting a selected pottery item. Six projects from which to choose. Cost includes one item, paint instruction, and the pizza party. Fees: MOSI members $27, nonmembers $30. November 28 MOSI - “Whodunit? The Science of Solving Crime.” DNA profiling, fingerprinting, firearm identification, forensic anthropology, pathology, and evidence collection are just a few of the methods and technologies examined in “Whodunit?” Guests will investigate a crime scene at the Memory Diner, then collect, analyze, and synthesize data at hands-on crime lab stations to evaluate the guilt or innocence of various suspects. 4801 E Fowler Ave. 813-987-6313 E-mail:

November 14 VERO BEACH McKee Botanical Garden - Old Florida Cookout, 4 - 6:30 pm. Celebrate the history of McKee Botanical Garden by enjoying a classic “Old Florida Cookout” on Nov. 14 at the historic Spanish Kitchen and Hall of Giants. Bluegrass music, storytelling, Florida critters, cowboys, gardening, and other events to honor McKee and Indian River County’s fascinating and historic cultural heritage. Cost is $30 adults; $5 kids. Seating limited; RSVP. Benefits children’s educational programming at the Garden. 350 U.S. Highway One. 772-794-0601 November 17 DELRAY BEACH The Making of A Geisha: Lecture and Optional Dinner Anthropologist and author Liza Dalby will speak of Kyoto’s modern-day geisha and her fieldwork experiences among them. Slides and video will present an insider’s view of Kyoto’s geisha and maiko. Open 5:45 pm - 6 pm. Bento Dinner ($18) -7:30 pm Lecture. Advance tickets required. - Member lecture tickets $5. Non-member lecture tickets $7. E-mail; Conact: Reiko Nishioka or Sharon Friedheim. 561-495-0233, Ext. 225.




December 11 ST. PETERSBURG Pinellas Pioneer Settlement -Christmas Jamboree. Crafts & Music. 2900 - 31st Street S. 727-866-6401 or 727- 893-7326 December 21 DELRAY BEACH Morikami Museum (Exhibit) Mr. & Mrs. Joel Rosen Doll Exhibit Masterfully crafted Japanese dolls that are seldom playthings. 561-495-0233

St. Augustine Lighthouse & Museum Site of Florida’s First Lighthouse

(see centerfold story)

December (All Month) DELRAY BEACH Morikami Museum (Exhibit) Sharaku was a master of the ukiyo-e woodblock print whose known body of work dates only from a 10-month period between 1794-5, and whose personal life remains a mystery. His portraits of kabuki actors are recognized the world over. Organized by Japan Foundation. Thru March 13, 2005 Japanese Armor of the 16th and 17th Centuries (Exhibit) Armor of the bushi, or samurai, underwent a profound change in the 16th century with the introduction of the firearm from the West. This exhibition draws from several private collections in South Florida, and explores a segment of Japanese society during a period of history that continues to fascinate. Free with paid admission. 561-495-0233 December 1-2 TAMPA MOSI- Adult Gingerbread House Class. 6:00 pm. Fees: $36 MOSI members, $40 nonmembers. December 3 MOSI - Enchanted Holiday Dinner for groups of 10 - 50 for a night of food, cheer and entertainment. Reservations. & December 7 MOSI & Color Me Mine pottery painting and pizza party. 6 p.m. Kids and adults will enjoy pizza and sodas while painting a selected pottery item. Six projects from which to choose. Cost includes one item, paint instruction, and the pizza party. Fees: MOSI members $27, nonmembers $30. 4801 E Fowler Ave. 813-987-6313 E-mail: December 3-5 TALLAHASSEE Battle at Sneads Florida. Saturday and Sunday battles. Ladies tea Saturday morning. Christmas parade. Lake Seminole Park. Take I-10 through Tallahassee to exit #253. No contact info available. December 11 SARASOTA Crowley Museum & Nature Center Pioneer Days. Hayrides, blacksmithing, historic displays & more. If you know a pioneer era craft and would like to participate in our Pioneer Days, please contact the Program Director. 16405 Myakka Road. 941-322-1000

In 1565, Spanish settlers erected a wooden watchtower at the inlet to St. Augustine. From the tower, sentries warned of enemy vessels and guided supply ships through the treacherous waters of the shallow harbor. Called “”crazy banks,” the ever shifting sands were the dread of all who sailed to the nation’s oldest city. On March 16, 1824, the tower officially became Florida’s first lighthouse. By 1870, erosion threatened the tower with collapse. The current light tower replaced the “old Spanish lighthouse” in 1875. A brick lightkeeper’s house was added and it was occupied by lightkeepers and their families until 1955. The lightkeeper’s house was destroyed by fire in 1970. In 1980, the Junior League of St. Augustine began a 15 year campaign to restore both the house and the tower to their Victorian splendor. Today the St. Augustine Light remains an active aid to navigation. The original Fresnel lens, beams 19 nautical miles, as it turns. The tower is 165 feet tall. Climb the 219 steps to the top for a breathtaking view of St. Augustine and the beaches. Open daily, the museum is located at A1A South, 1 mile left at Red Cox Drive across from the Alligator Farm at: 81 Lighthouse Avenue. 904-829-0745. 31

The goal of this magazine is to support Florida’s wonderful historic preservation & education programs. Submit your events, exhibits, and story ideas to: The Florida

Frontier Gazette

welcomes the following Community Spirit Partners American Victory Mariners Memorial and Museum Ship 705 Channelside Drive, Berth 271 Tampa, FL 33602 813-228-8766 American Waterski Educational Foundation 1251 Holy Cow Road, Polk City, FL 33868 863-324-2472 www.waterskihalloffame Collier County Museum 3301 Tamiami Trail East, Naples, FL 34112 941-774-8476 Dunedin Historical Society & Museum 349 Main Street, Dunedin, FL 34697 727-736-1176 Florida Museum of Natural History SW 34th St. & Hull Rd. Gainesville FL 32611 352-846-2000

Native Earth Cultural Center at Indian Stuff 1064 4th Street N, St. Petersburg, FL 33701 727-821-8186 Panama Canal Museum 7985 113th Street, Suite 100,Seminole, FL 33772 727-394-9338 Past Tymes (Living History Educators) 745 N.E. 117 St., Biscayne Park, FL 33161 305-895-7317 The Pier Aquarium 800 2nd Avenue NE, St. Petersburg, FL 33701 727-895-7437 Randell Research Center PO Box 608, Pineland, FL 33945 239-283-2062.

Historic Florida Militia, (Living History Groups) 42 Spanish Street, St. Augustine, FL 32084 904-829-9792

Sacred Lands Preservation & Education, Inc. 1620 Park Street N. St. Petersburg, FL 33710 727-347-0354

Matheson Museum 513 E. University Ave., Gainesville, FL 32601 352-378-2280

Tampa Bay History Center 225 S. Franklin Street, Tampa, FL 33602 813-228-0097

Hold onto your Roof!

Try this: Lay a piece of paper on a flat counter top and blow across it. You’ll notice that the paper begins to flutter as though it wants to rise. Wind across a flat surface causes a kind of air foil to develop, similar to the wing of an airplane. The motion of the air produces low pressure on the top surface of the paper and it will begin to lift. Certain angles on a pitched flat surface, such as a roof, will increase this effect. 32

The Florida Frontier Gazette’s staff was awed by the amazing exhibits in the South Florida Hall, Fossil Hall, and the Butterfly exhibit at Powell Hall, Florida Museum of Natural History in Gainesville, Florida.

Florida Frontier Gazette Vol 4 No 1  

Where Old news is Good News! Gators! Hurricanes! Pirates! Florida, ya gotta love it!

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