North and South 2/5/15

It’s COLD on our favorite island, and there’s plenty of snow . . . a perfect weekend for Winter Festival!

Oh man!  I sure wish I was going to be there!

Oh man! I sure wish I was going to be there!  You haven’t lived until you’ve snow-bowled!

Beautiful island sunset a couple of mornings ago.  (Photo: Clark Bloswick)

Beautiful island sunset a couple of evenings ago. (Photo: Clark Bloswick)

This panoramic view makes me want to put on a few more layers of clothing and go buy plane tickets!

This panoramic view makes me want to put on a few more layers of clothing and go buy plane tickets!  (Photo: Greg Main)

A new stop sign up at St. Anne's Cemetery.  (Photo: Josh Carley)

A new stop sign up at St. Anne’s Cemetery. (Photo: Josh Carley)

In Town!!  Robert McGreevy photographed this spectacular Bald Eagle hanging on in the Cottenwood Tree on Benjamin Hill.

In town!! Robert McGreevy photographed this spectacular Bald Eagle hanging out in a Cottonwood tree on Benjamin Hill.

Eerie sky and a lonely ship light under the Mackinac Bridge.  (Photo: Josh Carley)

Stormy sky and a lonely ship light under the Mackinac Bridge. (Photo: Josh Carley)

To all my buddies on the island . . . . share photos of the weekend festivities, please!

MEANWHILE – BACK IN FLORIDA – A LITTLE HISTORY LESSON

Our weather has been all over the place – warm, cool, rainy, sunny, windy – in other words, winter in the Sunshine State.

Ted and I went exploring again last Sunday afternoon and found Bulow Plantation Ruins Historic State Park just a few miles from our house.

It seems that back in the early 1800’s settlers in Florida were establishing plantations on lands that the Seminole Indians believed to be theirs.  In 1821 Major Charles Wilhelm Bulow acquired 4,675 acres of wilderness, and – using slave labor – cleared 2,200 aces and planted sugar cane, cotton, rice and indigo.  Major Bulow died at age 44, and left everything to his only son, John, who increased the plantation’s production and prosperity until the outbreak of the Second Seminole War.

John Bulow didn’t agree with the U.S. government’s intentions to send the Seminoles to reservations west of the Mississippi, and he fired upon the State Militia, led by Major Benjamin Putnam,  as they entered his property.  Bulow was taken prisoner, but after a brief campaign against the Indians, Major Putnam’s command relocated to St. Augustine and allowed Bulow to go free.  Bulow realized the Indians were becoming more hostile, so he and his slaves abandoned the plantation and followed the troops northward.

Shortly after the plantation was abandoned, the Seminoles burned “Bulowville” and other plantations in the area.  Bulow died in St. Augustine at the age of 26.

The shady walk through the plantation grounds to the burned ruins of the sugar mill.

The shady walk through the plantation grounds to the burned ruins of the sugar mill.

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All that is left today of this plantation are the coquina ruins of the sugar mill, several wells, a spring house and the crumbling foundation of the mansion.

All that is left today of this plantation are the coquina ruins of the sugar mill, several wells, a spring house and the crumbling foundation of the mansion.

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The cleared fields and rice paddies have been reclaimed by the forest, and the area looks much as it did when it belonged to the Seminoles.

The cleared fields and rice paddies have been reclaimed by the forest, and the area looks much as it did when it belonged to the Seminoles.

A few days later I rode with Ted to Fort Matanzas National Monument  – south of St. Augustine – where he picked up an application to volunteer at the fort Visitors Center.  Ted’s been studying up on Florida history ever since we arrived, and with his years of experience in the Visitors Center at Fort Mackinac, I’m pretty sure they’ll find something for him to do!

Y’all have a great weekend!

God bless

 

9 thoughts on “North and South 2/5/15

  1. So glad that you two are getting into the history of the area. I love to learn about the past so thank you for sharing. Ted will be an asset to the Visitors’ Center.

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  2. Love the history. We;d be checking out local history in our new home area if we ever move. . . not anytime soon. Can’t thank Clark Bloswick and you enough for sharing his photos. Love his choice of perspectives. Can’t wait to see Winter Festival photos!

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  3. Thank you for the history lesson Brenda (history was my favorite subject in school). Just watched “Sons of Liberty” on TV which I thought should have continued instead of just being a 6 hour show. Loved it.
    Ted should have no problem getting to work at the visitors center, after all he has plenty of experience. 🙂 Good Luck Ted.
    Me..I’m counting down the days till Spring 😉

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  4. OK…2 things:
    1. Eeeek!!! I LOVE bald eagles!
    2. Now that you two are officially Floridians, you have GOT to read “A Land Remembered”. One of my Top Ten Favorite Books. Wonderful history lesson on early settlers in Florida. It will stick with you, and you will enjoy it soooo much.

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    • MJ!
      Eeeeekkk – I love bald eagles too!
      And double Eekkk! I’ve read A Land Remembered TWICE! Absolutely in my top 10 favorite books ever ! Just read it for the second time last summer. When we walk through our nature preserve I can just FEEL those wild cattle looking at me through the bushes.

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  5. Brenda,

    If (When) we come to Florida, will you take us to the sugar mill? That is, if there no hills to climb. I never tire of history.

    Way to go, Ted. If they don’t let you volunteer, they’ll be missing out. You can tell them that’s what I said.

    Always like the Mackinac Island pictures.

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    • Just get down here, Lowell. We’ll show you all the history you can take. And guess what. To get to Fort Mantanzas, you have to take a ferry!!

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