Petals plucked from sunny climes


Material Information

Petals plucked from sunny climes
Series Title:
Bicentennial Floridiana facsimile series
Physical Description:
xxxiv, 495, 12 p., 5 leaves of plates (1 folded) : ill. ; 19 cm.
Brooks, Abbie M
University Presses of Florida
Place of Publication:
Publication Date:
A facsim. reproduction of the 1880 ed. -- with an introd. and index by Richard A. Martin.


Subjects / Keywords:
Description and travel -- Florida   ( lcsh )
Description and travel -- Cuba   ( lcsh )
bibliography   ( marcgt )
non-fiction   ( marcgt )
Spatial Coverage:


Includes bibliographical references and indexes.
General Note:
"A University of Florida book."
General Note:
Photoreprint ed. of the ed. printed for the author by Southern Methodist Pub. House, Nashville.
Statement of Responsibility:
by Silvia Sunshine i.e. A.M. Brooks.

Record Information

Source Institution:
University Press of Florida
Holding Location:
University Press of Florida
Rights Management:
Copyright by the Board of Regents of the State of Florida. This work is licensed under a modified Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License. To view a copy of this license, visit You are free to electronically copy, distribute, and transmit this work if you attribute authorship. However, all printing rights are reserved by the University Press of Florida ( Please contact UPF for information about how to obtain copies of the work for print distribution. You must attribute the work in the manner specified by the author or licensor (but not in any way that suggests that they endorse you or your use of the work). For any reuse or distribution, you must make clear to others the license terms of this work. Any of the above conditions can be waived if you get permission from the University Press of Florida. Nothing in this license impairs or restricts the author's moral rights.
Resource Identifier:
oclc - 02527356
lccn - 76010700
isbn - 0813004144
lcc - F316 .B872 1976
ddc - 917.59/04/6
System ID:

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BY Richard A. Martin.


A University of Florida Book.
The University Presses of Florida.
Gainesville 1976.

published under the sponsorship of the
SAMUEL PROCTOR, General Editor.


All rights reserved.


Library of Congress Cataloging in Publication Data
Brooks, Abbie M.
Petals plucked from sunny climes.
(Bicentennial Floridiana facsimile series)
"A University of Florida book."
Photoreprint ed. of the ed. printed for the author
by Southern Methodist Pub. House, Nashville.
Includes bibliographical references and indexes.
1. Florida-Description and travel-1865-1950.
2. Cuba-Description and travel. I. Title. II. Series.
F316.B872 1976 917.59'04'6 76-10700
ISBN 0-8130-0414-4


Governor Reubin O'D. Askew, Honorary Chairman
Lieutenant Governor J. H. Williams, Chairman
Harold W. Stayman, Jr., Vice Chairman
William R. Adams, Executive Director

Dick J. Batchelor, Orlando
Johnnie Ruth Clarke, St. Petersburg
A. H. "Gus" Craig, St. Augustine
James J. Gardener, Fort Lauderdale
Jim Glisson, Tavares
Mattox Hair, Jacksonville
Thomas L. Hazouri, Jacksonville
Ney C. Landrum, Tallahassee
Mrs. Raymond Mason, Jacksonville
Carl C. Mertins, Jr., Pensacola
Charles E. Perry, Miami
W. E. Potter, Orlando
F. Blair Reeves, Gainesville
Richard R. Renick, Coral Gables
Jane W. Robinson, Cocoa
Mrs. Robert L. Shevin, Tallahassee
Don Shoemaker, Miami
Mary L. Singleton, Jacksonville
Bruce A. Smathers, Tallahassee
Alan Trask, Fort Meade

vi Bicentennial Commission.

Edward J. Trombetta, Tallahassee
Ralph D. Turlington, Tallahassee
William S. Turnbull, Orlando
Robert Williams, Tallahassee
Lori Wilson, Merritt Island


A NONYMITY seems to have been almost a fetish
with Abbie M. Brooks, alias Silvia Sunshine, au-
thoress of Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes, which is
being published as one of the volumes in the Bicenten-
nial Floridiana Facsimile Series. So complete is the mys-
tery of her background and the incidents of her life, that
Richard A. Martin, who has written the introduction to
this facsimile edition, after much diligent research was
able to find almost nothing at all about Abbie M. Brooks.
It is not known whether she was a professional writer or
a journalist, where she was born, or anything about her
education or her personal life. The wall of mystery which
she built in the nineteenth century remains intact to the
present time. That she was something of a traveler is
suggested by her writing; she obviously spent time both
in Cuba and in Spain. She worked in the Archives of the
Indies in Seville, Spain, where she studied original docu-
ments covering Florida history from the 1500s to the
beginning of the nineteenth century. Assisted by an ar-
chives employee, she translated many of these documents,
and later published some of these in a book entitled The
Unwritten History of Old St. Augustine. Many of Miss
Brooks' original transcripts are in the Library of Congress.

Obviously Abbie Brooks lived and worked in Florida,
and traveled throughout the state. How else could she
have written a travel book as comprehensive as Petals
Plucked from Sunny Climes without having visited the
scenes which she describes? She could not have written
so personally about people without observation. Petals
conducts the reader on a tour of Florida, from Fernan-
dina south to Key West, and then along the Gulf Coast
into the Florida Panhandle and on to Pensacola. Miss
Brooks obviously had charted this route herself. How
she traveled or when is not known. Whether it was one
continuous trip, or whether she had visited different
places at different times is not revealed. There is no mys-
tery about the fact that Miss Brooks saw the places which
she describes, and she observed the people whom she
writes about. She had an eye for the colorful and the
unusual; she visited out-of-the-way places like cracker
cabins and a cigar factory in Key West; she obviously
had sailed on an Oklawaha River steamboat. Miss
Brooks lived for a time in St. Augustine; her book is filled
with many descriptive passages of that ancient city.
If we do not know very much of Miss Brooks as a
person, we do know her as a writer. In his introduction,
Richard Martin notes, "though she does not always wield
an incisive pen, she frequently demonstrates a jour-
nalist's mastery for observing detail and communicating
the sense of it with a minimum of words." According to
him, Petals has "enduring value"; Martin ranks it "among
the classics of its kind in Florida literature." It was one
of the many travel books about Florida published during
the second half of the nineteenth century, particularly




in the years after the Civil War. The New South had
come into being during the postwar era. This was also
the time when Florida was "rediscovered." The new dis-
coverers were for the most part wealthy northerners who
looked upon Florida as a new kind of Eden-sunshiny
days, blue skies, tropical fruits and flowers, white sand
beaches, and lush scenery. Even before the Civil War, at
a time when tuberculosis and consumption claimed many
lives, affluent northerners came to Florida, hoping to re-
gain their health and prolong their lives. Jacksonville
and St. Augustine were the Meccas for these visitors.
Celebrities like Robert E. Lee, Ulysses S. Grant, Mary
Todd Lincoln, and Presidents Chester Arthur and Grover
Cleveland toured Florida. Harriet Beecher Stowe lived
with her family in Mandarin on the St. Johns River, not
far from Jacksonville, and she described the years in
Florida as among the happiest of her life. Later, mil-
lionaires like Henry Morrison Flagler, using both wealth
and creative genius, built great resorts like Palm Beach,
with lavish hotels and private residences for visitors.
Travel and guide books were in demand. Some, such
as Florida: Its Scenery, Climate, and History, by Sid-
ney Lanier, were commissioned by a railroad. Others,
like Rufus King Sewall's Sketches of St. Augustine, were
subsidized by owners of popular tourist hotels. Besides
the railroad companies, promoters, and developers, who
sent out printed matter designed to sell land to prospec-
tive settlers, many books, such as Petals Plucked from
Sunny Climes, appeared under private auspices. Interest
in Florida was widespread and growing, and the sales
of these books, pamphlets, and descriptive articles were



good. Americans had expressed a curiosity about Florida;
writers like Abbie Brooks helped to fulfill that need.
Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes is one of the twenty-
five, rare, out-of-print volumes being republished by the
Florida Bicentennial Commission. This series of fac-
similes, covering all periods of Florida's long and rich
history, is part of the Commission's research and pub-
lications program. Each of the facsimile volumes includes
an introduction written by a well-known authority in
Florida history. These facsimiles, published by the Uni-
versity Presses of Florida, Gainesville, are available at
moderate prices for libraries, scholars, researchers, and
all those interested in Florida's past.
The twenty-seven-member Florida Bicentennial Com-
mission was created by the state legislature in 1970 to
plan Florida's participation in the celebration of the two
hundredth anniversary of the American Revolution. Gov-
ernor Reubin O'D. Askew serves as honorary chairman
of the Commission. Members of the legislature, represen-
tatives of state agencies, and ten public members ap-
pointed by the governor make up the Commission. Ex-
ecutive offices are in Tallahassee.
Richard A. Martin, a native of New York, was a grad-
uate of the University of Florida and a former teacher in
Marion County public schools. He has written several
books on Jacksonville and Florida. These include The
City Makers; St. Luke's Hospital: A Century of Service;
Eternal Spring: Man's 10,000 Years of History at Flor-
ida's Silver Springs; and Consolidation: Jacksonville-
Duval County: The Dynamics of Urban Political Reform.
He edited the University of Florida's quadricentennial

Preface. xi

edition of T. Frederick Davis' History of Jacksonville.
He recently completed a history of Jacksonville in the
antebellum and Civil War period. Mr. Martin's articles
have appeared in newspapers, magazines, and profes-
sional and scholarly journals. He was the recipient, in
1974, of the Arthur W. Thompson Memorial Prize in
Florida history for an article on Jacksonville during the
Civil War, published that year in the Florida Historical

General Editor of the

University of Florida.


A MONG the many travel books written about Flor-
ida in the decades immediately following the Civil
War, Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes is perhaps one
of the most unusual, both for its own sake and for what
it tells us about its mysterious author, Miss Abbie M.
Brooks, who attempted to conceal her identity behind
the pseudonym of Silvia Sunshine. This clearly tongue-
in-cheek pen name might seem appropriate for a book of
this kind, but it also is likely that Miss Brooks used it for
serious reasons of her own related to a love of anonymity
that continues to protect her privacy even to this day.
Consequently, although this volume should be regarded
on its own merit as a delightful and informative reading
experience, let it be noted at the outset that one of its
most intriguing aspects relates to the author and her
later writing career. For Petals Plucked from Sunny
Climes was to have far more impact on its author than
on the readers of her day, who carried it by demand only
as far as a second edition. In preparing this volume, Miss
Brooks passed over a personal threshold that changed
the course of her life and led her into the production of
her greatest work as a pioneer of notable achievement in
the field of Florida historiography. But more about these


things later. For the moment, let us consider the book at
In the pages of her book Miss Brooks conducts the
reader on an itinerary that begins at Fernandina on
Amelia Island and makes a circuit of the peninsula and
the Panhandle, touching most of the important cities and
towns before moving overseas to Cuba. Although this is
an itinerary she may have taken several years to cover
on her own, she presents it as a single journey for the
reader, and her entertaining prose makes the trip seem
all too short in retrospect. One comes to enjoy vicariously,
through her gifted pen, that fascinating Florida of a cen-
tury ago in the colorful period immediately following
the Reconstruction Era when the state was entering what
might be called its Golden Age of Tourism. Most in-
teresting of all, perhaps, is the manner in which Miss
Brooks leads one on to adventure-for she was a traveler
in time as well as space; and as he relaxes and gives
himself up to the pleasant tour she conducts, he soon
realizes that she is guiding him through two dimensions:
Florida past and Florida present-Florida from the time
of its discovery to the Florida she explored more than
350 years later during the 1870s.
Although this was not a journey without pitfalls for
Miss Brooks-she made the same errors of fact and over-
sight common to authors of similar books written during
the period-her "ramble into the Early History of Flor-
ida" emerges as better than most attempts, and is re-
deemed by an obvious infatuation for the subject which
expresses itself in passages that are both colorful and
inspired.1 Best of all, Abbie Brooks is a good storyteller.



She has the gift of helping one see and hear the sights
and sounds she experienced; and she has a flair for
blending with her facts an occasionally humorous and
always interesting mixture of local lore and legend. As
the reader will discover, the "petals" Silvia Sunshine
plucks are from a garden of Florida anecdotes-some
honeyed with humor, others colored with drama, most
still sparkling with the nectar of life.
Is there anything in Florida literature to compare with
the story of Matt Driggers and what might be called
"The Great Mastodon Hunt," as told by Abbie Brooks
(84-86)? And what about the Indian legend of Silver
Springs Miss Brooks culls from another publication but
uses so effectively to embellish her own? Here are all the
elements of romantic tragedy in the tale of the handsome
young Indian chief, Chuleotah, and the beautiful Indian
princess, Weenonah, who died tragically for their love
and whose spirits not only haunt Silver Springs, but, in
the best tradition of Indian legends, account for their
present beauty: "'Now, mark those long, green filaments
of moss swaying to and fro to the motion of the
waves; these are the loosened braids of Weenonah's hair,
whose coronet gives us such beautiful coruscations,
sparkling and luminous, like diamonds of the deep. .
These relics of the devoted Indian girl are the charm of
Silver Springs"' (72-75).
When Miss Brooks describes the places she visits and
the people she encounters, her pages often come to life
with the clarity of photographic impressions. Though she
does not always wield an incisive pen, she frequently
demonstrates a journalist's mastery for observing detail



and communicating the sense of it with a minimum of
words. In fact, it is the journalist in Abbie Brooks, and
not the storyteller or historian-no matter how inspired-
which lends this volume its enduring value and ranks it
among classics of its kind in Florida literature.
For example, the steamboat wharf at Jacksonville
springs into being as Miss Brooks describes her experi-
ence in stepping ashore: "We are importuned and jostled
on every side by black boys, dray and carriage-drivers,
who worry us for our baggage, raising their whips with
the imperious movement of a major-general, and sud-
denly lowering them at half-mast when we say, No!
Then the officious hotel-runners, who scream in our ears
to patronize the houses that employ them, until we are
on the verge of desperation, and feel as though the
plagues of Egypt could not have been worse" (36).
Again, Miss Brooks manages to convey an unmistakable
and colorful impression of the cosmopolitan city Jack-
sonville had become, using just a few sentences and
phrases applied like brush strokes by a master artist:
"No costumes, however peculiar, appear out of style. .
Celebrities or millionaires walk the streets without creat-
ing any sensation. The Mormon, with his four or fourteen
wives, can come from Salt Lake City, take rooms at the
St. James, enter all the frequented resorts with the same
fear from molestation that a genuine Floridian feels of
being Ku-Kluxed. Any strong-minded market-woman can
don the Bloomer costume and peddle vegetables
verdant as the idea which prompted her to forsake the
flowing robes of her fair sisters, and assume the half
masculine attire of the sterner sex, without attracting any
more attention than the lazy loungers in the market-



house. The citizens are so accustomed to sight-seeing that
nothing would astonish them but an honest politician"
In a happily lengthy passage comparing northern and
southern varieties of poor folk, Miss Brooks opts for the
southern cracker because he "has a hearty welcome for
the stranger, which puts the blush of contempt upon
those claiming a much higher degree of civilization.
Everything the house contains is free to visitors .
Chickens are always killed for company, without count-
ing the number of Christmas holidays they have seen.
Your plate is piled with sweet potatoes and corn-dodger
bread, or ash-cake, to be washed down with strong cof-
fee. The old folks are very attentive; but where are
the children? Run away like wild rabbits. They are out
taking a view of the company. Watch, and you will soon
see curious little eyes looking through the cracks, or
slipping around the covers" (64-65).
Visiting a cigar factory in Key West, Miss Brooks can
speak volumes in a few sentences: "Upon the first floor
are seated eighty females, engaged in stripping tobacco
from the stems. Here mother and daughter work side by
side, the daughter earning five dollars per week on ac-
count of her more nimble fingers, and the mother three.
The daughter puffs a delicate cigarette, while the mother
smokes a huge cigar, it being considered a disgrace for
the young ladies to use-only cigarettes. Two hundred
and fifty men are occupied in one room upon the second
floor, all forming those cylindrical tubes through which
is to be drawn so much enjoyment in the present, while
a perfect abandon of all anxiety for the future is felt.
These operatives employ a reader, who reads aloud from



newspapers printed in Spanish, while they are working,
for which luxury each one bears his proportion of the ex-
pense. When any news favoring the cause of the [Cuban]
insurgents is read, the house echoes with shouting and
stamping of feet" (321).
One walks the sands of North Beach outside St. Augus-
tine, the streets of Pensacola and Havana; he is jostled
by the same tourists who crowd with her at the rails of
an Oklawaha River steamer, staring at Negro deckhands
leaping through the forest along the shore carrying burn-
ing brands to light the way for the vessel through the
pitch-black night. He bumps over rutted trails in a stage
coach, gets a first-hand view of seamen at work hauling
lines and canvas aboard a schooner bound for Cuba,
pokes through churches and cathedrals from Jackson-
ville and St. Augustine to Cienfuegos and Havana.
Miss Brooks provides her readers with a glimpse of the
celebrated Harriet Beecher Stowe nodding off to sleep
in a Jacksonville church, while her husband, Dr. Calvin
Stowe, preaches a sermon. One shares her amusement at
the false fire alarm raised by a visiting Catholic bishop
at St. Augustine, who, on rising early one Sabbath and
finding no one present at the cathedral to attend mass,
rang mightily on the bell with the result that the streets
were soon filled with people in various stages of dress
and undress. The reader tours a marmalade factory, wit-
nesses a cockfight, digs through ancient Indian mounds,
explores mighty forts, visits aging cemeteries, looks into
schools and classrooms of a century ago-and all along
the way hears stories dredged from local lore embellished
by the tidbits of early Florida history which so fascinate
this guide.



Although she has an occasional word of advice for
tourists who might follow in her footsteps, Miss Brooks
makes few concessions in this direction. In fact, she does
not seem to be very much in sympathy with the travelers
she meets along her way. At St. Augustine, for example,
she admires "what is left of the city gates, the most in-
teresting relic that remains from a walled city," describes
the architecture of the now gateless pillars as "arabesque
surmounted by a carved pomegranate," and observes
that "if a protection is not built around these pillars, the
hand of vandalism will soon have them destroyed, as so
many careless visitors are constantly chipping off frag-
ments" (198-99).
Her occasional description of tourists shows how little
human nature and the style of this particularly distinctive
class of travelers has changed, and at one point Miss
Brooks pauses to classify them as "the defiant, the en-
thusiastic, and the indifferent." Elaborating on these
definitions, Miss Brooks reserves her scorn for the latter:
"The indifferent tourist is an anomaly to everybody. Why
he ever thought of leaving home to travel, when with
his undemonstrative nature he appears so oblivious to all
scenes and sights around him, is an unsolved problem.
He maintains an unbroken reticence on every occasion,
the mantle of silence being thrown about all his move-
ments, while his general appearance evinces the same
amount of refinement as a polar bear, his perceptive
powers the acuteness of an oyster, his stupidity greater
than Balaam's saddle-animal" (209).
It becomes obvious, as one travels with Miss Brooks,
that her interest in the Florida of the tourist comes into
early conflict with the Florida of history. Not far into



her text Miss Brooks observes that "The early history of
Florida Territory being written in characters of blood
for years, it is considered both appropriate and interest-
ing to intersperse a sprinkling of historical facts in this
work, to the authenticity of which some now living can
testify" (90). But later she notes that "Many writers who
come to Florida [merely] copy an abstract of the most
interesting portions contained in the guide-books, be-
sides what they can hear, afterward filling up the inter-
stices from their imaginations" (154). As for herself, she
pauses while in St. Augustine to wonder at those who
inquire, "How do you kill time in that ancient city?" Her
answer: "To the historian, there is no spot so well adapted
to meditation on the past ." (208). Somewhere amidst
these statements the reader senses a growing interest in
Florida history that seems to be developing beyond the
ordinary, and is not surprised to see her delving beneath
the superficial and bringing forth source documents as
her infatuation with the past begins to assume a perhaps
greater importance than she originally intended. "We
look to the old Spaniards for information, but alas! they
are like the swamp cypress which the gray moss has
gathered over until its vitality has been absorbed-age
has taken away their vigor," she reports at one point
(154). And, as one will see from what is known of her
work after the publication of Petals, she was to do more
than merely complain about the "lacuna of a century and
a half" which she discovered in the Spanish source docu-
ments relating to early Florida history.2
Two periods of this history appealed most to Miss
Brooks. The first was the period of exploration and early
development and the events surrounding the founding



of Spanish St. Augustine and French Fort Caroline. The
second was the Seminole War. In treating the former,
Miss Brooks pauses frequently on her journey to highlight
relevant developments from earliest times and relate them
meaningfully to the places she is visiting. This use of
the remote past to illustrate Florida present, as she saw
it a century ago, tended to invest the state with an an-
tiquity most of her contemporaries were scarcely familiar
with, since Florida was then still largely a wilderness.
Her final "Ramble into the Early History of Florida"
summarized all she had learned of this early period and
was as good an introduction to the subject as any then
available. This interest is reflected in Miss Brooks' treat-
ment of St. Augustine, to which she devotes more effort
and space than any other single subject or place. In
fact, her concentration on so many aspects of St. Augus-
tine as she observed it during the late 1870s accounts in
large part for this book's enduring value and interest.
There can be no doubt that it was the early Spanish in-
fluence in the ancient city as she saw it-its Spanish-
speaking natives and traditions and its Old World archi-
tecture-that inspired her abiding interest in the larger
history of Florida.
Also developing as a major theme in this volume is
the Seminole War and the character of the Indians who
fought it. The author's fascination for Florida's Indians
is obvious throughout, and may relate to the fact that she
saw some western Indians at Fort Marion. Apparently
she was also present at an Indian festival at St. Augustine
in 1876. Describing her own thoughts on the latter oc-
casion, Miss Brooks says that during "the grand war-
dance of the season [which] came off after dark, when



prisoners were captured and treated with sham hostilities
... the mind of the imaginative could portray what would
be done in reality to a helpless captive in their power"
(192). Unfortunately, it is this darker side of the Indian
character Miss Brooks concentrates on most, sprinkling
her text with accounts of Seminole War murders, mas-
sacres, and atrocities (see 49-50, 99-100, 141-43, 241-
43, 334-38).
Equally as intriguing to Miss Brooks was the some-
times enigmatic character of Indian leaders like Osceola
and Coacoochee or Wild Cat, whose eloquence seemed
to transcend and contradict their reputed savagery.
Though she repeats the usual stories concerning these
celebrated Seminole chieftains, she succeeds in present-
ing them favorably as individuals, using their own words
to achieve a sympathetic effect. She quotes Osceola re-
acting to the Treaty of Payne's Landing: "There is little
more to be said. The people have agreed in council .
it is truth, and must not be broken. I speak; what I say
I will do; there remains nothing worthy of words. If the
hail rattles, let the flowers be crushed" (96). Again, when
Osceola is arrested, Miss Brooks savors his "native elo-
quence," sharing with her readers the Indian's defiance:
"The sun is overhead, I shall remember the hour; the
[Indian] Agent has his day, I will have mine" (97). As
for Coacoochee, the Wild Cat, she excuses his sins
against the white man with the observation that "war to
him was only a source of recreation" (151). But she also
gives his eloquence free rein, allowing him to speak at
length, as if pleading for all of his kind while he recounts
his bewilderment over the white man's duplicity and the
relentlessness of his encroachments (291-93). Finally,



Miss Brooks reveals her admiration for the audacity and
courage of the Indians, even in the midst of one of their
bloodiest excursions, the one against Indian Key, which
she rates as "among the boldest feats of the [Seminole]
war" (243).
As has been noted, despite her preoccupation with
such subjects, it was the personalities and events sur-
rounding the founding and development of St. Augustine
which appealed most to Miss Brooks, and which claimed
her primary attention. The reasons for this seem to relate
to an almost mystical empathy she developed for St.
Augustine and its blend of Old World and New, as well
as the frustrations she experienced on discovering that
"lacuna of a century and a half in its early history" which
obscured much that she wanted to know.3 In her intro-
ductory chapter on St. Augustine Miss Brooks observes:
"This point appears to be a favored place for the stimu-
lus of thought ... [and] inspiration. Daily we are
more impressed with the fact how treacherous are the
links which connect the chain of tradition in a country
where its earliest history is mingled with a record won-
derful as the champions of knight-errantry who figured
in the pages of romance" (154). Warming to her sub-
ject she conveys most clearly the mingled awe and frus-
tration she experienced in her enjoyment of the ancient
city and her initial exploration of its past:

We feel as though, in trying to describe this place, we were
hovering on the brink of uncertainty, and drifting along its
shores, not knowing where to land, that we might find the
stand-point to commence our task. It is here we realize a
kind of traditional flickering between the forgotten and neg-
lected past, shrouded in awful obscurity. Before the



forest-trees which covered the grounds upon which New York
City now stands were felled, St. Augustine was the seat of
power. ... It is here, as in no other place, that two forms of
civilization find a foothold .... This city is like ancient Rome,
with which many found fault while there, but, from some
kind of fascination, they always returned again.... During
the Spanish rule, it was a place of importance as a military
post, being the Government head-quarters .... What a strange
sensation steals over us to be awakened just before the old
cathedral bells have chimed twelve by the sound of musical
instruments, accompanied with singing, in a foreign tongue,
a song which has echoed through the same town for more
than three centuries! The language spoken by ... [some
of the oldest inhabitants] is supposed to have been identical
with that used in the Court of Spain before the days of Fer-
dinand and Isabella. It has the terseness of the French, with-
out the grandiloquence of the Spanish, being derived directly
from the Latin. The religion here is that which sprang
into existence during the Middle Ages. What a host of
past memories rise before us on every side as we walk its
narrow streets, overshadowed by mid-air balconies (159-66)!

It was that "brink of uncertainty," that "neglected past,
shrouded in awful obscurity," which led Abbie Brooks
into her most important work following publication of
Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes. And this brings us, at
last, to one of the most intriguing aspects of this book-
the mystery surrounding Miss Brooks herself.
Who was Abbie M. Brooks? Where was she born and
educated? What kind of background did she come from?
What happened to her later in life? Unfortunately, some
of the answers to these and other questions still evade
the researcher. But one has learned enough about Miss
Brooks to place her life and work in some kind of per-
spective for the reader-enough to hope that republica-



tion of this volume will stimulate a new interest in her,
possibly promoting the continuation of this tentative re-
search toward a more satisfactory conclusion. For, as
will be seen, the life and labors of Miss Brooks, particu-
larly in the field of Florida historiography, deserve at
least a definitive monograph.
The reader gets his first clue to the author's back-
ground in the preface to this volume, which suggests
that she may have been a professional writer, quite
possibly a journalist. Indeed, certain elements of her
style strongly suggest the latter. The preface shows also
that Miss Brooks probably came to Florida for reasons
of health, and that during the course of writing Petals
Plucked from Sunny Climes she was interrupted by oc-
casional lapses of illness. The text itself provides addi-
tional information-for example, the fact that Miss Brooks
launched her journey into Florida from Atlanta, although
whether she was living and working there, or merely
passing through from some other point of origin, cannot
be ascertained (17). It cannot be judged with any cer-
tainty when Miss Brooks made her journey to Florida, or,
for that matter, whether Petals was the product of one or
several journeys. Nor can one say when she may have
first visited the state or when she became interested in
its history, although she suggests herself that it was
an interest which developed in the course of her work
on this book. The book itself provides some leads for
answering these questions in the way Miss Brooks used
occasional contemporary dates. Some are presented like
entries from a diary and the text following them is not
enclosed in quotation marks, whereas datelines from
articles Miss Brooks uses are set in quotations. This sug-



gests that the diary-like entries are from her own notes,
and because they are dated between 1876 and 1878, it
is assumed this was the period when Miss Brooks first
visited Florida and did most of the work on her book
(see 209, 228). The final manuscript probably was sub-
mitted to her printer in 1879, the year of her copyright,
and this, of course, was followed by publication of the
first edition in 1880 (3, 4). A second and final edition
followed in 1885.4
When this investigation of Miss Brooks's background
first began there was reason to believe that some of her
papers were located either in the North Carolina Collec-
tion or in the Southern Historical Collection in the Uni-
versity of North Carolina Library at Chapel Hill. But an
examination of these facilities yielded "no trace of
Ms. Brooks" and not even a copy of her book, save on
microcards.5 Investigation of standard sources, including
the Library of Congress, revealed only one source men-
tioning Miss Brooks, and that simply a brief identification
of her as "an American writer, of the South."6
One other question occurred: did Miss Brooks have
any connection with Nashville or Tennessee? Was she
born or raised there; had she lived or worked in Nash-
ville where many periodicals and publishing houses were
located? Surely she had some link with that city, since
she chose to have her book privately printed there at the
Southern Methodist Publishing House. But neither the
records nor a history of that institution yielded any evi-
dence, and the Tennessee State Library and Archives
could offer no information either.
Miss Brook's extensive travels in Florida, combined
with her voyage to Cuba and leisurely exploration of that



island, leads one to wonder whether she might have been
independently wealthy-a question which occurs also
in respect to her later travels and apparently lengthy
visits in Spain. It appears that by the time Miss Brooks
completed the manuscript for this volume her interest in
early Florida history had transcended the ordinary. What
the volume at hand does not reveal, however, is how
this interest came to dominate her life, so much so that
she became a pioneer in Florida historiography and "the
first person since Buckingham Smith8 to reproduce from
the originals in Spain documents especially pertinent to
the history of Florida."9
It was an impressive accomplishment, but like her
work in Florida for Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes,
it is not known when she began her research into the
original documents, how long she labored at it, or when
she finished. It is known that she did go to the Archives
of the Indies at Seville, Spain, and remained there long
enough to make a study of original documents compre-
hensive enough to produce a substantial body of material
covering Florida history from 1500 to 1810. In this for-
midable and time-consuming undertaking she was as-
sisted by Sr. Don Antonio SuArez, an employee of the
archives, who was "especially familiar with the docu-
mentary history of Florida."10 Additional research may
also have been conducted in the archives at Madrid."'
According to Woodbury Lowery, a later scholar in the
field who discussed the project with both Miss Brooks
and Sudrez, the latter told him that the work in Seville
was carried out with Miss Brooks making transcriptions
of the original documents in her own hand "at the dic-
tation of Sr. SuArez, who read from the originals.""



These transcriptions were of documents which dealt ex-
clusively with Florida affairs, and, according to Lowery
-who examined them-were "entirely trustworthy, and
S. accurate transcription of the originals."13
As finally compiled, the collection of transcripts con-
sisted of five volumes, covering the following periods: I,
1500-1580; II, 1581-1620; III, 1621-1689; IV, 1690-1740;
and V, 1741-1810.14 On completion of this remarkable
work, Miss Brooks returned to the United States and, in
1899, she was living in St. Augustine and preparing to
publish a book based on the documents she had un-
earthed.15 What she did was to select representative
documents from the period 1565 to 1784, and with the
assistance of a Mrs. Annie Averette as translator, organize
these into a volume which was privately printed under
the title of The Unwritten History of Old St. Augustine.
But once again, as was the case with Petals Plucked from
Sunny Climes, Miss Brooks's penchant for personal an-
onymity makes it difficult to learn much about the cir-
cumstances surrounding the later publication. The Un-
written History carries neither the imprint of the printer
nor the place and date of publication! Miss Brooks
merely allows her readers the information on the title
page that The Unwritten History is based on documents
"Copied from the Spanish Archives in Seville, by Miss
A. M. Brooks and Translated by Mrs. Annie Averette."
The only evidence for a publication date is through a
presentation copy given to the Library of Congress by
the St. Augustine Institute of Science and Historical Soci-
ety, on February 20, 1909, which bears the legend, "Pre-
sented by the Author Miss A. M. Brooks," presumably
written in her own hand.16 However, several years earlier,



April 4, 1901, Miss Brooks sold her original transcripts
to the Library of Congress for three hundred dollars,
under accession number 134,17 although as early as 1893
advanced sheets of the books were published as columns
in the Florida Times-Union.8 There is still another clue
in the files of the Library of Congress Manuscript Divi-
sion, "a reference to 'a scrapbook of the 1900's' which
contained a translation sent from Spain by Miss Amanda
[sic] Brooks and printed in the [St. Augustine] News of
January 1902."19 This scanty and often conflicting evi-
dence suggests that The Unwritten History was in prep-
aration from 1899, and that it was published sometime
after 1901, when Miss Brooks sold her collection of
transcriptions, and prior to 1909, when the autographed
copy of the book was presented to the Library of Con-
Unlike Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes, which pro-
vided at least a few leads concerning the author, The
Unwritten History yields absolutely nothing about her,
save what is stated in a brief preface:

We [Abbie Brooks and Annie Averette] take pleasure in pre-
senting to our readers information connected with St. Augus-
tine never before published. It is comprised largely of reports
and letters to the King of Spain, much of it written by Pedro
Menendez himself, and contains decrees and letters from the
King to the Governor, Generals, and Officers having charge
of the Florida Provinces. It has been buried for over three
centuries in Seville, Spain. It is reliable, having been written
in old Spanish and guarded with care. It contains facts for
which many have sought in vain. The style in which it is
written is clear and comprehensive, without being diffuse or
overdrawn. It is the true history of our country.



Unfortunately, The Unwritten History contains no
supplementary commentary to bridge the various selec-
tions and place them in some kind of historical perspec-
tive. Annotations citing the location of the selections in
the Spanish archives are also omitted, as are the original
Spanish texts, thereby limiting the value of the work to
scholars.20 But Miss Brooks apparently intended the
volume for general readership, made no claim to scholar-
ship, and sought no special recognition for her work.
The Unwritten History opens with a royal decree of
King Philip II of Spain, authorizing certain expenditures
and procedures for the further settlement of Florida, and
is signed from "Bosque de Segovia, August 15, 1565." A
letter follows to the king from Pedro Menendez de Avil6s,
dated October 15, 1565, which describes the march
against Fort Caroline and the massacre of the French
garrison. The letter is especially interesting for the de-
tails Menendez includes concerning his personal leader-
ship and the part he played in the assault upon the fort.21
The final documents include correspondence between
the king at Madrid, written to the bishop of Cuba, San-
tiago Jose, dated August 4, 1773; and letters to the king
posted in 1784 from the governor of St. Augustine and
Nicholas Grenier, a commander of troops in Florida. The
two latter letters relate to military operations in north-
east Florida, between Fernandina and Jacksonville,
against outlaw bands who were reported to consist of
"men who have neither God nor law who are capable
of the greatest atrocities."22
Despite the reservations among scholars initially, Miss
Brooks's original transcripts and her published selections
in The Unwritten History achieved their purpose. They



bridged that lacuna of a century and a half which she
had found when she first explored Florida history in the
late 1870s, and they shed light at last on that "neglected
past, shrouded in awful obscurity" which had frustrated
her so during the preparation of Petals Plucked from
Sunny Climes (159). As one authority in the field ob-
served: "In a day when few such materials had been
transcribed, hers was a notable achievement, although
her work did not begin to compare either in quantity or
in quality with [Buckingham] Smith's .... Miss Brooks
did succeed, however, in giving a suggestion of the con-
tinuity of the Spanish colony [in Florida] by making
public this series of papers covering the years from the
founding to the late eighteenth century. In the absence
of any substantial, scholarly printed materials on the
Spanish regime as a whole, this questionable collection
served as a noteworthy addition to the historical litera-
ture of Florida."23 It was this kind of academic reserva-
tion which led Woodbury Lowery to examine the tran-
scripts and translations and to authenticate their accuracy
and reliability "in justice to Miss Brooks' work and in
order to remove any suspicions which their appearance
might at first awaken."24
In the sources the given name of Miss Brooks is given
variously as Abbie M., Amanda M., and Mary A.25 She
moved to St. Augustine in the late 1890s, she purchased
property at number 84 or 85 Charlotte Street, she lived
there until 1903 or 1904 and possibly longer.26 But even
this brief information concludes on a note of uncertainty,
and after that all traces of her vanish. Whatever her be-
ginning or her end, this much is certain. Florida made a
lasting impression on Abbie M. Brooks when she visited



the state to write Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes,
and she in turn has made an impact on the literature of
Florida and on its history. As the custodians of her orig-
inal transcripts at the Library of Congress noted in refer-
ence to her work, she was, indeed, "the remarkable Miss
Brooks."27 Now one may hope that her own neglected
past, shrouded in obscurity, will one day be illuminated
by a scholar who will be as equal to the challenge she
left behind as she was to the one she accepted and
triumphed over in her own time.


Jacksonville, Florida.


1. Silvia Sunshine (Abbie M. Brooks), Petals Plucked from
Sunny Climes, p. 16. Future citations to this facsimile will be by
page numbers inside parentheses within the text.
2. Woodbury Lowery, "The Spanish Settlements within the
Present Limits of the United States" (original MS), vol. 1, 1513-
1561, introduction (microfilm no. 141-A, P. K. Yonge Library of
Florida History, University of Florida, Gainesville.)
3. Lowery quotes Miss Brooks on this point in "The Spanish
4. This edition was also published privately, using the same
printer, Southern Methodist Publishing House, Nashville, Tenn.
5. H. G. Jones to Richard A. Martin, August 7, 1974. Mrs. R.
Royall Rice of Durham, N.C., also attempted to find some trace of
Miss Brooks in the Carolinas, without success.
6. Robert H. Land, chief, Reference Department, General Ref-
erence and Bibliography Division, Library of Congress, to Richard
A. Martin, October 3, 1974. The reference is from William Cush-
ing, Initials and Pseudonyms: A Dictionary of Literary Disguises
(New York, Crowell, 1885), p. 366.



7. Mrs. Maxine Carnahan, assistant reference librarian, Ten-
nessee State Library and Archives, to Richard A. Martin, March
25, 1975; Since 1789: The Story of the Methodist Publishing House
(Nashville, Abingdon Press, 1964); Charles Allen Madison, Book
Publishing in America (New York, McGraw-Hill, 1966). The
Methodist Publishing House conducted a search of its records,
but found no mention of Miss Brooks.
8. Buckingham Smith, born in 1810 on Cumberland Island,
reared at St. Augustine, educated at Harvard, was a Florida legis-
later who held diplomatic posts in Mexico and Spain during the
1850s, which enabled him to devote himself to "the passion of his
life, the study of archeology and Indian philology,' and to con-
duct important research into the colonial history of Louisiana and
Florida. Among his published works, most of them privately
printed in limited editions, were translations of de Vaca and de
Soto, as well as numerous monographs bearing on Indian philology
and the history of the early Spanish periods in Mexico and Florida.
See the biographical sketch in Rowland H. Merrick, Memoirs of
Florida (Atlanta, 1902), p. 683.
9. Ray E. Held, "Spanish Florida in American Historiography,
1821-1921" (Ph.D. dissertation, University of Florida, 1955), p.
10. Lowery, "The Spanish Settlements."
11. Jacqueline Bearden, St. Augustine Historical Society, to
Richard A. Martin, September 20, 1974. Miss Bearden reports
several clippings from the Florida Times-Union in the Society's
possession, which reproduce some of these transcriptions in trans-
lation, with the editorial note that they are "as copied from the
'Spanish archives of San Augustin' at Seville and Madrid [italics
added] by Miss A. M. Brooks and furnished from her compilations
for the Times-Union." This is the only mention of Madrid in the
sources. Unfortunately, only one of the clippings reported had a
date penned on it-January 8, 1893. This appears to be an error,
however, since a careful search of the paper on that and surround-
ing dates, and other years, failed to locate any of the columns. As
for the amount of time Miss Brooks may have spent on her re-
searches in Spain, the sources are silent. We do not learn whether
she conducted the research continuously, possibly while living
temporarily in Spain, or whether the work was accomplished over
a period of many years during any number of visits abroad. This
much is certain: merely searching through the archives at Seville
and Madrid for documents related exclusively to Florida in the
period 1500-1810 would have consumed a great deal of time, to
say nothing of the work of transcribing these documents by the
tedious method described by Lowery.
12. Lowery, "The Spanish Settlements."



13. Ibid.
14. Held, "Spanish Florida in American Historiography," p.
15. Bearden to Martin, September 20, 1974.
16. John G. Broderick, assistant chief, Library of Congress
Manuscript Division, to Richard A. Martin, September 24, 1974.
17. Ibid. The original transcripts are now housed "unbound,
in two manuscript containers," at the Library of Congress, accord-
ing to Broderick.
18. Bearden to Martin, September 20, 1974. As reported in
note 11, 1893 may not be the correct date.
19. Broderick to Martin, September 24, 1974. It was not pos-
sible to trace this article, and the whereabouts of the scrapbook,
if it still exists, is not known.
20. The original Brooks transcripts, now in the Library of Con-
gress, are chronologically arranged with a transcript of each docu-
ment filed with its translation.
21. Unwritten History, pp. 1-15.
22. Ibid., pp. 226-31.
23. Held, "Spanish Florida in American Historiography," pp.
24. Lowery, "The Spanish Settlements."
25. Abbie is the most commonly used. The Library of Congress
reports Amanda once, and Lowery refers to the "Mary A. Brooks
Collection" of transcripts.
26. Bearden to Martin, September 20, 1974, states: "In the
1899 St. Augustine Directory, Miss A. Brooks is listed as living at
85 Charlotte Street. Miss Brooks once owned the property
where our Library now stands at 271 Charlotte Street. She bought
it from a Dr. C. P. Carver. We are not sure of the date but Dr.
Carver bought it in 1884. Miss Brooks probably bought it some-
time after 1899. In 1903 Miss Brooks sold the property to William
Murray. In the 1904 Directory Miss A. Brooks is listed as living
at 84 Charlotte Street [but] the address may be in error also
since it is [listed as number] 85 [in the 1899 Directory] These
listings may not be Abbie M. "Although all this seems rather un-
certain, the Society reports definitely that "we have a photograph
of Miss Brooks circa 1900."
27. Broderick to Martin, September 24, 1974.







Bit} luustrations.


Entered, according to Act of Congress, in the year 1879, by
in the Office of the Librarian of Congress, at Washington.










T HIS book contains a brief account of the early settle-
ment of Florida, and some of its Indian conflicts,
together with many amusing incidents connected with its
present history; also a new illustration, prepared expressly
for this work-the whole being a collection of travels, and
what is to be seen in various portions of Florida, Key
West, and Cuba; with a Gazetteer and Florida Guide-book
attached, designed for the use of tourists and settlers.

epj i-~gbrl E"";s~PI:~


W RITING, like other employment, furnishes a reward
to those who are fond of it-elevates the mind to a
higher and happier state of enjoyment than merely grasp-
ing for earthly treasure, a desire to discover something beau-
tiful in our surroundings, a nobility of character in mankind,
a grandeur in all God's works.
My travels, both in Florida and Cuba, when not suffer-
ing from sickness, were an uninterrupted source of pleas-
ure and entertainment, made thus by the smiles of friend-
ship, intercourse among kind-hearted people, combined with
the luscious fruits and delightful scenery by which I was al-
most constantly surrounded.
In arranging the historical portion of this work, I have
endeavored to sift conflicting events, at all times retaining
those which were the most tangible, and rejecting many
which have been received by superficial observers as con-
sistent truths.
I shall feel amply rewarded if any sad, sensitive heart,
wounded in life's struggles, is cheered even for awhile in
perusing these pages, or the consumptive invalid entertained
with a pleasanter potion than his cod-liver and gloomy fore-
bodings of future ill.


11 1 .



CHAPTER I............................................17
Adieu to Atlanta and arrival in Macon-Early settlement of Savan-
nah by General Oglethorpe-Met by the Yamacraw Indians with pres-
ents-Death of Count Pulaski-Bonaventure Cemetery-The inland
route to Florida-Pass St. Simon's Island-Wesley visits Frederica
to establish his faith- Cumberland Island, the home of Nathanael
Greene Olives- The scuppernong vine- Dungenness, the burial-
place of Light-Horse Harry Lee-General Robert E. Lee visits
the grave of his father-Amelia Island-Taken by filibusters-Their
surrender--Fine beach and light-house -The turtle Sea-shells-
God's treasures-A resting-place for the weary.
CHAPTER II............................................28
Fate of the Spanish galleons-St. John's Bar and River-General re-
marks on Florida-Lumber-mills-Jacksonville-Grumblers-The in-
valid-Churches-Dr. Stowe preaches in the Methodist church-Mrs.
Harriet Stowe goes to sleep-Sermon by a colored brudder-Journal-
ism-Moncrief Springs-The invincibility of boarding-house keepers-
The cemetery-Too much delay with invalids before coming to Florida.
CHAPTER III..................................6..... A6
Jacksonville Agricultural Association, and its advantages-Exhibits
of wine, perfume, and fruits-Industries of the ladies-Yachts-Gen-
eral Spinner-Steamer Dictator-Nimbus on the river-Mandarin-
Employment of its inhabitants-Murder of Mr. Hartley by Indians-
Weariness of war by the settlers-Fanciful names given to towns-
Hibernia and Magnolia-Green Cove Springs-Fort at Picolata-Pilat-
ka-Putnam House-The Herald, edited by Alligator Pratt-Colonel
Harte's orange-grove-The Catholic Bishop as sexton-Ocklawaha
CHAPTER IV.........................................55
No fossilized Spaniards on the Ocklawaha-Scenery on its banks-
Thick growth of timber-Passengers amuse themselves killing alliga-
tors-Climbing asters-Air-plants-Water-lily-An affectionate meet-
ing at Orange Springs-The deaf lady-Pleasure-riding in a cracker-
cart-Northern and Southern crackers-March of improvement-Make
fastl-Wooding up-Passengers take a walk-Night on the water-
Surrounded by thickets-Our flame-lit craft moves on with its pillar
of fire-Who I-Plutonic regions-Pyrotechnic displays.
CHAPTER V ...........................................69
Incident as we enter Silver Springs-A gentleman loses his grinders
-The Mirror of Dianht-Sunset-A beautiful legend of the Princess

10 Contents.

Weenonah-A scientific description by Prof. J. Le Conte-Vicinity of
the springs-Improvements-Description of Ocala-Impressions of
DeSoto-Public Square-Contented, hospitable people-Marion county
the back-bone of the State-Matt. Driggers and his neighbors go on a
mastodon hunt-Lakes and long prairie-grass above Silver Springs--
The man who wanted a sheriff to marry him-Leesburg and its im-
provements-A dredging-boat mistaken for a cook-stove-Indian trails
-Historic relics-Lake Duuhamn-Okahumkee-The Ocklawaha his-
toric ground.
CHAPTER VI........................................90
Florida during the Indian war-Cumbersome movements of the troops
-Cause of the war-Treaty of Payne's Landing-Birthplace of Osce-
ola-Lives with his mother in Okefinokee Swamp-Afterward in the
Big Swamp-Osceola expresses opposition to the" treaty "-Jumper
unwilling to go West-Charlie Emaltha-Plea for remaining-Indian
,oetry-Appearance of Osceola-Hostility toward the survey force-
Does not favor immigrating-Decision of Micanopy-Osceola in irons
at Fort King-Sullen, then penitent-First hostile demoristiation
from the Indians-Murder of Private Dalton-Killing of Charlie
Emaltha--Osceola seeks revenge in the assassination of General
Thompson-Dade Massacre-Micanopy fires the first gun-More than
one hundred whites killed-Depredations of daily occurrence-Battle
of Withlacoochee-Captain Ellis, of Gainesville-Capture of Osceola
by General Jessup-Imprisoned first in Fort Marion, afterward sent
to Fort Moultrie-His death-Chechotar, his wife-Poetry by a friend
-Sisters of Osceola now living in the West.
CHAPTER VII.......................................105
Shores of the upper St. John's, where various kinds of timber grow,
and bony stock range-Mounds and their contents-Their obscure
origin-The chasm not yet bridged-Belief in the immortality of the
soul-The mounds a sh'rine-Conduct of the Spanish invaders-An-
cestral veneration-Articles for use deposited with the body-Unan-
swered questions-History of mound-building in its infancy-Found
in Europe- Uses of mounds Monumental mounds The mystery
shrouding their structure-Intrusive burial-The growth on Florida
pounds, and the distinguishable feature of mound-builders-Mound
near New Smyrna-Mounds in South Florida- The large one at
Cedar Keys-Mounds for sacrifice-Description of a victim-Pyramid
of Cholula-Mexican teocalli-Pyramids for kifigs-Mounts of ordi-
nance-Sacred fires-Indians worshiped high places "-The temple
at Espiritu Santo-Residence of King Philip-Lake Jessup mound-
Copper weapons-Indians worship the sun and moon-Burial urns-
Pearls a heavenly product-The Indian empress a prisoner-Manu-
facture of beads from conch-shells-Pearls of no value found on the
coast of Florida-Who were these architects?-A veil obscures our
vision in trying to discover the engineers of these mounds-The key
never found-Tumuli, mounds, and plateaus, all objects of interest.

CHAPTER VIII......................................121
A description of the animals and birds seen on the St. John's a cent-
ury since-Lovely landscape-The happy family-Lake George-En-
terprise-Mellonville-Sulphur Springs-Lake Harney and Salt Luke

Contents. 11

-Indian River-Settlers discouraged on account of the Indians-An
order for blood-hounds-Battle of Caloosahatchee-Famished soldiers,
and fidelity of the dog-Big Cypress Swamp-Locality of the chiefs-
What the Indians cultivate-Their babies never cry-The Prophet,
and his influence as a medicine man-Wild Cat in command of Fort
Mellon-Speech of Sam Jones-Hanging of Chekika-Major Belknap
takes his command into the Big Cypress-Country developed by war
-Indian River after the war the sportsman's heaven-Game, oysters,
and fish-Scientific theory on the formation of coquina-Fine products
of the Indian River country-A resort for consumptives-Camp-cook-
ing-Soothing influences from the surroundings-Coming down the
St. John's-The sick man-Stewardess and 'gaitors"-Curious people
with curious things-The chameleon-The fawn-The crane-The
bug-hunter and his treasures-The many old people in Florida-The
CHAPTER IX.......................................1 139
Stop at Tocoi for St. Augustine-Scenery along the route-Stage-con-
tractor's notice-Murder of Dr. Weedman-Cloth houses-Two mail-
carriers murdered-The blood-hounds-Mr. Francis Medicis and four
others shot-Remarks by a resident on witnessing the scene-Wild
Cat the leader of this atrocity-The theatricals fill their engagement
-Coacoochee admires himself in the glass, also one of General Her-
nandcz's beautiful daughters-His capture and escape-His twin sister
and her pearls-Returns, dressed in theatricals, for a parley with the
whites-Starts West, and dies on the way.
CHAPTER X.......................................... 154
St. Augustine described in rhyme-The old Spaniards-A place for
stimulus of thought-Treachery of legends-Early settlers lured by
tales of wealth-Historical antiquity-Astonished Seloes-Capture by
Sir Francis Drake-St. Augustine, 1764-French privateers-Rory
McIntosh the Don Quixote of the times- American flag raised in
1821-Freedom to worship God-St. Augustine archives-Dr. McWhir
the founder of Presbyterianism in Florida-Appearance in 1834-The
frost-Every thing shrouded in a kind of tradition-Fromajardis, or
Garden Feast--Matanzas River-Nuns-Escribanio, or St. Mary's
Convent-The ancient city sleeps all summer-The dear old folks
from their Northern homes, and the young ones too-Curiosities-
Crafts of all kinds-Gayety of the winter-Remarkable memory of
the natives-Peaceful days-No welcome for adventurers-St. Augus-
tine supposed to have been the residence of the Peri-Expressing an
unfavorable opinion about Florida not popular here.
CHAPTER XI............... ....................... 173
The cathedral-Regular attendance of its worshipers-Harsh tones
of the church chime-Early mass-Cathedral finished in 1793-Mate-
rial employed-Moorish belfry-Irreverent visitors-Religion of the
natives a part of their existence-The bishop regarded as a vicegerent
-Mistaken conclusions of outsiders -Peculiar frescoes representing
death-Christmas Eve-Ceremonial conducted by Bishop Verot-Ad-
ministration of the sacrament-Tolemato Cemetery-Its custodian-
Murder of Father Corpa by the Indians-Chapel dedicated to Father
Varela-Tablet-inscriptions erased by time-A medallion supposed to
have been worn by Father Corpa, which was brought from Rome.

12 Contets.

CHAPTER XII........................................183
Castle San Marco-Indestructibility of the material employed-Com-
menced in 1565-Completed by Montiano, 1756, with the aid of Mex-
ican convicts-Attacked by Oglethorpe-Appearance in 1740-Im-
proper change of names-Description of Fort Marion-Its resemblance
to Scott's Garde Douloreuse-The chapel and its holy mysteries-Iron
cages-Caving in of the bastion-No cages sent to the Smithsonian
Institute-The wooden machine-The old sergeant-Human bones not
unusual in other ruins-Spaniards branded with the cruelties of the
Inquisition-True version of the iron cages from Sefior B. Oliveros-No
nation exempt from cruelties during some period of their history-The
Western Indians retained as hostages in the fort.
CHAPTER XIII.......................................198
The sea-wall-when commenced-Material employed-Boulevard of
the city-City gates and vandal visitors-Tapoquoi village-Murder
of Father Rodriguez-La Sylphide rose-Fine pulpit talent-Sabbath
in January-The Presbyterian Church-Flowers from the gardens of
Messrs. Alexander and Atwood-Gushing young men-Dr. Daniel F.
March and his words of comfort-A description of the Episcopal
church-A curious question about disputed grounds-Dr. Root, the
clergyman-A peculiar man and his dog, that walked into the church
from habit-St. Augustine a restorer to both health and reason-Pub-
lic reading-room-Circulating library-What shall we eat?-Ships
constantly coming in with supplies-Fresh vegetables-Oranges-
Hotels and fine boarding-houses-Growlers-Gratuitous hospitality
now obsolete-The most eligible houses-Summer resort-Pleasant
people found by the sea.
CHAPTER XIV...................................214
How they spend their time in the ancient city-A slight departure
into history-Different kinds of visitors-Grand opening of the Lunch-
basket on the North Beach-Music and moonlight on the water-The
Indian buffalo-hunt near the old fort-Dancing inside by the Indian
prisoners- Preparation for a gala day, March, 1877 Post band--
Yacht-race-A jockey-race-The hurdle-A foot-race by the Indians
-Wheelbarrow contest-Victor and greenbacks-Ham and money-
The cat a musical animal-St. Augustine Hotel, where music is made
from their sinews.
CHAPTER XV.........................................224
Longevity in St. Augustine-Manufacture of orange marmalade and
wine-" El Pavo Real"--Genovar &*Brother, wine makers-Visit-
ors leaving-A page from unwritten history-Tolling the bells for the
pope-Grand illumination by the Yacht Club-The ignes-fatui boats
-String-band and dancing-Capricious weather a comfort to growlers
-A change to balmy air and waving palms-The Indians leave-They
have no use for Government clothes on the plains-Mrs. Black Horse
and Mochi dressed in hats and plumes-The Indians leave their
Moody & Sankey song-books-A picture-written letter from the squaw
of Minimic-These Indians differ from novel-writer characters-The
strain of civilization during their stay being too great they mutiny,
headed by White Horse-A squad of soldiers from the barracks search

and iron four of them-Fort closed to visitors-They pine for home,
the aristocracy of their nature scorning restraint-Money made by
polishing sea-beans, etc.-Description of St. Anastasia Island-Ponies
.feeding on marsh-grass-Attack of General Oglethorpe in 1740-The
old light-house built by the Spanish, and used as a fortress-Fresh
water in mid-ocean caused from lime-sinks-Treaty of Fort Moultrie
-Origin of the Seminoles.

CHAPTER XVI .............. ..................... 235
Burning of the Spanish Governor's son by the Indians over a century
since-The Great Spirit as arbiter-Fort Matanzas-Its age, use, pres-
ent appearance-Entered by an escalade-New Smyrna settled by Dr.
Turnbull with his Greek colony-They at first engage in the culture
of indigo, which soon fails-Great dissatisfaction among the colonists,
who are finally released, and retire to St. Augustine-The Douglass
Dummit Plantation-Indian Key Massacre, August 15, 1840-Murmur-
ings of the citizens.

CHAPTER XVII.............................. 245
The Everglades Expedition, under Colonel Harney, 1841-Prepara-
tions-Spanish Indians-Leave Fort Dallas, arriving at Chitto's Island
-The bird flown-Sam Jones's Island, containing villages and pleas-
ure-grounds-The soldiers greatly annoyed by roaches and musquitoes
-Prophet's Island-Discovery by Indians-Sergeant Searles mortally
wounded-Arrival at New River-Fort Dallas--General appearance
and extent of the Everglades-Manilla hemp and the cotton-plant
indigenous-Return of Colonel Harney-Grand ovation in St. Augus-
tine-Sorrowful reflection on the situation-Present inhabitants of
the Everglades-Old Tiger Tail-Intrenches himself in .Mexico as
brigand, afterward makes his way to Florida, and becomes chief of
the Seminoles-Father Dufau goes to the Everglades as a missionary
-" Two squaws no good "-Dress of the Indians-Everglade alligators
and moccasins no respecters of persons-Primeval condition of the
country, with its trees, birds, and native growth.

CHAPTER XVIII........................... .....260
From Jacksonville to Cedar Keys-The Florida Central-Baldwin-
Alligators and moccasins-West India Transfer Railroad-Piney Woods
-Trail Ridge-Lawtey-Starke-Turpentine distillery-Serenades-
Waldo-Alachua county-Hummock-lands and phosphates-The in-
dignant Boston lady-Alachua settled in 1750 by an Indian named
Secoffe-Juggs or sinks-Approach to Gainesville-This town named
for General E. P. Gaines-Accommodations for visitors-Tillandsia
and its uses-Orange Lake the natural home of the orange-Budded
trees-Eucalyptus-tree for malarial districts-Information on the sub-
ject of lands-Orange City, Arredondo, Albion, and other prospective
cities-Bronson-Its good settlers-Otter Creek--" Great Gulf Hum-
mock "-Its tropical growth.

CHAPTER XIX.... ........................ ........ 270
Cedar Keys, the terminus of the West India Transit Railway-Extor-
tion-Dr. McIlvaine's Hotel-Fourth of July toasts, 1843-Steamers
from Cedar Keys to Manatee-Early settlement of Clear Water Har-
bor-The unfortunate Narvaez-Inaccessibility of South Florida-



14 Contents.

Manatee-Its dwellings embowered among orange-trees-Tenacity of
contesting Indians-Their independence subdued by association-The
cactus pear eaten by Indians-Present population-Church privileges
for worship-Schools-Good physicians-Sowing before reaping-
Boarding-houses kept as sanitariums-Pantry supplies-Fine fish-
An Elysium for rheumatics-No starving--The grape-culture suggested
-Also wine-making-A variety of crops-Sugar-cane ratooning for
six years-Old-fashioned bees in gums-This locality a fine resort for
those who wish to avoid cold-The sunny-side of nature turned out
in February-Oleander and orange-buds bursting their pink and
white petals-The banana-Spring flowers, etc.-Zephyr breezes-The
rose-"A child of summer "-Historic records-Hon. Judah P. Ben-
jamin-Remains of the mastodon and megatherium,

CHAPTER XX....................................285
Tampa--Undisturbed slumbers-First settlement by Narvaez-Poor
Juan Ortiz I-His vigils among the dead-Espiritu Santo Bay-De Soto
and his festive soldiers-Billy Bowlegs-Cedar and pine lumber-mills
in Tamnpa.-A school and its teacher-Old Tampa-Uses of the cabbage
palm-Fort Brooke-Appeal of General Worth to the vanity of Coa.
coochee, which finally results in his band being sent West-An invo-
cation to the Great Spirit during a storm.
CHAPTER XXI .................................... .296
Marooning from Tampa to Key West-Drum-fish-Loons-Acrobat
fleas-Roaches-Bilge-water-The Methodist preacher and his chil-
dren-Sailor's fare-Landing lady-passengers-Terrasilla Island and
its products-Madam Joe-The romantic young couple-Sarasota Bay
-Stock-raising Health Mangrove thickets Perpetual verdure-
Palmetto houses-Striking for fish-Varied amusements for visitors-
Hunting deer-Bugs and butterflies-Egmont Key-Rare shells and a
rarer Spiritualist, with his toothless wife-Professor Agassis-Bucca-
neers---Jean Lafitte-Sunset at sea-Isles of the sea-Boca Grande-
Felippe the Spaniard, and his Indian concubines-Polly goes West for
money-Punta Rassa, the terminus of the International Telegraph.

CHAPTER XXII...................................313
Alone with God and the stars-Phosphorescent waves-Reefs and coral
formation-Key West-Cocoa-trees-Chief of the Everglades-Dwell-
ings-Inhabitants-Early settlers-Conchs-Their origin and occupa-
tion-Court of Admiralty-Wrecking-The International Telegraph
Survey-Public schools-The sisters-Cigar-makers-Reading while
working-Monkey-jugs and their use-Cochineal-Sponge and spong-
ers-Fort Taylor and other fortifications-Curiosity -shop-Captain
Dixon its Greek keeper.
CHAPTER XXIII ................................... 327
Middle Florida and South Georgia-Jealousy between Middle and East
Florida-Good landed titles in Middle Florida-Disappointment the
result of overestimation-No spot with every thing desirable-Dis-
eased people tinctured with a sullen melancholy-Lake City-Deriva-
tion of the name-The citizens-Style of architecture adapted to the
climate-Products-Atmosphere for asthmatics-Monticello-Its peo-



ple-Former wealth evidenced by the numerous freedmen-Good hotel
here-The festive frogs: great variety, some with loud-sounding voices
-The "pretty frog" that went to England-The singing-wasp-Tal-
lahassee, where De Soto spends his first winter, 1539-The Spanish
soldiers and their armor-Town incorporated, 1825-Corner-stone of
the capitol laid, 1826-Situation of Tallahassee-Governor Reed's mes-
sage, 1840-Blood-hounds and leash-men from Cuba-Two Indians
caught by them-Bounties en heads-Indian scare-Only a goat-In-
dians attack wagons, relieving negroes of their clothing-Former
wealth and culture in Tallahassee-Colonel Murat and his mother
come to America-Visit the Catholic Bishop, but not in regal style-
The neighbors are disappointed in a king's son-Birthplace, home,
and early associations of the gifted authoress, Mrs. Mary E. Bryan-
Wakulla Spring, with a beautiful description by Bartram-Chattahoo-
chee-State penitentiary-Montgomery and Eufaula route to Florida
-Town of Quincy-Mountain-streams with a musical cadence-Cuban
tobacco and scuppernong grapes grown here-Stage communication
between Quincy and Bainbridge-Cherokee rose-hedges-Bainbridge
-Its decline on account of railway communication-Thomasville-
Mitchell House-Gulf House-Embowered dwellings-Brisk trade-
Newspapers-Female college-Churches-Former wealth of Thomas
county-Colored politicians prefer speaking by proxy-No water com-
munication from Thomasville-Wire-grass country-Quitman-Home-
like hotels-Cotton factory-Valdosta-Pine-trees-Plenty to eat-
Valdosta editor-Crowds on public days-Trip on the Gulf road-The
light-wood fires an epitome of the Arabian Nights' Entertainment.

CHAPTER XXIV.................................3... 55
Pensacola musings-Its early settlement and capacious harbor-Origin
of the name-The soil contains clay for brick and pottery-Casa Blanca
-The city conquered by the Spaniards-Causes for its not competing
with other Gulf cities-Description of Fort Barrancas-It is supposed
to contain a dungeon-Fort Pickens-Fort St. Michael and Fort St.
Bernard-Ten dollars offered for the scalps of colonists-General move-
ments of General Andrew Jackson-Governor Callavea in the cala-
boose-Description of the old plaza-Present appearance of Pensacola
-It contains no fabled fountains-A plank walk on which sailors reel
like drunken elephants-Prosperity of the place dependent on the
demand for lumber-Commotion on the arrival of a ship-Resin-
ous wood and its light accompaniments-The Indians hated to leave
it-Ferdinand Park and its rural scenery-The market-house-The
singing fishermen-The proud fishermen with their big fish-An ox-
horn announces the sales-Fresh-water wells-Drawers of water lose
their vocation-Porpoises-Tropical fruit-culture not very successful
here-The washing bayou and its water-nymphs-Florida hunters-
The fleet-footed fawn a past record-The yellow-fever visitor-Perdi-
do, or Lost Bay-Escambia Bay-The alligator: her nest, and her
young-Churches-Free schools-Catholic schools-Episcopal school,
and its founder, Mrs. Dr. Scott.

CHAPTER XXV...................................378
Leaving Pensacola-Contentment in our moving habitation-A calm
-Physalia utriculus-A genuine nor'-wester and its accompaniments
-A moment of terror-Morning at last-Isle of Pines and its products

16 Contents.

-Pirates-Water-spouts-Early history of Cuba-The Spaniards burn
an Indian-Cienfuegos-The fort on the bay-Cuban houses-Clothing
of the children-Cruelty to northern seamen-Mother Carey and her
unlucky chickens-The fate of the insurgents, and their numerical
strength--" La Purisima Conception "-Negleet of ceremonial duties--
The church inside-Its lady-attendants furnish their seats-The slave
receives a gentle admonition-The largest plaza on the island-The
beautiful sesoritas and the band-music.
CHAPTER XXVI.................................399
Distances from Cienfuegos to Havana-Railroads-Three classes of
passenger-cars-Smoking-Rain-drops-Harvest-LoI the poor ox-
Goads -Sugar-cane in bloom Cattle-herders -The war- Arabian
stock of horses-Devastations by the insurgents-Vegetation and va-
riety-Depots and drinking-Flowers-Fences from vegetation-Royal
palm and its' uses-Slaves gathering palm-fruit-Great variety of
growth-Cactus family-Sugar and sugar-makers--Negro slaves and
coolies-Their miserable quarters-Chicken-fighting-Inhuman treat-
ment of the poor fowls-Matanzas-A Pentecostal illustration--" En-
glish and French spoken"-Dinner and its condiments-Matanzas
Bay at night-The tough old tars-Their families on shore-The phos-
phorescent lights on the water-The plaza and hotel-Our French
valet de chambre-Siesta--My cafe-El volante-Up the mountain-side
-El Cueva de Bellamar, being a remarkable subterranean temple-
Stalactites and stalagmites-Names given to the different formations
inside the cave-Return to Matanzas.
CHAPTER XXVII................................424
From Matanzas to Havana--Buzzards-Description of El Moro Castle,
A.D. 1519-Captured, 1619, by Sir George Pocock-El Moro like the
Venetian "Bridge of Sighs "-Havana a century since-Its harbor
and fleet of ships--Architecture of the houses-Narrow streets-A
view from El San Carlos Hotel-Beautiful moonlight on the bay-El
Paseo-French coaches-Residence of the Captain-general--Ladies
shopping in volantes-Market-house-Mules, panniers, etc.-Work-
ing-class receive an early supply of grace-No Sabbath here-" Lot-'
tera "-Beggars-Description of the cathedral-Bishop-Acolytes-
Organ-Tomb of Columbus-Santo Christobal-His life and mission
as Christ-bearer-Cemetario de Espeda-Its walls, vaults, tablets, in-
scriptions--Three bodies for sepulture-The poor without coffins-
The Protestant dead not admitted in Catholic grounds--Fragility of
promises in Cuba.

A Ramble into the Early History of Florida.......439
Florida Gazetteer, etc........ .......................481

Seals Iuthed from Sung (lines.


TRIP to Florida during the winter season
is now the popular move for everybody,
whether invalid or not, which those living
in so close proximity as Atlanta find diffi-
cult to resist.
Atlanta is a delightful summer resort, situated
a thousand feet above sea-level, visited by healthful
mountain breezes in summer, besides being blessed
with the purest of freestone and chalybeate water in
the world. The night passenger train leaves at 10
P.M. for Macon, one hundred and five miles distant.
We arrive in Macon about 7 A.M., where, after
being fortified with a good breakfast at the Brown
House, the train departs for Savannah-Macon be-
ing the commencement of the mountain-slope which
continues to the sea-shore. Many pleasant little
towns are passed through on the route, most of
which have never recovered from the devastating
effects of the war.
Savannah is at last reached, one hundred and
ninety-two miles from Macon. To say that Savan-
2 (17)

18 Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes.
nah is a pleasant place conveys -an indefinite idea
of its attractiveness. Many persons stop to remain
only a night, but are so much pleased they tarry a
month before proceeding further South.
The present site of Savannah is where General
Oglethorpe was met, in 1733, by the Yamacraw
Indians, who, after he had landed, presented him
with a buffalo-skin, on the inside of which was
painted the plumage of an eagle, accompanied with
the following address: "The feathers of the eagle,"
said the chief, "are soft, and signify love; the buf-
falo-skin is warm, the emblem of protection; there-
fore love and protect our families." Oglethorpe, in
coming to America, was stimulated with the desire
of finding a home for the oppressed Protestants and
bankrupt gentlemen of England. Upon the adjust-
ment of terms with the Indians he proceeded to lay
out the city of Savannah with the greatest regular-
ity. It then contained ten public squares of two
acres each, in which were trees, walks, and a pump.
The number of squares has now been increased to
twenty-four-the walks all being paved with granite,
and swept daily. Forsyth Park is on a more ex-
tended plan than these small squares, containing a
large fountain, fine flowers, magnolia grandiflora
trees, a small zoological collection-all objects of
interest, displaying the taste and refinement of a
well-cultured people. Pulaski Square is named for
Count Pulaski, who was mortally wounded during
the American Revolution while in an engagement
on the ground where the Central Depot now stands.
lie died on board the brig Wasp as she was leaving


rl:-- ----.r-

Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes.

Tybee for Charleston, when his body was consigned
to the sea. The citizens of Georgia, through their
munificent bequests, have erected in Monterey
Square a monument to Count Pulaski, the corner-
stone of which was laid when General La Fayette
visited America for the last time.
Savannah has made another fine exhibit of her
discriminating powers in selecting a retired and
lovely spot, made sacred to them by depositing all
that remains of the loved ones who have crossed
the river a little before. They have christened it
Bonaventure, derived from the Spanish, signifying,
Coming good. Here rest, in the unyielding embrace
of death, those whose warfare in life has ended,
where the huge live-oaks, with overlapping limbs,
entwine with their companions, forming natural tri-
umphal archways, while the somber-hanging gray
moss clings lovingly to its outstretched arms, waving
in the winds like some weird fancy that lingers only
on the brink of uncertainty. These beautiful
grounds were once the home of the Tatnall family,
but have now been purchased and devoted to the
dwelling of the dead, whither the living can come
and contemplate the change which awaits them all.
Travelers, in leaving Savannah for Florida, can
go outside by sea, or the inland route, many prefer-
ring the latter on account of avoiding sea-sickness,
the passage being made between sounds, inlets, and
islands, before Fernandina is reached. The inland
steamers are first-class in every respect, and the
long marsh-grass contains many of those colossal
lizards called alligators. They crawl about fear-


20 Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes.

lessly in their hiding-places, while the swamp black-
bird whistles very sweetly for us as we pass along
so quietly most of the time that we are not exactly
certain of any movement, but ten miles an hour is
the pro rata of speed.
We are now close to St. Simon's Island, where
General Oglethorpe commenced another settlement
in 1736, called Frederica. On this equable-tem-
pered island they laid out a town, built a fort with
four bastions to protect their palmetto cabins, which,
as the historian describes them, appeared like a
camp with bowers, being covered with leaves of a
pleasing color." Natural paths and arbors were
found here by the English, as if formed by the hand
of art, with the ripe grapes hanging in festoons of
a royal purple hue. The settlements made by Ogle-
thorpe in this portion of the country were the first
formed in the true spirit of improvement and colo-
With him came the great founder of Methodism
in America, Wesley, who planted his standard on
this island, and mentions their object in the follow-
ing manner: "It is not to gain riches and honor,
but to live wholly to the glory of God, as we have
come in the serene hour of peace, when the floods of
controversy have subsided, to sow the gospel seeds."
John Bartram visited St. Simon's Island in 1744,
and makes the following record of his repast with a
friend: "Our rural table was spread under the
shadow of oaks, palms, and sweet-bays, fanned by
the lively, salubrious breezes, wafted from the spicy
groves. Our music was the responsive love-lays of

Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes.

the painted nonpareil and the alert, gay mocking-
bird, while the brilliant humming-bird darted
through the flowery groves, suspended in air, drink-
ing nectar from the blooms of the yellow jasmine,
lonicera, andromeda, and azalea."
As we approach Fernandina we are nearing his,
toric ground-Dungenness, once a most charming
and attractive place, located near the southern ex-
tremity of Cumberland Island, the former home of
Nathanael Greene, of revolutionary fame, where his
last days were spent peacefully, of which pleasant
period he thus speaks: "The mocking-birds that
sing around me morning and evening, the mild and
balmy atmosphere, with the exercise which I find in
my garden culture." This locality seemed to have
constituted a happy close to his eventful career.
The English planted an olive-grove on this island
that succeeded well, as though the trees were indige-
nous. They used the fruit in making pickles, which
were considered very fine. Is it not the olive-tree
which the Christian should love and venerate, even
to the "hoary dimness of its delicate foliage, sub-
dued and faint of hue, as though the ashes of the
Gethsemane agony had been cast upon it forever?"
It was at the foot of the Mount of Olives, beneath the
shadow of the trees from which it derives its name,
that was selected for the most mournful of scenes-
"The Saviour's Passion." The good and the wild
olive-tree will flourish in this climate. It was these
trees which furnished the Apostle Paul with one of
his most powerful allegories. The wild olive blooms
in March, producing a profusion of pink-tinted,


22 Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes.

white, star-shaped flowers, while its polished, ever-
green verdure, remains all the year, affording a com-
pact and beautiful shade.
On this island, before the late war, was seen a
scuppernong grape-vine, nearly three hundred years
old, supposed to have been planted by the Spanish
missionaries. It was then pronounced a prolific
bearer, producing two thousand pounds of fruit per
annum, and covering nearly three acres of ground.
Here rests all that remains of Light-Horse Harry
Lee, the gifted and honored dead. "Here his lamp
of life flickered before being extinguished." He
died March 25, 1818. The decaying marks of time,
and the more ruthless destruction of war, have fear-
fully, invaded and devastated this once revered retreat.
"Silent though it be, there are memories lingering
still vocal amid the mutations of fortune and the
desolations of war-memories which carry the heart
back to happy days and peculiar excellences which
come not again."
When General R. E. Lee last visited Savannah
the burial-place of his illustrious parent was not for-
gotten. It was the only tribute of respect which
his great feeling heart could bestow, the last mission
of love he was able to perform. Did he think before
spring should return again, decked in her gay robes,
flinging ten thousand odors upon its balmy breath,
that his grave would then be visited by weeping
friends, and that loving hands should twine fresh
flowers for his remains?
How sleep the brave who sink to rest,
By all-their country's honors blest I

Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes.

We next pass the mouth of St. Mary's River, the
source of which is a vast lake, where dwelt the far-
famed beautiful women, or Daughters of the Sun.
These were the last of the Yemassee tribe, who
had intrenched themselves here for protection, all
efforts to pursue them being like the enchanted
lands, which receded as they were approached.
Fernandina is situated on Amelia Island, which
is eighteen miles in length and two in width. Ves-
sels can approach the harbor any time without fear
from shoals, as the water on the bar will always fur-
nish an average of nineteen feet. Its first settlers,
as of many other places in Florida, were Spaniards,
a few of whom are remaining. During the move-
ments of the Embargo War, together with the pri-
vateers and slavers, three hundred square-rigged
vessels have been seen in this harbor at one time.
Another settler mentions the mounds when the
country was first explored by the Spaniards.
General Oglethorpe, like other explorers in Amer-
ica, was impressed with the coast of Florida, and
thus speaks of Amelia Island: "The sea-shore, cov-
ered with myrtle and peach-trees, orange-trees and
vines in the wild woods, where echoed the sound of
melody from the turtle-doves, nonpareils, red-birds,
and mocking-birds." Different nationalities looked
upon Amelia Island with longing eyes for many
years, coveting it for their possession.
In 1817, Gregor McGregor, a Scottish baronet-
an enthusiast on the subject of contest-came, with
only fifty followers, making proclamations and issu-
ing edicts, of more magnitude than plans for their


24 Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes.
execution, but soon retired to the quieter quarters
of his Highland home.
Afterward came Commodore Aury, with one hun-
dred and fifty men, on a filibustering expedition, and
overpowered the Spanish troops. At this time it
would have been a difficult task to find a more mot-
ley, medley crowd of residents in any country than
upon Amelia Island, composed of English. advent-
urers, Irish and French refugees, Scotch, Mexicans,
Spaniards, privateers, natives, and negroes. Fac-
tions of such varied dispositions and inclinations
were not designed to promote harmony in any com-
nmnity; consequently, riots and disturbances were
of frequent occurrence.
Previous to this movement by Aury, negotiations
had been pending between the United States and
the Spanish Government for Florida; consequently,
President Monroe and his Cabinet looked upon the
disputed property, in a manner, as their own posses-
sions. These Spaniards, being unable to expel the
privateering adventurers, President Monroe sent
United States troops, which took possession of Fer-
nandina without resistance, in the name of His
Catholic Majesty of Spain. This event happened
in the spring of 1818.
On Amelia Island is situated a light-house, which
exhibits a flash-light, one hundred feet above the
level of the sea, visible sixteen miles. The tower is
built upon a promontory which overlooks the sur-
rounding country and the Atlantic as far as the eye
can extend.
At Fernandina the Atlantic Gulf and West India

Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes.

Transit Railroad commences, where the gentleman-
ly officers connected with and in charge of the road
reside. The obliging superintendent is always in
readiness here to give information upon the peculiar
facilities resulting from living on this route, as a
health-location, besides being so closely connected
by steam-ships with all parts of the world. It now
contains a population of about three thousand in-
habitants, and, on account of the fine sea air, has
been a resort for many years during the summer
season by persons from the interior of the State.
The misfortunes of our late war fell heavily on
Fernandina, crippling its energies and crushing its
present prospects for a time. The real estate of its
residents was confiscated and sold fot taxes. Some
of it has been redeemed, and the remainder Is pass-
ing through a series of lengthy litigations, which,
when settled, are designed to decide the validity ot
tax-sales generally throughout the entire State. The
present condition of affairs places the inhabitants in
rather a Micawber-like condition, waiting for some-
thing to turn up in the future.
As a resort far away from-the busy, bustling cares
of life, this place seems peculiarly fine. The island
being entirely surrounded by salt-water, a delightful
breeze visits the inhabitants at all seasons of the
year-in summer, zephyry as the vale of Cashmere,
or the soft winds which bore the silver-oared barge
of Cleopatra through the Cydnus. The most at-
tractive feature of all in this locality is the beautiful
beach, connect -with the town by a good shell-road
two miles in 1iogth, bordering the island fol twenty-


26 Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes.
one miles, and over two hundred yards in width. It
is this unsurpassed drive about which the inhabit-
ants love to entertain you at all times, until you can
see it in your dreams. A good livery-stable is kept
here, well filled with fine, fast horses, trained to trot,
or wade in the surf, allowing visitors to admire the
wonderful vastness of the most beautiful expanse of
waters which wash the Atlantic shores. At ebb-tide
the imagination cannot conceive of a finer place, the
beach being so firm that a pair of horses and car-
riage scarcely make an indentation on the surface in
passing over it. The pavement is God's own work-
manship, being composed of white sand, occasionally
interspersed with shells, many of them the tiniest in
existence. Here the happy sea-birds ride on the sil-
very fdam, or flit across the breezy water; the sea-
gulls and pelicans luxuriate and flap their wings in
peaceful quietude, while the sand-crab takes his
walks, standing upright like a pigmy of the human
species, presenting arms in a soldier-like manner,
and never turning his back, however hotly pursued.
These are in reality very curious little creatures, re-
minding us of the Lilliputians in Gulliver's Travels.
Here the turtle comes to deposit her eggs beyond
high-water mark, and when they are hatched re-
turns to escort a family of one hundred and fifty
babies to her home in the sea. Here the bright
moonbeams dance upon the surface of the water, in
silence and solitude, until it resembles the surface
of a silver mirror, -Maidy pretty shells are found on
this beach, of various sizes and designs, with occa-
sionally d&~ioirable cabinet specimens, which are

Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes. 27

thrown out when the waters become much agitated.
This is the spot for the jilted lover to forget his idol,
and the disconsolate lady her imaginary devotee;
for those fretted by the rough edges of corroding
care to retire and find a respite from their struggles;
the bankrupt who has been conquered in the bat-
tles of brokerage, to visit and be reminded God has
given us more treasures to delight us than the dross
which passes from our grasp like a shadow, but
which all are struggling and striving to win; the
store-house of the fathomless deep, where we can
contemplate that great image of eternity, "the in-
visible, boundless, endless, and sublime."

28 Petals Plucked from &Snny Climes.


N leaving Fernandina we come out Amelia
SRiver, which is formed by the tide-water
from the Atlantic. We pass Old Town,
one mile from Fernandina, which has a
look-out for pilots who take vessels across
the bar, besides a few houses, the residence of Spian-
iards. Fort Clinch is the last noticeable point be-
fore we reach the St. John's River bar.
It is the month of January-a bland breeze greets
us, when our thoughts revert to the early settle-
ment of this country, when the Spanish galleons-
a strange-looking craft-navigated these waters;
also ponderous old ships, with sailing figures of vari-
ous devices carved on their prows, and high-peaked
sterns, the timber used being mahogany and cedar,
many of which were driven to pieces in a most mer-
ciless manner among the breakers, thus scattering
their treasures of silver and gold on the strand, to
tempt and satisfy the cupidity of those who found
them. Vessels dread this bar, as those drawing only
six feet of water are oftentimes detained when going
and returning with their cargoes of lumber. The
white caps wave their snowy plumes, as a warning,
when the wind blows, which sends terror to the
hearts of the timid, but the more daring exclaim, It
looks grand!

Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes.

As we cross the bar we are in sight of two resorts
-Mayport and Fort George Island-both places ar-
ranged for the accommodation of summer and win-
ter visitors. Fishermen also live in these diminutive
towns, and are engaged, like the apostles when their
Saviour called them, in mending their nets. Shad-
fishing is very profitable here during the season.
Shad abounds in this river, and being a delicious
fish, it is much sought after.
The various descriptions published from the pens
of those who visit Florida now are read by persons
looking to this locality as a winter-resort, or in search
of new homes and health, as items of unsurpassed
interest. For this reason writers should be reliable
in their statements. In many tourists the emotional
current is created so far from the surface that it is a
difficult matter for them to be impressed with exter-
nal objects. For this cause we meet with.a multi-
tud.e of fault-finders.
Settlers living in remote localities from the St.
John's River complain because visitors resort there
in preference to all other parts of the State. If the
facilities and inducements were the same elsewhere,
the desire to go would be equal; but it requires the
fortitude of a Livingstone to commence a trip into
many of the most attractive parts of Florida, with
the indistinct prospect how they are to get away
when inclined to make a change. The Americans
are a restless, roving people, fond of varied scenery,
and when confined where they cannot get away, man-
ifest very much the disposition of caged captives.
Laudonnibre thus speaks of the St. John's River:


80 Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes.

"The place is so pleasant that those who are mel-
ancholy would be forced to change their humor."
This stream, with its tributaries, is the great artery
of the State, where the savage roamed at will for
nearly three hundred years after its settlement by
the Spaniards, who came in search of hidden treas-
ures, its former history being a page in the past.
Here this river glides before us, with its dark, cof-
fee-colored waters, and no perceptible current ex-
cept where the tide comes in, it being a remarkable
stream, unlike any other in North America. The
coloring matter it contains is not precipitated by
standing, and for this reason is attributed to a col-
ored earth through which it passes from the upper
lakes, together witl the different kinds of vegeta-
tion that environ it. It varies in width from one to
three miles, and is thought by many to be an estu-
ary. From the mouth of the St. John's to Pilatka
there are numerous bluffs, some of them ten or
twelve feet in height, with an under-stratum of
shells, on which elevations the pine-tree flourishes.
The cypress, ash, and cabbage-palmetto grow on the
banks above Pilatka. The weeping cypress, with
its leafless, conical excrescences, called knees, and
dropsical feet, loves to be alone. It gives a friendly
greeting to the gray moss, which lives and swings
from its tallest limbs to the lowest twigs, furnishing
a complete mantle of grace to the naked-appearing
trees. This moss has no affinity for the pine or
palm, which thrives in close proximity, colonizing
and fraternizing in groups, oftentimes solitary, sigh-
ing or rustling as the sea-breeze comes to meet and

Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes.

kiss its feathery crowns and perennial foliage. A
feir of the trees are deciduous, as the swamp-oak,
ash, and poplar; most of the others are persistent,
the change of foliage occurring so quietly it is
scarcely observed. The mistletoe, with its green,
tufted foliage, fastens on the oak, and is a regular
parasite-a thief-for it deprives the tree of vitality.
The mistletoe seeds are used as an article of food by
the birds, and, being thus transported to the forest-
trees, adhere by means of a gluten until germination
The change of flags in 1821 produced a change
with many of the citizens, when much local infor-
mation connected with the history of Florida was
lost. This province, when ceded to the United
States, was divided in two parts, called East and
West Florida. Petitions were then frequently for-
warded to Washington, with a request to have it
remain divided, as it was inconveniently large.
During the war which soon followed, many new ex-
plorations were made in the hidden hummocks and
intricate recesses of the State.
The drinking-water used in Florida does not
come from mountain-streams or arctic regions, but
in summer, mixed with sugar and lemon-juice, or
sour orange, forms a most palatable and healthful
Land-snakes are not plentiful, as many have sup-
posed, there being very few but water-snakes, which
can be easily accounted for, as the intense heat from
the fires which sweep through the long grass every
year destroy them; then there are no rocks for their


82 Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes.

hiding-.places, where they could rear patriarchal
Musqqitoes abound in some places on the coast,
and to the dwellers in tents the impression has, ino
doubt, been received that the air was made of these
insects. There is a due proportion of fleas in por-
tions of Florida, but not more than in the sandy
soil of other countries.
The climate is constantly tempered by the Gulf
Stream, that conducts away the tropical heat, re-
turning in a submarine current, the cooler waters
from the North thus producing an atmosphere of
salubrious influences and life-renewing properties.
No month is without its fresh products and fruits,
while every warm day the mocking-bird sings above
our heads on some airy perch.
Many theories have been advanced in regard to
the formation of terra firma on our continent, the
one most generally received being that it was all
once submerged under water-as a proof of which
shells and other marine fossils have been found in
elevated positions, which only could have been
placed there by the sea overflowing the land, and
afterward receding. When this conclusion is at-
tained, Florida cannot be included, as every year
the land augments from the combined efforts of the
coral insect, limulus, and barnacles, together with
the debris which is deposited upon them afterward.
If the disturbing influences along the shores were
less, the increase of land would be much greater, as
winds and waves are as destructive to the prosperity
of these subterranean architects as tornadoes and

Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes.

cyclones to the growth of fine forest-trees. The
coral insect is constantly working in his briny bed,
making masonry which resists the action of the ele-
ment in which it is placed, thus laying the founda-
tion for islands and continents. It is the work of
these madrepores and polyps that form reefs which
wreck so many vessels on its coast, tlhs making
fortunes for those who follow salvage entirely for a
The fact of Florida as a health-resort has long
been established, the proof being furnished by the
length of time consumptives who come for the pur-
pose of lingering a little longer than they otherwise
could North, and living in the enjoyment of suffi-
ciently good health to pursue any lucrative vocation
their tastes may decide, is sufficient evidence of the
efficacy of the climate for pulmanic complaints. Ex-
posure in Florida, as in other places, has its penal-
ties affixed. Near bodies of water a chilliness per-
vades the air as soon as the sun sets, which is plainly
perceptible to all delicate persons. No barometer
was ever more sensitive to atmospheric variations
than the feelings of a sick person; no magnet was
ever attracted to steel more suddenly than their
nervous sensibilities to an agreeable or disagreeable
object. This prescribing invariable rules for every
disease is all a humbug; the patient is usually the
best judge. The resort for invalids, when the dew
and shades of night are falling on the face of nature,
is before a pleasant light-wood fire, surrounded by
cheerful companions-remembering that an inter-
view of the internal emotions frequently for the sick


84 Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes.
is not beneficial. Try and keep from thinking how
badly off you really are, as much as practicable.
Many have lived for years with only one lung. All
sudden changes from heat to cold should be avoided:
when you are cold, get warm as soon as possible,
and when you are tired, stop-your life depends
upon it. All invalids should select a locality which
best suits their malady; then settle down, with the
determination to extract all the sweets of content-
ment in store for them which the world contains,
keeping their bodies comfortable in every respect,
their minds free from all exciting or unpleasant
thoughts, their hearts purified while living, and, if
death comes, prepared to meet their Maker.
About ten miles from the mouth of the St. John's
Laudonnibre established his Huguenot colony, build-
ing his fortification on a hill of "mean height,"
naming it Caroline, from their sovereign, Charles
IX., of France, now known as St. John's Blufft
The former site of Fort Caroline can be traced with
some degree of accuracy, from the fact of this being
the first point on the river above its mouth where
its banks are approached by the stream, besides
being the only elevated spot where a fort could be
built. between the St. John's Bluff and the mouth of
the river. As Fort Caroline was constructed more
than three hundred years ago, from materials of so
perishable a nature-being pine-logs and sand-
none of it remains to be seen at the present day.
The first lumber-mills on the St. John's are lo-
cated near the estate of Marquis de Talleyrand,
eight miles from Jacksonville. The busy hum of

Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes.

industry now echoes from the shores, where pine-
logs are being sawed into material for making
houses, not only in Florida, but in Boston and other
Northern cities. Mr. Clark's mill, in East Jackson-
ville, received an order, after the big Boston fire,
for a million feet at one time. These mills, besides
being a source of revenue to the owners, furnish
work for the poor, and the refuse pieces fuel, while
in cold weather the big fires that consume the slabs
afford a free lodging for benighted travelers; also
for those who have no good houses, and would be
unwelcome visitors in almost any place.
Twenty-five miles from the sea, on the banks of
the St. John's, once stood an insignificant place,
known as Cow Ford, but now the fine, thriving city
of Jacksonville, named in honor of General Andrew
Jackson. This city is the head-center of Florida,
where visitors can come, and stay, with no prospect
of starving, and from which place they can migrate
when and where they please, with ample facilities
furnished them at all times for the furtherance of
their plans.
A combination of singular emotions here seizes
the Northern visitor, after being transported in mid-
winter from his frozen home to a clime where every
thing is fresh and blooming, where the market is
furnished with cabbages, sweet potatoes, lettuce,
turnips, green peas, and radishes, just gathered, be-
sides strawberries red as the blush of morn, with
bouquets of rose-buds, upon which still lingers the
morning dew-drop.
Many persons come here with unhappy tempera-


36 Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes.
ments, to whom peace and contentment in any place,
or under all circumstances, has been deficient, but
always vainly expecting to find happiness hanging
on every new object they meet, waiting for them to
pluck; but, unfortunately, it hangs so high they can
never reach it-when they commence abusing every
thing with which they come in contact. We hear
them constantly exclaiming, "Too much sand! too
little to eat! too high prices for things!" Nothing
can please them. Their faces are drawn up in dis-
gust, and their tongues ready to strike with the
venom of contempt, at every person who has a good
word to say in favor of Florida.
The unbroken quiet which has been with us since
we left Savannah is interrupted as soon as the steam-
er touches the Jacksonville wharf. We are impor-
tuned and jostled on every side by black boys, dray
and carriage-drivers, who worry us for our baggage,
raising their whips with the imperious movement of
a major-general, and suddenly lowering them at
half-mast when we say, Nol Then the officious
hotel-runners, who scream in our ears to patronize
the houses that employ them, until we are on the
verge of desperation, and feel as though the plagues
of Egypt could not have been worse. Most of
these public criers are dirty, ragged, and lazy, hav-
ing no legitimate vocation, except what they can
make from visitors, or in drumming for boarding-
houses. This city has fine accommodations, and for
that reason receives more envy than admiration from
other Florida towns. It can furnish more than one
hundred good places of entertainment, among

Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes.

which may be found several colossal hotels, capable
of containing two or three hundred guests, also
boarding -houses of less pretentious dimensions,
where, no doubt, a nearer approximation to the
acknowledgment for value received is oftener real-
ized. Selections can be made where money may be
expended rapidly or slowly, according to the incli-
nation of the visitor. Here, as in other places, we
meet with boarding-house complainers. This class
of grumblers must remember that hotel-keepers
stand fault-finding as quietly as a delinquent school-
boy his deserved punishment; they are used to it;
they expect it, and would be disappointed if they
did not get it.
The influx of visitors commences sooner some
seasons than others. The first cold blast from the
North sends the feeble invalid South to bask in the
summer sunshine of a milder atmosphere, and when
spring comes he returns home like the migratory
Jacksonville and its adjacent towns number a
population of over twelve thousand inhabitants, the
whole area being three miles long and about two
wide. The different names given to this small
space of country looks larger on the map than in
reality. These corporations are distinguished from
each other by the names of Jacksonville, East Jack-
sonville, Brooklyn, La Villa, Riverside, Springfield,
Hansom Town, etc.-each town containing from
fifty to fifteen hundred houses. The inhabitants
say they were laid out into lots and named, with the
expectation of a large increase of persons; conse-


38 Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes.

quently there are desirable building-spots in these
surveyed sites for growing cities, for sale at all times
upon moderate terms.
Jacksonville makes a display of architectural
skill, in which are seen the improvements of the
nineteenth century. Yards and lawns are laid out
fronting many of the residences, where the beauties
of landscape gardening may be found blending in
harmony with the artistically-arranged walks and
pleasure promenades. The sidewalks are made of
plank and brick, shaded aind overhung with live-
oaks, forming archways of inviting appearance,
from which swings pendant moss, presenting a
perennial, picturesque scene of nature's grandeur.
There are over twenty church-edifices in and around
the city, where both white and colored people come
to worship in crowds. We are happy to state these
statistics find the inhabitants in a much better spir-
itual condition than has been represented. How-
ever, we have no partiality for many of the doctrines
preached by itinerant reformers who come here.
We prefer our old orthodox faith, which made us
contented while we lived, and carried us to heaven
when we died. But these new isms, such as Spirit-
ualism, Liberalism, Free-loveism, and every other
species of modernized infidelity that is now gaining
ground and receiving accessions from our Sunny
South, are designed only to delude and drown the
souls of their followers in eternal misery. The
Churches here are representatives of various creeds
and beliefs- Methodist, Presbyterian, Protestant
Episcopalian, and Roman Catholic.

Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes.

The Sabbath dawns in Florida with its recreations
and steam boat excursions, well patronized by
Northern visitors, as very few appear to bring their
religion when they come South.
Mrs. Harriet Beecher Stowe is here to-day from
her home in Mandarin, for the purpose of attending
church. Dr. Stowe, her husband, accompanies her
as he preaches. When they both entered the South-
ern Methodist church a slight rustle was heard in
the congregation, and a few persons left the house.
Mr. and Mrs. Uncle Tom were more than a Sabbath
dose for some of the Jacksonville community. Har-
riet B. has no resemblance to a perpetrator of dis-
cord or scandal, or one who has swayed the divining-
rod of Abolitionism with sufficient potency to im-
mortalize herself for many coming generations, or
probed the private life of a man who, during the
period of his checkered existence, never carved out
virtue for his shrine. The three snowy curls on
each side of her face give her a matronly look, and
her stout-built frame, well covered with flesh, a sub-
stantial appearance.
The service was opened by a very long prayer
from Dr. Stowe, after which he preached a purely
orthodox sermon on the subject of godliness. Mrs.
Harriet had confidence in the ability of her hus-
band; she knew the discourse would be right with-
out her vigilant eye, and she went to sleep. Like
other sleepers, she nodded naturally; her digits
were concealed beneath kid covers, and thrusting at
no one. She looked the picture of content, and
was no doubt dreaming of that far-off, beautiful


40 Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes.
country, where those who create dissensions and
stir up strife can never enter.
Places of worship have had an existence for both
colors throughout the entire South since the country
was settled, the negroes being naturally inclined to
religion more than the whites. The African Church
has always been a full-developed institution, attend-
ed with its peculiarities and noisy accompaniments,
where the colored zealots could always give vent to
their religious enthusiasm by howling their emo-
tional feelings among others equally excited. The
preacher usually leads the singing with his loud,
soul-stirring strains, manifesting much fervor, some-
times improvising a strain or two with his own in-
vention, if the rhyme and tune do not measure
The following is a correct copy of an original
sermon delivered by a very black Baptist. brother
to a Jacksonville colored congregation a short time
previous to the Freedmen's Bank explosion, which
appears prophetic in regard to that swindling insti-
tution. The text was, "Lay up for yourselves
treasure in heaven":
"MY DEAR BREDREN:-De Lord is here to-day,
goin' from de African to de white folks church,
ridin' on a milk-white steed in de air. He knows
all yer hearts, and what you're thinking' about.
Ef yer hearts are not right, dey must all undergo a
radical change until dey are made good. De Lord
taught his disciples on de lake of Genesis, and
I'm now telling you all de way do do. I 'spec you
all cum to de house of de Lord just kase yer friends

Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes.

are here. While yer preacher is trying' to permul-
gate de gospel, you is looking' down de street to
see what is coming and den you're thinking' about
what you will wear to-night when you come to
preaching paying' no attention to me, who is trying'
to save yer souls.
"O my bredren, dis is a fine new meetin'-house,
but we should all seek a house whose builder and
maker is de great Lord! Labor-not for de perishin',
spilin' meat!
Last night was Saturday, and you have spent most
of yer week's wages and earnin's, dun put de rest in
de Freedmen Savin' Bank, and you do n't know as
you'll ever see it any more in dis world! Some-
body may git it, or you may die, and den you will
leave it. How much did you bring here for de
Lord? O my bredren, when dem jerudic angels
come you will be sorry you have n't done more for
de Lord! When dey come, ef you has n't dun noth-
in' for yer blessed Jesus, den dey will not say,
'Come, ye blessed, home!'
You must do nothing' wrong ef yer want ter git
up by dat great white throne among dem snow-
white angels, and be one yerselves. You must
never cuss or drink any whisky. Paul told Timo-
thy his son to drink some wine when he had de
stumak-ake. My bredren, do n't think yer suffering'
when yer not, jest for an excuse to git a dram. Old
Master in heaven knows when yer sure enuff sick!
Can't fool him about nothing! "
Journalism in Jacksonville is commencing to rest
on a firmer basis than heretofore. The present pop-


42 Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes.

ulation demand more knowledge on the subject of
the country, consequently papers and periodicals
published in the interest of the State are much
sought after. The Semi-tropical, a monthly estab-
lished here, will be found to contain both readable
and reliable articles on the climate and various prod-
ucts of Florida. The Sun and Press is a daily dem-
ocratic paper, unswerving in its efforts to inculcate
correct principles among those in power. There
were other organs whose politics was gauged for the
season, and since the war until now have been on
the winning side, the Republicans being in the ma-
jority. The ephemeral existence of newspapers has
passed away here, andcthe morning news, fresh and
well printed, containing the latest telegrams, are
found lying on the breakfast-table, furnishing a po-
tent auxiliary to the peace and happiness of the
The privilege of doing as one pleases is not to
be overlooked in Jacksonville. No costumes, how-
ever peculiar, appear out of style, or the wearers,
as in some other places, obliged to seek protection
from the police. Celebrities or millionaires walk
the streets without creating any sensation. The
Mormon, with his four or fourteen wives, can come
from Salt Lake City, take rooms at the St. James,
enter all the frequented resorts with the same fear
from molestation that a genuine Floridian feels of
being Ku-Kluxed. Any strong- minded market-
woman can don the Bloomer costume, make and
sell sugar, brown as her own bun-colored face, and
peddle vegetables verdant as the idea which prompt-

Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes.

ed her to forsake the flowing robes of her fair sis-
ters, and assume the half masculine attire of the
sterner sex, without attracting any more attention
than the lazy loungers in the market-house. The
citizens are so accustomed to sight-seeing that noth-
ing would astonish them but an honest politician.
Unfortunately for all parties concerned, this win-
ter there is a large influx of men in search of em-
ployment, fifty looking for situations with only one
vacancy. It is well to come prepared for all exi-
gencies, and bring a tent to stop in, provided noth-
ing better presents itself. The woods, waters, and
oyster-bars are free to all; but boarding-house keep-
ers, from the pressure of surrounding circumstances,
have a peculiarly persistent way of watching strang-
ers closely and interviewing them frequently, par-
ticularly if there is a suspicion that funds are run-
ning low with them. Camping in the open air in
this genial clime is pleasanter than would be imag-
ined by persons not accustomed to it, and is accom-
panied with more peace of mind than being dunned
for board-bills without money to pay them.
Pleasant places of resort are springing up in the
vicinity of Jacksonville, which furnish lovely drives
behind some of the teams kept in the city. Mon-
crief Springs, four miles distant, now appears to be
the most popular resort. Here the orange marma-
lade factory may be visited-a recently-developed
branch of industry--making use of the wild
oranges which flourish so abundantly throughout
the State without culture. Many other improve-
ments have been made at this place-bath-houses,


44 Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes.
bowling-alley, dancing-saloon, and restaurant-all
of which contribute much to the diversion of
Visitors always form an idea of the cultivation or
ignorance of a locality by the manner in which the
dead are cared for, together with the various styles
of monuments, inscriptions upon the tablets, neat-
ness and taste displayed in the surroundings. Upon
this hypothesis a favorable conclusion would be
formed in regard to the Jacksonville cemetery,
which last resting-place of its citizens is pleasantly
located on a slightly elevated piece of ground be-
yond the city. It was on the Sabbath we visited it,
when all kinds of people were present. Some of
them were much stricken with grief, while others
came for recreation. It is really very surprising
why so many persons of exceedingly low morals re-
sort to grave-yards for the sole purpose of enjoy-
ment, and the indulgence of obscene conduct and
conversation. Certainly rude sounds must jar very
inharmoniously upon the feelings of those who come
to visit and weep over the remains of their departed
Too many invalids, before coming to Florida, wait
until they have already felt the downy flappings
from the wings of the unrelenting destroyer, and
heard the voices from a spirit-land calling them, but
come too late to be benefited and take a new lease
on life. The climate should not be blamed because
the sick will stay away until death claims them.
Those who do not wait derive the same benefit in
remaining that flowers receive from gentle rains in

Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes. 45
spring-time-the atmosphere being a tranquillizer,
the pure sea-breeze on the coast a lotion and tonic
to the lungs. God grant that the genial air which
visits this peninsula may restore the health-seeking
invalids to vigor, strength, and usefulness, that their
presence may again gladden the hearts of those left
at home, now saddened by their absence!

46 Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes.


VERY year, during the month of February,
Jacksonville has an exhibit of industries,
from all portions of the State, thus fur-
nishing visitors an opportunity for seeing
specimens of the best Florida products for
themselves, before purchasing. Another advantage
is the exchange of experience in growing the same
things, besides receiving new suggestions in regard
to those which may have failed, and, finally, it keeps
up a friendly intercourse with old acquaintances, also
enabling new immigrants to form pleasant associa-
tions, in the absence of those whom they have left
behind--thus promoting harmony, not only in a
community, but throughout the entire State.
The weather--that important auxiliary-this year
was unpropitious a greater portion of the week.
Nature put on a wild, damp face, which chilled the
ardor of many who had intended coming. How-
ever, the exhibit was very good, in every depart-
ment. All kinds of semi-tropical fruits, from the
most perfect pine-apple that has flourished in any
clime, to the sweetest orange, whose cheek had been
kissed by a golden sunbeam. Pure wines were not
wanting to complete the conviviality of the occa-
sion, or perfumes distilled from Florida leaves and
flowers, to waft odors around us, sweet as the mem-

Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes.

ory of a first love. The industrious ladies sent their
needle-work, some of which looked as if wrought
by fairy fingers, more than real flesh and blood.
Each succeeding year this organization gathers
strength as the State becomes more populous, and
the necessity of comparing the products from differ-
ent latitudes is made a criterion for those who wish
to examine the local products of a country. In ad-
dition to what has already been done, there is much
room for improvement, which will be accomplished
as the necessities demand, until the Agricultural
Florida Fair shall be numbered among the perma-
nent institutions, where the ingathering harvest of
tropical fruits every year will be a fixed fact, where
immense crowds shall come to look, wondering at
its magnitude, and silent with admiration before the
grandeur of its extensive proportions. The future
of the Fair, like that of the State, has not been at-
Another source of entertainment with many who
come here is yachting. The white-winged little
crafts are constantly flitting about the Jacksonville
wharves, like summer songsters in a clear sky. The
boats, in reality, have become quite indispensable to
the excitement of visitors. Those that draw the
least water, and make the best time, or with a fair
wind can sail on a heavy dew, are the class of craft
most in demand. General Spinner, formerly of the
United States Treasury, has a fine little yacht, in
which he takes pleasure-excursions, looking much
happier than when the responsibility of a nation's
finances rested on his movements.


48 Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes.

Our stay in Jacksonville has been very pleasant;
but its surroundings furnish a poor criterion for the
fertile lands lying in other parts of the State.
The ocean steamer Dictator is waiting at the
wharf for passengers, and we will be among the
happy number to embark on this reliable-running
craft. Her former efficient commander, Captain
Coxetter, has gone where bars or rough waters
never imperil his safety. However, his place has
been supplied by a skillful seaman, thus placing the
Dictator at the head of the list for palatial accom-
modations and attentive officers.
The St. John's to-day appears overspread with a
kind of semi-transparent mist, through which the
sun shines with a nimbus of golden sheen, that fills
the air and sky. Imagination could not paint the
River of Life more beautiful. How smoothly we
glide on its peaceful bosom, while fleecy clouds of
unrivaled purity float over us like airy forms, which
leave an indefinable idea of an invisible presence
hovering near.
The first noticeable landing, after we leave Jack-
sonville, is Mandarin, fifteen miles distant-the
winter residence of Harriet Beecher Stowe-at
which point many stop, as though she was expected
to furnish a gratuitous exhibition of herself, de-
signed for the benefit of those who walk her do-
mains. Visitors come here thinking they are at the
same liberty to inspect her person as though she were
connected with a menagerie, and obligated to pre-
sent herself for their entertainment. Very curious
ones open her window-blinds if they cannot see her

Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes.

in any other way. These impudent violations of
etiquette do not meet with her approval, while those
indulging in them must take the consequences, re-
membering that although patience is a virtue, it is
not always exercised.
Mandarin is quite unpretentious in its general
appearance. The inhabitants raise fine sweet or-
anges and other produce, which they bring down in
little boats to market; this is the most perceptible
stir made by any of its residents. Like many other
localities in the State, historic records of tragic
events, extending back to the Indian wars, are yet
remembered by some of its old citizens. The fol- dated December 25, 1841:
"For some time the settlers in this section of the
country had been lulled into apparent security, un-
der the belief that there was no danger to be appre-
hended, since the notorious Wild Cat and his party
were shipped to the West.
"On Monday a band of twenty-one Indians ap-
proached the settlement of Mandarin, when, after
capturing an old negro belonging to Mr. William
Hartley, lay by until night, when they attacked the
house of Mr. H., who was absent hunting. They
murdered his wife and child, also Messrs. Domingo
Acosta and William Molpus. These savages, after
committing this foul deed, plundered the house and
applied the torch. They then proceeded to the
plantations of Nathan and George Hartley, and as
the inmates had fled, they destroyed their homes.
The Indians camped near until morning, when they
released the old negro, and fled. Captain Hurry, of


50 Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes.
Mandarin, and a few other citizens, followed their
trail the next day for some distance, but finally lost
The settlers then gave expression to their feelings:
We, the citizens of Mandarin, cannot too strong-
ly urge upon Col. Worth the propriety of keeping in
this vicinity a force sufficiently strong to render to
our citizens that protection to which they are justly
entitled. Many of them had returned to their aban-
doned places, others making preparations for that
purpose; but their plans are now frustrated, as there
can be no possible security until the last Indian is
hunted out of Florida; while our troops are operat-
ing in the South, they are murdering in our .unpro-
tected settlements. This is the seventh Christmas-
day we have witnessed since the Indian war has
been raging in our territory, it being now our pain-
ful duty to record it is far from being ended. The
blood of our citizens is still warm upon the hillocks
and turfs of Florida, and the wily savage roams un-
dismayed, with his thirst for the blood of fresh vic-
tims unquenched."
One noticeable feature in traveling through Florida
is the fanciful names we hear given to unimportant
places-the name being the most prominent point,
the towns so diminutive that it is difficult to locate
them with any degree of certainty. The first high-
sounding ones, after Mandarin, are Hibernia and
Magnolia, both little stopping-places, considered
quite exclusive in their associations with the world
in general and themselves in particular, where guests
are so well contented they think the fabled land for

Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes.

which the Spaniards searched so long is at last
Green Cove Mineral Springs, thirty miles above
Jacksonville, is a noted resort for those afflicted with
rheumatism-the temperature of the water always
being warm enough in winter to stimulate the sys-
tem and give relief to pain. Many other diseases
are also greatly mitigated. Very happy faces come
down here to look at us, which is, no doubt, attrib-
utable to the exhilarating influences of the water
and fine fare at the hotels.
Picolata, forty-five miles above Jacksonville, on
the east bank of the river, is more famous for what
it has been than for what it is now, its former great-
ness having departed, leaving scarcely a shadow to
guide us. This was formerly the stage terminus
from St. Augustine, eighteen miles distant, and of
some importance as a commercial point, with a
weekly stage running to Tallahassee and St. Mark's.
During Spanish times this place was called Fort
Picolata, where once stood a very ancient fortress.
The following is a description of its dimensions,
written over one hundred years since: "It was con-
structed with a high wall, without bastions, about
breast-high on the inside, with loop-holes, and sur-
rounded by a deep ditch. The upper story was open
on each side, with battlements supporting a cupola,
or roof. These parapets were formerly mounted
with eight four-pounders-two on each side. The
works were built with hewn stone, cemented in
lime. The shell-rock from which it was constructed
was cut out of quarries on St. Anastasia Island, op-


52 Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes.
posite St. Augustine." The object of this fort was
to guard the passage of the river, and preserve com-
munication with St. Mark's and Pensacola.
As we propose describing Tocoi on our return,
we will now proceed to Pilatka, the county-seat of
Putnam, with a population of fifteen hundred inhab-
itants. The land on which the town stands is high,
the soil being mixed with shells. The accommoda-
tions here for visitors are fine, where many come to
stay all winter, in preference to any other place.
The Putnam House is well kept, being refreshingly
neat, and the whole premises in perfect order. It is
now February, and the garden is producing peas,
lettuce, radishes, Irish potatoes, and many other
vegetables, from which the house is supplied. The
tables groan with good things, while the proprietor
tries to make everybody welcome. The politeness
of the servants reminds us of the palmy days of the
past, when they were trained for use, and not per-
mitted to roam, as many do now, like untamed
beasts, seeking something which they can kill and
eat, or steal, and trade for money. The citizens are
very industrious and law-abiding-the town having
been settled thirty years-and never had a county
jail until recently; but, in keeping with the im-
provements of the age, they have one now which is
equal to any emergency. Among the various other
buildings, we notice a court-house, several churches,
and many boarding-houses. The principal indus-
tries are a moss-factory, sea-island cotton-gin, a
steam grist-mill and saw-mill, also a guano fish-oil
factory. Shad-fishing is profitable here in March,

Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes.

when large quantities are shipped. One paper-the
Pilatka Herald-publishes all the news. The editor
is called "Alligator" Pratt-he having obtained his
title by giving descriptions of the immense num-
bers of alligators which frequented the streams, as
recorded by the early settlers, but bringing it down
to the present time, as a visible fact, which is not
true, nor ever will be again, while so many are being
killed every year. When we visited the Herald
office, two lads, sons of the proprietor, were working
like busy bees, the youngest being thirteen, and the
oldest seventeen, years of age. They said their fa-
ther was in Tallahassee, and they were "getting out
the paper." Such enterprise is commendable.
Many of the tropical fruits are cultivated here,
some of which grow to perfection, while others are
experimental, but at present very flourishing. Ripe
strawberries, luscious and sweet, are now ready for
market, on Col. Hart's place-the fertilizer used
being river-muck, which is inexhaustible. The
weather is milder here than in other localities of the
same latitude, not on the river, which is accounted
for by the waters of the St. John's flowing from a
milder clime, thus checking any proposed invasion
from Jack Frost.
A very amusing circumstance happened here this
morning. The Catholic bishop from St. Augustine
being in town, according to his usual custom, pro-
posed to have early morning mass. On repairing to
the church, and finding none of his members in at-
tendance, and not being inclined to say mass for the
repose of their souls and bodies while in bed, as a


54 Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes.

gentle reminder of their duties he commenced pull-
ing vigorously at the bell-rope. The jingling at so
early an hour caused a consternation among the in-
habitants, who supposed it to be a fire-alarm, and,
thinking the safety of their dwellings in danger,
rushed from every street in hasty-made toilets, look-
ing for the conflagration. However, on quiet being
restored, the affair was considered a good joke.
Pilatka is the head of navigation for ocean steam-
ers, the river narrowing so rapidly soon after leaving
here that they cannot run any farther. Parties go-
ing up the Ocklawaha must always stop at this point,
as steamers made for no other purpose leave here
daily. No Florida tour would be complete without
a trip up this narrow, tortuous stream, which turns
its course so often the wonder is that it does not for-
get which way it was going to run.
The name of our boat is Okahumkee, which bears
a slight resemblance to the pictures designed to rep-
resent Noah's ark, but only in shape, not in size or
age. On account of the obstacles she has to meet
in navigation, there can be no surplus-work or em-
bellishment on her; but she is clean and comforta-
ble, the fare good as on any river-craft. The pro-
pelling power is at the stern, and sends the steamer
ahead at the rate of eight miles an hour. The
owner, Col. Hart, is a man of undaunted energies,
whose pioneer movements in navigating this river
will ever remain a monument worthy of emulation.
Twenty-five miles above Pilatka the Ocklawaha
-comes in, which name signifies boggy river, or tur-
gid water, so called by the Indians.

Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes.


HILE in Florida, if tourists wish for a va-
riety, let them travel up the meandering
course of that peculiar stream, the Ock-
lawaha. There is no signaling here, as at
other rivers in the State, for fossilized Spaniards to
take us over the bars. After describing a triangle,
we enter its dark waters without obstacle or inter-
ruption, when our steamer glides along easily, if not
quickly, as a Florida sun behind the horizon.
The Ocklawaha is the largest tributary of the
much-admired St. John's River. It is only from
fifty to seventy-five feet in width at any point, and
navigable all seasons of the year. Its banks are
lined with "forests primeval," while its crooked
course can only be traced by a seat upon the decks
of its steamers. The banks are low, with an occa-
sional bluff, accompanied by a wildness of scenery
not so unvaried as to become monotonous. The
river runs through heavily-timbered lands, consist-
ing of sweet-gum, sweet-bay, and live-oak, from
which hangs a drapery of long moss so dense it is
only visited by zephyr breezes. The swaying of
this pendant growth appears like the movements of
magic, preparing a revelation from the secret abodes
of wood-nymphs, or a debut from the weird form of
some dark-eyed Indian maid.


56 Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes.
The cypress-trees grow here to the height of two
hundred feet, some of them being twenty-four in
circumference, and eight feet through at the base.
From this kind of timber spars for vessels are made,
which excel in durability any other in use.
The trees on the banks are set closely as a cane
thicket, thus obscuring all view of the surround-
ing country as effectually as if it were a thousand
miles distant. It is to this point the sportsman
resorts to indulge his propensity for killing birds,
which sing songs of joy as we pass; but when
wounded, their helpless bodies fall into the turbid
waters--the last that is seen of them being a flutter-
ing pinion, signaling their sinking condition, with
no one to pity or rescue. The click of the rifle is
heard on every side from the hands of passengers,
with the exciting remark: there is another alli-
gator! Sight him quick! Kill him!" Although
this seems to be great sport for the huntsman, it is
not always death to the game.
As we approach the source of the river the scen-
ery is constantly changing, like a kaleidoscopic view,
and although it is mid-winter the river-banks are
lined with flowers in full bloom, as though Jack
Frost was not abroad with his withering breath, and
had killed many of their companions far away, and
buried them under his white covering, bound with
icy fetters.
Among the most conspicuous plants which we see
now is the aster, climbing twenty or thirty feet,
forming bowers filled with blooms, supported by
woody stems, sending forth their fragrance to glad-

Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes.

den the senses of those who love perfumery made
in nature's laboratory.
The water-lily, enthroned on her emerald seat,
sits like a queen, spreading a snowy crown in every
quiet corner of the stream; while the air-plants, with
a more ambitious turn, are clinging to the trees,
with their pink petals bursting into bloom, as the
wild oranges and scarlet berries combined form a
panorama which creates new-born emotions of hap-
piness in the minds of all who look on their beau-
ties and retain in imagination their charms.
Captain Rice, who has charge of the steamer
Okahumkee, is the alpha and omega of the inhab-
itants on this river. He supplies all their wants,
makes all their contracts, and sells all their produce.
The men expect him to furnish them with whatever
they need, from a sugar-mill to a plug of tobacco.
From this portion of the country are shipped sea-
island cotton, moss, oranges, vanilla, chickens, and
eggs. These are sold in Jacksonville to obtain their
family supplies. The Captain goes shopping for the
young ladies, buys their pin-backs, tilters, face-pow-
der, and sometimes snuff-for their mothers only!
For these numerous services he rarely ever receives
any thing but a smile! No wonder the man looks
thin, fed on such intangible substance!
Orange Springs, thirty-five miles from the mouth
of the river, is our first landing-place. This was
formerly a resort for invalids, on account of the min-
eral properties contained in the water. Here we
witnessed an affectionate meeting between a hus-
band and wife. The lady had just returned from


68 Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes.
Jacksonville on the steamer. When she stepped on
shore, and saw her husband waiting for her, she
threw her arms around his neck and cried. Some
of the experienced passengers said she wept because
she thought of all that old fat bacon she would have
to eat after feasting so high in Jacksonville.
A log is something which our boat appears to un-
derstand. It leaps over at a single bound, then goes
crashing against the large limbs, which sounds like
the rattling of musketry, or crashing of a cyclone.
We met a lady on board who, since her last visit
up the Ocklawaha, has been deprived of her hearing.
Not aware of the great change through which she
had passed, she quietly inquired if the obstructions
had not all been removed from the river. The sound,
then, of big limbs rasping across the boat, which had
been crushed by coming in contact with it, resem-
bled thunder. The Captain changed his seat very
suddenly to go forward, while the passengers were
all busy looking after birds and alligators; but no
one asserted that navigation was without impedi-
ments, so far as last heard from. "Where ignorance
is bliss, 'tis folly to be wise."
On this river is the home of the genuine crackers.
You can see them come to the steamer when it
lands; and clever people they are, too. They ap-
pear to come from nowhere, their first appearance
being on a bateau, or little platform, by the river-
banks, where are seen standing specimens of hu-
manity so thin a musquito would be doing a bad
business in trying to obtain sustenance from their
bloodless bodies.

Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes. 59

Hoping that the mind of the public may be re-
lieved of the impression that a kind of hybrid bipeds
circulate through the South entirely unknown in
other localities, called crackers, I herewith append

a description of the Northern crackers, in connec-
tion with our Southern product, taken from my own
From the Alleghany Mountains of Pennsylvania

60 Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes.
to the sands of Florida there exists a certain class
of the genus homo, defined by different nanes, but
possessing traits of character nearly allied, called in
the North "the lower class," in the South crack.
ers." In the Northern States these poor, uneducated
creatures ruminate without restraint. The localities
they prefer are removed from the principal towns
and cities. During the summer they spend a por-
tion of the season in raising a little corn and pota-
toes, together with other "garden sass," which is
consumed by their numerous families to sustain
them during the cold winter weather. The little
attention this crop receives is when they are not
working out as the hired help, in assisting their
neighbors through hayin' and harvestin', or digging'
taters." Many of them never "hire out," but sub-
sist entirely by hunting, fishing, or gathering ber-
ries, for which pursuits their wild natures and un-
settled habits well adapt them. They excel in the
piscatorial profession, studying the habits of the
finny tribe during their various stages, together
with their times of ascending and descending the
streams. Sometimes the city folks come out to
spend a few days with tent and reels, which move-
ment these self-constituted sovereigns of the soil
regard as a direct innovation of their rights; and if
the supposed intruders escape without their tent
being burned, or their clothes stolen, during the day
when they are absent, it may be regarded as a fort-
unate circumstance. Many of those "lower class"
specimens of humanity cannot read or write, while
those who can do not often imbibe orthodox opin-

Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes.

ions in their religious belief, but embrace theories
mapped out by New England fanatics, upon which
they try to make an improvement during the cold
winter days when they cannot be stirring out
doors." If a thaw comes they hunt deer and other
wild game, which is bartered for groceries. Hogs
with them, as most other people, are an important
item for winter food. These animals manage to
live tolerably well during the summer on grass, be-
sides occasionally breaking into a neighbor's field
of corn or potatoes, and fattening in the autumn on
wild mast, which is plentiful.
This "lower class" have never been credited with
being strictly honest, and frequently a stray sheep,
calf, or turkey, makes an important addition to the
family larder, which is eaten by all without any
scruples, no questions being asked. Generosity
cannot be classed among their virtues. If a benev-
olent impulse ever forces its way into their stingy
souls, it is soon frozen out for want of sustenance.
Never a weary wanderer rests upon their beds, or
is fed from their table, unless pay is expected for it,
nor a drop of milk given to pleasure-excursionists
without collection on delivery. Their clothes are
made mostly of wool, it being a home product, and
the winters so severe they are obliged to be pro-
tected. The "wimmen folks" weave the cloth,
then color it blue or red, and when the garments
are made they are worn through all seasons-in
winter to keep out the cold, and in summer the
heat. There is no changing of raiment, nor any
record kept of the time each garment is worn, it


62 Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes.
being only removed when patching becomes neces-
sary, and a Joseph's coat among them is not an un-
common sight. They are not remarkable for their
powers of articulation, but communicate with a pe-
culiar twang through their noses, as though that
was the design of the organ. Cow is pronounced as
though it was spelled "keow;" how, heow." "Aw-
ful" is their principal adjective, upon which they
ring changes at all times: "Awful mean!" "Awful
good!" Conversation through the nose for the old
women is a difficult experiment, as they deposit
large quantities of snuff in that organ, whether for
disease, or to fill a vacuum in their crania, has never
been determined, but it is really a most disgusting
and filthy practice to witness.
The above is a correct description of the North-
ern crackers, of which some scribblers seem to
have lost sight in their unfeeling efforts to abuse
the South, and impress the world with the idea that
crackers and poor whites are entirely of Southern
origin, and only found in that locality, they being
the outgrowth of a slave oligarchy.
That indigenous class of persons called Southern
crackers receive names according to their locality.
In South Carolina and South Georgia they are
called "Poor Buckra," and in Florida "Sand Lap-
pers," or "Crackers." The Florida crackers are
supposed to be named from the facility with which
they eat corn, it being their chief article of diet,
while some few contract the habit of dirt-eating,
and have been named "Sand Lappers."
The true derivation of cracker, notwithstanding

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