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PROPOSAL TO RECONFIGURE THE DE MESA HOUSE INTERPRETATIVE EXHIBIT
This proposal is in response to w of the present interpretative
exhibit (Mhii. Territorial Period) ich have been voiced by members
of the Board of Trustees, Director, and professional staff.
1. Determination of the focus of the exhibit
Statement of purpose: This exhibit is presented "for the use, benefit, education,
recreation, enjoyment and general welfare of the people of this state and nation" as
stated in the Enabling Act, Chapter 266; Florida Statutes.
It is designed to communicate meanings and relationships through the use of ori-
ginal objects and illustrative media and to effectively promote a general under-
standing of "St. Augustine as a link between the sea and the hinterland, and St.
Augustine's Spanish heritage and role in the Spanish Empire. The last century of
the First Spanish Period (1672-1763) will be emphasized, closely followed by emphasis
on the Second Spanish Period (1784-1821). The 21 year (1763-1784) British Period will
be reflected in proper perspective, and the Territorial Period (1821-1845) will be
treated as a bridge to more recent times." p. 15 [Master Plan 1983] .
Specifically, the proposed de Mesa exhibit will consist of a mix of period rooms
and thematic exhibits surveying St. Aunustine history from 1672 to 16M. with a major
emphasis on the latter part of the First Spanish Period.
These exhibits are outlined in detail in step 3.
2. Determination of the audience
(Who are they, what are their needs, and what are they looking for?)
According to "Visitors to Florida Attractions," April 1984, Florida's visitors
arrive by automobile, bring children and come on vacation. They are here to see
the attractions, ie. to be entertained. They have a very limited interest in
historic sites and even less in educational events.