|Table of Contents|
Bicentennial commission of Florida
View of west Florida
BY JOHN LEE WILLIAMS.
A FACSIMILE REPRODUCTION
OF THE 1827 EDITION
INTRODUCTION AND INDEX
BY HERBERT J. DOHERTY, JR.
A UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA BOOK.
THE UNIVERSITY PRESSES OF FLORIDA.
THE BICENTENNIAL FLORIDIANA
published under the sponsorship of the
BICENTENNIAL COMMISSION OF FLORIDA
SAMUEL PROCTOR, General Editor.
A FACSIMILE REPRODUCTION
OF THE 1827 EDITION
WITH PREFATORY MATERIAL, INTRODUCTION,
AND INDEX ADDED.
NEW MATERIAL COPYRIGHT @ 1976
BY THE BOARD OF REGENTS
OF THE STATE OF FLORIDA.
All rights reserved.
PRINTED IN FLORIDA.
Library of Congress Cataloging in Publication Data
Williams, John Lee.
A view of west Florida.
(Bicentennial Floridiana facsimile series)
"A University of Florida book."
Photoreprint of the ed. printed for Tanner, Philadelphia.
Includes bibliographical references and index.
1. West Florida-Description and travel. I. Title.
F317.W5W7 1976 917.59'9'044 75-45282
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
Edward J. Trombetta, Tallahassee
Ralph D. Turlington, Tallahassee
William S. Turnbull, Orlando
Robert Williams, Tallahassee
Lori Wilson, Merritt Island
"TmE results of his long and toilsome life in books recorded
will live when the marbles and monumental brasses of many
of his contemporaries shall be no more." This was the pro-
phetic epitaph of John Lee Williams written just two days
after his death by his friend and fellow Florida writer, Dan-
iel G. Brinton. Indeed, Florida does owe a major debt to
Williams, the transplanted New Englander who, along with
Dr. William H. Simmons of St. Augustine, was appointed in
1823 to select the site for a new seat of Florida government.
Acting under a legislative mandate they inspected Middle
Florida to determine where the capital should be located.
Inadequate maps and a dearth of accurate geographical in-
formation turned this exploration into a difficult undertaking.
The journal John Lee Williams kept of the journey, later
published in volume 1 of the Florida Historical Quarterly,
reveals some of the problems the men encountered. The
need for books and reliable maps of Florida was obvious.
Williams chose first to write about West Florida, the area
between the Perdido and Suwannee rivers. His A View of
West Florida was published in 1827 together with a map
which he had prepared of West Florida. It was raw, un-
settled land which Williams described in this book which
is being published now as a facsimile. Its sparse population,
only a few thousand people, lived in and around St. Augus-
tine in East Florida and around Pensacola on the Gulf.
Middle Florida-Leon and the surrounding counties-was
being settled by families moving in from Georgia, the Caro-
linas, and other southern states. Tobacco farms and cotton
plantations would quickly become valuable economic assets,
along with lumbering, turpentining, and hunting and fishing.
Sugar cane, potatoes, and other vegetables and fruits would
soon become productive commodities. The Indians were liv-
ing in North Florida at the time of Williams' writings and
were becoming increasingly more hostile. Roads were little
more than trails through the woods, and most of the trans-
port depended upon rivers and the other waterways. It was
a frontier in every sense.
Neither A View of West Florida, nor Territory of Florida
(published in 1837), are adequate by today's standards, but
at the time they were among the best accounts of Florida
available. If Williams' View of Florida was "incomplete and
error-laden," it did record the physical aspects and natural
endowments of the territory. Descriptions of West Florida
life and times, based upon Williams' personal observations
and experiences, are the most important parts of his book.
Therein lies its value to Floridiana. Williams' 1827 map, by
comparison with twentieth-century geographical knowledge,
is crude and inaccurate. Yet at a time when there were few
cartographic aids at all, maps were needed and Williams'
proved useful. A second map which he prepared in 1837
revealed how much more about the history and geography
of Florida he had learned in the span of a few years.
A facsimile of John Lee Williams' The Territory of Florida
was published in 1962. At that time the country was observ-
ing the Civil War Centennial, and many American and
Florida history books and monographs were coming off the
presses. The University of Florida Press issued a series of
facsimiles of significant out-of-print Florida books. Now that
the nation is celebrating its two hundredth birthday a new
Florida facsimile series has been launched. A View of West
Florida is one of the volumes in the Bicentennial Floridiana
Facsimile Series being published by the University Presses
of Florida for the Florida Bicentennial Commission.
The twenty-seven-member Bicentennial Commission was
established by the state legislature in 1971 to plan Florida's
role in the national celebration and to develop state and
county projects that will enhance the three major themes of
the Bicentennial: Heritage '76, Festival '76, and Horizons
"76. Governor Reubin Askew serves as honorary chairman of
Publication of Florida history was adopted as one of the
major goals of the Bicentennial Commission. This will in-
clude the issuance of twenty-five facsimiles of important
Florida history books which have long been out of print,
difficult to find, and expensive if at all available. This fac-
simile of A View of West Florida is in this series. The titles
selected will represent the whole spectrum of Florida's rich
and exciting history which goes back for nearly five cen-
turies. Scholars with a special interest in and knowledge of
Florida have been invited to edit each volume, write an
introduction, and compile an index. The goal of the Florida
Bicentennial Commission is to make a lasting contribution
to the scholarship of Florida history.
Herbert J. Doherty, Jr., editor of A View of West Florida,
was also editor of the facsimile edition of Territory of Florida
(1962). A native of Jacksonville, and a graduate of the Uni-
versity of Florida and the University of North Carolina at
Chapel Hill, Professor Doherty is a well-known expert in
Florida history. Among his books and monographs are Rich-
ard Keith Call: Southern Unionist and The Whigs of Florida,
1845-1854. He has served as editor of the Florida Historical
Quarterly, president of the Florida Historical Society, and
chairman of the Alachua County Historical Commission. He
is professor of social sciences and history at the University of
Florida and chairman of the Department of Social Sciences.
General Editor of the
University of Florida.
A View of West Florida by John Lee Williams was pub-
lished in 1827 as an extended essay to accompany a new
map of the area which the author had prepared. West
Florida was defined as that area between the Perdido and
Suwannee rivers, which had been delineated by an ordi-
nance of Governor Andrew Jackson in 1821. Williams de-
scribed the area as a gently rolling land intersected by many
navigable rivers. Much of it, he noted, was covered with
forests whose trees were spaced a considerable distance
apart with little undergrowth. These forests were carpeted
with grass and flowers, and the streams were bordered with
hardwoods tangled in vine. The waterways abounded in fish
of all kinds. Though Williams claimed only utilitarian vir-
tues for his book and denied his ability "to amuse by highly
wrought diction, or the ingenious inventions of the imagina-
tion," there is imaginative writing in his description of this
land where "the climate is healthy and the seasons mild."'
One of the earliest reviews of Williams' book appeared in
1828, by James Gadsden, in the North American Review.
Gadsden, a South Carolinian, had accompanied Andrew
Jackson to Florida during the First Seminole War and had
passed some years of his life there as a resident. He was
particularly familiar with West Florida. Though Williams
does not make reference to having had any assistance in
preparing his map, Gadsden noted that the book was the
first to appear since the public lands had been surveyed and
declared that the map was based upon the "admirable"
survey maps in the General Land Office in Washington.
Gadsden concluded that, "The work is evidently the produc-
tion of a plain, candid man, who seems to be under no influ-
ence calculated to deceive himself, or to impose on others,
for he has given many facts, and hazarded but few opin-
ions."2 His comments about "influence" perhaps referred to
the fact that some very early treatises on Florida, notably
those by James G. Forbes and Charles Vignoles, were at
least partially motivated by economic interests of the authors
in Florida lands.3
John Lee Williams was born in Salem, Massachusetts, in
1775 but grew up in the state of New York. After attending
Hamilton-Oneida Academy in Clinton he moved to Virginia
and was engaged in business there for a number of years.
Because of ill health he came in 1820 to Spanish Florida,
settling in Pensacola. By his own account he was in very
feeble health and blind when he arrived, yet within six
months he had completely recovered and began to take an
active part in the business and politics of the community
that was rapidly becoming Americanized. Judge Henry M.
Brackenridge described him at that time as one of the two
trustworthy lawyers in Pensacola.4
In 1823, with Dr. William H. Simmons of St. Augustine,
he was appointed by Governor William P. DuVal as a com-
missioner to locate a site for a new seat of government in a
place convenient to both of the widely separated populated
parts of Florida. He met Simmons in October, 1823, near
St. Marks and explored the lands north of that old Spanish
outpost fairly thoroughly during October and November.
The journal Williams kept of that journey, on which this
book is in part based, was published in the first volume of
the Florida Historical Quarterly. It is a very sparse account,
but the delays, mistakes, and confusion evident in it make
plain the difficulties of such an exploration in 1823.5
The first third of the narrative portion of this book is a
discussion of the geographic features-and the flora and
fauna-of West Florida. A comparison of both the maps and
the descriptive detail in A View of West Florida (1827)
and Williams' book of a decade later The Territory of Florida
(1837) shows interesting discrepancies which indicate that
he learned more about both Florida geography and history
during the years between the two publications.6 Both books
and their maps, however, indicate how imperfect the state
of knowledge about Florida was in the early nineteenth
century, compared with the present day. Both maps seem
crude at best.
A brief comparison with modem maps shows many inter-
esting errors, omissions, and name changes. Taking a survey
beginning at the Suwannee River and going west, one first
notes that Williams placed the Waccasassa River and Bay
much closer to the mouth of the Suwannee than they actu-
ally are. His 1827 map called it Vaccassar Bay, which be-
came Wakassee Bay by 1837. In the preface to his 1837
book he observed that most surveyors had skipped over more
than thirty miles of the coast here because "an extensive
reef" shut in this bay. West of the Suwannee, he placed the
Histahatchee River further west in 1827 than in 1837, and
on the earlier map he confused it with the Acheenahatchee
River. On present-day maps it appears as Fishbone Creek.
Moving to the west the 1827 map located next the Chatta-
hatchee River, but the 1837 map, apparently correctly, lo-
cated the Acheenahatchee River next, with the Chattahatchee
River being west of it. The Acheenahatchee River, perhaps
through years of lazy enunciation, is apparently the river
now called the Steinhatchee (pronounced Steenhatchee).
What John Lee Williams called the Chattahatchee on his
1837 map now appears to be the Fenholloway.
The Fenholloway River appears on both Williams maps,
with slight variations in spelling, but it does not flow to the
Gulf! Nor does the Econfina River, both of which modern
maps show flowing into the Gulf between the Aucilla and
Steinhatchee rivers. On both Williams' maps the Fenhollo-
way and Econfina rivers flow into the Aucilla River (Oscilla
by his spelling) before it reaches the Gulf. Williams appar-
ently mistook the Wacissa River for the Aucilla, believing
that the true Aucilla was the Fenholloway and that the
Welaunee was the Econfina.
Further west is the village of St. Marks, at the confluence
of the Wakulla (sometimes called Wakully by Williams)
and the St. Marks rivers. In 1827 Williams represented the
Wakulla as extending inland in an almost due north direc-
tion. By 1837 he had it more correctly extending in a north-
westerly direction inland. The body of water from the con-
fluence of those two streams to the Gulf, he called the
Apalache River. Close by on the west is Ochlockonee Bay fed
by the river of the same name and the Sopchoppy (Secke-
hopko on his 1837 map). On the 1827 map Williams ran the
Ocklockney (his spelling) almost due north, but by 1837 he
changed the spelling to Oclockoney and reoriented its route
closer to its actual location. Crooked River which is virtually
a second, western mouth of the Ochlockonee is approxi-
mately correct on both maps.
The Apalachicola River (spelled with two "p's") is
straighter and more due north in its orientation in 1827 than
1837. The Chapola (Chipola) River flows into Hort's Lake
on the 1827 map before reaching the Apalachicola. On the
1837 map the "Chappola" flows into "Drowned Land," des-
ignated on today's maps as "Dead Lake." The representa-
tions of Apalachicola and St. Josephs bays are not too dif-
ferent from modern maps though both appear smaller on
Williams' mapping of St. Andrews Bay differs materially
from that of modern cartographers. He identified no North
Bay nor West Bay, but depicted a large body of water in
the vicinity of both which he called Wapaluxy Bay. Another
Econfina River ran into it. Though he designated an East
Bay on the 1827 map, the configuration of connected bays
is not nearly so extensive as that delineated on modern maps.
In the preface to his 1837 book he admitted that until that
time St. Andrews Bay had never been examined by any of
the surveyors of the coast or the public lands.
Greater detail in the mapping of both Chactawhatchee
(Choctawhatchee) Bay and the complex of bays around
Pensacola indicate Williams' greater familiarity with that
area of Florida which had been his home for several years.
On the northwest corner of Choctawhatchee Bay the 1827
map shows Lafayette Bay. By 1837 it has disappeared. On
mid-twentieth century maps the distance between Chocta-
whatchee and Pensacola bays appears to be three or four
times greater than on Williams' maps, which have the two
almost connected. What Williams called Yellow Water Bay
appears on modem maps as East Bay, but Pensacola Bay
and Escambia Bay are comparatively the same. On the 1827
map, however, they appear larger than on most later maps
and the streams flowing into Yellow Water Bay are named
differently on Williams' 1837 map. The configuration of Per-
dido Bay, west of Pensacola, differs from 1827 to 1837, and
from modem maps.
A careful observer can find many interesting evidences
of the primitive nature of the map-maker's art by comparing
these maps of the 1830s with those of the present day. In
addition to the differences noted here one may find that
often ponds and lakes are included which do not exist, are
omitted when they do exist, or are misplaced.
Though neither of Williams' books is valuable as history,
his View of West Florida is particularly incomplete and
error-laden. In his explorations of the Tallahassee region
Williams had been struck by the remains of the extensive
Spanish mission system which had flourished there in the
seventeenth century. He saw the remains of roads and build-
ings, but not knowing of the missions he concluded that
some advanced civilization had formerly resided there.
Drawing on garbled oral tradition passed on by Indians in
the area, and speculations of his friend Henry M. Bracken-
ridge, he theorized that survivors of the DeSoto expedition
had settled in the area and mixed with the Yamassee Indians
whom he believed to have inhabited the region in the six-
teenth century. Williams concluded, "by intermarriages and
good example, they induced many of the natives to adopt
the arts of civilized life. Wholly lost to, or neglected by the
mother country, they grew up in the wilderness of Florida,
planned towns, extended highways, and built fortifications,
whose ruins still cover the country. Becoming effeminate,
they at length fell a prey to the Seminoles, Muscogees, and
other northern tribes, perhaps one hundred and thirty years
Williams' concept of the history of the Florida Indians
was fancifully inventive where he had no evidence. His au-
thority for the culture of the Indians was a work published
in Paris in 1806. He accepted its generalizations uncritically,
assuming apparently that the cultures of all early American
Indians were relatively uniform.8 He did admit to a two-
hundred-year "hiatus" in Florida Indian history, and in this
connection he referred his readers to Brackenridge's letter
in his Appendix I. He reported a tradition that Yamassees
and whites lived together for a long period in the Tallahas-
see region until routed by the "Muscogulgees."9 Actually the
Yamassees had never lived in the Tallahassee region; the
sixteenth-century Indians there were called Apalachees. The
American Indian authority, John R. Swanton, maintains that
no destruction of the Yamassees ever took place.10 He also
makes no recognition of a tribe called "Muscogulgees," but
he does note that William Bartram used the term in his
eighteenth-century account of his travels in America. It is
known that Williams had read Bartram and that Bartram
believed the "Muscogulgees" had exterminated the Yamas-
sees, hence part of Williams' faulty theory is attributable
The physical evidence Williams saw in the Tallahassee
area included remnants of roads, buildings, and cultivated
fields. He was convinced, however, that most of the build-
ings were forts and noted their locations on all sides of
Tallahassee. The name of one still survived, Fort St. Lewis,
two miles west of Tallahassee, where he noted "extensive
defenses" and the finding of two cannon.12
In point of fact, the explanation for the remains Williams
and his contemporaries saw was far less romantic and more
impressive than they imagined. The physical evidences which
they attributed to some Indo-European culture were actually
remains of the Spanish Franciscan missions which had flour-
ished from the Atlantic coast to the Apalachicola River in
the seventeenth century. The Franciscans came to Florida
on a serious scale in 1595. Not until 1608, however, did they
make regular contacts with the Indians of West Florida,
and it was not until 1633 that the Apalachee Indians got
their first full-time resident missionary.13 All through the
1630s and 1640s the influence of the Franciscans continued
to grow in the Apalachee region. By 1655 they claimed
26,000 Christian converts in thirty-eight doctrinas, as a mis-
sion village with a resident friar was called. In those villages
where there were many converts a veneer of Spanish culture
was maintained. These Hispanicized Indians all took Chris-
tion names, prefixed by don.1
To the dismay of the Franciscans, the Spanish military
officials planted garrisons among these missions for their
"protection." All too often friction developed between sol-
diers and Indians because of exploitation of the latter by the
Spaniards. Under Governor Rebolledo Indians were con-
scripted to raise corn and carry it to St. Augustine. In conse-
quence, the Apalachees revolted in 1647 and again in
1656. The revolts were cruelly repressed and the garrisons
strengthened.15 The circumstances probably were the origin
of the tradition that the missions were "forts."
The evidence is that Williams' Fort Lewis was the mission
of San Luis de Talimali which Michael Gannon in recent
years has mapped near Tallahassee. Gabriel Diaz Vara Cal-
der6n, Bishop of Santiago, Cuba, who made an inspection
of the Florida missions in 1674, noted, "In the mission of
San Luis, which is the principal one of the province, resides
a military officer in a country house defended by pieces of
ordnance and a garrison of infantry."16
The last quarter of the seventeenth century marked the
high point of the Franciscan missions in Florida. In 1676
there were forty fathers of this order in Florida; by 1680,
there were fifty-two."1 The death knell of the missions, how-
ever, was to be sounded by events to the north. English
colonization had spread as far south as Charleston by 1680.
English incursions against the missions north of St. Augus-
tine increased through this period, the Yamassee Indians
usually working in alliance with the English. By the end of
the century fear and apathy had spread among the Fran-
ciscans because of these raids and the neglect of all affairs
relating to Florida by the Spanish crown. In 1702 the War
of the Spanish Succession began, pitting England against
Spain and France. In that year Governor James Moore of
South Carolina with many Indian supporters laid siege to
St. Augustine and destroyed all missions in northeastern
Florida. In 1704, again with his Indian allies, Moore launched
a succession of raids into the Apalachee country. Mercilessly
his forces looted and burned the mission towns and mur-
dered their inhabitants. Mooreannihilated eight of the four-
teen missions in that area of Florida. By 1708, the Apalachee
missions had been completely destroyed and ten to twelve
thousand Indians had been carried to slavery in the Caro-
By 1837, when he published The Territory of Florida,
Williams had learned a great deal more about Florida his-
tory. The lengthy historical section of that work contains no
tales of lost members of the DeSoto expedition amalgamating
with Indians. Although he placed the Franciscans in Apa-
lachee country about a century too early, he no longer
viewed their missions as forts. He wrote, "Missionary estab-
lishments, and convents were founded, whose ruins are at
this time a subject of curious investigation, in the middle
district of Florida. It was here that the see of Rome char-
tered a great religious province, under the order of the
Franciscans .. ."19 He made no reference to his earlier
inventions in his View of West Florida.
For a modern historical researcher, as well as a layman
interested in Florida history, the most valuable parts of this
book are those in which Williams described the life and
times of the West Florida which he knew. In that connec-
tion, even his sketchy knowledge of Florida's past reveals
to us the general ignorance of Americans on that topic in
the early nineteenth century. He had, however, seen with
his own eyes the towns of West Florida; the geological curi-
osities such as disappearing rivers, sinks, and natural bridges;
the festivals and customs of the old inhabitants; and the
productions of the land. His section called "Productions"
(beginning on page 38) deals with the natural productions
of the land. He cataloged the land in five types: pine bar-
rens, uplands, hammocks, swamps, and marshes, and he
estimated the quantity of each. He described the qualities
of the soil in each category and then made an extensive
inventory of the trees, shrubs, herbs, vines, and grasses in
each. The accuracy of his usage of botanical names does not
stand close scrutiny, but his efforts are nonetheless impres-
His section on "Agriculture" (beginning on page 62)
brings few surprises. Cotton was the largest crop, and sev-
eral varieties were cultivated. Some readers may be sur-
prised to learn that rice was the second ranking crop. Wil-
liams maintained that it grew as well in uplands and pine
barrens as in low wet areas and that it was a more certain
and profitable crop than corn. He noted that corn should be
raised for local consumption but not for market. It was too
risky a crop, and he believed good land should be more
profitably used for sugar and cotton. For three years prior
to publication of this book, sugar had been successfully pro-
duced in Jackson, Gadsden, and Leon counties, and Williams
believed it had a promising future. The sweet potato was a
common crop grown profitably everywhere in Florida, but
Irish potatoes grown locally were thought to be inferior to
those grown in the North. Tobacco and indigo were grown
on a small scale, as were a variety of small grain crops and
vegetables. Grasses, he noted, had been little cultivated. Of
fruit crops, figs, plums, and oranges were successfully culti-
vated, but the sweet orange was noted to be particularly
delicate and difficult to raise.
"Manufactures" got short shrift as Williams noted, "As yet
there are none in West Florida," and "It is not probable, that
manufactures will ever be greatly extended in this country.
. ."20 Commerce, according to him, consisted of a small
coasting trade which brought foreign goods from New York
and groceries and provisions from New Orleans.
The section on "Towns" (beginning on page 73) deals
only with Pensacola, but, used in conjunction with the inset
maps of Pensacola and Pensacola Bay on his map of West
Florida, it presents a revealing picture of that city in his
day. A very sketchy history precedes the description. Of
the life of the mind, Pensacola had little, according to Wil-
liams' lights: "Good schools are not encouraged as they
ought to be. Science is scarcely thought to be a subject
worthy of conversation. Swarms of children are running
about the streets, improving rapidly in dissipation and vice."21
A section on "Manners and Customs" ensues next (begin-
ning on page 77). The distinctive customs he described were
those derived from the old inhabitants and were quite simi-
lar to those which had been observed in old St. Augustine.
After these descriptions, as if the printer had gotten his
pages mixed up, unaccountably he continued the narrative
of towns, writing of Tallahassee's physical appearance, pop-
ulation, civic organizations, and living expenses. After noting
several abortive attempts at town-building he closed the sec-
tion with the observation, "Quincy ... is said to be improv-
ing very handsomely."22
Ten pages follow headed "Counties" (beginning on page
80), in which he related what he had observed of the geog-
raphy and natural resources of the six counties then com-
prising West Florida: Escambia, Walton, Washington, Jack-
son, Gadsden, and Leon. To some degree this is repetitive
of the material presented in earlier pages. The final section
of the material authored by Williams deals with history.
Despite our critical treatment of that section in previous
pages, it should be noted that, as in other portions of the
books, where Williams related the history that passed within
his own memory the quality and value of his material im-
Fully 40 percent of this book was not, however, authored
by John Lee Williams. Three appendices at the end of his
work, admittedly "more copious than was at first intended,"
occupy seventy-four pages. By all odds the most interesting
is the first-a letter from Judge Henry M. Brackenridge to
Joseph M. White, Florida's delegate in Congress. Its con-
tents indicate that Williams and Brackenridge were much
indebted to each other for their knowledge of Florida.
Appendix II relates to land titles and gives a brief history
of Spanish land practices as well as the procedures used by
the United States government to validate old claims and to
make arrangements for disposing of lands to United States
citizens. In 1826 a pre-emption act relating to Florida was
enacted by Congress, and Williams devoted many pages to
excerpts from discussions in Congress which took place be-
fore its passage.
Appendix III is headed "Canals." This section purports
to show the importance and ease of constructing canals to
advance communication and commerce in Florida. In it are
reproduced supporting newspaper articles, Congressional de-
bates, and letters. The central object was the survey and
initiation of a cross-Florida canal, a project as yet incom-
James Gadsden, in his review, expressed the hope that
Williams would write a similar book relating to East Flor-
ida.23 Such was Williams' intent should this work meet with
success. With a great show of modesty, he wrote that "his
expectations, however, are not high, and it is therefore im-
possible that his disappointment can be great." This first
work was well received, and its success spurred him on to a
second volume. It, however, was not limited to East Florida
but embraced the entire territory. In the period between
publication of his two books Williams moved to East Florida,
settling first in St. Augustine about 1830. There he dabbled
in business and law and served as a justice of the peace.24
Undoubtedly, much of his time was spent in exploration of
the east coast and the St. Johns River valley. He boasted
that "the whole face of the country" east of the St. Johns
River was "more correctly exhibited" on his map of 1837
than on any other map.25
In 1834 he moved to Picolata, about twenty miles west of
St. Augustine on the St. Johns River. In 1837 his Territory
of Florida was published in New York by A. T. Goodrich.
It proved to be very popular owing, no doubt, to the Semi-
nole War then raging in the territory. After the publication
of his second book, Williams settled into a quiet rural life,
occasionally visiting Jacksonville or St. Augustine, and re-
ceiving friends and travelers in his house by the river. In his
eighty-first year John Lee Williams died in his rustic home
at Picolata. Two days after his death on November 7, 1856,
the American anthropologist, Daniel G. Brinton, arrived to
visit him. Brinton recorded that Williams' last twenty years
had been spent alone and in abject poverty. He had occu-
pied his time in gardening, in botanical and horticultural
experiments, and in literary dabblings. He had, Brinton re-
ported, been working on an improved version of The Terri-
tory of Florida and also upon a novel set in China. No scrap
of these manuscripts has survived. Brinton found Williams'
fresh grave in a corer of his garden, marked by round pine
sticks at head and foot. He lamented that all traces of Wil-
lams' physical existence would soon be obliterated, but he
took comfort in the thought that the results of his life would
live on "in books recorded."26
HERBERT J. DOHERTY, JR.
University of Florida.
1. John Lee Williams, A View of West Florida (Philadelphia: H. S.
Tanner, 1827), iii, 5-6.
2. James Gadsden, Review of Williams, A View of West Florida, in
North American Review 26 (April, 1828): 483.
3. Ray E. Held, "Spanish Florida in American Historiography, 1821-
1921" (University of Florida Ph.D. thesis, 1955), pp. 39-40.
4. Clarence E. Carter (ed.), The Territorial Papers of the United
States, volume 22, The Territory of Florida, 1821-1824 (Washington:
Government Printing Office, 1956), p. 877.
5. Florida Historical Quarterly I (April, July, 1908): no. 1, pp.
37-44; no. 2, pp. 18-29.
6. John Lee Williams, The Territory of Florida (New York: A. T.
Goodrich, 1837), was republished in a facsimile edition, with its map
and an introduction by Herbert J. Doherty, Jr., as a part of the
Floridiana Facsimile and Reprint Series by the University of Florida
Press in 1962.
7. Williams, View of West Florida, 91-92. Henry M. Brackenridge
was one of the several gentlemen who came to Florida in 1821 with
Andrew Jackson and received appointment at his hands. Earlier he
had dabbled in diplomacy in Latin America and had some pretensions
to learning. He was United States Judge for West Florida.
8. Ibid., p. 70.
9. Ibid., p. 72.
10. John R. Swanton, The Indians of the Southeastern United States
(Washington: Government Printing Office, 1946), 231n.
11. Swanton, pp. 224, 231; Willams, View of West Florida, p. 32;
William Bartram, Travels through North and South Carolina, Georgia,
East & West Florida . (Philadelphia: James and Johnson, 1791),
pp. 483, 487-88.
12. Williams, View of West Florida, pp. 33-34.
13. Michael V. Gannon, The Cross in the Sand: The Early Catholic
Church in Florida (Gainesville: University of Florida Press, 1965),
14. Ibid., p. 55.
15. Ibid., pp. 56-59.
16. Report of Gabriel Diaz Vara Calder6n to Queen Mariana of
Spain, 1675, cited in Gannon, Cross in the Sand, p. 63. Also see map
opposite p. 64. Gannon's careful mapping of the Florida missions
makes it possible to identify almost all of the old towns listed by
Brackenridge (Williams, View of West Florida, p. 107). St. Matthew
was likely the mission of San Mateo, St. Juan was San Juan de Aspa-
laga, Aspalaga is probably the same place even though he lists it
separately, Ocon was likely San Francisco de Oconi, Ayavala seems to
be La Concepci6n de Ayubale, and San Pedro was San Pedro de-Poto-
hiriba. Tapalaga is not identified, and St. Marks was not a mission
17. Gannon, Cross in the Sand, p. 69.
18. Ibid., pp. 73-76.
19. Williams, Territory of Florida, p. 175.
20. Williams, View of West Florida, p. 69.
21. Ibid., p. 77.
22. Ibid., p. 80.
23. Gadsden in North American Review 26 (April, 1828): 493.
24. Carter, Territory of Florida, 24:402, 592, 601, 682, 816.
25. Williams, Territory of Florida, p. vi.
26. Daniel G. Brinton, Notes on the Floridian Peninsula, Its Literary
History, Indian Tribes and Antiquities (Philadelphia: Joseph Sabin,
1859), pp. 70-72. For more complete biographical information on
John Lee Williams, see the introduction to the facsimile edition of
Williams, Territory of Florida.
GEOGRAPHY, TOPOGRAPHY, 4c.
TREATING OP ITS
ArTIQVITIEBS, LAND TITLES,
A CHART OP THE COAST, A PLAN
THE ENTRANCE OF THE HARBOUR.
BY JOHN LEE WILLIAMS.
PRINTED FOR H. S. TANNER AND THE AUTHOR,
I. R. BBAIIETY PRINTER.
EJATERN DISTRICT OF PENNSYLVJNIA, To wIT:
BE IT REMEMBERED, That on the ninth day of March,
(L. S.) in the fifty-first year of the Independence of the United States of
America, A. D. 1827, H. S. TAnaER and JouH L z WILLIAXS, of the
aid District, have deposited in this Office the Title of a Book, the right whereof
they claim as Proprietors, in the words following, to wit:
"A View of West Florida, embracing its Geography, Topography, &c. with
San Appendix, treating of its Antiquities, Land Titles, and Canals. And con.
Staining a Map, exhibiting a Chart of the Coast, a Plan of Pensacola, and the
" entrance of the Harbour. By John Lee Williams."
In conformity to the Act of the Congress of the United States, intituled, "An
Act for the encouragement of learning, by securing the copies of maps, charts,
and books, to the authors and proprietors of such copies, during the times therein
mentioned." And also to the Act, entitled, "An Act supplementary to an Act,
entitled, An Act for the encouragement of learning, by securing the copies of
maps, charts, and books, to the authors and proprietors of such copies, during
the times therein mentioned,' and extending the benefits thereof to the arts of
designing, engraving, and etching, historical and other prints."
D. CALDWELL, Clerk of the
Eastern District of Pennsylvania.
THE following pages are the result of the occasional employ-
ment of the writer, while engaged in other pursuits, during a
residence of seven years in Florida. His attention was first
attracted to the subject, by remarking the singular deficiency of
the maps of West Florida, in his frequent excursions through
the country. Having been appointed one of the commissioners
for locating the new seat of government of Florida, the author,
for his own satisfaction, made a minute survey of the coast, from
St. Andrew's bay to the Suwannee, as well as of the interior of
the country in which Tallahassee is situated. In consequence
of the information thus acquired, he conceived the idea of pre-
paring a new map of that part of Florida which had come under
his immediate notice; and of accompanying it with a memoir,
or essay, containing such information in relation to the country,
as would seem to be called for at the present moment
In appearing before the public as an author for the first time,
he throws himself upon the candour of those who are in search
of useful and accurate information, without being too fastidious
as to the manner in which it is conveyed; for they will find no
attempt to amuse by highly wrought diction, or the ingenious
inventions of the imagination: his object has been to offer
something useful to practical men.
Although Florida is rapidly increasing in population, there
are several causes which must tend to retard its progress in some
parts, for several years to come: these are, principally, the un-
settled land claims, and the large grants possessed by individu-
als, which are withheld from sale for the purpose of speculation.
The general excellence of the climate, and its adaptation to the
culture of some of the m6st valuable of the southern staples,
must give it decided advantages over any part of the southern
seaboard. The sugar cane, the silk worm, the grape, and the
olive, will no doubt at some future day render it one of the most
important portions of America. The fine harbours of Florida will
secure to it important commercial advantages; and no portion
of the Union possesses such singular facilities for the construc-
tion of canals. Should the ship channel across the peninsula
be effected, and in the practicability of which the author is very
sanguine, a most important revolution in commerce will be the
The author has had it in contemplation to prepare a similar
map and memoir of East Florida, should the success of the pre-
sent attempt be such as to afford him encouragement: his ex-
pectations, however, are not high, and it is therefore impossible
that his disappointment can be great. Should such a work be
undertaken, the natural as well as the civil history of Florida
will appear in a more systematic form.
The Appendix to this little volume is somewhat more copious
than was at first intended; but it contains some interesting docu-
ments, which the author felt unwilling to omit.
PaIL oz~LtAu, MaTrch 5th 1827.
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
THE title of West Florida has, 'at different periods, been ap-
plied to territories very different in location as well as in extent.
At one time, the river Mississippi was the western boundary,
and for a long period of time, the Appalachicola river was the east-
ern limit In 1821, General Jackson, then Governor of Florida,
by an ordinance, since confirmed by several Acts of Congress,
fixed the limits of West Florida, from the bay and river Perdido
on the west, to the river Suwannee on the east; and from the
Gulf of Mexico on the south, to the thirty-first degree of north
latitude on the north, until intersected by the Chattahoche river;
then down the Chattahoche river to its junction with the Flint
river; thence eastwardly on a direct line towards the head of St.
Mary's river, until it intersected the river Suwannee. The
tract of country thus designated, is situate between 280 10' and
310 N. lat, and between 60 and 100 20' W. long. from Wash-
ington. It is about 276 miles long, from east to west; and from
forty to ninety in width, from north to south. It contains about
16,500 square miles, and 10,560,000 acres of land, with a popular.
tion of from eight to nine thousand inhabitants.
The face of the country is, generally, rolling, but there are
neither mountains nor hills of any considerable magnitude. It is
intersected'from north to south by numerous rivers, many of
which are navigable quite through the territory. A large portion
of the country is covered with forests, the trees usually at a
considerable distance apart, without underbrush; while the sur-
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
face of the ground presents a carpet of verdant grass and flowers
most of the year. The borders of the water-courses, however,
as well as the hammocks, are covered with thick woods of hard
timber, tangled with innumerable vines. An abundance of lakes
and ponds diversify the interior; while the seacoast is indented
with bays, bayous, and lagoons, abounding with fish of all kinds,
and affording every facility for internal as well as foreign com-
merce. Although the largest portion of the country is covered
with pine barrens, and much of it extremely poor, yet there is
also much upland, interval, and hammock land, of the most ex-
cellent quality; peculiarly well calculated to produce sugar, rice,
cotton, tobacco, indigo, corn, small grains, vines, and fruits;
and all the timbers necessary for ship-building are found here
in abundance. The pine barrens afford excellent grazing for cat-
tie, and they are abundantly stocked with wild game. The cli-
mate is healthy and the seasons mild.
The southern coast of West Florida, from Perdido bay to
Cape St. Blass, a distance of 140 miles, is formed of pure white
sand, principally silicious, but mixed with calcareous particles of
broken sea shells. From Cape St. Blass to the Appalache river,
a distance of sixty miles, the coast is composed of a yellowish
brown sand, alternating with white cliffs and sometimes with "
salt marshes. From the Appalache to the Suwannee river, a dis-
tance of eighty miles, a calcareous rock forms the seacoast, gene-
rally covered with grass and rushes for several miles into the sea.
These different formations of the coast are occasioned by various
causes. The limestone which forms the base of the country,
from the Chactawhatchec river in the iinterior, to the seacoast of
Appalache bay, is, every where, very productiveof grass; this
bay is also sheltered from storms by the circular form of the
coast; and the Tortugas shoals throw th6 currents of the gulf so
far out to sea, that they scarcely strike the western coast of Flo-
rida until they reach Cape St. Blass; from thence westward, the
coast receives the full force of both storms and currents, and ex-
hibits a beach of sand, white as snow, and almost as hard as
Between the Perdido bay and the Escambia river, the soil is
alluvial. The substratum is a clay of various colours-white, yel.
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
low, red, and blue. Strata of dark iron sandstone pervade it in
many places; and is often thrown up in small hills, especially in
the low grounds near the water-courses. This clayey substratum
is generally covered with a fine, white, silicious sand, which in
its native state, produces little more than pine forests and grass;
except where the tide or the streams have thrown upon it fossil
or vegetable remains; these form hammocks'and intervals, rich
in vegetable productions. The peninsula, extending between
Pensacola bay and St. Rosa sound, has not even clay beneath
the sand: peat is sometimes found there in extensive beds, with
abundance of cypress and cedar stumps, standing far beneath
the sand. A stratum of sandstone, three or four feet in thickness,
is forming, some twenty miles from the west end of the penin-
sula, but it is yet too tender for building.
North of the Chactawhatchee bay, a high ridge of sand divides
the -water-courses, which fall southwardly into the bay, and
northwardly into Shoal river, a branch of Yellow Water. Near
the east end of the bay, this ridge subsides in a succession of
knolls, which give rise to the springs of Alaqua river and Uchee
creek. A pleasant country of rich land'extends from this to the
Chactawhatchee river, based on soapstone and limestone forma-
The soapstone is found in strata, from five to eight feet thick,
and extends to the Shoal river. The limestone has been dis-
covered west of the Chactawhatchee, only in the Uchee valley,
where it is abundant. On the eastern bank of the Chactawhatchee,
the limestone is found less compact than on the western ; it seems
a congeries of, shells, some of them entire, cemented together
by a tough aluminous matter. Buhrstone of an excellent quality
is found in large masses near the Alabama line. Millstones are made
here of a better quality than can be procured from abroad. This
stone extends as far eastward as the Flint river, and northward
for a hundred miles or more. The structure is nearly compact;
the cavities are very small; it appears like a mass of fine escal-
lop shells; is evidently calcareous; and rings like marble. The
colour is from a light gray to a brown, the break conchoidal, and
has an earthy appearance. Ponds and sink holes are numerous
between the Chactawhatchee and Chapola rivers, and large
VIEW OP *EST FLORIDA.
springs, forming navigable streams, often burst from this forma-
tion; the waters, though perfectly transparent, are highly im-
pregnated with lime, and are not generally considered healthy.
Proceeding towards the Chapola river, the limestone acquires a
firmer texture, the clayey concrete disappears, and the mass ap-
proaches nearer the surface; it is seen as far south as the Econ-
fina river, seven miles, above the head of St. Andrew's bay.
Near the Chapola river, this formation often rises above the
earth, in tabular platforms; they are usually covered with grass,
but not with trees. At other places, broken fragments lie in
large piles, interspersed with dogwood, chicasa plumb, hydran-
gia shrubs, and vines. Under these piles of rock, caves have
usually been discovered.
East of the Appalachicola river, there are few indications of
stone, until we approach Leon county. Here a ridge appears
above the earth, from four to six miles from the coast, and paral-
lel with it; it dips a few degrees to the SSW., and is probably
the edge of that stratum which forms the coast: the navigation
of all the streams between St. Marks and Suwannee is impeded
by it. This rock resembles chalk, generally of an ash colour;
some of it, however, is quite white, and is used for chalk. A
kind of imperfect flint is imbedded iii it, in form of a shelly
nucleus. It becomes hard on exposure to the air. The flint is of.
a light gray colour, full, of holes, which are filled with the cal-
careous matter: it breaks with a conchoidal fracture; gives fire
freely with steel; is quite opaque, but void of the greasy feel
which is peculiar to pure flint. On points of the coast, where
the waves have washed the calcareous matter away, these flinty
nuclei form extensive and very rugged reefs. The fort of St.
Marks is built of this limestone. Grass grows spontaneously on
this rock, whether covered with salt or fresh water, even to the
depth of twenty feet. Oysters. grow in great masses to the rock,
and they are very hard to separate from it.
Through the centre of Gadsden and Leon counties, ridges of
clay extend, and form the base of an excellent soil. The upper
strathm is red and very pure, and has an unctuous feel; but very
small sandstones, of the size of a buck-shot or bullet, pervade the
whole mass : this stratum is usually fourteen feet, more or less,
VIEW OF NVEST FLORIDA.
in thickness. Under this, a white clay, similar in quality, extends
from twenty to thirty feet, which resposes on a rotten limestone;
somewhat different, however, from that found in the western
part of Jackson county. The shells which compose it are more
perfect, and the cement is a calcareous, instead of aluminous
matter. It is found to make excellent lime. The springs and
streams in this part of the country are very pure; they rise and
run over the aluminous formations, but they all at length sink
beneath the limestone rock, where, having united their currents
and become highly impregnated with lime, they rise at once
navigable rivers; such are the St. Marks, the Wakulla, and
Oscilla rivers, which from these springs pass over the chalky
formation to the sea.
This term, originally expressing temperament of situation, has
by common use become an indication of situation, as it respects
health or sickness. In this sense, West Florida is peculiarly
blessed. Her climate is temperate, both from its latitude and
from exposure to the mild sea breezes of the Southern gulf.
A rolling country is more favourable to a free circulation of
air than a level plain; and a sandy soil, covered with forests,
although not the most profitable to cultivate, is eminently pro-
ductive of health. On the contrary, the estuaries of large rivers,
and rich bottom lands, densely covered with timber, although
rich in natural productions, are usually unfavourable to health,
especially when first opened to the influence of the sun. A high
state of cultivation usually corrects both. Ponds of stagnant
water are usually fruitful sources of disease, and some of these
exist in this country. Many of these ponds, however, are merely
expansions of the subterraneous rivers, which pervade the lime-
stone region. Extensive marshes are, also, usually unhealthy
in a warm climate; and these line our seacoast, from the St.
Marks eastward, to the Suwannee; how far the sea breezes may
correct the evil, time will discover.
From these observations, it appears certain, that the advan-
rages of a pure atmosphere, and at the same time a very rich
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
soil, cannot be expected to meet in the same place. If this coun-
try be diversified with both these blessings, in different situa-
tions, it is all we can reasonably expect. Residences on the low
alluvial bottoms, and near the marshes, have usually, in autumn,
been attended with agues and bilious fevers; except these, .
have heard of no diseases peculiarly incident to the climate.
Pensacola has twice been visited with yellow fever. The last
time that dreadful disorder occurred, was in the year 1822.
The season had been unusually hot, there was no efficient police,
the town was filthy in the extreme, and overrun with strangers.
A cargo of spoiled codfish arrived from Havana, and was distri-
buted among the little huckster-shops along the bay. From this
moment, the pestilence spread like wildfire, sweeping whole
families, and almost whole streets, in one general destruction,
which ended only in a total desertion of the inhabitants. We
have every reason to believe, that a vigilant police will always
prevent the recurrence of a similar calamity.
Our climate has proved peculiarly salutary in pulmonary com-
plaints. Many of our most useful citizens came here, merely for
the recovery of constitutions which were rapidly declining; and
they are now enjoying perfect health. We are taught by expe-
rience, that intemperance will produce disease in every climate;
but with habits of cleanliness, moderate industry, and temper-
ance, any person may enjoy as perfect health in West Florida,
as in any part of the universe. Sea-bathing is one of the greatest
luxuries of our climate; and this, more than any other prescrip-
tion, has tended to recover invalids from most disorders. This,
with other gentle exercise, and a prudent diet, has uniformly
proved successful, in the most inveterate diseases. The yellow
fever has yielded to it, and by it this dreadful disorder has often
Perdido bay, which divides Florida from Alabama on the
west, is a pleasant sheet of water, about thirty miles in length,
and from two to six miles in breadth. The bar, at its junction
with the gulf, is shoal and constantly shifting, and has from five
to seven feet water.
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
Pensacola bay is from twenty-five to thirty miles long, and
from four to seven miles wide. About eleven miles from its
junction with the gulf, it divides into three parts; the north-west
bay is called Escambia, which is about ten miles long, and from
four to six wide. It receives the Escambia river at the north-
west end, which enters among several low islands. The north
branch is called Yellow Water bay; it is about the same length,
and from three to four miles wide. It receives a river of the
same name, from the east, through several channels. Black
Water bay is attached to its north-west corner. This is a small
bay, seven miles long and two wide, and is full of islands; it
receives from the north, Cold Water river, Black Water and Cedar
creeks. The eastern bay is called East river bay, it extends six
or seven miles into the country, where it ends in a small river.
St. Rosa sound is connected with Pensacola bay, on the south-
west The latter joins the Gulf of Mexico, between the fort of
Barrancas and St. Rosa island, where it is at least three-fourths
of a mile wide. It has, at the lowest tides, twenty-one feet, and
usually twenty-three feet water on the bar. This is by far the
best harbour on the Gulf of Mexico, or indeed south of the
Chesapeake bay. The following Report of Commodores Bain-
bridge and Warrington, and Captain Biddle, will show the opin-
ion of those gentlemen on the subject.
"The bay of Pensacola is extensive and capacious, easy of
access from the sea, and affording secure anchorage for any num-
ber of vessels of the largest class. The depth of water on the
bar, as laid down by Major Kearney, of the Topographical En-
gineers, is twenty-one feet. From the report to us of Lieutenant
Pinkham of the John Adams, whom we directed t6 sound, and
from all the information we have been able to collect, at least
this depth of water, we believe, will always be found on the bar,
even after a long continuance of northerly winds. These norther-
ly winds sensibly affect the waters on this part of the coast; they,
however, seldom continue long. The ordinary tides do not rise
more than three feet, but these tides run with considerable ra-
pidity, thus affording facilities to vessels working in or out of
the harbour, against an unfavourable wind.
"< The position which we have selected, as, in our judgment,
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
combining the greatest advantages for a Navy Yard, is in the
vicinity of the Barrancas, and to the northward and eastward of
Tartar point. Here we found the necessary depth of water
nearest the shore; an important consideration in respect to the
expense to be incurred in carrying out the wharves required for
naval purposes. Here too the works erected for the defence of
of the Navy Yard, would give additional security to the harbour,
while its vicinity to the Barrancas would admit of assistance to
it, in case of need, from the troops stationed there. Here, we
are, in our opinion, susceptible of complete defence, at a less
expense than elsewhere in the bay. The position is wholly pro-
tected by Tartar point, against the swell of the sea, which
strong south-westerly winds set over the bar. It is favourably
situated for rendering assistance to vessels approaching the har-
bour. Its healthiness is not surpassed by any other part of the
bay; and fresh water is here abundant, and of a wholesome
The post of Barrancas was established in 1669, by the
Spaniards, under Andre de la Riola; and the present fort was
built by Don Bernardo de Galvez, about 1784. It is situate on
the north shore, on a high shell bank. It completely commands
the entrance of the harbour. West of the fort, a light-house was
erected in 1824. It is thirty feet high, and may be distinctly
seen at fifteen miles distance. The ruins of old Fort Arunado,
are situate on the north side of St. Rosa island, about two
miles from the west end, and two and a half from Barrancas,
nearly opposite Tartar point, where the naval depot is now es-
Large vessels, coming from the eastward, should keep in seven
fathoms water, until the light-house bears N. by W., in that
course run to three and a half fathoms on the bar, then steer the
same course till the west end of St. Rosa island bears E. by
S. and the light-house N. one half W. ; then steer direct for
the light, until within the island, then hawl up and run into the
bay. The same should be the course of large vessels coming
from the west, except that they may safely run in five fathoms.
Vessels drawing less than fourteen feet, may bring the light to
bear N. three-fourths W., and then steer for it till within
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
half a mile; thence E. by N. till sheltered by St. Rosa. The
ebb tide sets south-west, and the flood north-east. The ebb sets
directly on to the Caycos shoal, and the flood across the Middle
The following extract from the Report of F. Laval, Commis-
sioner of Marine, &c. to His Catholic Majesty, in 1719, will
show that a century has made no material difference in the en-
trance of Pensacola bay:
<" The Admiral (Champmeslin) was on board of the Hercules, of
sixty-four guns, but then mounted only fifty-six, and drew about
twenty-one feet water; he was advised that there was only twenty-
two feet on the bar; he therefore despaired of entering the harbour;
but an old Canadian, named Grimau, a man of experience, and
well acquainted with the channel, alleged that he could take her
in, and actually succeeded. He ran along a good musket-shot
from the ledges, (breakers,) till he brought the Fort of Pen-
sacola, (Barrancas,) N. and S. one-fourth E., and ran that
course till he was W. one-fourth S. from the old fort on St.
Rosa; he then bore away a little to the west land, keeping mid-
way betwixt that and the island, to avoid a bink on the latter,
which ran out to some distance WNW. from the point. The
Hercules was followed by the Mars, pierced for sixty, but carry-
ing only fifty-four guns. The Triton, pierced for fifty-four, but
carrying only fifty. Two frigates, one of thirty-six, the other
twenty guns. They all anchored in water from twenty-five to
thirty-six feet, in good holding ground of soft mud.",
The Grand Lagoon extends from the entrance of Pensacola
bay, below the Barrancas, eight miles westward, and within three-
fourths of a mile of the Perdido bay, and with which it might
be connected by a trifling labour. It is open to the gulf near
the west end; the passage has usually six feet water on the bar;
near the Barrancas it is more shoal, the sea having lately broken
over and thrown considerable sand on the bar.
The Big bayou enters the bay one and a half miles above Tar-
Three miles farther north-east, Bayou Chico enters; on the north
bank of which, Camp Clinch is beautifully situated, one and a half
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
miles north of the bay, of which there is a fine prospect. This
bayou is a pleasant, healthy, and safe harbour for small craft.
Bayou Texar enters from the north, one mile above the city of
VPensacola; it is a handsome sheet of water, one-fourth of a mile
wide, and four miles in length.
The Bayou Mulatto enters the east side of Escambia bay.
St. Rosa sound connects the bays of Pensacola and Chactaw-
hatchee. This is a charming sheet of water, about forty miles long,
and from one and a half to two and a half miles wide. A narrow
peninsula divides the Pensacola bay from the sound, for thirty
miles. Vessels drawing five feet water may pass through the sound
and thence to sea, through the west end of Chactawhatchee bay,
and the pass L'Este. The navigation is perfectly safe, and
no difficulty occurs, except at the narrows, near the east end of
the sound, where there are two places that the channel is narrow
The Chactawhatchee bay is at least forty miles long, and from
seven to fifteen wide. It receives the Chactawhatchee river
through many mouths, at the east end ; while on the north side
there enters Cedar creek, the Alaqua river, Rock creek, Boggy
creek and Twin creek. This bay is much affected by storms; and
many shoals running far into it, the navigation is considered
somewhat dangerous. It has two outlets. The pass L'Este
communicates with the sea, seven miles south-east from the west
end of the bay, and at the west end by St. Rosa sound. When a
heavy swell of the sea meets the ebb tide on the pass L'Este,
the breakers render it impassable. The British established a very
profitable fishery here. It might .still be improved to great
St. Andrew's bay has, hitherto, been little known, but it must
hereafter become a place of importance. It is easy of access, has
eighteen feet water on the bar, good anchorage, and is perfectly
sheltered from every wind. It is divided into several arms,
which stretch over a wide extent of country; the north and east
arms extend to the neighbourhood of the rich settlements of Chi-
pola, the principal trade of which, at this time, passes through
this bay. Three islands lie off the mouth of this harbour, Sand
island, Hummock island, and Crooked island. The principal
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
channel is between Sand and Hummock islands, it being the
nearest; betwixt Hummock and Crooked islands the channel is
The main body of the bay extends northward for about twelve
miles, and thus far averages about five miles in breadth. Five
miles from the entrance, a large arm, near a mile in width, runs
to the west, parallel with the coast for twenty miles. Ten miles
from the entrance, another branch extends westwardly thirty
miles; this branch is in some places ten miles wide, and approaches
very near the Chipola inundation. The Wetappo, a navigable
creek, which enters the north-east end, rises near the very bank
of this sheet of water. Five miles north-west of East bay, the
Wapaluxy bay branches off to the west, in a circular form, which
the name indicates. This bay is from seven to ten miles in
diameter. A navigable creek enters the west side of Wapaluxy,
from which, to the lake branch of Chactawhatchee river, is only
four miles and a half. Seven miles farther up the north branch,
vessels may carry eighteen feet water, to Little Oyster point.
From thence to the head of the bay, a distance of eight miles, the
water gradually shoals to seven feet.
St Joseph's bay presents an entrance, from the north-west, six
miles wide, but most of this distance is occupied by a middle
ground. One channel is close under the north point of the pe-
ninsula, where there is seventeen feet water. The main channel
commences near Cape False, and passes about two miles from the
main land, and has twenty-eight feet water. The bay is generally
from seven to eight miles wide, but grows narrower, and shoal,
towards the south-east end. It is twenty miles in length, and
easy of access. On the land side it is unapproachable, being
insulated among lakes, lagoons, and marshes. The southern point
of the peninsula, which forms St. Joseph's, is the Cape St. Blass.
The north end is blown up into sharp sand hills, except, that
inside of the point there is a forest of high pines, which may be
seen at a great distance.
The Appalachicola bay is formed by the islands of St. Vincent
and St. George,opposite to the mouth of the Appalachicola river. It
is from four to eight miles wide, and twelve in length. Vessels
drawing twelve feet water can enter the bay, and with eight feet
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
can approach Murder point, at the mouth of the river. This river
being the largest in West Florida, and the outlet of an extensive
and fertile country, it will, at some future time, render this bay
a place of extensive business, unless the produce of the country
should be directed into some other channel.
This bay is connected with the gulf, on the north-west, hy the
Indian pass, which is rapidly filling up: little more than four
feet water is now found on the bar.
The main channel is.betwixt St. Vincent and St. George
islands; here the channel is about a mile wide, and easy of access.
A small sand bar lies outside of the entrance,swhich is called Flag
island: the channel is near the east side of it. From the north-
east corner of St. Vincent's, an extensive oyster bar runs, in a
circular form, round the entrance of the bay, almost to St.
George's island. St George sound, between the island and the
main, is a pleasant inland passage, but is obstructed about midway
by an oyster bar, which extends from north to south, quite across
the channel; at low tides the water is not more than four feet
deep on this bar. East of Cat point, in this sound, there are
extensive bars, covered with large and excellent flavoured oysters.
The Ocklockney' bay is twelve miles long, and two broad.
The Ocklockney river enters the west end, where a large branch
passes off to the west, called Crooked river, which, after running
about twenty miles, enters New river near its junction with the
sound, directly north of the west end of Dog island. The entrance
of this bay is obstructed by sand bars and oyster shoals. No more
than four feet water can be depended on at low tide.
The Appalache bay is that circular indentation which sweeps
round from the South cape to Histahatchee bay. This on one
side, and the peninsula on the other, affords a partial shelter from
the eastern and south-western storms, and although it is quite
exposed to the south, and the shore also quite shoal and composed
of rock, yet it has the credit of a safe navigation. There is really
no good harbour in it for large vessels. It is wholly surrounded
by green marshes, interspersed with keys, which are covered
with live oaks, cedars, and palm trees. The port of St. Marks
is much frequented since the establishment of the seat of govern-
ment at Tallahassee: seven feet water can usually be depended on
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
in passing up the riVer to the fort. A great number of oyster
bars render the navigation of the river narrow, crooked, and
Histahatchee, or Deadman's bay is small, but offers a safe har-
bour for small vessels, which may enter and anchor perfectly
secure in twelve feet water. Nearly the same draught of water
may be carried up nine miles to the falls.
Vacassar bay receives the Suwannee river from the north,
divided among an archipelago of islands and keys; but scarcely
five feet water can be any where found on the bar, nor is the
anchorage outside of the bar very secure, though here the water
is deeper. This is the easternmost bay in West Florida.
Cape St. Blass is the most noted of any in West Florida: it is
situate in Washington county, in latitude 290 42', longitude 850
45', and lies in front of St. Joseph's bay. It stretches into the
sea near twenty miles, in successive ridges: even at that distance,
it is little more than seven fathoms deep. Vessels drawing ten
feet water, may, in good weather, pass within three miles of the
land, but if a southern swell prevail, they ought to keep double
that distance from the shore.
Cape St. George extends south from the island of that name,
about five miles from the west end, in latitude 290 32' N. and
longitude 840 52' W. It is perceptible only three or four miles
from the island.
South Cape is a point of land in front of Alligator harbour, on
James island, below the Ocklockney bay. Several distinct shoals
lie off this point. Vessels bound to or from St. Marks, should keep
three miles from this shore.
St. Rosa is a narrow sandy island, extending from the mouth
of Pensacola bay, opposite to the fort of Barrancas, to the pass of
L'Este, a distance of near fifty miles. It is about half a mile in
breadth, and is conspicuous for its pure white sand hills, which
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
at a distance appear like hills of snow. It is very barren: a few
crooked live oaks and pitch pine grow in spots on the north side
of the island; while scrub oaks and yapon, tangled with vines,
form impenetrable thickets on the ihorthern sides of the sand hills;
these are excellent shelters for deer, which are numerous during
winter; abundance of water fowls cover the fresh water ponds,
which are found in all the valleys. There is usually a heavy
surf on the south shore of the island; during storms it is tremen-
dous; several vessels have been wrecked here. A small fort and
pilot house formerly stood near the west end of the island, they
are both in ruins.
Opposite the mouth of St. Andrew's bay, are three small
islands: the first is Sand island, three miles from the shore, and
about one mile in length. Except some bunches of tall grass,
(uniola latifolia,) and some scurvy grass, or as it is called here,
sea-kale, it is totally barren. During summer, it is wholly cover-
ed with the eggs of sea fowl. A shoal extends from the shore to
this island, except a narrow channel in which there is eight feet
Hummock island commences a mile and one-fourth south-east of
Sand island, and extends, parallel with the coast, six miles; it is
quite narrow, and has no timber, but is covered with the same
kind of tall grass. Immediately after passing either end of this
island, vessels may anchor in perfect safety, close along shore.
A ridge of low sand hills extends along the west side of this island.
On Gauld's chart, this and Sand island, are laid down as forming
the west point of St. Andrews; and Crooked island, alone, is laid
as separate from the shore. It is not improbable, that these islands
have been separated by some late eruption.
Crooked island lies a mile south of the latter. Its north-east
point'approaches very near to the shore, past which, however,
there is a deep channel. It is nearly as long as Hummock island,
but lies in form of a crescent. It is half a mile wide, at the north
end, but becomes narrower at the southern end. This island has
on it a considerable grove of pine trees. Between Sand and Hum-
mock island, the channel is more than half a mile wide. To enter,
sail within a mile of the centre of the island, where the channel
opens between a shoal one mile below Sand island, and another
VIEW OP WEST FLORIDA.
shoal which stretches west from the centre of Hummock island.
After entering between these two shoals, run within a quarter of
a mile of Hummock island, then haul up north. If you wish to
enter the bay, pass close to the north-east point of Sand island.
If the object be merely to make a harbour, you may lay round
the north end of Hummock Island, in four fathom water and
St. Vincent's island is on the west of Appalachicola bay; its form
is a triangle; the north and west sides about ten miles long, and
the eastern from five to six miles. It is thickly covered with
timber, lofty pines shade the seacoast, while the eastern shore,
within the bay, is diversified with live oaks, magnolias; and
palms, which give it the resemblance of a fine park, rather than
a lonely uninhabited island. An excellent stream of fresh water
enters the bay from about the middle of the east side. The north-
ern shore is marshy and broken by large lagoons.
St. George's island is about forty miles long, and from a half
to two miles wide. Its west end is about opposite, and eight
miles south of the mouth of Appalachicola river. For about four
miles, its direction is E. by S.; it then turns NE. The east end
is about three miles from shore. The southern shore of the island
is thrown up into two or three parallel ridges of a yellowish-
brown sand; some of them forty, some fifty feet high. The cen-
tre of the island is usually covered with pine forests, among
which there are some hammocks of good hard timber land. The
northern shore is marshy, and indented with numerous bays and
lagoons. On this side, the island seems to be increasing in size.
The east end is low and barren.
Dog island lies in the same direction as St. George's, and
about the same distance from the shore. It is seven miles long,
and one and a'half wide. It is similar in- surface to St. George's.
At the north-east end there is an excellent harbour for small ves-
sels. It is three miles distant from St. George's. The tide runs
with great force between them.
James island lies between New river and Ocklockney bay. It
is made by a branch of the Ocklockney, called Crooked river,
which branches off to the west from the head of Ocklockney
bay. It is twenty miles long, and from five to twelve miles wide.
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
Alligator harbour is in the south-east corner of this island; South
cape is part of the peninsula that forms the harbour. This island
is, in general, a poor pine barren, broken by ponds of water,
and skirted, especially on the east end, with extensive salt
There are four or five small islands between the Appalache
and Suwannee rivers. Within the mouths of several rivers, also,
especially the Chactawhatchee, Appalachicola, and Suwannee;
there are several extensive low islands; but they are little known,
and can be of little consequence until some enterprising planters
shall bank the water off them. They will then become the rich-
est cane lands in the territory.
The Perdidp river is of little importance, except as forming
part of the boundary line between Alabama and Florida. It
rises )about thirty miles within the state of Alabama, increases
rapidly from large springs, and empties into the bay of the same
name. It is navigable seven miles above the bay, to some saw-
mills, which have done considerable business.
The Connecuh rises in the south-east part of Alabama. Its
general course is south-west, until it meets the Escambia river,
near the north line of the territory. It there loses its name for
that of Escambia, a much smaller river. Here it turns a south-
east course, and enters the north-west end of Escambia bay,
through several deep channels. Its principal tributary streams
are, Sepulgas, Murder creek, the Big and Little Escambia.
The lands, on the banks of this river, are rich, but are often
overflowed, which renders planting, on the intervals, a,hazard-
ous employment. In autumn, they are also subject to agues and
fevers. An opinion is prevalent here, that the soil is so open,
that the waters cannot be banked out. The experiment has never
yet been made; should it ever prove successful, as I think it
will, some of the finest land that the territory affords will be re-
The Yellow Water also rises in Alabama. Its course is south-
east, till it enters the bay of the same name. It receives from
VIEW OP WEST FLORIDA~
the south-east, near its mouth, Shoal river and Titi creek. About
ten miles from its mouth, the Yellow Water is obstructed by ex-
tensive rafts, which wholly impede the navigation. There is a
very good settlement of industrious farmers on this river, forty
miles above the bay. These lands stand the droughts of summer
better than any other lands in the country. On Shoal river, also,
there is very good land in small bodies, some of which is settled.
SThe Alaqua rises north of the Chactawhatchee bay, and in-
creases rapidly from large springs, some of which are large enough
to turn mills at their source. It is navigable for boats, fifteen
miles, to Vaughn's. It runs through one of the pleasantest wild
countries in Florida, and empties into a, large lagoon north of the
The'Chaetawhatchee rises near the east line of Alabama; its
general course is south and west, till it arrives at the Cow .ford,
thirty miles from its mouth; it then runs west to the bay, which
it enters through numerous channels. It receives in its course
Pea river, and Uchee creek, from the west; and Big Barren,
Holmes, and Pond creeks, from the south-east. The United
States' road, to St. Augustine, crosses at the Cow ford; three miles
below, the river divides, and makes an island ten miles long: the
eastern branch" is called East river. The western branch is cut
,up with innumerable islands, and the water running very rapid,
the navigation of this branch is difficult. Boats have ascended
this river one hundred miles. The Big spring of Chactawhatchee,
rises about one mile and a half south-east of Hohles creek, and
joins it about the same distance ,from the Chactawhatchee: six or
seven feet water may be carried up to the spring head. This has-
been a considerable landing place for several years past. The
banks and every sunken log in this river, are covered, most of
the year, with a profusion of wild flowers;, turtles and water-
-snakes, are'scarcely less numerous.
The Econfina has a short course; it rises from large springs
and ponds, south and south-east from Oak Hill, in Washington
county, and falls into the north arm of St. Andrew's bay:-it is
navigable to the natural bridge, fifteen miles from the mouth,
where the United States' road crosses.
The Chapola is a western branch of the Appalachicola. It rises
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
in several very large springs, on both sides of the north line qf
the territory, in Jackson county; after running twenty miles, and
receiving considerable accessions from both sides, it divides, and
both branches sink into the earth; the eastern branch continues
under ground several hundred yards; the western branch but a
few rods: these streams unite again about half a mile below. To
this place the Chapola is navigable. About half a mile west of
the natural bridge, a large stream bursts from the base of a gen "
tle hill, and joins the Chapola a mile below; it is large enough for
boat navigation. Five miles below the natural bridge, the Big
spring of Chapola rises, three miles east of the river; this spring
is, also, navigable to its source. Thirty miles below this spring,
an arm of the Appalachicola has lately burst into the Chapola, ant?
formed a lake twenty miles in length, and jeren wide, in which
the forests are yet standing. This river enters the Appalachicola
nine miles above Colinton, or fort Gadsden. The hanks of the
Chapola are usually low.: The upper part of the river has a
swamp 6l on or both sides, a mile or more in width. The
adjoining lands are among the best in the territory, and generally
settled with able planters,
The Appalachicolar is formed by the junction of the Chatta.
hoche, and Flint The former rises near the corners of the four
states of Tennessee, South Carolina, Georgia, and Alabama,. Itsw
course lies through a country of excellent land. The Flint is, a
much smaller, stream. The junction is ode hundred miles from
the sea. To this place considerable sized schooners have sailed.
Boat navigation extends three hundred miles higher. This river
-was formerly the boundary line betwixt East and West Florida,
until the line was removed to the Suwannee, by an ordinance of
general Jackson, in 1681. The current of this river is swift, the
channel deep, narrow, and crooked. It overflows its banks.to a
considerable extent The lands on its margin are very rich. It
has carried considerable Delta into the hay of the same name,
which' it enters among numerous low marshy islands.
The Oeklockney rises in Georgia, has a general course SSW,
passes through the, noth-west .corner of Leon county, through
the eastern part of Gadsden, and enters the gulf on both sides of
James island. Littleriver,. Robinson's creek, and Rocky Cumn
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
fort, branches of this river, pass through a large tract of excellent
land, in thle heart of Gadsden county.
The Appalache is formed at the fort of St. Marks,by the junction
oftheWakully and St Marks rivers; it is only nine miles to the sea.
Schooners, drawing seven feet water, have ascended the Wakully
Sto Francis town, seven miles above the fort, and the St. Marks,
four miles, to the watering place. In the winter of 1826, the
Franklin schooner came up to the fort, drawing nine feet; but
seven is asmuch as can be usually depended on: numerous oyster
ahoals render the channel excessively crooked. Business on this
river is rapidly increasing. Large boats may ascend the Wakully
to its source, which is eleven miles and a half north-west from St.
'Marks fort. For two miles the upper part'of the river is full of
islands, and the whole surface of the water is covered with grass,
likea green meadow. Boats may also ascend the St. Marks river
nineteen miles and a half, tq the place where it emerges in a con-
siderable pond; this, also, is wholly covered with grass and rushes,
although several fathom deep. The outlet of this pond is rapid,
narrow and rocky., It is an excellent situation for mills. The
water is at all seasons equally abundant, and the timber in the
neighbourhood plenty and of a good quality. Below this rapid
)the river becomes broad and deep, but there are two more rapids
-.elow; the one six and the other ten miles above the fort: the
fetter is half a mile in extent; The pine barrens usually approach
very near the river. A few small mill streams enter on each side,
on which are found tolerable hammock lands. All the lands
within the.forks of Wakully and St. Marks, for four miles back,
are very rich, but low, and cleared of timber; by banking two or
three miles, on each river,'a plantation might be redeemed that
would become invaluable. Situate at the head of schooner
navigation, near the seat of government, with the great road pass-
ing through the centre, no situation in Florida would have
The Oscilla rises just south of the north line of the territory, in
several large lakes and ponds; it passes through the centre of
Leon county, and enters the sea twelve miles east of the Appa-
.lachei it has five feet water on the bar, after which there is a con-
VIEp~kW OF' WESi' FLORIDA.
siderable depth for twelve miles; above that the river sinks in
the earth for a considerable distance.
The Acheenahatchee and Chattahatchee are considerable streams,
which enter the gulf east 'of Oscilla, but they are little known.
The Histahatchee enters the bay of the same name about fifteen
miles west of Suwannee; it is navigable nine miles, to the falls,
where it branches into several small creeks. The banks of this
river present rocky shores scooped out into very singular fantas-
The Suwannee is a very pleasant river, and, but for a shoal
bar at its mouth, would be of great importance in navigation.
Its principal stream comes from the Oquafanoka swamp. It
receives two large branches from Georgia, the Allapahaw and,
Ouithlacouchee. Its course is west for a considerable distance;
it then makes a great bend, quite round to the east, where it
meets the Santaffee; it then turns a south-west course to the sea.
This river is yet but little known. It is said to be generally
deep. At its mouth it is divided into a great many'channels,
among a wide extent of low keys: none of them has been found
to possess five feet water. The ruins of an old town have been
discovered, just below Ouithlacouchee, on the western bank.
And on the same side, below its junction with Santaffee, the
remains of old Suwannee town are still to be seen. A little*
below the Santaffee is the Great Maneto spring. This spring
is on the south-east side of the Suwannee river, below the San-
taffee, at the foot of the Upland hills; the basin is circular fifty,
yards in diameter, of a bluish green colour, but perfectly trans-
parent, and exceedingly deep. It is a kind of jet, emitting the
waters with great force for nearly half a minute, and then subsid-
ing for the same length of time; the stream, issuing from this
fountain, is forty or fifty feet wide and very deep, it abounds in
fish arid alligators; and the Indians state that the maneto, or sea-
cow, used to resort to it. This is nearly the size of the Chapola
Big spring. The general course of this river is through a pine
barren country. There are, however, on its borders, some con-
siderably extensive hammocks of good land. A few Americans
are about settling near the mouth of the river, for the purpose of'
cultivating the sugar cane.
VIEW OP WEST FLORIDA.
The central parts of Florida are interspersed with a great num-
ber of lakes and ponds: some of them are natural reservoirs of
water drained from the surrounding country, and some are
expansions of subterranean rivers, which frequently pervade the
Mickasukee lake is situated fifteen miles north-east from Talla-
hassee; it is twelve miles long from south to north; the western
part is, in form, a triangle; from the south-east point, an arm,
one or two miles broad, extends quite into Georgia. There is
.jome good hammock land on its borders. *And many old-Indian
fields remain covered with peach trees.
Lake Jackson lies north-west from Tallahassee. It is eight
miles long, and from two to three miles Wide. This is avery
pretty sheet of water. On its shores are some of the best lands
in the country.
Lake lamony is about fourteen miles north of Tallahassee; it
is eight piles long and three broad. This lake is'said to contain
a great number of fish. Its banks are generally good 14nd. Its
outlet communicates with the Ocklockney'river.
^ The Old Tallahassee lake lies five. miles east of the seat of
government, in La Fayette's township.. Chefixico's old town
was situate on the south shore; here are extensive peach orchards.
It is three miles from east to west, and about.a mile wide.
Lake Wimico is situate in Washington county, between the
mouth of Appalachicola river and St. Joseph's bay. It is seven
miles long, and two or three broad.
The Inundation, or Hort's lake, is, to appearance, newly formed,
orn the Chapola river, by a part of the Appalachicola bursting out
and inundating the country; it is from ten to twenty feet deep,
yet the forests are standing in the water. It is the longest lake
in the country, being twenty miles long and seven broad.
Dennard's lake, betwixt the Cow ford and St. Andrew's bay,
in Washington county, is twelve miles long and five wide; it is
VIEW OF WEST PLORIDA.
The native horses of Florida are a small breed of ponies, hardy,
and easy to support, but not fit for the harness. They will keep
fat on the wild grass and herbage of the country; they are excel-
lent swimmers, and are better for travelling in a new country
than English horses; endure very long journeys with ease, but
are not heavy enough for the harness. They were originally
brought from Andalusia by the Spaniards.
Mules are rarely raised, here, but are frequently brought"from
Campeachy; are principally used for draught, and they are very
long-lived. It is believed, that a mixed breed of native and,
English horses would unite most of the qualities desirable in that
The cattle are a large breed, with broad horns and close hair;
they are good breeders, but have not been highly valued for the
dairy. They often become very fat on the wild grass, but it does
not so much increase their, milk. Very few oxen are used;
when yoked, they are always managed with a line, like horses.,
Sheep would succeed well, did not the inhabitants prefer to
keep an immoderate number of useless, thieving dogs, to worry
them. The barking, yelping, and howling, of a congregation of
half starved whelps, is music to the ear of a native Floridian;
even if, by supporting them, his children be reduced to the same
miserable circumstances. It is not surprising, that there are few'
sheep in Florida.
Goats are raised with ease; very little care is expended abqut
them; they even seem to prosper best, when neglected .
Hogs grow well; but corn is always too dear to fatten them;
.most of our pork is, and will be, brought from a,distance,
Of wild animals, the deer is most numerous. Panthers, bears,
and wild-cats are plenty, in some parts: wolves are sometimes
seen; foxes are rare. The Mexican oppossum is very numer-
ous; even in the city of Pensacola, they often rob the hen-roosts&
Racoons and skunks are frequent in the interior.
There are two kinds of squirrel; the. large fox squirrel,and the
small gray. The former is much admired as a pet, especially,
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
when it is found with a white face, and a rich brown colour. The
Salamander is a large mole, about half the size of a rat. It pene.
trates the earth in every direction, especially the pine barrens,
which it throws up in the form of ant-hills. Otters and minks
are numerous, in the water courses. Rats and mice are very
troublesome, every where.
The Gopher is a very peculiar animal. It delights in black
jack ridges, which are easily penetrated with its burrows. They
are easily caught, by digging pits at the mouth of their holes,
into which, if they fall, they remain prisoners. Soups and 'gum-
boes, made of their flesh, are much esteemed. They are a harm.
less animal, of the turtle species. They feed, night and morning,
on the dewy herbs,,near their burrows. They lay several eggs,
in the sand, about the size of a hen's, but quite round, and leave
them to hatch by the heat of the, sun.
The Alligator stands at the head of this class. He is, undotibt
edly, the ugliest creature living. Floating on the. water, he
appears' like a rotten log; on land, he appears like a huge
snake, with the addition of sprawling claws. But it is in the
wallows, large mud holes among the rushes, that the alligator
appears herself; surrounded by a hundred young imps of ugliness,
all barking like puppies, and chased by the male for food. The
female then adds rage to her native deformity, and she often kills
her whelps by the strokes of her tail, made in their defence. Yet
these reptiles are more terrific than dangerous. Persons often
bathe within a few yards of them, in perfect safety; nor have they
been known, in this country, to injure any human b~ing. They
have sometimes caught hogs and dogs, but very rarely. Almost
every night, they leave the salt water, to wallow in-some pool of
fresh water, in the vicinity; but they usually return before morn-
ing. Some of them, however, live in fresh ponds, forty miles
inland. Salt lagoons are their favourite residences, where fish,
and other reptiles are abundant; and they are not delicate in their
choice of food. It is sometimes difficult for a stranger to sleep
near their residences, for their bellowing. About the Gulf of
VIEW OP WEST FLORIDA,
Mexico, they are abroad during the whole winter. Their nests
are truly described by Bartram. They usually consist of five to
seven tiers, or alternate layers, of eggs and vegetables; the whole
plastered with mud. When hatched, by the fermentation of the
vegetables, and the sun's rays, the young whelps all crawl from
one hole, near the top of the cone, and, instinctively, seek their
mother, in the adjoining wallow.
The other lizards of Florida are very small; the largest is
about seven inches long, with sides striped, alternately, red and
brown, and has large red gills; he is a disgusting reptile, and
somewhat impudent witlial, often intruding himself into the
houses of new settlers; he is in other respects innocent. The
old inhabitants call him the scorpion.
The northern blue tailed lizard is sometimes, but rarely, seen.
The chameleon is the least ugly of the species; he is very fre-
quently seen, and has much the contour and manners of a dandy.
He will often sit on a green leaf, and puff out his under lip like
a bladder, speckled with rubies, looking you all the time in the
fc'e, with great assurance.
The rattlesnake,,moccasin, and viper, are all dangerous snakes,
and highly poisonous; but they are very rare. Many aie killed
by the fires that frequently run over the country. Some are killed
by the deer, who wage an eternal war with them.. And the king
snake kills them whenever they cross his path. There is a little
ground rattlesnake, that escapes the fires' in his burrow, he is
very diminutive, being not more than twelve inches long, but
his bite is very poisonous. A water moccasin, that covers the
old logs, in the rivers near tide water,, is a large dreadful looking
snake, but it is said not to be poisonous. On the contrary, a livid
looking mud asp, thit has sometimes been mistaken for an eel,
has, in several instances, proved.fatal to those who expose them-
selves by wading in muddy creeks.
The king snake is clothed with a variegated coat of black,
brown, red, yellow, 'afd white, in rings of about an inch long.
his bite is innocent, buthe has the credit of tyrannizing over his
fellow crawlers of the desert. '
Black snakes are tolerably frequent, both on land and in the
water; th4 former, sometimes, catch chickens, ducks, and gos-
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
lings. The coach-whip is most frequently seen in the pine bar-
rens; he perfectly resembles a coach-whip, with a black handle;
but is very innocent
The garter, riband, green, chequered, and glass snakes, make
up the account of this species, in West Florida.
Although the lands of Florida may not, all of them at least,
produce forty bushels of frogs to the acre, as has been asserted
by a late traveller in that country; yet, it cannot be denied, that
they are very numerous, and very noisy. The Bell or Virginia
frog, is only found in the eastern district; and there they are not
numerous. The bull-frog is numerous every where: a stranger
would imagine, that he often strained his lungs, to imitate the
voice of the lordly alligator. The red and black toads are com-
mon and useful reptiles; in destroying insects they are extremely
expert. The shad-frog, speckled, and green frogs, are confined
usually to the water. The house-frog always becomes very
musical before a rain; and may be termed the poor man's barome-
ter. The little green garden frog changes colour like the chame-
lion, and his barking imitates, to perfection, the voice of a puppy.
Except the little savanna-frog, these embrace all the species with
which we are acquainted.
Of these the jigger is the most troublesome; it enters the skin,
most usually of the feet, and produces an excessive itching and
inflammation. Frequent sea-bathing, and constant cleanliness,
are the best guards against them. When once lodged under the
skin, it is very difficult to expel them.
Red bugs are numerous, especially in mossy woods; they are
nearly imperceptible to the naked eye'; but the poisoned shirt of
Dejanira could scarcely be a greater torment, than these little
pests are to the body. Sea-bathing, or rubbing the body with
spirits, will destroy them, if immediately applied. If this be
not done, they will continue painful eight or nine days.
Our hammocks are infested with fleas; the sea-beach with
sand-flies; the uplands with gnats; and the low grounds with
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
In most parts of West Florida, the inhabitants sleep under
musquitoe bars; and every person travelling the country, in the
summer season, should carry a bar with him.
Too little attention has been paid to the insects and reptiles
of Florida: an examination of these subjects, as well as that of
Conchology, and Ichthyology, is in progression, and may here-
after be published.
Our Ornithology is also very imperfect; the following is a
list of those birds which are most common.
OF EAGLES. Falco, we have
The Bald eagle. F. leucoce-
Fishing eagle. F. piscatorius.
Hen Hawk. F. gallinareus.
Chicken Hawk. F. pullenari-
Pigeon Hawk. F. columbarius.
Marsh Hawk. F. ranivorus.
SharpWinged blue. F.subceru-
Great Horned. S. arcticus.
Whooping. S. acclamator.
Screech. S. assio.
Turkey Buzzard. Vultur aura.
Carrion Crow. V. atratus.
Raven. Corvus carniverus.
Rook. C. maratimus.
Common Crow., C. frugive-
Florida Jay. C. Floridanus.
Jackdaw. Gracula quiscula.
Crow Blackbird. G.purpurea.
Parroquet. Psitticus caro-
Red-crested. P. pileatus.
Red-headed. P. erythrocepha-
Red-bellied. P. carolinus.
Black and white. P. pubescens.
Yellow-bellied. P. various.
Nuthatch. P. varia venture.
Brown Creeper. Certhia rufa.
Pine Creeper. C. pinus.
King Fisher. Aludo alceon.
Humming bird. Trochilus ca-
Butcher Bird. Lanius garru-
Black-head fly catcher. Mus-
Yellow-bellied do. M. cristata.
Little Olive do. M. subviri-
Green Wren. M. cantatrix.
Pigeon. Columba migra-
VIEW OP WEST FLORIDA.
Turtle Dove. C. carolinaen-
Ground Dove. C. passerina.
Brown Meadow Lark. alauda.
Robin. Turdus migratorius-
Thrush. T. rufus.
Mocking Bird. T. polyglot-
Red bird. Merula marylan-
dica---a good singer.
Cat Bird. Lucar lividus-a
Cedar Bird. JAmphelis garru-
Wild Turkey. Meleagris a-
Quail. Tetrao minor-plenty.
Red Bird. Loxia cardinalis.
Cross Beak. L. rastro.
Rice bird. Emberiza oryzi-
vora-this bird changes his
Finch. Linaris ciris-several
Linnet L. cyanea.
kinds, the Hemp Bird and
Sparrow most common.
House Sparrow. Passer do-
Red Sparrow. P. palustris.
Field Sparrow. P. agrestis.
Cow Pen Bird. S. sterco-
Blue bird. Motacilla sialis.
Water Wagtail. M. fluvialis.
Wren. M. domestic.
Do. do. palustris, and
Do. do. caroliniana--seve-
Titmouse. Lucinda philomela.
Yellow Bird. Parus luteus--
of this bird there are many
Swallow. Hirundo pelasgia.
Purple Martin. H. purpurea.
Chimney Swallow. H. cerdo.
Night Hawk. Caprimulgus
Muckawis. C. rqfus.
Crane. Grus. pratensis--these
birds inhabit the pine barrens,
in flocks or pairs, and feed
on grass and seeds, but with-
draw to the coast in the even-
ing, and stand in great flocks
together near the waters edge
during the night .They are
three feet high, of a cinerous
grey colour; usually very fat
and equal to turkey. Every
person who has passed down
the Mississippi, will recollect
their evening music.
Heron, Gray. qrdea herodius.
White Heron. A immaculate.
Small do. A. minor.
Crab Catcher. /. maculata.
Marsh Bittern. a, mugitans.
Frog Catcher. A. clamator.
Blue Bittern. ,A. violacca.
Poke. .A. viriscens.
Spoonbill. Platqlea ajaja.
Pelican. TantaluI loquator.
VIEW OP WEST FLORIDA.
White Curlew. T. alba.
Speckled do. T. pictus-the
Gannet, or Ibis. T. Ichthyo-
White Godwit. Numenius.
Red-breast do. N. pectore ruso,
abundant in Appalache bay.
Pool Snipe. N. fluvialis.
Sea Curlew. N. magnus.
Little do. N. cinerius.
Field do. N campe&tris,
Meadow Snipe. Scalopax
Tring, several species, Parva
Canadian Goose. Jnser cana-
Grey do. a/. maculata.
Duck and Mallard. qAnas.
Black Wood Duck. J./ nig.
Blue-bill. J,. subcerulea.
Sprig-tail. 8. caudacuta.
Speckled. ./.A rustic.
Dipper. .8. maculata.
Teal, several kinds.
Whistling Teal. Fistulosa.
Fishers. Mergus-three kinds.
Cormorant. Corymbus flori-
Snake Cormorant. C. calubri-
Loon, Pied. C. musicus.
Diver. C. arcticus.
White Gull. Lanus alber.
Grey do. L. griceus.
River do. L. minor.
Sea Pelican. Onocraticus
Booby. P. rula.
Noddy. Sterna stolida.
Kildea. Charadnus vocifer-
Ringneck Plover. C. minor.
Coot. Fulca floridana.
Water Rail. Rollus minor.
Brown do. R. rufus.
Blue do. R. major.
The central parts of West Florida, display abundant evidences
of an ancient, and dense population. History is silent on the
subject, and Indian tradition sheds but a faint and uncertain light
on that period of distant years. Great roads, were the first objects
which caught the attention of a traveller, while this country was
yet uninhabited. Bartram,,the younger, mentions them in his
Tour and Remarks, that they would be conspicuous for a hun-
dred years to come. Three years ago, they might be easily
traced on both sides of the Ocklockney river, for fifty miles,
nearly in a straight line, east and west. The prominent ridges,
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
which they crossed, were dug down, and causeways were con-
structed over the swamps. The principal highway, running
through the site which is now the seat of government, waa often
crossed, at right angles, by other roads: near Tallahassee these
were very frequent. At a little distance south-east of the town,
however, the minor roads crossed at very acute angles. It is
remarkable, that although the Indian paths often cross this great
road, they never follow it; but wind away from it, with almost a
Extensive forts were erected, on many commanding eminen-
ces. Fort St. Lewis was situate two miles west of Tallahassee.
Its form was an irregular parallelogram; the eastern, and longest
side, was fifty-two paces. Within the moat, two brick edifices
had been erected; one sixty by forty, and the other thirty by
twenty feet. There were bastions at each corner. The outward
defences were extensive. A covered way led to a spring, in a
deep ravine, under the north-east wing of the fort. Here were
discovered two broken cannon, one of them having only the
muzzle broken off: this has been removed to Tallahassee, and
again awakens the echoes of the distant hills, on days of rejoicing.
Many articles of old iron have been discovered about this ruin.
Before it, trees and grape vines grow, in the order in which they
were planted: the rows are distinctly traced, although overrun
with a more recent forest.
Three miles east of Tallahassee, on a hill, at the base of which
is a small but deep pond, is a fort, about a hundred and fifty paces
long, and sixty broad, with regular bastions, ditches, &c. both
without and within. In this fort are to be seen the ruins of brick
buildings: within the fortifications, twenty, or more, gun-barrels
were found, but little injured by the rust; on one of them, was
discovered the tower stamp. This fact, however, does not prove
that the English possessed the fort; since that nation has long
manufactured arms, as well as other articles, for the world. Mr.
John M'Iver has erected a dwellinghouse within the walls of this
fort; and it is expected, when he removes the rubbish of the old
brick edifices, that valuable discoveries will be made. He has
lately discovered a large well, which has not yet been cleared
out. Ona higher hill, about half a mile north-east of this, are
VIEW OF WEST PLORIDA.
the outlines of a larger, and apparently more regular fortress:
but the Indians have, for a number of years, cultivated the spot,
and oBiterated the most distinguished features of the work. Even
now, the inhabitants often dig up numerous spikes, hinges, pieces
of saw-plate, and tools of various kinds, which marks a population
of civilized people. About half a mile south of Tallahassee, and
near the dwelling of his excellency governor Duvall, are the ruins
of several small fortifications, which appear to have been hastily
thrown up; near one of these, a large wooden building appears to
have been destroyed by fire; some large timbers of the frame,
completely charred, have been preserved; very large spikes, locks,
keys, and hinges, have been discovered here: among other things,
a.porcelain lion, in a good state of preservation: it appears to
have been an ornament for a chimney piece. At some distance
under the surface, a floor was discovered, formed of a composition
of lime, and other materials, very hard and smooth. On a part
of the floor, was piled a quantity of charred corn and filberts,
perfect in form, but very tender.
On the east side of Ocklockney bay, and about two miles from
the mouth, are the ruins of an extensive fort. This is said, by
the Indians, to have been the last place occupied by the old civi-
lized inhabitants of Florida, when the country was conquered ty
the Muscogulge tribes. A town, called Oldenberg, was founded
near this place, by the English.
At the junction of the Chattahoche and Flint rivers, on the
eastern bank, are the ruins of an extensive and regular built for-
tification. The bank is two or three hundred feet high; it com.
mands a beautiful and extensive wild prospect of the Appalachi-
cola, and its tributary streams. The Spaniards are said to have
abandoned this, in favour of fort St. Marks; the latter being'
easier of approach.
Regular avenues are frequently seen, usually about one hundred
feet wide, extending in a straight line, for a mile or more; on
each side, large oaks are growing, in the wild disorder dictated
by nature; while the centre is filled, very thickly, with young
On the west side of Suwannee river, and near St. Pedro lake,
there are ruins, nearly as extensive as those described in the
VIEW OF WEST PLORIDA.
neighbourhood of Tallahassee: but the country is yet unsettled,
and the objects of antiquity have not been much examined. A
ruined monastery is particularly spoken of, the broken bell of
which, has long been a subject of wonder to the Indians.
Tumuli are not so common here, as in the valley of the Mis-
sissippi; they, however, are occasionally seen; most usually, on
hammocks; and always in situations where they command exten-
Near Histahatchee, places have been discovered where the
aborigines, long since, manufactured arrow and spear heads from
the reef flint: large piles of chips mark the spots; among these are
found the half formed weapons, which some unlucky stroke had
spoiled: some are found nearly perfect. The arrow heads are,
usually, one and a half, the spear heads three inches long; one
half the length is spear shaped, the other half a shaft, notched to
fasten to the reed. These arrow heads are often discovered, in
the newly cultivated countries of the northern states; and are
sometimes called elf stones.
These consist, principally, of natural caverns, sinking rivers,
great springs, and natural bridges.
The Arch cave is situated near the public road, about three
miles west of the ferries on Chapola river, in Jackson county.
It opens, to the east, an aperture under a vast limestone rock;
about five feet high, and thirty feet wide. This passage descends
gently, for three or four rods; the cavern then opens, to the extent
of a hundred feet wide, and fifty feet high. A deep channel, of
transparent water, skirts the south side, for some distance; it then
breaks off in wells, and finally disappears altogether. The course
of the cave now turns north-west; it grows narrower, and resem-
bles an arch of the gothic order. After proceeding about sixty
yards, the cave is crossed by a stream twenty feet wide, and five
deep; in this, numbers of craw fish are seen: after passing this
stream, the passage turns north of east, and presents a hall, one
hundred feet in length; pretty straight, with a very uneven floor
of red clay, covered with the debris of the decomposed rock.
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
A row, or rather cluster of stalactical columns, supports the centre
of this hall; while thousands of stalactites stretch down their long
tubes towards the white bases, which are growing up to meet
them, from the floor. Many large holes, in the rock above, are
filled with bats, which, on the approach of lights, flit off to other
dark recesses, with a roaring sound, like heavy wind.
The passage now becomes crooked and intricate, for a few rods;
and then opens into another lofty apartment; from which, there
are many avenues, most of which remain unexplored; as well as
two water courses, one of which bounds the passage.
This cave has been explored about four hundred yards. The
congelations, on the sides of the walls, have the appearance of
grey ice; through which, a sparkling crystallization appears: they
often project into curls and folds, representing draperies, and
mouldings of inimitable forms: the projections are nearly white,
but the same sparkling crystalline appearance continues. The
regular stalactites are hollow; the outside a soft chalky decompo-
sition; the centre irregular sparry crystals, of a yellowish hue.
In the neighbourhood of the Arch cave, colonel Stone attempt-
ed, in three several places, to sink wells; but in every instance,
he came to hollow spaces in the earth; and the well-digger be-
coming at length frightened, at the danger of entombing himself
in some fathomless cavern, abandoned his work.
The Ladies' cave is about one mile south-east from the Arch
cave; it opens to the north-west; the entrance is wider, and easier
of access, than the former; it is, also, more spacious within.
About fifteen paces from the entrance, it is divided into two pas-
sages; the left, about fifty yards in extent, terminates in a deep
river, which passes to the north, under a bold arch of sparry con-
gelations, which has not been, nor cannot, without a boat, be
explored; the banks are bold, rocky, and difficult of access. The
right hand passage is formed of rugged rocks, bold projecting
pillars, curious excavations, and fanciful galleries, which it would
be difficult to describe. The congelations are fine and infinitely
various. The passage terminates in a narrow chasm, which has
the appearance of a water-course; through which, at about three
rods distance, another room appears: this has been but imperfectly
explored. To the right of this last branch of the cave, the exca-
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
vation has been examined about one hundred feet; many holes
appear to lead off in different directions; some of these may lead
to other caverns.
Two miles south-east from the Ladies' cave, is the natural
bridge, over the Chapola river. The water at this place sinks
through a stratum of limestone rock, until meeting some impedi-
ment in its course, it rises again, and flows on the surface of the
earth. A great road formerly crossed this bridge: it is now travell-
ed by some persons, during the summer; in winter, the whole is
overflowed: a stranger, crossing here, would not be led to discover
any difference in the appearance of the ground, from the river
bottom, in any other place; the heavy forest timber appears the
same, and there is no variation of ground.
The Econfina river passes under a similar natural bridge, but
it is narrow. The United States' road, from Pensacola to St.
Augustine, crosses this bridge; but an addition of timber is now
The Oscilla river, in Leon county, sinks for nearly a mile; a
division of general Jackson's army once crossed here, without
suspecting that a river existed near them.
The course of subterranean rivers, can usually be traced by
persons acquainted with the country, by the growth of timber,
and by frequent sink holes, which usually occur at short distances
from each other.
The Wakully river, rising from the earth, presents the finest
spring in West Florida; probably in the world. It is of an oval
form; the longest diameter about six rods. It is of an unknown
depth, and perfectly transparent. In looking into it, the colour
is similar to a clear sky; except, that the reflection of the surround.
ing verdure, gives it a slight shade of green: the eastern side
presents a rugged rocky precipice; all else, is an abyss of bound-
less depth. Squadrons of fishes are seen, careering round "their
own world," in perfect security. The water is not very cold;
but it is highly impregnated with lime. The beauty of the foun-
tain; the luxuriance of the foliage around it; the calm retirement
of the whole scenery, renders this a charming spot.
The Big spring of Chapola, offers a very different scene; here
another river bursts from the gaping rocks, with giant force, and
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
furious rapidity; as though impatient of its long confinement. The
orifice opens to the south-west, under a high bank; it is near
thirty feet one way, by eight the other: a large rock seems to
divide the opening in two parts, at some depth below the surface.
The water acts as a prism; all the objects seen through it, in a
sunshine day, reflect the colours of the rainbow. It at once forms
a river six rods wide, and eight feet deep. The Wakully rises
gently from a retired dell, in a low level country; surrounded by
deep embowering groves of trees, hung with festoons of a hun-
dred different vines. The Chapola spring bursts from the side of
a hill, in an open country, thinly scattered with oaks. There
all is calm unruffled quiet: here all is life, activity, and animation.
The Chapola river is almost wholly formed from large springs;
one of them rises at the foot of a gentle hill, on the farm of judge
Robinson, near the natural bridge. It is nearly as large as the
Big spring, above described; boats may ascend quite into the
fountain; it is peopled with a great variety of fish.
The Big spring of Chactawhatchee rises eight miles above the
Cow ford, on that river. It is a round basin of a few rods in circuit,
very deep, and very clear, but much filled up with timber; it throws
out a constant gentle current, eight feet deep, and five or six
yards wide, which, in a mile and a half from the spring, joins
Holmes' creek, about the same distance from the Chactawhatchee
river. This spring has, for many years past, been a general
landing place for the country trade; a large store is now kept
there, by Mr. Cummins, a merchant from Philadelphia.
Several medicinal springs are scattered over the country; the
largest and most numerous are in, and on the borders of the Wa-
kully and St. Marks rivers. They usually cover the aquatic
plants in their vicinity, with a bluish white gelatinous matter;
some of them indicate chalybeate and sulphurous qualities; none
of them, however, have been analyzed.
These vary, according to the soil on which they are produced.
The soils of West Florida, may, perhaps, all be comprised in
five kinds, to wit: Pine barrens, uplands, hammocks, swamps,
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
and marshes. If we estimate the quantity of land at 10,560,000
acres, and deduct one fourth part for bays, lakes, rivers, &c.,
there will remain 7,920,000. Of this quantity, two thirds, or
5,280,000 acres may be covered with pine barrens; 800,000 with
tillable upland; 600,000 with hammocks; 500,000 with swamp;
and 400,000 with marsh.
The pine barrens are composed, principally, of silicious sand,
more or less mixed with calcareous and vegetable matter, and
often divested of every fertilizing principle, by the frequent fires
which run over them. Barrens are found on the seacoast, and
on the ridges, between the large water courses. All the lands
covered with pine timber, are by no means barren; on the con-
trary, some of the best uplands are wholly, or nearly all, covered
with yellow pines. And some of the burnt barrens will not pro-
duce even pine or scrub oaks, but are usually partially covered
with clumps of savin. West of Cape St. Blass, the sands are
usually of a pure white; east of that point, they become more
coloured, and of course, more fertile. Very few trees grow on
this soil; those most frequent, are,
Pine, pitch. Pinus rigida-a low poor timbered tree, but pro-
duces turpentine and tar.
Pine, many cored. Pinus seratina--a useless tree, found on the
banks of lakes and lagoons.
Pine, loblolly. Pinus taeda---a large tree, in valleys, has much
Pine, yellow. Pinus palustris-this is a large and most useful
tree, it is the principal timber used for plank and scantling in
the southern states; and also produces turpentine and tar.
Oak, high willow. Quercus cinera-on barren hills.
Black Jack. Quercus nigra--on the poorest sand ridges-excel-
Andromeda. A. rigida--on the edges of savannas and streams.
Shallow Cup. Quercus pumilla-round the borders of hammocks.
Live-oak shrub. Q. maratima-near the sea coast, very fruitful.
Holly-leaved. Q. ilicifolia, do. the branches
often bent to the ground with acorns, excellent for swine.
Hickory grubs. Juglans tormentosa-the better kind of barrens.
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
Haw, winter. Cratagus parvaflora-ridges, fruit green or yellow,
Haw, summer. C. flava--sea islands and dry plains.
C. apafolia--edges of savannas and streams.
Azalea. A. Bicolor and nudiflora, do. do.
Chinquapin. Castanea nana-dry ridges, edge of hammocks,
Andromeda. A. feruginea-dry ridges, edge of hammocks,
Huckleberry. Vaccinum myrsinites-dry ridges, berry small,
Whortleberry. V. staminium-dry ridges, berry larger.
V. dumosum-plains, dark purple.
Blueberry. V. frondosum-damp flat plains, berry blue.
V. glaucum, do. larger fruit, on a
HERBS are abundant, to wit:
Wild Sunflower. Helianthes atranubus-pine woods.
H. pubescens-banks of streams.
Goldenrod. Salidago reflecta-ridges.
S. laterifolia-pine woods.
S. pyritnidata, do.
S. bicolor, plains.
S. pulverulenta, do.
S. elata, do.
Aster. A. ericoides--dry ridges.
A. squarosus-pine woods.
A. concolor, do.
A. surculasus, do.
A. undulatus, do.
A. cenearefoleus, do.
Dittany. Cunila mariana, do.
Wild Pennyroyal. A. pugloides, do.
Woundwort. Stachys sylvatica-barren fields.
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
S. hysopafolia-barren fields.
S. aspera, do.
Wild Mallows. Hybiscus scaber, do.
Origanum. Monarde punctata, do.
Spiderwort. Tradescanthia virginica, do.
T. tripetalous, do.
Wild Indigo. Baptista perfoliata, do.
B. lanceolata-pine woods.
B. tinctorea, do. this is a most valua-
ble plant; it produces the best indigo, with less trouble than
any other of the species.
Agrimony. Eupatoreum alleum-barren plains.
E. rotundifolium, do.
E. linearifolium, do.
E. foeniculasceum. do.
Penstemon. P. pubescens-pine woods.
P. levagatum, do.
Chrysopsis. C. argentea-dry ridges.
C. graminifolia, do.
C. pinifolia, do.
C. trychophylla, do.
Ophrys. Neottia tortillis-sandy plains.
Balsam Cuphilla. C. viscossima, do.
Gerardia. G. linifolia-sandy plains, flower blossoms four
Scull cap. Scutelaria villosa--pine woods.
S. pilosa, do.
Silkweed. Asclepias phytolachoides-sandy plains, and sea isl-
ands. This beautiful plant has already, by the French nation,
been cultivated to advantage. The pappus is spun with raw
silk for gloves, the juice collected for opium, and the leaf used
Asclepias connivens-sandy plains and sea islands.
A. obtusifolia, do. do.
A. amplexicoides, do. do.
A. lanifolia, do. do.
A. tuberosa, do. do.
Violet. Viola villosa.
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
Button Root. Eryngia.
Lupin. Lupinus perennis--pine woods.
L. villosus, do.
Glycine. G. argentosa-dry plains.
G. peduncularis, do.
Sensitive plant. Mimosa sensitiva, do.
White Lilly. Crinum-pine woods.
Nightbelle. Ipomea bona nox, do.
Sand Lilly. Convolvulus spithamacus-dry plains.
C. obtusilobus, do. and sea islands.
Granadilla. Passiflora incarnata, do.
P. lutea, do.
Phlox. P. parviculatus, do.
P. pyramidalis, do.
P. glaberima-damp plains;
Verbena. V. corymbosa.
Graphalum. G. purpureum.
Anona. A. grandiflora.
Ruellia. R. strepens.
Salvia. S. graviolens.
Prenanthus. P. virgata.
Chrysomachia. C. acaulis.
Galega. G. chrysophylla.
Hypoxis. H. folafilia.
Comelina. C. erecta.
Black root. Pychnastaticum.
Blackberry. Rubus villosus.
Dewberry. R. cunefolius.
Strawberry. Fragaria virginiana.
Tormentilla. T. officinalis.
Wood-anemony. A. nemorosa.
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
Muscadine grape. Vitis rotundefolia-heads of small streams,
Briar, China. Smilax China-grows everywhere, but best in damp
soils, near streams. It often extends one hundred feet; the root is
similar to a cluster of potatoes. The Indians grate them,or bruise
them in a large wooden mortar, then throw on water, strain
the starch through baskets, dry and pulverize it; the colour is
a redish brown. They mix it with fine homony, and make
cakes; with honey and warm water, it becomes a fine jelly:
toasted and mixed with sweet milk, it is a delicious food
Briar, China. S. Ovata.
Morning-glory. Convolvulus purpureus.
Cypress vine Ipomea coccinea.
Traveller's Joy. Clematis holosericea.
Crimson woodbine. Lonicera sempervirens.
Yellow do. L. flavium.
Climbing Ivy. Cissus,hederocea.
Yellow Jessamine. Gelseminum sempervirens-dry plains.
The grasses are also numerous; there are very few spots, in
deed, of pine barren, that are not covered with grass: in many
dry ridges, the heat of the summer kills the stem, while the
roots remain entire; and fire is thought to improve its growth;
the herdsmen, accordingly, fire the barrens, at regular seasons.
Deer, as well as cattle, may always be found on places recently
Twisted Xyris. X. flexuosa-flat grounds.
Rough-head Fuerina. F. squarosa---fat grounds.
Rush-like F. scirpoida-savanna edges
Killingia. K. pumila, do.
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
Rhynchospera. R. plumosa--dry plains.
Schoenus. S. Sparsus-pine woods.
Nut grass. Cyperus hydra-on cultivated sandy land, and
almost every place; it is the greatest curse to planters; the
Riband cane is said to keep it down, but nothing has been
found to eradicate it. The root is fibrous like horse hairs,
strung at a few inches apart with tubers of the size of a mus-
ket ball, which descend into the sand, in every direction, fre-
quently to the depth of five feet.
C. distans-pine woods.
Mariscus. M. retrofractus-sandy plains.
Scirpus. S. capellaceus-dried savannas, forms a close carpet
soft as silk.
S. autumnalis-savanna edges.
S. ferugineus-pine woods.
S. exaltatus, do. grows to a great height-ten feet.
S. lineatus, do.
White button. Duchromena leucocephala-wet barrens.
D. ciliata, do.
Cockspur. Cenchrus tribuloides-old sandy uncultivated fields.
Low cane. Arundinarea tecta-around spring heads.
Muhlenbergia erecta-pine woods.
Fringed Aulaxanthus. A. ciliatus-ridges.
Fringed Paspalum. P. ciliatifolium--old fields which have been
Smooth Panic grass. P. lavigatum-ridges.
Cocksfoot. P. grus-galli-round savannas.
Broad-leaved Panic grass. P. latifolium-pine woods.
P. amarum-sand ridges.
P. ciliatum-wet barrens, evergreen.
P. divergens-sand hills.
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
Crab Grass. Digitaria sanguinalis.
Bermuda grass. D. dactylon-these, as well as P. divergens,
ought to be cultivated: these in dry, that in wet soils.
Silky Agrostis. A. senicea-sand hills-may be cultivated where-
ever there is calcareous matter in the soil.
A. trichopodes-sand hills.
A. juncea-sand hills, not fit for hay.
Purple Aristida. A. spiciformis, do.
Woolly do. A. lanosa, do. do.
Fringed Andropogon. A. ciliatus, do. if mown early, the hay is
tolerable, but coarse.
Nodding Andropogon. A. nutans-finer.
A. purpurea-stem coarse, few leaves.
A. argentus, do.
Broom Grass. Lateralis-tall, coarse, and often used for sweeping.
Purple Aira. A. purpurea-sea islands.
Hairy Poa. P. hirsuta-old fields.
Green do. P. viridis, do.
P. nitida, do.
Rough do. P. rigida-pine woods.
Purple do. quinquefida-makes excellent hay.
Oat grass. Uniola paniculata-sea islands.
U. gracillis-pine woods.
Slender Fescue. Festuca tenella-barren plains.
F. parvaflora-pine woods.
Hairy do. F. mycinus-ridges.
F. nutans-most common in the barrens.
Crows Foot. Eleusine indica-old fields, an exotic probably.
Tooth-ache Grass. Monocera aromatica.-This is a singular
grass; it has a naked stalk four feet high, spikelets in two close
rows, on one side of the stem, at top; straight when young,
but bends with age, and finally curling in a spiry coil. It
affects the breath and milk of cows, who eat it when young
and tender. The root is bitter, and affects the salivary glands.
Uplands are formations of clay, which arise gradually on the
subtending limestone; they usually commence about twenty miles
from the coast. The first stratum of clay is usually white; red
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
clay succeeds; while the surface is covered with a mulatto or
chocolate coloured loam. The trees, on this soil, are abundant,
and form the pleasantest groves imaginable. The following are
Oaks, Hemispherical. Quercus laurefolia.
Black. Q. tinctoria.
Red. Q. coccinea.
Yellow. Q. rubra.
Spanish. Q. falcata; triloba.
Post. Q. obtusiloba.
White. Q. alba-the most useful tree in America.
Yellow Pine. Pinus palustris.
Black Hickory. Juglans nigra.
Thick shelled do. J. sulcata.
J. tormentosa-the common Hickory of Florida.
Magnolia. M. grandiflora.
Umbrella tree. M. tripetala.
Yellow Poplar. Liriodendron tulipifera.
Dogwood. Cornus florida.
Wild Cherry. Cerassus virginiana.
Persimmon. Diospyros virginiana.
Holly. Ilex opaca.
Sassafras. Laurus sassafras.
Mulberry. Morus rubra.
White do. M. alba, or pubescens.
Black Gum. Nyssa sylvatica.
Sorrel tree. Andromeda arborea.
Catalpa. C. bignonia.
Scarlet maple. Acer rubrum.
Plumb, red and yellow. Prunus chicasa.
Anona. Asimina triloba, or Pawpaw.
Gordonia. G. lacianthus.
Hopea. H. tinctoria.
White Locust. Robinia pseud acacia.
Beach. Fagus sylvatica.
Chesnut. Castanea vcscn
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
Birch, white. Betula alba.
Iron wood. Carpinus ostrya.
Sycamore. Platanus occidentalis.
White Ash. Fraxinus epiptora.
Honey Locust. Gleditschia triacanthos.
The uplands produce few shrubs; the following are found about
spring heads, banks of rivers, lakes, and savannas:
Anana. A. grandiflora.
Lantana. L. camera.
Stratia. S. virginica.
Hopea. H. pumila.
Shrub Locust. Robinea hispida.
Baccharis. B. halimifolia.
Carylus. C. americana.
Chinquapin. Castanea pumila.
Myrtle. Myrica cerifera-rare.
Prickly Ash. Zanthoxilon tricarpium.
Service Berry. Prinos verticilatus.
White Fringe tree. Chionanthus virginica.
Azalea. A. visciosa-rare.
Hydrangea. H. Nivea-on limestone rocks.
The herbs, vines, and grasses, on the hammocks, are, many
of them, similar, but of more numerous species than those on the
uplands; the same classes of trees and shrubs also grow on the
hammocks, but there is also a greater variety of species; those
which are common to both, will therefore not be again enume-
rated; but such as are peculiar to the hammocks will be noted.
Sweet Bay. Laurus borbonia.-This tree produces timber in-
ferior only to mahogany, which it closely resembles. The
young leaves are often used for tea, which is a most pleasant
and healthful beverage. Cattle eat the herbage with avidity.
Pond Spicewood. L. geniculata.
American Olive. Olea americana.
Spotted Haw. Fothergilia punctata.
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
Cabbage Palm. Chamarops palmetto.-The greatest ornament..
of our sea-coast; they sometimes rise on a straight column
eighty feet. The timber resists the gulf worm, so destructive
to vessels. Hats, baskets, mats, &c. are manufactured from
the leaves. The embryo head is excellent food. Bears and
other animals feed on the berries. Confined to the coast and
islands; not seen farther west than St. Andrew's bay.
Cotton Tree. Populus grandidentata.
Juniper. Juniperus alba.
Red Cedar. J. virginiana.
Sweet Gum. Liriodendron styraciflua-rivers, hammocks.
Live Oak. Quercus virens.
Cettis. C. occidentalis.
Mulberry. Morus rubra.
Saponaria. Sapindus saponaria.
Sidiroxelon. Bumelia lycoides.
Halesia. H. tetraptera.
Azalea. A. calendulacea-the most beautiful native shrub of
Florida. Flame coloured, pink, yellow, streaked and mottled
with every intermediate shade.
Haw. Crategus grus galli.
Salicifolia. Spinaea salicifolia.
Andromeda. A. axillaris.
Hammock Berries. Vaccinium myrtilloides-about the size ot
a cherry, usually grows near streams, ten feet high.
Clethera. C. tomentosa.
Styrax. S. grandifolium.
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
Hydrangia. H. quercifolia.
Ananna. A. incarnata-five feet high, flowers large, white,
many on a large panicle; fruit size of a small cucumber; pulp
yellow, and tastes like custard.
Sumach. Rhus vernix.
Sensitive Shrub. Mimosa eburnea-the first plant which grows
on the sea sand; excellent for hedges, and ornament.
Scull Cap. Scutilaria hysopifolia.
Blue do. S. laterifolia.
Coral Tree. Erythrina herbacea.
Cassia. Sesbania macrocarpa.
Senna. S. marylandica.
Lindernia. L. dilatata.
Bellwort. Uvularia sessilafolia.
Fairy Flax. Houstonia coerulea.
Star of Bethlehem. Hypoxis erecta.
Slender Lobelia. L. kalmia.
Indian Tobacco. L. inflata.
Ladies traces. Neottia tortillis.
Domestic Ipecacuanha. Gillenia trifoliata.
Scabious. Erigeron philadelphicum.
Asclepias. A. tuberosa.
Pentstemon. P. pubescens.
Starwort. Aster lineafolium.
VIEW OF. WEST FLORIDA.
Wild Sunflower. Helianthus truncatus.
Annemona. A. thalictroides.
Milkwort. Polygala purpurea.
Pogonia. P. verticillata.
Smilacina. S. canadensis.
Cancer Root. Orobanche virginica.
Wormseed. Chenopodium anthelminticum.
Lambs Quarter. C. alleum.
Poke. Phytolacca decandria.
Sheep Sorrel. Oxalis-acetosilla.
Spanish Moss. Tilandsia usneoides.
Indian Agave. A. virginiana.
Ground Sorrel. Rumex acetosa.
Jimpson. Stramoneum datura.
Phlox. P. carolina.
Broad Thistle. Sonchus macrophyllus.
Cotton do. S. oleraceus.
Narrow leaf. S. floridanus.
Small yellow. S. carolinianus.
Milk Thistle. S. accuminatus.
Wild Baum. Melissa.
Golden Rod. Solidago reflexa.
Tarragon. Artemissia caudata.
Wild parsnip. Sison trifoliatum.
Ranunculus. R. recurvatus.
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
Poppy. Papaver-white and yellow, petals four, stamens many,
pistil one, leaves jagged and thorny, sap a yellow juice some-
what corrosive; these plants are new to me, and although very
common on the shores and old fields, it is doubtful whether
they are not exotics naturalized.
Mallows. Malvus virginicus.
Water Cress. Sisymbrium nasturtium.
S. amphibium.--This plant is found on
sea islands in other respects barren, and on the shore; the sands
often drift over it, but it shoots through again; it is a delicious
and most healthy herb, especially in scorbutic affections.
White nettle. Urtica alba.
Domestic Euphorbium. E. cordifolia.
Aurantium. A. coccinia.
Veronica. V. angustifolia.
Eupatoreum. E. foeniculaceum.
Graphalium. G. polycephalum.
Senecio. S. hieracifolium.
Chrysopsis C. pinafolia.
Verbesina. V. sinuata.
Cancer Weed. Salvia lyrata.
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
Fox grape. Vitis vulpina.
V. aestivalis-usually cultivated for arbours, it is
also a good wine grape.
Bignonia. B. radicans.
Rhus. R. radicans.
Poison Vine. R. toxicodendron.
Crimson Woodbine. Caprifolium sempervirens.
Yellow do. C. flavum.
Supple Jack. Rhamnus volubilis.-Twisted walking canes of
this vine are much admired.
Yellow Bell Flower. Convolvulus obtusilobus.
Ipomea. I. coccinea.
Ivy Vine. Cessus hederacea.
Yellow Jessamine. Gelsemum sempervirens.
Yellow Echites. E. diformis.
Aristolachea. A. tomentosa.
Purple Thyrsa. Thyrsanthus frutescens.
These may be divided into three kinds. First, those formed
on the borders of rivers, by inundation; these are the richest
swamps, and the most extensive. They are usually separated from
the stream by a ridge of dry land, formed by the heaviest parts of
the alluvial matter, which is deposited immediately after leaving
the current; this ridge, or natural embankment, prevents the
waters from draining off, as the surface of the rivers subside.
They are, usually, densely covered with heavy timber, and this
tangled with innumerable vines, which renders them almost im-
penetrable. Secondly, pine barren swamps, which are natural
basins, containing the waters of the surrounding country. These
swamps, when covered with small coast cypress trees and knees,
are usually, but improperly, termed cypress galls. Cypress
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
knees are hollow cones, which rise from the roots of the cypress
tree, from one to six feet high, and terminate in a blunt point
These never shoot up into trees, as has been imagined, from the
circumstance of large cypresses being supported on hollow cones,
similar in appearance; in the latter case, the tree first grows
up straight, and the cone gradually swells out underneath it,
as high as the highest stage of the water. Savannas are no
more than natural reservoirs of water like the swamps; except
that they are covered with grass and herbs instead of trees and
vines; they are usually founded on clay or marle, but sometimes
only on a hard sand. They are frequently extensive, and form
excellent grazing lands. The third kind of swamps are those
spongy tracts, where the waters continually ooze through the
soil, and finally collect in streams and pass off. These are pro-
perly termed galls, sometimes sour, sometimes bitter lands. They
are the coldest soils we have, and the waters arising through
them are frequently impregnated with sulphur, vitriol, and iron.
When their foundation is alluvial matter, it is usually very thin,
like quagmire: the land may be shaken for acres in extent. When
the base is sand, it is always a lively quicksand, very dangerous
for cattle. These galls are usually covered with titi and other
andromedas, loblolly and other laurels, vaccinums and vines.
The trees most peculiar to swamps, are,
Cypress. Cupressus disticha.--A large and beautiful tree, often
rising one hundred feet, makes excellent boards, scantling,
Coast do. C. thyoides.
Pine barren do. C. imbricarea.
Swamp Ash. Fraxinus epiptera.
White do. F. acuminata.
Oval-leaved. F. platycarpa.
Black. F. pubescens.
Willow Oak. Quercus phellos.
Water do. Q. aquatica.
Lyre-leaved. Q. lyrata.
Chesnut do. Q. prinos.
Velutinian. Q. michauxii.
Pignut. Juglans porcena.
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
Tupelo. Nyssa unifolia.
Ogechee Lime. N. capitata.
Loblolly. Laurus caroliniensis-grows in every kind of swamp,
from ten to seventy feet high; the beauty and aroma of its
flower is well known.
Swamp Magnolia. M. glauca.
Swamp Poplar. Populus angulata-river swamp.
Whahao. Ulmus alata-high pine barren.
Bumelia. B. lycoides-galls.
Plane Tree. Planera gmelini-grows in river swamps, and re-
Soap Tree. Sapindus saponaria, do. near the coast.
Winter Plumb. Prunus hiemalis, do. back from the coast.
Gordonia. G. lasianthus, do.
Buttonwood. Cephalanthus occidentalis-near the coast.
Swamp Dogwood. Cornus canadensis.
Amorpha. A. frutescens-river swamps.
Strawberry Tree. Euonimus americanus, do.
Viburnus. Viburnum dentatum, do.
Swamp Haw. V. nudum, do.
Sambucus. S. canadensis-deep inland swamps.
.Laurel. Laurus millisafolium, do. and in galls.
Andromeda. A. axillaris.
Titi. A. angustifolia.-This class furnishes most of the shrubs
found in our swamps; the titi, in particular, occupies the same
situation south of Georgia that the alder does in the northern
states. It grows from six to twelve feet high; the stoles are
slender and set so thickly together that their shade keeps the
small streams cool for a great distance from their fountains.
In March, their racemes of white flowers are abundant and very
ornamental, and their singular strings of three cornered seeds
often hang on the bushes till winter.
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
Billberry. Vaccinum corymbosum.
Spicewood. Laurus benzoin.
Bird Shot. Canna indica-river swamps.
Herbaceous Canna. C. salicornia-savannas.
Spring Callitriche. C. callitriche-galls.
Virginian Gratiola. G. virginica--ditches.
Yellow do. G. aurea-pine barren swamps.
Hairy do. G. pilosa-near swamps.
Round Fruit G. sphaerocarpa-lake shores, and savannas.
G. quadridentala, do.
Square-stemmed. G. tetragona, do.
Lindernia. L. dilatata, do.
L. attenuata, do.
Round Micranthemum. M. orbiculatum, do.
Big-leaved do. M. emarginatum,do.
Floating Utriculare. U. inflata, do. in still water, fresh.
Purple do. U. saccata, do.
Yellow do. U. longirostrus, do.
Small do. U. biflora, do.
Bristle-stalked. U. setacca-pine barren swamps and sa-
Narrow-leaved Lycopus. L. europius, do.
Sallop-leaved do. L. sinuatus, do.
Blue Tripterella. T. coerulea, do.
Variegated Iris, I. versiqolor, do. the root is a reme-
dy for dropsy.
Three-petaled. I. tripetala, do. rare.
Blue. I. hexagona-rich river swamps.
Yellow Tricoma. Lachranthes tinctoria-pine barren swamps
Creeping Comelina. C. communis, do.
Blue do. C. longifolia, do.
Moss-leaved Syena. S. fluviatilis-bay galls.
Proserpina. Proserpinaca palustris, do.
P. pectinata do. and savannas.
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
Tetragon. Diorea tetragona-galls.
Three-leaved Galium. G. trifidum, do.
Centaurella. C. verna, do.
C. paniculata, do. and swamps.
Sanguisorba. S. canadensis, do.
Potamogiton. P. pinnatum-stagnant fresh water.
P. verticillatum, do.
Villarsia. V. trachysperma, do.
Lysimachia. L. ciliata-savannas.
Phlox. P. divaricata-low river swamps.
Cardinal flower. Lobelia cardinalis, do. beautiful scarlet.
L. amaena, do. blue.
Pinckneya. P. pubens-galls and savannas.
Solanum. S. nigrum-savannas.
S. mamosum-low swamps.
Swamp Milkweed. Asclepias parviflora, do.
Hydrolea. H. quadravalvis-galls.
H. corymbosa, do.
Erynguim. E. foetidum, do.
E. gracile, do.
Hydrocotyle. H. interrupta-stagnant water.
Wild Annise. Ammi copillaceum-galls.
Cicuta. C. maculata, do.
Sundew Drasera. D rotundifolia-galls.
D. longifolia, do.
Spanish Moss. Tilandsia usneoides-swamps.
T. recurvata, do.
Wampee. Pontederia cordata-galls and savannas.
Pancratium. P. mexicanum-savannas.
Smooth Palmetto. Yucca gloriosa-galls near the sea shore,
Calamus. Acorus calamus-muddy galls.
Cats Tail. Typha latifolia, do.
Soft Rush. Juncus effusus-galls and savannas.
J. setaceus, do.
J. triflorus-river swamp edges.
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
Rumex. N. britannicus-shady swamps.
Nectris. N. aquatica, do.
Swamp Lilly. Saururus cernuus-galls.
Rhexca. R. virginica, do.
Blue Scull-cap. Scutelaria laterifolia-swamps and galls.
Polygonum. P. hirsutum, do.
P. persecaria, do. and ponds.
Penthorum. P. sedoides, do.
White Pond Lilly. Nymphaea odorata-in swamps, ponds, and
Sarracena. S. purpurea-swamps, galls, and savannas.
S. rubra, do.
S. variolis.-The leaf of this singular plant is a tube
which widens towards the top in the three latter species; in the
two former, they are contracted near the top. The inside of
the tube is covered with viscid hairs, which prevent insects
from retreating, when once they have entered for shelter or
food. They are always partly filled with insects. The leaf
is beautiful, both as to shape and colour, and the flower is of a
deep gaudy redish brown, and remarkable for having two
Hypericum. H. parvaflorum.
Elodea. E. virginica.
Ranunculus. R. hederaceus.
Caltha. C. ficoloides-swamps.
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
Cyamus. C. luteus, or Yellow Water Chesnut, do.
Polygala. P. lutea-ponds and galls.
P. corymbosa, do.
Winged Dolichos. D. luteolus, do.
Aromatic Liatris. L. odoratus-galls and savannas.
Purple Veronica. V. oligophylla-edge of swamps.
Eupatorium. E. perfoliatum, do. A decoction of this
plant operates as a gentle emetic. Indians use it as a sudorific
Conyza. C. marylandica.
Black Root. Pterocaulon pychnastachyum.-The famous Indian
remedy for pulmonary disorders.
Butter Weed. Senecio lobatus-swamps.
Slender Aster. A. carolinianus, do.
A. dracunculoides, do.
A. junceus, do.
A. paniculatus, do.
Solidago. S. virgata, do.
S. pulverulenta, do.
Baltonia. B. asteroides, do.
Heleneum. H. autumnale, do.
H. quadridentatum, do.
Yellow Bidens. B. coreopsis-ditches and galls.
Chana. C. capitata, do.
Duck.meat. Lemma minor-stagnant waters.
Bristly Typha. T. latafolia, do.
Sparganium. S. americanum, do.
Carex. C. stipata-swamps.
C. scirpoides, do.
C. scoparia, do.
C. crineta. do.
C. trichocarpa, do.
C. furcata, do.
Orchis. 0. ciliaris, do. and galls.
0. cristata, do.
Calopogon. C. pulchellus, do.
Sagittaria. S. sagittifolia, do.
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
S. graminea-swamps and galls.
Arum. A. dracontium, do.
A. triphyllum, do.
A. alba, do.
Cissus. C. ampelopsis--swamps.
Echites. E. diformis, do.
Dolychos. D. luteolus, do. near salt water.
Apios. A. tuberosa, do. This vine has numerous tubers
of the size of hickory nuts. The Seminoles raised great quan-
tities for food.
Glycine. G. reflexa, do.
Grape. Vitis labrusca-in all swamps.
Muscadine. V. rottundifolia--edges.
Smilax. S. pastata, do. every where.
Smooth Briar. S. bona nox.
S. pseudo china.
S. caduca.-These briars cover wet lands of
Pistache. Amphicarpe monoica.-This is a singular plant, stem
decumbent, climbing angular, red at the base, light green above,
branching, twenty inches to two feet long. Leaves ternate,
lanceolate, ovate. Common petiole three to five inches long.
Stipules ovate, subulate, hairy; flowers in pendulous racemes;
ealyx tubular, four toothed. Corolla white, tinged with violet
Legume wrinkled,*one to three seeded, most frequently two.
The petaled flowers are barren, but stems, furnished with a
calyx and the part of a style, shoot from the stalk into the
ground, and there produce pods. They were greatly cultivated
by the Seminoles, and are now much used by the Americans
of West Florida. This vine produces a large crop on sandy
land. They are baked or roasted in the shell, and are much
used by the confectioners. The pistache is a native of Spain,
from which it was, but a few years since, transferred to the
VIEW OP WEST FLORIDA.
gardens of France and Italy. With us it is perfectly natural
Rhynchospora. R. cymosa-galls and savannas.
R. distans, do.
R. sparsa, do.
Cyperus. C. articulatus, do.
C. vegetus, do.
Spanish Grass. C. virens, do.
Yellow Cyperus. C. flavescens, do.
C. tenuiflorus, do.
C. odoratus-edge of rivers.
C. strigosus-galls and savannas.
C. speciosus, do.
C. enslenii, do.
Scirpus. S. filiformis, do.
S. validus-in lakes and ponds.
S. minimus-galls and savannas.
Fringe leaved. S. ciliatifolius-savannas.
Dichromena. D. ciliata-margin of ponds and swamps.
Trichophorum. T. cyperinum-savannas.
Cane. Arundenaria macrosperma.
A. tecta-edge of swamps and marshes.
Spring Trichodeum. T. laxiflorum-swamps.
Leersia. L. oryzoides, do. inland.
Phalaris. P. americana, do. fresh and brackish.
Early Paspalpum. P. precox, do.
Joint Grass. P. distichum, do,
Large Spiked Panicum. P. italicum, do.
Cockfoot. P. grus-galli, do.
Water Panicum. P. geniculatum, do.
Compressed. P. anceps, do.
Sword-leaved. P. ensifolium-galls.
Aira. A. palustris-swamps and savannas.
Proserpinaca. P. palustris, do.
Arenarea. A. glabra, do.
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA. 61
Liatris. L. tormentosa, do.
Veronica. V. oligophylla, do.
Awlwort. Sibularia aquatica-river swamps, and wet sea beach.
Are of two kinds, fresh and salt The former are usually situ-
ate on the borders of some large body of water, in the interior of
the country. The latter on the seacoast, or near the estuaries
of rivers, There is a great diversity of marshes; much depends
on the substratum, on which they are based. For instance, the
most extensive marshes of West Florida are based on lime-
stone, which renders them extremely fertile in aquatic vegetables:
some of the fresh marshes, on the contrary, are merely quicksands,
covered with a very thin soil, and are of course quite barren.
Others have a clay foundation, and may be cultivated to advan-
tage. Marshes produce no trees; a few shrubs sometimes skirt
the edges of them. The herbs most common, are,
Micranthemum. M. orbiculatum-fresh marsh.
Tripteleria. T. coerulea, do.
Creeping Comelina. C. communis, do.
Convolvulus. C. sagittifolius-salt.
C. repens, do. near the mouth of rivers.
Marsh Rosemary. Statice limonium-salt marsh near the shores.
Pancratium. P. mexicanum-fresh.
Dracocephalum. D. variegatum, do.
Cardamine. C. pennsylvanica-salt-near the sandy shore.
Pistia. P. spathulata-brackish-mouths of rivers.
Sagittaria. S. lancifolia, do.
Arum. A. virginicum, do. and fresh.
Iresine. I. celosioides-salt and fresh.
Acnida. A. rusocarpa-fresh.
Water Plantain. Alisma plantago-brackish.
Schoenus. S. effusus-fresh marsh.
Rhynchospora. R. longirostris, do.
Scirpus. S. simplex, do.
S. palustris, do.
Round-head. S. capitatus-salt marsh.
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
S. mucronatus, do.
Large Marsh. S. lacustris, do.
Salt Rush. S. spadiceus, do.
Downy Flower. S. ferrugineus, do.
S. maratimus, do.
Eriophorum. E. virginicum-fresh-in boggy clumps.
White Rush. Spartina juncea-salt-forming also tufts.
Salt Marsh Grass. S. glabra-salt.
Ceresia. C. fluitans-fresh.
Smooth Panicum. P. laevigatum-fresh.
Soft do. P. molle, do.
Sea-shore do. P. virgatum, do.
Johnny Bartram. Lycium carolinianum-salt.
Black Rush. Juncus acutus-brackish.
Arenaria. A. canadensis, do.
Aster. A. flexuosus, do.
A. subulatus, do.
Zizanea. Z. aquatica.-This is the most common grass at the
mouths of rivers where the marsh is often overflowed, grows
six to ten feet high, is eaten freely by cattle and horses. Mili-
acea is not eaten by either.
The productions of agriculture in this country, at present, are
not very numerous. Cotton engrosses the most attention. Three
kinds are cultivated.-The sea island, Mexican, and green seed
cotton. The sea island, or black seed, is only raised on the sea-
coast; hammock lands, where the sea-breezes are felt, are most
congenial to its perfection; on them it often grows to the height
of fifteen feet, throws off extensive branches, and bears a large
beautiful yellow flower. The cocoons, or capsules, are longer than
those of the other kinds. The seeds are black and smooth, the
herl long, of a silky lustre; the colour a glossy yellowish white.
It is sown in February and March, in drills, according to the
quality of the soil, from five to seven feet apart; the stalks from
seven to twelve inches.
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
It is sometimes cultivated on the uplands. There the drills
are usually from ten to twelve feet apart. The cocoons open from
September to December, when they are usually killed by the
frost; the cotton should be gathered as the pods open, as a rain is
then of great injury to the cololfr and strength of the herl. The
cotton is separated from the seed by a pair of small wooden roll-
ers, less than an inch in diameter, and from twelve to fifteen
inches long: these are turned by a crank with the hand or foot.
One slave will clean from twenty to twenty-six pounds of cotton
in a day. The expense of cleaning the sea island cotton, is
greater than that of the other kinds, although the machinery is
much less expensive. When well handled, it brings more than
double the price of green seed cotton, and has a more certain
market. Whether this plant is indigenous to America, or an
exotic, is still uncertain. The green seed cotton is most com-
monly cultivated in the country: this is the true Gossypium,
brought formerly from Siam. Its height rarely exceeds four feet;
the flower is white, the capsule shorter and thicker than that of
the sea island, or Mexican; the herl is shorter and whiter than
the former; it grows so firmly to the seed that it requires a gin
with steel saws to separate it; the bark of the seed being torn by
these, forms the little black motes so hard to separate from the
A red clay soil is most congenial to the growth of the green
seed. This is the kind of cotton usually cultivated in France,
Malta, Italy, and Egypt. It is said to have been introduced
into Georgia by a Dr. Turnbull.
The Mexican cotton is an intermediate species, between the
two former; it is a native of Mexico and Peru. It grows better
in the country than on the seacoast; the seed is green, but the
staple long, fine, and white. It produces well, and is yearly
coming more in use.
As the sea island cotton is only cultivated within the range of
the sea breezes, and as the quantity of good land on the seacoast
is comparatively small, this article is never likely to be produc-
ed in sufficient quantities to glut the market. It will always be
a safe crop to cultivate. It is much to be wished, that all our
fine hammock lands were improved in its cultivation. They
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
uniformly afford delightful residences for the farmer. They will,
besides cotton, produce all the necessaries of life. Their situa-
tions on the seacoast are usually healthy; and the abundance of
fish in all the bays and creeks are a great convenience to a
farmer. Fruits and vines are produced with great ease, and in
great perfection. The only apparent* inconvenience is their de-
tached situation, not being usually large enough to support a
neighbourhood; they must be retired residences, though they are
certainly very pleasant ones.
Rice is the next article that merits the attention of the Florida
farmer. This grain is raised with equal success in the marsh,
the hammock, and the upland; and on the pine barrens when
trod, or as the term is here, cowpenned. A general opinion has
prevailed, that rice can be cultivated successfully only in situa-
tions where water can be raised upon it. Humboldt has stated,
that the Mexicans neglected the culture, for want of this con-
venience. But constant experience teaches us, that, although it
is easier to kill the weeds among rice by water, than by the hoe,.
yet that if is no more essential to the growth of rice than of corn.
Next to sta island cotton, this is the most profitable crop in Flori-
da. Cattle, in winter, eat the straw with as good an appetite as
they do hay; sixty bushels of rough rice is a usual crop, on cow-
penned pine land, per acre; low rich lands often produce eighty
bushels; seventy-five cents is the usual price per bushel in market,
or from four to five dollars per hundred when cleaned from the
husk. A barrel of cleaned rice contains as much nutriment as
a barrel of flour. It preserves much better in a warm climate.
On the rich valleys of the Mississippi and Ohio, it is doubtless
more profitable to raise corn; but in this climate rice is a more
certain crop, and much more profitable.
Corn should be raised by every planter for his own family, but
not for market. It grows well on some of our uplands, and bet-
ter on the alluvial grounds of our rivers, but they often overflow
while the crop is still on the ground; it is, therefore, a business
of much risk; and besides, our river bottoms are quite subject to
bilious complaints in autumn. The hammock lands produce
very good corn, when early planted; but if planted late, they are
often overrun with worms, which destroy the ear. On our rich
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
land, therefore, it will be more profitable to raise sugar and cot-
ton, and purchase bacon and flour.
Sugar is becoming an object of attention. Several farmers have,
forthe three last years, 1824,1825, and 1826, been increasing their
fields of cane. In many parts of Jackson, Gadsden, and Leon coun-
ties, it grows to great perfection; the climate and soil are very ap-
propriate, and there is no doubt that sugar, in a few years, will be-
come an article of the first importance to our planters. An acre
of sugar cane has, in one year, produced three thousand pounds
of sugar. In Louisiana, one thousand pounds per acre is con-
sidered a good crop. A farmer near Tallahassee, has this year
made three barrels of excellent sugar from an acre of cane, besides
a barrel half full of thick syrup, with his usual family utensils
alone: and he reserved cuttings for planting, to the value of one
hundred and sixty dollars from that same acre.
The Otaheite cane has been principally cultivated in Florida.
In Louisiana, the riband cane is likely to supersede all others.
This species of cane was introduced, only six years ago, by Mr.
Cairon, of Terre aux Boeuf. He procured it from Georgia, where
it had a short time before been introduced, from the Philippine
islands. Mr. Cairon was not, at first, aware of the importance of
the plant of which he had become possessed. Experience has
shown, that it stifles the nut grass, (coco.) It ripens a month
earlier than any other cane, and stands the cold better; when
blown down, it does not become sour so soon. The rattons never
decay: it will succeed on much poorer land than any other cane.
A middling crop will produce one thousand five hundred pounds
to the acre.
The sweet potato, (convolvulus batata,) is probably as much
used for food, in this country, as any other vegetable whatever;
the pine barren is its natural soil. It is agreeable to almost every
taste; there is no vegetable, the Irish potato excepted, which pro-
duces so much nutriment from the same quantity of ground. It
is a very healthy food, as useful to animals as to man; and is, in
this climate, the best substitute for bread, that exists.
The Irish potato, (solanum tuberosum,) is considerably cul-
tivated here; and when planted early, and covered with sea-weed
or some compost, to shield its roots from the rays of the sun.
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
it usually succeeds well: the red clay uplands suit this vege-
table better than any of our soils. The Irish potato, raised here,
does not last through the season, so well as those brought from
The sweet tobacco of Cuba, nicotianaa,) has been cultivated
here, in small quantities, with perfect success. The cultivation
of this plant should take place of the green seed cotton; it is a
more certain crop, and always finds a more certain market. Flori-
da is the native country of this plant. It was first introduced
into Europe, from this place, in 1560. One species of it, (nico-
tiana rustica,) still grows wild in our hammocks. While the
British had possession of Florida, tobacco was a considerable
article of exportation.
Indigo, (indigofera, sp.) however, was most extensively culti-
vated by the English, as an article of exportation. Caracas,
alone, was able to rival Florida, in this article; forty thousand
pounds sterling, in one year, has been paid in London for Flori-
da indigo; yet at this time not a pound is raised in the territory,
for sale; a few planters cultivate it for the use of their families:
yet it is raised with less trouble than any other crop, and any
female slave can manufacture it. This plant, also, is a native of
Florida: its natural soil is the pine barrens.
The small grains have been little attended to. Rye has been
cultivated with success on the uplands. Wheat cannot be ex-
pected to grow near the seacoast. It is believed that barley
might be raised advantageously.
The palmachriste, ricinuss,) and the benne plant, (sessamum,)
produce profitable crops on any of our lands.
The lady pea (dolichos) is extensively cultivated for table use; it
is a pleasant food, both green and dry, is also healthy, and contains
much nutriment; it is usually planted in corn-fields after the
hoeing is finished, and in this way it is raised with very little
trouble. The cow pea is raised in the same manner, and is
sometimes used for food; but more generally for provender, for
horses and cattle.
Pumpkins, water-melons, musk-melons, and cucumbers, are
raised with great ease, and in great perfection; squashes are more
difficult to cultivate; cabbage and carrots do well; but beets,
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
parsnips, and onions, are raised with difficulty. Lettuce and radish-
es come to great perfection. But the egg plant, (solanum,) and
tomata are used more generally, than most other garden vege-
tables, during the summer season.
Grasses have been very little cultivated; the whole country is
covered with wild grasses, of almost every description; many of
them might be cultivated with great advantage. The guinea
grass has been raised successfully by judge Robinson, of Gads-
den county. It has succeeded, to admiration, on the sandy
peninsula, occupied by judge Brackenridge, opposite to Pensacola.
The Bermuda grass forms a very soft carpet for our yards; but
the nut grass is an intolerable curse to our gardens. Red and
white clover grow wild in many places, and there can be no
doubt of their succeeding, as well as lucerne, on a large scale of
Of fruits, the fig is produced with less care than any other. It
grows spontaneously; by selecting the best kinds, and keepingthem
pruned, any quantity might be raised with a trifling expense.
There are several varieties, of which the black are largest; but
the small yellow or coeleste fig, is the sweetest. They usually
produce two, sometimes three crops in one year; they bear plenti-
fully the third year after planting.
There are several varieties of the Chicasa plum, all nearly
in a state of nature. Where they have been transplanted from
the woods to the garden, they have been greatly improved.
The sweet orange has been successfully cultivated, in and
near Pensacola; but the cold season of 1822, killed all the trees;
they are again beginning to bear fruit. This is a tender tree,
and requires considerable care in the cultivation, especially in
sheltering it from violent storms and extreme frosts. They
usually bear in six or seven years from the time of planting the
seeds. The young trees should be transplanted from the nur-
sery the second or third year; they should be set in good land,
about twenty-three feet apart, in a quincunx form, and kept clear
from weeds; when arrived at maturity, they will, on an average,
produce one thousand oranges per year: some trees in St. Au-
gustine, have been known to produce six thousand in one year.
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
In a good soil they have been known to live a hundred and fifty
years. It is well to plant one or two rows of sour orange, on the
side of the grove next the sea, to break the force of the storms.
The sour orange is much more hardy; the acid juice of the
fruit and the peel are the only parts used.
The bitter sweet is a native kind of orange, that grows wild
in many parts of the peninsula, especially near the St. Johns
Of late years it is considerably cultivated; many estimate the
mild acid of its fruit, before the sweet orange; the peel alone is
bitter. This is the most hardy of the orange trees, and when
cultivation shall have brought it to the perfection it is capable of
attaining, it may become, in all respects, the most estimable fruit.
The pomegranate is a beautiful ornamental shrub, and the
fruit is considered healthy; it arrives at perfection here; and
almost every garden is ornamented with it. Mr. Darby recom-
mends this shrub for hedges; it certainly would be very ornamen-
tal, and if interspersed with our mimosa eburnea and Spanish
dagger, (yucca draconis,) the hedge would be also formidable.
The quince is also common in our gardens, but it does not pos-
sess the fine aroma of the northern fruit; want of attention in the
cultivation may be one reason for the difference.
Apple trees grow here, but produce little fruit; they blossom
abundantly; probably they are blasted by the sea breezes; when
fruit is produced it is but indifferent. This fruit might perhaps
succeed better on the clay uplands, at a distance from the coast.
Few pears have been raised; they are said to do well and pro-
duce very good fruit in the country. The persimmon is a native
of our hammocks, and the pawpaw of the river bottoms. The
wild cherry is a common timber tree on the hammocks and up-
lands; the fruit is very indifferent, but the wood is superior to
the northern cherry in firmness and texture. The bilberry (vac-
cinum arboreum,) and the whortleberry (vaccinum stami-
neum,) are found in the sandy edges of the hammocks, and near
small streams.-And the blueberry, (vaccinum resinosum,) in
the pine lands. The blackberry, (rubus villosus,) is common
in most grounds, and the dewberry (rubus fruticosus,) on the
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
pine barrens, and on the sea-beach. Wild strawberries are con-
fined to the prairies and savannas, but our gardens produce a
The only mode of improving our,4nds has been the penning
of cattle on them; this improves thesandy lands by rendering
.them more compact, as well as manuring them. Our gardens
are sometimes manured imperfectly. Great improvements might
be made, by mixing clay with the sand, and thereby rendering
it more 'retentive of moisture. Burting renders the clay still
more fruitful. Sea-weed may be collected, in any quantities,
on our seacoast; this forms an excelle,~ianure for every kind
Sof~ifoduce; especially so, for the sea. island cotton, agd Irish
potatoes. Extensive banks of shells are also found every where
near the coast; for clay soils nothing can be better. Peat beds
ate also frequent; his, when trodden or fermented in piles of com-
post, forms an excellent nianure.
As yet there are none in West Florida; if we except the
domestic clothing, made by the planters for their own families.
It is not probable, that manufactures will ever be greatly extend-
ed in this country; as the staple articles of commerce will always
employ the inhabitants more profitably: certainly that will be the
case for many years to come. Some of the most important pro-
ductions of this country, however, require to be manufactured
Son the spot where they are produced:-such .as sugar, indigo,
myrtle wax, quercitron bark, sumachh, benne, and palma christi.
Bricks are now manufactured here; cargoes of them are weekly
shipped to, Orleans. Fire bricks, in particular, are in great
demand, and bring a very good price. -
Lime has often hben shipped abroad: our shell banks are very
extensive, and will nop be exhausted for many years. In pro-
portion as sugar cane shall be cultivated, taffia may be manufac-
tured. Cigars have'often bepn made from the tobacco raised here,
in no particular inferior to Havana cigars. This business ought
to be increased.
Our shores are peculiarly well calculated for the making of
salt. It is said that a company is forming to establish salt works
"70 VIBW OP ,WST FLORIDA.
at St. Andrew's bay. Glass might be made here to great advan-
tage; all the materials are furnished in the neighbourhood, in per-
fection and abundance. Peach brandy will, ere long, be made in
the country;'as peach orchqis are rapidly increasing. Few pur-
suits offer better prospects of success than this.
Is yet in infancy; a moderate casting trade is all that West
Florida can yet boast. Foreign goods are principally imported
from New-York: provisions ahd groceries from New-Orleans.
:Otir exports consist of cotton, cedar logs, boards, staves, deer
dkins and horns, beeswax tallow,-hides, peltry, and bricks.
When Ponce de Leon first visited Florida, in 1500, the natives
were. a'hardy warlike race. They were' very independent; but
like all ignorant people, they were also vry superstitious. The
following portrait of the manners and customs of that period, is
translated from The Beauties of American History, published at
Paris in 1806.
They worshipped a demon called Toy-, to whom they offered
human-sacrifices. The priests were called Jauvas, who disguised
themselves in a variety of extravagant forms, to ,impose on the
credulous, and to extort rewards for alleviatifig their fears.
In the morning, every Indian presented himself at the entrance
of his cabin, and extending his hands towards the sun, as his first
ray beamed from the eastern horizon, he addressed a rude but
fervent hymn of admiration to its gloty. 'At noon they performed
a similar act in token of their gratitude. .And to the setting sun
they addressed their thanks for all the bounties, which they con-
ceived, he had bestowed upon them during the day: and they
were particularly careful that his last ray should strike their
They had four quarterly feasts or holy days, which they cele-
brated, by assembling together on the highest ground in the
vicinity of their villages, where altars were raised for the purpose,
on which they sacrificed aromatic plants and honey, prostrating
themselves at the sane time in adoration. The chief Jauva also
spread on a .smooth stone, corn, an offering to the birds, in
VIEW P0 WEST PLORIDA.
acknowledgment for their melody. These rites being perform-
ed, they devoted themselves to dancing and joy. At exact noon
Sthe sacrifices were renewed, and cages were opened, and multi-
tudes of birds, which had been procured for the occasion, were
turned loose to the air, whose joyful "noteswcelebrated their free-
dora: to their flight great attention was paid by the Jauvas, who
thence prognosticated future etefts. It was in-i asesof great
calamity only, that human sacrifices were offered to their demon,
In some districts, the first-born- male infant was required to be
sacrificed to the sun; in other districts, a handsome girl, of a good
faily, was sacrificed to the moon and in both cases the mother
was required to assist at the immolation of her offspring
hIeaven, or the higher world, they called Hamanpacha. Hell,
or the lower world, Ucupacha; and Cupai the evil spirit.
That all the branches of quackery might be united in the same
persons, the Jauvas carried by their, sides, when not engaged in
spiritual affairs, a bag'of various simples to cure disorders; and
their experience, says our author, had probably rendered them
asefficacious as the nostrums of our civilized'practitioners. These
priestly physicians, dressed in mantles made of skins, cut in
bands and fastened by a belt round the waist, the legs and arms
naked, the head'covered'with a cap of the same skin terminating
in a point, ahd ornamented at bottom with a garland of feathers,
carried a kind of drum to announce their approach.' The
Jauvas were consulted before they went to'war, and a kind of
consecation was perforxied by sprinkling water in the air over
the assembly. Valiant warriors were honored by various fune-
ral rites, and their widow ~tvere allowed the honour of deposit-
ing their hair on the tomb of their husbands, But they were'dot
permitted to marry again until their hair hdd grown so as to cover
The adulterous woman was stripped of her clothing and hair,
and thus exposed to the insults of her own sex, and thensent, to
her parents, who hid her' in some secret recess. They usually
remained naked until twelve or fifteen years of age; they then
used leggins and mantles of fur.
Not many of the modern Indians of Florida, are, probably,
even the descendants of those who inhabited the coast in the days
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
of Ponce de Leon; yet their habits and manners are not extreme-
ly dissimilar. During a term of two hundred years there is a
great hiatus in the Indian history, see judge Brackenridge's letter,
Appendix, No. 1. Tradition says, that about one hundred years
ago the Yamases inhabited this country; but that white men also
had towns and cultivated fields among them; that they lived in
peace and intermarried with each other. But the Muscogulgee
tribes commenced a war on them, which continued a long time;
during which the forts were erected, whose ruins are still seen:
that the Muscogulgees finally conquered; that the white men
were at last all driven to Fort St. Lewis, and from that to the
Ocklockney fort, from which they embarked on the Big water,
and left the country. That the remainder of the Yamases were
taken prisoners, and made slaves to the conquerors. That the
Muscogulgees then abandoned the country, because they had
destroyed the means of subsistence. Many years of desolation
succeeded; till at length vagrants from different tribes strayed
into the unoccupied regions, and united with the remnant of the
Seminole nation. These traditions are gathered from the old
men of the Fowl towns, and however uncertain, are the only
authorities within our reach. After the battles of Emuckfaw,
and the Horseshoe, &c. many of the fugitive Creeks fled into
Florida, and joined the Seminoles.
The Indian villages west of the Suwanney river, and Mickasuky
lake, were called.the Fowl towns, when the territory was trans-
ferred to the United States. They were six in number, viz:
Cahallihatchee, OldI'allahassee, Taphulgee, Allikhadjae, Etatul-
ga, and Mickasuky, besides several 'nbr settlements.
By the treaty made at Camp Moultre, in 1824, the Indians of
Florida relinquished their lands, in the centre of the territory,
for a district of country on the peninsula; to which they were
removed in 1825: and a military post was established at Tampa
bay, for the purpose of supplying them with necessaries, and
keeping them in order. Their improvements were immediately
occupied by emigrants from different parts of the United States,
and the rest of the country is now rapidly settling. A few sec-
tions of good land were reserved- to their chiefs. The land to
which they are legally banished, consists of dry sand ridges
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
and interminable swamps, almost wholly unfit for cultivation;
where it has cost the United States more than their AJnd was
worth to support them; they are now in a starving condition; they
have killed the stock of the American settlers, in every part of
the territory, to support themselves already; and there is no
present prospect of their situation becoming improved. Their
number, in 1824, anoured to one thousand one hundred, of
which three hundred and eighty-five were warriors. These
Indians, before their removal, depended principally on hunting
for their meat. The women raised vegetables in considerable
quantities, especially corn, sweet potatoes, pista#ie nuts, beans,
melons, and pumpkins. They also manufactured a kind of bread
from the tuberous root of the great bamboo, or china briar, (smi-
lax pseudo china,) which they grated fine, and separated the
starch from the fibres. They appeared to live happily among
themselves; they were quite republican, and watched the con-
duct of their chiefs with jealous care. The men were much
handsomer than the women, and dressed with better taste. The
inferiority of the women was probably a natural consequence of
their servile situation. Their children appeared healthy, active,
and intelligent. The female Seminole usually carried her infant
in her arms; not on her back like the northern Indians. Educa-
tion was uMknown here.. Children were under no restraint; they
neither laboured nor hunted till they did it from choice. This
tribe paid much attention to the raising of cattle and horses; and
the women iised hogs and fowls. .Indeed their savage charac-
ter was much broken; and had they continued to cultivate the
rich fields of Mickasuky and, Tallahassee, they would soon have
attained a considerable degree of civilization.
Pensacola is situate on the'north bank of the bay, in latitude
300 23' 43". Longitude 100 5' west of Washington, and is the
only ancient town that remains in West Florida. For a century,
this was little more than a military post, established and support-
ed for the purpose of maintaining the sovereignty of the soil,
and of securing the trade of the Indians.. Like most other mili-
tary posts, it has suffered by the strife of rival and contending
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
powers; and has, at different times, belonged to several success&
It was at first established by the Spaniards, in 1696, by Riola,
as a check on the French settlements on the Mississippi river,
and at the Baloxi bay. Jealousies arose from proximity of situa-
tion, and a mutual desire of extending their possessions, until
war actually broke out in 1719. I ng this year Pensacola
changed masters three times, and was at last burned by the
French. The first attack was made by Monsieur Bi'enville, with
a party of Canadian French, .from Louisiana, and four hundred
indians. Wi~ this force he invested the town in the rear,
while three armed vessels made an attack in front. To avoid an
escalade, the Spanish commander capitulated, in March, and
saved the post from pillage; and the prisoners were sent to Ha-
In the month of August, of the same year, a Spanish flotilla
appeared before the town, and meths were found to excite a
mutiny among the French soldiery, which occasioned an imme-
diate surrender;,and the prisoners were, in their turn, sent to
Bienville, in September, again invested the town, while the
French fleet entered the harbour, set Are to the place, and de-
molished the fortifications.. The truce of 1722, aglin put the
Spaniards in possession. From this time the Perdido bay was
considered as the boundary, betwixt the possessions of France
In 1763, Florida was ceded to Great Britain, and possession
was given'the following year. 'They held the province eighteen
years; during this period Pensacola was greatly improved. Agri-
culture was encouraged in the neighbourhood, and commerce,
in lumber, naval stores, indigo, skins, peltries, &.. was greatly
extendqda The town was laid out at right angles, in 'squares of
four hundred by two hundred and fifty feet; the streets sixty feet
wide, with a large common fronting on the bay, one thousand six
hundred feet from east to west, by nine hundred north and south.
Most of'our principal buildings were erected during this period.
The three largest, the two barracks, and the mansion-house of
Cassa Blanca, have since been burnt down at different periods.
VIEW OP WEST FLORIDA.
The gardens of Pensacola were the pride of Florida; every city
lot had, appended to it, a garden lot in the suburbs; their ruins
are still to be seen, overrun with weeds, bushes, and vines.
In -78i, Pensacola, then commanded by general Campbell,
was agan conquered by the Spaniards under count de Galvez,
governor of Louisiana. In this attack a red hot shot from the
Spanish camp entered the British magazine of Fort St. Mitchel,
which blew it up. From this period it appears to have declined.
In 1814, the plan of the city was altered; the gardens in the
suburbs were cut up into arpent lots and sold at auction; after
which none of them were improved. Some of the streets were
blockaded by erecting -houses in them, or shutting them up as
lots. The fine common was cut up into lots, and distributed to
different persons; a slice to one, and a corner to another. Some
were disposed of by the intendant, to'suit his own purposes;
some were disposed of at auction by the Ayuntamento, to serge
theirs. Streets were laid off to meet the general confusion; some
thirty, some forty, and some sixty feet wide; some short and
some long, to suit the present exigence. Out of this massacre of
order and decency, two small squares were saved, one on the
east and one on the west ends of the old common; one was named
tlvsquare of Seville, and the other the. square of Ferdinand,
eaci five hundred feet long by three hundred broad.
At the general treaty of peace, in 1783, Florida was ceded to
Spain, who held it without intermission till 1814; when an .En-
glish fleet entered the harbour of Pensacola, and furnished the
Creek and Seminole Indians with arms and ammunition, ind
excited them to hostilities against the United States; took pos-
aession of the Spanish forts, and set the province in hostile array
against us, in open violation of the professed neutrality of Spain.
General Jackson, then at Mobile, after several ineffectual re-
monstrances and demands on the Spanish authorities, to cause
their neutrality to be respected by the English, at length'marched
his atmy to Pensacola, and took possession of the fortifications;
drove the English fleet from the harbour, and frightened the
Indians into the interior. He then retired from the place, and
left'it in the hands of the Spaniards.
At length the Seminole war broke out; and the Americans
VIEW OF WEST FLORIDA.
wpre again obliged, to visit their faithless neighbours. In 1818,
Jacksonagain took possession of Pensacola, formed .a temporary
government, and sent the Spanish troops to Havana: but it was
soon given up, and the Spanish authorities reinstated.
In 1819, a treaty was concluded between the. United States
and Spain, by which the Floridas were ceded to the former, in
consideration of spoliations made by the latter on American cbm-
merce. This treaty, however, was not ratified by Spain uritil
1820. On the 17th of July, 1821, the provinces were delivered
over to the American commissioners; and they are now held in
full property and sovereignty by the United States. By this
treaty, our government has peaceably acquired a country, which,
on investigation, proves to be of much greater .intrinsic value,
than was at first anticipated; they have, at once, cut from the
root a thousand fruitful sources of contention and war. Our
enemies can no longer take advantage of the weakness of .our
neutral neighbours, to excite the savages on our frontiers, or
possess themselves of positions to annoy the vital parts of our
The public buildings in Pensacola are a court-house, church,
market-house, custom-house, and public stores -
The court-house is a two story wooden building, and was
merly the government house of the Spaniards. It stands near
the byy on the old common. It has lately been refitted .and
painted by order of government, and the yard enclosed with a
handsome paling. But the orangery and out houses have been
suffered to go to ruin.
The church stands on the beach. It was formerly a warehouse,
and 'is large enough for present use; but very inconvenient, and
ill calculated for the purpose to which it is now appropriated.
The maiket-house is a neat new building, situate near the
bench, at the foot of the square of Ferdinand.
SThe custom-house is one of the old block-houses formerly
erected for the defence of the town; this is also near the bay, on
the square of Ferdinand. The public store was formerly a hospi-
tal; it is situate at the corner of Government and Palafox streets:
this building has also been repaired by government.
The market is still small, but is increasing. Beef is plenty