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NEH USACH
STANDARD VIEW MARC VIEW
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/USACH00007/00003
 Material Information
Title: Benet Store Cerveau House; Bitto Property
Series Title: Progress Photos Book No. 2
Physical Description: Newspaper
Publisher: The St. Augustine Record
Physical Location:
Box: 1NW22
Folder: Benet Grocery
 Subjects
Subjects / Keywords: Saint Augustine (Fla.)
Benet Store (Saint Augustine, Fla.)
Bitto Building (Saint Augustine, Fla.)
Genre: newspaper   ( sobekcm )
Spatial Coverage: North America -- United States of America -- Florida -- Saint Johns -- Saint Augustine
 Record Information
Source Institution: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: B13-L8
System ID: USACH00007:00003

Full Text



sWLU rLIUI LI UI L fl




Buget, Buys Prol


By Tom King
(Record Staff)
Budget requests totaling $995,-
000 in operating funds for the
next biennium and $1 million in
supplemental capital outlay
funds have been approved by
the St. Augustine. Historical
Restoration and Preservation
Commission for submission to
the State Budget Commission.
-The action was taken yester-
day afternoon at a meeting of
the restoration commission
which alsb saw action on ac-


quisition of two more future
building sites.
'The operating budget asks for
$497,000 for fiscal 1967-68 and
$498,000 for 1968 69. The ap-
propriation for the current bien-
nium was $300,000. -
The $1 million being request-
ed for a supplemental capital
outlay budget would be used to
acquire historic sites and con-
struct buildings a contract
basis, Chairm a .Wolfe
explained. He oimis-
sion had been Ico e and-


S Cerveau House


urged by Sen. Verle A. Pope,
who will be president of the
Florida Senate during the next
legislative session, to request
the supplemental funds for capi-
tal outlay.
The work of the agency in res-
toring colonial St. Augustine is
detailed in a lengthy explana-
tion of the budget requests pre-
pared by Earle Newton, execu-
tive director of the commission.
It points out that the 'seed mon-
ey' supplied by the state approp-
riations largely for operating
expenses has been the catalyst
for donations for capital pro-
jects to St. Augustine Restora-
tion, Inc., totaling $604,000. They
have become permanent assets
of the state program.
In addition to the more than
half a million dollars which has
reached the program through
this source, several million dol-
lars has been spent in private
restoration projects.
The new properties which
have been acquired.by the com-
mission are the Cerveau house
at I6 Cuna St. and the Bitto prop-
erty, which housed the Musical
Museum, on St. George St.
The commission approved the
purchase of the Cerveau prop-
erty for $19,000 at the meeting
yesterday and announced that it
had exercised the option, pre-
viously approved, to buy the Bit-
to property for $40,000.
Commission member Lawr-
ence Lewis Jr., as recorded as
not voting on the motion to put-
chase the Ceir au. property,
stating that not ac-
quainted wit e propeRty.
Newton saj S house ysan
early Ame~ truce that
could be restored and sed for
rental :piOperty for. the present,
adding, that its real valuq at the
present9ithat' iwfll afftM' ac-
cess tohy wIch' the
commiss o at therear of
the Spamsh' !I
'(Continued 6o Page 5)











(Continued From Page One)
Newton said the Bitto prop-
erty is the site of an old general
store and suggested that it could
be restored in the future and
rented for this purpose. Mean-
time, Ihe said, St. Augustine
Trailed Trains was interested in
renti4k the property as a sight-
seeipl headquarters when it
moves from the Gallegos House
which will be used by the tom-
mission as a information center.
In another action the commis-
sion voted to pay half the cost
of a health and accident insuf
ance plan for employes of the
commission. It also authorized
the commission's new assistant
director, Bradley Brewer, to
sign payroll checks and pur-
chase orders and checks up to
$50, and voted to-bond all com-
mission emplyes for $25,000.
Wolfe said. a misunderstand-
ing over Ueion of the com-
missi,'.j ieal contracting 11-
cen ad~ptently been set-
tled' element by the con-
ttc 'l-1i6n1ising board to cert-
ify th@ d omission. He also
spoke 61Fthe peculiar nature of
the commission's building pro-
jects which makes it difficult to
contract the work, except for


sub c D( mbingj
electrical and heating phases.,
He said projects were contract-
ed where possible, such as the
Spanish center and Florida Ex-
hibition building, and that hi
hoped the commission would bi
able to contract projects in th(
future.
Following the commission
meeting, the corporation met
'briefly and authorized expendi-
ture of up to $1,000 to prepare a
supplement to the brochure
showinig'he progress made with
'funds donated to the corporation.
i Mpily firms and individuals
have donated to the program'
through the corporation under a'
five year program which is
nearing expiration of the first
phase. Wolfe, who suggested
that the supplement be prepar-
ed, said it would keep the don-
ors informed on the highly suc-
cessful program and )elp retain
and attact other donhas,
Members of tbh'ecflmission
present, besidi-s Wolf and
Lewis, were im:i'deSi III
and J. Saxton ". .',
Corporation members present
included the members of the
commission and John Versaggi
and Frank D. Upchurch Sr.




, r




MUSICAL MUSEUM
St. Augustine, Florida

Unusual and Educational only begin to de-
scribe the Musical Museum, in the oldest city.
Featured in this attraction are more than 300
phonographs, dating from 1878, all are in
working order, and collected over a period of
50 years. These priceless items are beautifully
displayed for the visitor's enjoyment.
Color by W. O. Cooper


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coquina from Benet Store rebuilt


into north wall. (Record 8/20/67)


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An Edition of The Florida Times Union


AUGUSTINE AND


ST. JO;H !S CCUJ--TY FOUNDED


IN 1565 THE NAT


< ST. AUGUSTINE, FLORIDA, SUNDAY MORNING, AUGUST 20, 1967


-(Record photo)
BENET STORE TO BE COMPLETED SOON
The Benet Store, located at the corner of Cuna and St. George streets, is to be com-
pleted soon by the St. Augustine Historical Restoration and Preservation Commission,
and will take its place among the restoration's arts and crafts complex -on north -St.
George Street.


ror
41- '<


I Reconstructed


By Anne Carling
Staff Writer
A general store of the 19th
century will soon take its place
in the ever growing restora-
tion commission arts and crafts
complex at the northern end of
St. George Street.
Reconstruction of the Benet
Groceries, a general s t o r e
which once stood at the corner
of Cuna and St. George streets,
is just about completed, ac-
cording to Robert Steinbach, re-
storation archaeologist and con-
struction superintendent, who
says his crews will be finished
the beginning of the week.
The next.step.will be furnish-


ing of the interior, which will
continue through the fall, ac-
cording to Earle W. Newton, di-
rector general of the restoration
group.
A store interior discovered in
San Miguel, Mexico, St. Augus-
tine's sister city, will be used
in the Benet Groceries, New-
ton says. This find is complete
with counters .and cabinets.
Most likely, the store will in-
clude a museum area and "pro-
bably" will sell a selection of
items, too, he says.
The reconstruction of the Ben-
et Groceries, a project of the
St. Augustine Historical Restor-
ation and Preservation Com-


mission; involves the re- crea-
tion of a general store, operat-
ed by the late Joseph Ravina
Benet, last member of his fam-
ily to own the establishment.
Two of his daughters still live
in St. Augustine, Miss Carmen
Benet and Mrs. Rena Haas, who
reside at 28 Cuna St., just around
the corner. Before actual recon-
struction work began, the two
ladies were busy recalling their
very early childhood to help the
restoration group with its pro-
ject.
Building's Interior
The reconstructed building
consists of two rooms down-
(Continued on Page Eight)


Benet


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(Continued from Page One) tega, and during the second pear on any maps" has been
stairs, with an efficiency apart- Spanish period, records show discovered t h e r e, Steinbach
ment on the second foor. One that it was a House of the King, says. "We'll probably. put the
entire wall and part of another and Don Diego Mirando lived in real old one back," he says, ex-
have been built with old coquina it. plaining that investigation \vill
rock uncovered when the land The heirs of Batholeme Villa- continue as demolition progres-
was cleared for the reconstruc- longer lived in the middle build- ses.
tion work. in \lhich dated to the second With the arrival of fall, New-
In years past, "they took co- -p:,',ih period, but at least one ton anticipates that work will
quina from the walls, put it on all v :.i the same age as that begin on reconstruction of a
the ground and covered it with of its northern neighbor, Stein- high wall, once located on the
dirt to raise the grade," Stein- bach's crews have found. This east side of Government House.
bach explains. The entire north building, at least two stories, For the present, work in' the
wall of the store is built had about four rooms on the tourist center has been com-
with the rock from the original first floor. pleted, Newton explains, and
wall of the Benet groceries, and The southern. most house, now, energies will be directed
part of the east wall contains probably a three story struc- to restoration of the governor's
some of the original coquina. ture with four rooms on the mansion. One of the biggest
The second floor efficiency first floor, was the home of the problems, however, is lack of
apartment includes two rooms, heirs of Marganett Acosta. material concerning the interior
a small kitchen and bath, And This, too, dated to the second of the mansion.
the building is centrally heated Spanish period. It is hoped this information
and air conditioned. Foundations of all three have can be found in the Spanish
The exterior color is blue, be- been exposed, giving the .sum- archives, and current efforts in
cause that was one of the col- mer tourists who visit St. Madrid are being directed to-
ors discovered on some coquina George Street an opportunity to ward this end, according to
rocks found when the site was see just how the restoration Newton.
cleared, group goes about its work.
One such rock was used as a At present, the workmen are
.cornerstone. On it; outside plas- "mining coquina" Steinbach
ter reveals a succession of ex- says. Like the Benet store sit-
terior colors. Yellow was appar- nation, the workmen discovered
ently the last color, .red the pieces of old coquina when they
middle and a very pale blue the began demolition of the store
first, complex located just south of
Area Cleared the general store site. They are
SJust south of the Benet Store, also tearing down the entire
Steinbach's crews have been west wall of the store complex,
busy clearing land. for the re- which is solid coquina.
construction of three houses, one This old rock, now stacked in
of which dates back to the first' high piles around the area, will
Spanish period. ., used in the reconstruction of
Unlike the Benet store, which th.- th"ee homes.
is a 'project of the restoration Once 'these three structures
commission, the reconstruction are completed, it is hoped that
of these three buildings is being they can be utilized for "furth-
undertaken by the St. Augustine' er development of the Interna-
Restoration, Inc. companion tional Center," Newton ex-
agenc y to the commission.! plains. At present, the commis-
Funds for this group are more sion is continuing -negotiations
limited, Newton explains, so with the Mexican government,
work on this site will probably and Agustin Salvat, minister of
continue at a slower rate. tourism, is "very enthused about
Through the "generosity of it," Newton says. It might be
donors" the property was ac- possible that two could be utiliz-
quired, Newton explains, and ed by the Mexican government,
now others must be found "for according to Newton, with the
funds to construct the build- third one operated by the Cen-
ings." tral American common market
Steinbach's findings have re- orp-iriadlJo.
vealed that three private homes N;got'iatins however, con-
originally stood on the property.' corning this phase of develop-
The northern most one, a resi- ment are still continuing.
dence dating back to the first Other Projects
Spanish period, probably re- )ini anii.'lil plans are being
mained through the years, and formu!-.ted for othci r. ito, :,:ion
had additions added to it fromi r, i.r. : :"e This .,iek, St'2-n-
time to time; Steinbach says. It bach expects to put his crews
was "probably a five room to work clearing the Judsoni
house. property at the corner of Cuna
Occupying the'house during and Charlotte streets.
the first Spanish period werei Thus far, a floor of a "real;
the heirs of Nicqlas (Lopez) Or-, ea'rl, house which "doesn't ap-.


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