Collegedale, Tennessee 37315
Mr.Earle Newton, Director
St .Augustine Restoration Comission
St Augustine, Fl6rida
Dear Mr. Newton:
A few weeks ag& there came to me some newspaper clippings from an old friend in
St.Augustine, Mrs J,C.Alexander of Menendez Drive. These clippings contain interesting
accounts of the work you, Bt. Calkin and Mr. Steinbach are doing to recapture and reactivate
the latent charm of old St.Augustine.
I was so delighted as I read your plans Icould not refrain from writing to wish
you God-speed in your venture to capitalize the historic value of St.Augustine to the
whole of America. It is an outstanding little city. I have noted tha4 no one has done much
to restore its nostalgic beauty since Flagler8s day, though it is fully as worthy of becoming
a national shrine as any city I have seen in Europe. We need as Americans, to te-evaluate
our own natural and historic beauty spots and invite the world to come take a look.
My home in St.Augustine from which I married and removed to Jacksonville,Fla. in 1915
I believe, is still standing at the corner of St.George and St. Francis STs. This old home
was known as the old Dumnett home"' My parents, Mr.and Mr. Joseph Henry Hudson had wanted to
purchase the property in 1912, but it seems, if I recall correctly, there was some litigation
concerning the heirs disposing of it, but my parents did lease the house. After repairs and
redecorating the place, my parents opened the house, under the name of "THE HUDSON HOUSE"
in early 1913. There were only about 15 guest rooms, if I recall, and with scanty bath
and other facilities, its charm and popularity lay in its supberb cuisine and excellent
service for which there was always a waiting list ofpatrons who engaged quarters for the
entire season* Many were persons internationally known in our an other nations' governmental
May I suggest you look into the history of this quaint old house, which we were told
had stood under three flags, and was about 300 years old at that time. The house stands or
stood at the NBE. corner of St.George and St.Francis Streets. Its walls are 18 inches thick
we were told and are made of solid coquina, the native building material of that ancient time.
Xlso, we were told the ceiling beams were of Mahogany, brought over from Haiti for tjat bouseq
and run through the coquina walls to support the ever-hanging balconies on both streets and
a covered verandah upstairs overlooked the patio, which my mother kept aglow with beautifully
colored nasturtiums throughout the season.
That was a gay"little house, filled each season with happy and lovely people, good
comradeship,good food, warmth and good times. I was married from that charming old house.
I came down those old hand hewn stairs to go as a bride on uncharted seas. I trust the old
house still stands as a monument to the art and skills of those who "builded better than
Good success to you, MrNewton, and the gentlemen working with you. I thank you for
reading this lengthy appeal to look into the house mentioned, and discover its charming
Very sincerely yo 7 -6/9
Mrs Lacia Hudson Lee