1 INTERGENERATIONAL TRANSMISSION OF TRADITIONAL ECOLOGICAL KNOWLEDGE DURING URBAN SPRAWL : EXPERTISE OF A FLORIDA CRACKER FAMILY By DEBORAH J. ANDREWS A THESIS PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE SCHOOL OF THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA I N PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE MASTER OF ARTS DEGREE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA 2012
2 201 2 Deborah J. Andrews
3 To the extended Mickler family, the true historians of Palm Valley, Florida
4 ACKNOWLEDGMENTS I thank my parents for instilling the importance of education in me I also thank my Southern mother who indirectly taught me about Southern food and gardening and my Northern dad who showed me how you can try to fit in even if your accent is a dead giveaway I thank David G oodman whose Cajun cooking and reflective thoughts helped me survive this process I would also like to thank the members of my committee, J. Richard Stepp, Marianne Schmink and Peter Collings for their wise advice I thank the Mickler and Mier families fo r their cooperation and inspiration Knowing Sid, Jo and Donna Mickler has been a true pleasure and inspiration for this body of work
5 TABLE OF CONTENTS page ACKNOWLEDGMENTS ................................ ................................ ................................ .. 4 LIST OF TABLES ................................ ................................ ................................ ............ 7 LIST OF FIGURES ................................ ................................ ................................ .......... 8 LIST OF ABBREVIATIONS ................................ ................................ ............................. 9 ABSTRACT ................................ ................................ ................................ ................... 10 CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION ................................ ................................ ................................ .... 12 2 THEORETICAL BACKGROUND: TRADITIONAL ECOLOGICAL KNOWLEDGE .. 17 Relevance and Benefits of Traditional Ecological Knowledge ................................ 20 Transmission of Traditional Ecological Knowledge ................................ ................. 21 Traditional Ecological Knowledge, Identity and Cosmology ................................ .... 23 Experts in Traditional Ecological Knowledge ................................ .......................... 24 Cultural Change and Loss of Traditional Ecological Knowledge ............................. 26 3 CONTEXT OF STUDY OF TRADITIONAL ECOLOGICAL KNOWLEDGE ............. 30 Environmental History ................................ ................................ ............................. 30 Location ................................ ................................ ................................ ............ 30 Geology ................................ ................................ ................................ ............ 32 Veg etative Communities ................................ ................................ ................... 34 Fauna ................................ ................................ ................................ ............... 34 Present Climate ................................ ................................ ................................ 35 Anthropogenic Changes ................................ ................................ ................... 35 Indigenous Horticulture and Agriculture ................................ ........................... 36 Fire ................................ ................................ ................................ ................... 38 P opulation Data ................................ ................................ ................................ 39 Early Historic Background ................................ ................................ ....................... 41 Diego Plains, Predecessor to Palm Valley ................................ ....................... 42 The Defeat of Fort Diego ................................ ................................ .................. 43 Turpentine and Timber ................................ ................................ ..................... 44 Change of Ruling Nations, Arrival of the Cracker s ................................ ........... 46 The Civil War and Reconstruction ................................ ................................ .... 48 How Palm Valley Got its Name ................................ ................................ ........ 50 Foundation of the Country Club Lifestyle that Led to Urban Sprawl ................. 51
6 4 CRACKER CULTURE ................................ ................................ ............................ 56 Origin of Cracker Culture ................................ ................................ ........................ 56 ................................ ................................ ................... 60 Shakespearean Use ................................ ................................ ......................... 60 Cracking W hips and Cracker Cattle ................................ ................................ 61 Corn Cracking ................................ ................................ ................................ .. 64 Moonshine ................................ ................................ ................................ ........ 66 Use of ................................ ................................ ................ 66 Historic Cracker Subsistence and Land Use Practices ................................ ........... 71 5 TRADITIONAL ECOLOGICAL KNOWLEDGE IN PALM VALLEY: A FAMILY CASE STUDY ................................ ................................ ................................ ......... 77 The Participants ................................ ................................ ................................ ...... 77 The Origin of the Micklers ................................ ................................ ....................... 78 The Minorcan Connection ................................ ................................ ....................... 79 Arrival in Palm Valley ................................ ................................ .............................. 79 Methodology ................................ ................................ ................................ ........... 81 Limitations ................................ ................................ ................................ ............... 86 6 TRADITIONAL ECOLOGICAL KNOWLEDGE RESULTS AND DISCUSSION ...... 87 Theoretical Ecological Knowledge: Names of Natural Phenomena ........................ 87 Fauna ................................ ................................ ................................ ............... 87 Flora ................................ ................................ ................................ ................. 89 Technical Ecological Knowledge ................................ ................................ ............ 92 Faunal Usage ................................ ................................ ................................ ... 93 Floral Usage ................................ ................................ ................................ ..... 96 Gardening ................................ ................................ ................................ ......... 97 Construction and Crafting ................................ ................................ ................. 99 Home Remedies ................................ ................................ ............................. 104 Ecological Knowledge o f Land and Resource Management Systems ............ 106 Threatened and Endangered Species ................................ ..................... 106 Species Changes ................................ ................................ ........................... 107 Traditional Ecological Knowledge, Cosmology and Ethics ................................ .... 1 08 Intergenerational Transmission: Family Comparison ................................ ............ 111 7 CONCLUSIONS ................................ ................................ ................................ ... 115 LIST OF REFERENCES ................................ ................................ ............................. 118 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH ................................ ................................ .......................... 128
7 LIST O F TABLES Table page 3 1 Eastern Horticultural Complex ................................ ................................ ............ 38 3 2 Census data for St. Johns County, Florida ................................ ......................... 40 6 1 Animal names ................................ ................................ ................................ ..... 88 6 2 Bird names ................................ ................................ ................................ ......... 89 6 3 Plant names ................................ ................................ ................................ ........ 90 6 4 Comparison of family knowledge of a nimal names ................................ ........... 111 6 5 Comparison of family knowledge of plant names ................................ ............. 112
8 LIST OF FIGURES Figure page 3 1 1942 Aerial map of the convergence of the Guana and Tolomato Rivers, in what is now the GTMNERR. From University of Florida photo archives. ............ 31 3 2 USGS topographic map of Palm Valley and Ponte Vedra. ................................ 33 3 3 State historic marker located off Landrum Lane in Palm Valley, 2011. Photo by author. ................................ ................................ ................................ ........... 44 3 4 Cat face on a pine stump located in Palm Valley in 2011. Photo by author. ....... 46 3 5 Photos from 2011. ................................ ................................ .............................. 51 3 6 Series of Aerial maps from 1942. ................................ ................................ ....... 55 3 7 Series of Aerial maps of Palm Valley/Ponte Vedra Beach. ................................ 55 3 8 Series of Cracker Day photos. ................................ ................................ ........... 63 4 1 1935 s ign for the Palm Valley Fishing Pier. Photo by author. ............................. 80 6 1 Photos from Twenty Mile Road in Palm Valley. ................................ ................. 95 6 2 author. ................................ ................................ ................................ ................ 97 6 3 s garden. ................................ ................................ ................................ 99 6 4 ................................ ................................ ............. 103 6 5 ................................ ................................ ............................ 104 6 6 Garden photos ................................ ................................ ................................ .. 110 6 7 Series of photos ................................ ................................ ................................ 111
9 LIST OF ABBREVIATION S BP Before present Cal BP Calibrated before present DEP Department of Environmental Protection FNAI Florida Natural Areas Inventory GTMNERR Guana Tolomato Matanzas National Estuarine Research Reserve TEK Traditional Ecological K nowledge USGS United States Geological Survey WPA Works Progress Administration
10 Abstract of Thesis Presented to the Graduate School of the University of Florida in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Master of Arts INTERGENERATIONAL TRANSMISSION OF TRADITIONAL ECOLOGICAL KNOWLEDGE DURING URBAN SPRAWL: EXPERTISE OF A FLORIDA CRACKER FAMILY By Deborah J. Andrews May 2012 Chair: John Richard Stepp Major: Anthropology I investigated the intergenerational transmiss ion of traditional or local ecological knowledge of a Florida Cracker family in a coastal location that has been impacted by urban sprawl over the past 30 years. At the outset, I investigated whether the Cracker family possessed traditional ecological know ledge as well as the dimensions of the knowledge establishing a neo indigenous group Due to the dramatic landscape changes due to urban sprawl I investigated whether local ecological knowledge is being passed on from generation to generation and whether there were changes to or loss of knowledge The results of this study demonstrate that while the landscape is under tremendous stress and development pressure, local ecological knowledge is still being passed on to the subsequent generations. Ecological e xperts emerged for three generations, with at least one member exhibiting extraordinary knowledge of local flora and fauna The oldest two generations had knowledge of ecological changes to the native fauna, including the arrival of exotic species during t heir lifetimes A comparative analysis was conducted of non Cracker local residents, with a comparison of local plant and animal knowledge. The results showed that the Cracker family possessed a greater
11 knowledge of local flora and fauna names. The results also showed an inverse relationship between formal education levels and local ecological knowledge. This study demonstrates that families and cultures with a deep history in a region can possess meaningful ecological knowledge that can be of value in ongo ing and future conservation and land management efforts despite lack of advanced formal education
12 CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION A goal of anthropology is to explore and understand how cultures perceive, construct and interact with their environment (Ross 20 02). Ethnobiology is the study of the relationship between people and the complex of relationships with the biological environment (Svanberg 2007). Local peoples often develop what is known as traditional ecological knowledge, which is transmitted from gen eration to generation. Traditional ecological knowledge includes: (1) the names of natural phenomena, (2) the functions and uses of the phenomena, (3) the land and resource management system and institutions that govern them, and (4) the cosmologies, world views and ethics of the people (Berkes 1999). In Chapter 2, I address the theoretical basis for traditional ecological knowledge and descr ibe the literature on the subject of traditional ecological knowledge, including the above four factors or components of traditional ecological knowledge identified by Fikret Berkes (1999) which are used as a model throughout this thesis I also address the methods of transmission of traditional ecological knowledge, including the role of the fa mily. This chapter also i dentifie s experts in traditional ecological knowledge. Chapter 2 thus provides the theoretical foundation for this thesis. The initial question addressed by this study is wh at ecological knowledge consists of for a subset of southern American culture know n as Florida Crackers, including each of the four criteria identified by Berkes (1999). The study subjects include descendants of a pioneer family in Palm Valley, St. Johns County, Florida, as well as relative 'ler, and often mispronounced) traces its presence in Palm Valley, Florida back to 1843. Some members of the Mickler family
13 still live in Palm Valley; others grew up in Palm Valley but have moved to nearby towns such as Jacksonville Beach and St. Augustin e. Others have left Florida altogether. This study investigate s the intergenerational transmission of knowledge of the flora and fauna of Palm Valley within the Mickler family. The purpose is to determine the level of traditional ecological knowledge posse ssed by the family, what constitutes their traditional ecological knowledge, and whether this knowledge is being transmitted or lost by the subsequent generations of a pioneer family with historic ties to the land. The research question revolves around th e issue of whether the change in the landscape, with much less reliance on the land for livelihood such as farming and hunting, has caused a reduction of the knowledge of the local ecology. Prior studies in other regions of the world have found a loss, to a certain extent of traditional ecological knowledge (Timbrook 2000; Minnis 2000; Quave and Pieroni 2009). With this in mind, various members of the extended family across several generations pa rticipated in this study. I also investigated whether the tra ditional ecological knowledge is being preserved through the emergence of experts within the family or community, for each successive generation, thereby serving as both a source of knowledge and a source to learn from so that the knowledge continues to be passed on from generation to generation. The context of this st udy is described in Chapter 3. Since culture is reflected in community (Arensberg 1955), t his research study took place in a small community called Palm Valley, Florida, which is located alon g the Atlantic coast in northeast Florida. I describe the geographic location, as well as the environmental features. The prehistoric landscape is described, including the anthropogenic changes and indigenous
14 horticulture and agriculture. The historic desc ription continues from Spanish colonial contact forward to the urban sprawl that started in the late 197 0s in this region. The history of humans in this region is important in understanding the changes to the environment and landscape that have occurred a cross time, from the extinction of megafauna through the present day urban sprawl phenomenon. While indigenous people are often defined as the people who inhabited a region nd space. Populations migrate, change and adapt to the environment. For example, in the southern United States some indigenous groups, such as the Timucuan and Calusa, were eradicated or absorbed into other culture s such that there are no longer any recogn izable members of some indigenous tribes. Thus in a landscape or space such as northeast Florida, native human populations can diminish to be replaced b y new immigrants who took up residence in the vacated lands. The United States has a wide variety of c ultures that are incorporated into the larger American culture. One well known United States culture is the Southern culture, consisting of the unique characteristics of populations of the southeastern United States. One population subset of Southern cultu culture is a rural culture, with the residential preference for living in the woods and condition, but a patterned lifestyle, although pover ty, at least during some periods of in Florida and Georgia, Crackers immigrated in to territory that was vacated by both the original Native Americans, such as the Timu cuan, and also by the colonial Spaniards.
15 Cracker culture in general is described in Chapter 4. Early migration patterns to the deep S the backwoods people who occupied the regio n across time. While the use of the term a convenient way to identify a sub se t of southern Americans, but also can either be derogatory or a matter of self identity, as later described through the examples of Cracker Cowboys and the late Florida Governor Lawton Chiles. The focus of this study is a Cracker family that migrated to Palm Valley in the 185 0s In Chapter 4, I describe the research subjects as well as the research methodology. The study is to determine the existence of traditional ecological knowledge in this family, and to determine whether the knowledge is being tran smitted intergenerationally in spite of urban sprawl. Plant and animal knowledge is measured using freelists, as well as information about knowledge of and actual uses of wild plants an d animals by the participants. The family participants are compared in tergenerationally, and comparison is also made to a set of non family, local participants. To further evaluate impacts of urban sprawl, the participants are asked about any observed changes to plants or animals. I also address the question of whether the t raditional local ecological knowledge is situated with experts, and if so, whether this is a phenomenon of the role of elders. With traditional or local ecological knowledge differing from purely scientific approaches to gaining knowledge, I evaluate wheth er formal education is a predictor of the level of ecological knowledge. This model of inquiry is not necessarily limited to the population under study here, but rather can be
16 applied to any population to determine whether a subpopulation has emerged with greater ties to the land and greater ecological knowledge that can be useful in conservation efforts and land use decisions
17 CHAPTER 2 THEORETICAL BACKGROU ND: TRADITIONAL ECOLOGICAL KNOWLEDGE Human beings are a natural part of the environment and as suc h have influenced, changed and managed natural resources for millennia The landscape reflects these impacts, and many, if not most, regions have changed dramatically due to human interactions with the environment. Notwithstanding changes to the environmen t, local people develop traditional ecological knowledge. This thesis investigates the presence of traditional or local ecological knowledge among a pioneer famil y whose presence goes back over 150 years. Changes to the landscape occurred prior to the arri val of these pioneers by both the Native Americans as well as the European explorers and colonizers. The local knowledge of the environment by a culture varies among societies This or TEK knowledge and beliefs, handed down through generations by cultural transmission, about the relationship of living beings (including humans) with one another and their Other terms for traditional ecological knowledge include local ecological knowledge, indigenous knowledge, or ecoliteracy (Pilgrim et al. 2008; Davis and Wagner 2003) Traditional ecological knowledge is diachronic and is essentially the summation of ecological adaptation of people in a locale (Berkes et al. 1995) Traditional ecological knowledge is based on continuous history with the environment Traditional ecological knowledge is based on a system of knowledge that is dynamic and incorporates each
18 Wagner 2003) 1998:223) Berkes et al. (1995) describes t radition al ecological knowledge as differ ing from scientific knowledge in many ways including: limited geographical scale, reliance on qualitative data, and slower, less systema tic accumulation of information Thus it is perceived different ly than science, which i s more formal, follows universally accepted rules, is objective and can be replicated (Chalmers and Fabricius 2007) While traditional ecological knowledge may lack the formalities of scientific endeavor, it has more bases in morality, ethics, spiritual an d holistic perspective than science Traditional ecological knowledge can be both ecological and spiritual (Tsuji 1996) Traditional ecological knowledge, however, can also be based on scientific principles. As noted earlier, t raditional ecological knowle dge includes: (1) the names of natural phenomena, (2) the functions and uses of the phenomena, (3) the land and resource management system and institutions that govern them, and (4) the cosmologies, worldviews and ethics of the people (Berkes 1999). These four factors will form the test of traditional ecological knowledge in this thesis. Traditional ecological knowledge is based on indigenous knowledge and the systems of beliefs that are a part of that knowledge While the use of the term EK may seem to imply something that is out dated, in fact, traditional ecological knowledge can be quite innovative, adaptive and complex (Schmink et al. 1992). Since traditional ecological knowledge can be adaptive and innovative, this study
19 examines a su bculture that does not have the deep history in the region, as would classic indigenous cultures. While traditional ecological knowledge is important to each particular culture, it also has great importance in the long term understanding of continued adapt ation to the environment. Traditional ecological knowledge include s information and practices that maintain the continuity of natural resources across the generations (Pilgrim et al. 2008) The theoretical aspect of traditional ecological knowledge is the ability to identify and name the natural resource Thus this study will test the knowledge of the names of native, local flora and fauna. The technical aspect of traditional ecological knowledge is the practical skill of finding and using the natural reso urce, wh ich is a higher level of mastery More detail about the environment is learned when there is more active involvement This includes where and when to find the resource, as well as how to prepare and use the resource, which is more detail oriented ( Setalaphruk and Price 2007). In this study, technical ecological knowledge will be examined through use of free lists of native, wild plants and animals since naming and identification of the ecological resource is a cornerstone of establishing knowledge. In addition, higher levels of mastery of ecological knowledge will be examined, including uses of plants and animals for food, crafting, and construction, as well as knowledge of ecosystems and ability to locate the natural resource, as demonstrated, for e xample, by hunting fishing, shellfishing or gathering. Traditional ecological knowledge is a practical application of information in order to survive and thrive Information about the natural environment is used for many reasons, including food sources, water sources, remedies, and avoidance of hazards, such as
20 poisonous plants and animals (Berkes et al. 1995 ) On a broader, landscape scale, the knowledge of the various aspects of the environment allows for efficient travel and collection of food, water a nd resources Most certainly the collective knowledge of plants and their habitats, coupled with seasonal and annual observations, led to the development of horticultural and agricultural practices This study will investigate the uses of local flora and f auna, including food sources and gardening. Relevance and Benefits of Traditional Ecological Knowledge Traditional ecological knowledge can provide information about the changes to the environment and ecosystem, and can provide information on causes of the changes from a historical perspective (Chalmers and Fabricius 2007) The widespread extinction of flora and fauna over the last several centuries of natural resource exploitation has led to the acknowledgment that biodiversity is important and that tradit ional ecological knowledge is of value in biodiversity conservation Among the benefits of traditional ecological knowledge are: TEK offers new biological knowledge and ecological insights; some TEK systems provide models for sustainable resource manag ement; TEK is relevant for protected areas and conservation education; the use of TEK is often crucial for development planning; and may be used in environmental assessment (Berkes et al. 1995:282) Traditional environmental knowledge can be of gre at value and usefulness in the understanding of the environment, as well as pharmaceuticals, agricultural diversity, and wild harvests The loss of traditional ecological knowledge can hamper conservation efforts around the world (Pilgrim et al. 2008) Tog ether with indigenous rights and environmentalist movements, traditional ecological knowledge and the interests of stakeholders have been integrated into evaluation of land management
21 practices and conservation efforts being heard reflects, to a large extent, the widespread concern that exists respecting the social and economic sustainability of natural resource (Davis and Wagner 2003:464) This study examines traditional ecologic al knowledge during a time of urban sprawl, which fragments and destroys the natural landscape. Loss of habitat, as well as species, is contrary to conservation policies. Knowledge of the location of important habitat, especially for protected species, is useful in land use and management practices such as comprehensive planning and zoning. Inquiry was conducted into changes to flora and fauna observed in the landscape in order to evaluate knowledge of and changes to species in the landscape. Thus, the eco logical knowledge that may be possessed by Crackers can be of use in conservation practices and development of policy. Transmission of Traditional Ecological Knowledge Traditional ecological knowledge is a tacit, implicit form of knowledge Traditional e cological knowledge is based on interaction with the environment, often through trial does not function in isolation (Berkes et al. 2000:1258) This knowledge is distinct from individual knowledge: it is based on cultural, social and institutional knowledge held by groups of individuals (Chalmers and Fabricius 2007) The key to traditional ecological knowledge is that it is transmitted from generation to generation, such that each successive generation gains the benefit of the information accumulated over the generations As new information is
22 gained, it is added to this body of knowledge and passed on to the next generat ion In this study the method of transmission of knowledge will be investigated. The practice of traditional ecological knowledge is based on local, cultural socialization Mechanisms are necessary to establish coding and internalization of the knowledge et al. 2000:1258) Thus social practices are a part of the intergenerational transmission of tr aditional ecological knowledge. Traditional ecological knowledge is usually learned in the household context and within the family group, and is based on close interpersonal relations (Setalaphruk and Price 2007) Knowledge is usually transmitted through i nteractions between parents and children Children can acquire traditional ecological knowledge through observation, participation or play The acquisition of traditional ecological knowledge, such as learning plant names, can be informal, and be the resul t of overhearing conversations or asking questions (Zarger and Stepp 2004) Traditional ecological knowledge is often gender based learning Mothers and grandmothers are usually the teachers of wild plant knowledge (Setalaphruk and Price 2007) The learni ng of plant names is linked to language acquisition, and the mother is usually the most important source of learning plant names in early childhood In later childhood, fathers, other relatives and peers become more important sources of learning (Zarger an d Stepp 2004) Fathers and grandfathers are usually the teachers of wild animal knowledge When parents are absent and grandparents are the caretakers of the children, studies have found little difference in traditional ecological knowledge
23 when compared t o parent reared children (Setalaphruk and Price 2007). This perhaps demonstrates that grandparents have a key role in transmitting traditional ecological knowledge, especially considering the normally busy lives of parents Within generation learning also occurs, especially when parents are absent. Such within generation learning occurs from siblings and friends, as well as other relatives As part of their play, children gather wild foods, sharing the consumption of the food on the spot, which is itself a n exchange of knowledge learning traditional ecological knowledge An important aspect of the transmission of traditional ecological knowledge is involvement in the environmentally based activity (Setalaphruk and Price 2007) Traditional ecological knowledge is usually transferred across generations through oral tradition and observation (Pilgrim et al. 2008; Tsuji 1996; Van Eijck and Roth 2007) Oral tradition, however, is not limited to myths, but rather, is an intell ectual endeavor and form of education The process of learning also involves use of the natural resource (Ignas 2004). The methods of transmission of ecological knowledge will be examined in this study, to determine if the educational methods conform with prior studies, despite the fa ct that this population is relatively recent in the landscape. In addition, any changes to the transmission will be reviewed to determine if the present urban sprawl landscape is linked to changes in learning. Traditional Ecolo gical Knowledge, Identity and Cosmology Due to the social aspect of the transmission of traditional ecological knowledge, it often contributes to cultural identity, customs, traditions, beliefs and worldviews (Pilgrim et al. 2007) Traditional ecological k nowledge often provides a worldview for the culture
24 (Berkes et al. 2000:1256) In traditional ecological knowledge, the natural phenomena traditional knowledge and practice f or ecologically sustainable outcomes is a worldview that provides appropriate environmental ethics The pervasive cosmology of traditional are part of an interacting set o f living things, a view that was also common in Europe up until Med i Older religions that incorporate humans with the natural environment provide a framework of meaning for traditional ecological knowledge and associat ed behavior in relation to the environment Generational change caused by missionaries leading to rejection of traditional religions and adoption of Christianity has led to the loss of traditional ecological knowledge and a change in behavior towards the e nvironment (Ross 2002) Since the natural environment is a part of the cultural formation of traditional ecological knowledge, the change in the landscape caused by urban sprawl can affect the cultural component of the environment. Thus any intergeneratio nal changes will be examined to determine if there is evidence of cultural loss due to the environmental impacts caused by urban sprawl. Experts in Traditional Ecological Knowledge Not everyone has the same level of traditional ecological knowledge (Setala phruk and Price 2007) Different groups and individuals use natural resources and the landscape for different purposes (Chalmers and Fabricius 2007) Accordingly, there are often people who are considered expert in traditional ecological knowledge Experti se is a relative term however, and there can be varying levels of expertise A person may be
25 an expert when compared to other people, but may not be an expert within the local community (Ross 2002) lly sound management practices These carriers may be local stewards and leaders (Pinkerton 1998), elders Natural resource use is often controlled by leaders. ional resource harvesting systems rely on the guidance of a traditional expert to organize the harvest, control When traditional ecological knowledge systems are impa cted by the course of historical, political or economic events, the remains of this knowledge lie within the memories of local elders (Davis and Wagner 2003) The use of experts is important in assessing changes that have occurred in the environment (Chalm ers and Fabricius 2007) Since traditional ecological knowledge levels vary, it is important to identify and work with experts (Chalmers and Fabricius 2007) One technique of ident ifying local experts is to get peer recommendations by asking who the parti cipant thought was most knowledgeable about the su bject (Davis and Wagner 2003 ) This method of identifying potential experts enables the compilation of a rank order of potential experts (Davis and Wagner 2003) While it has been assumed that elders have t he most knowledge, at least one study found that retired fisherman were not high on the list of those believed by local fisherman to have the most knowledge (Davis and Wagner 2003 ) Obtaining information from local institutions is also a method of identif ying local experts (Chalmers and Fabricius 2007) Dependency on natural resources is also a means of identifying communities and experts that have traditional ecological
26 know ledge (Davis and Wagner 2003 ) In contrast to scientists, local experts use intuit ion to describe and assess complex environmental processes, and can provide a historical perspective from intergenerational transmission of knowledge (Chalmers and Fabricius 2007) In this study, I will evaluate the levels of ecological knowledge through f reelisting. Based on ranking amongst the participants in name knowledge, I will evaluate whether experts emerge. I will also compare this information to the exper ts identified by the participants. Cultural Change and Loss of Traditional Ecological Knowledge Loss of traditional ecological knowledge is of great concern, especially in cultures that are directly dependent on the land for survival The loss of traditio nal ecological knowledge is often due to migration, cultural assimilation, environmental loss, climate change, poverty, death of elders and urbanization (Christancho and Vining 2009) In this study, cultural change or loss will be evaluated against the ba ckdrop of urban sprawl. Traditional ecological knowledge is based on the local, cultural knowledge of the environment by the people who spend their daily, and perhaps majority of their lives in that setting The culture has motivation to continue its way of life in that setting through a balanced approach to the environment and human needs A key component of traditional ecological knowledge is the ethical, spiritual and holistic relationship with the environment such that the culture can continue without radical or destructive change Since traditional ecological knowledge is diachronic the knowledge of sustainable use
27 of natural resources has been tested across time and has led to the status quo in the culture. Unfortunately, as communities rely less on local resources and adopt modern lifestyles, traditional ecological knowle dge is often lost Adoption of market systems and globalization can lead to the loss of traditional ecological knowledge (Pilgrim et al. 2008) nt has until recently emphasized exploitation efficiency, in terms of physical and monetary yields, rather than sustainability in resource use (Berkes et al. 1995:283). The loss of environmental benefits, however, acts to limit economic growth in the futu re (Pilgrim et al. 2008) Political, economic and historical events and practices can erode or destroy the knowledge system due to the impacts on the local culture and people (Davis and Wagner 2003; Van Eijck and Roth 2007) The loss of traditional ecolog ical knowledge has been linked to increased modernization, urbanization, wealth, and a decrease in dependence and frequency of interaction with the environment (Pilgrim et al. 2008) The decline in ecological knowledge is associated with less dependence on agriculture and gather ing of wild materials, leading to a disconnection with the environment (Pilgrim et al. 2008:1007). Changes in belief systems and religion can also lead to a loss of traditional ecological knowledge, especially when the environment wa s integrated in the original belief system In addition, the extinction of or increased rarity of species also leads to the loss of traditional eco logical knowledge (Ross 2002). Formal schooling which does not focus on ecology also leads to this loss of kn owledge (Pilgrim e t al. 2008). In other words,
28 forced changes in education systems can lead to a loss of traditional ecological knowledg e however, that loss varies and even in cultures that now have formal schooling, traditional ecological knowledge persists (Zarger and Stepp 2004) Colonial mentalities have under appreciated traditional ecological knowledge and have had a negative impa ct on indigenous culture (Ignas 2004) Such attitudes can undermine cultural identity and resilience Governmental policies against the use of traditional practices and languages ha ve led to the loss of traditional ecological knowledge (Tsuji 1996). Thus t he interference with the transmission of traditional It is also possible that lifestyle changes may lead to a substitution of knowledge, such as, for example, an increase in knowledge about global warming, recycling, energy efficiency and organic foods (Pilgrim et al. 2008). Thus, the intergenerational transmission may not be about the enviro nment directly, but instead household conservation habits may be taught Against this backdrop is the radical change in the approach to the environment brought via corporate and economic migration and motivation. The history of the Americas is replete wit h the exploitation of the natural resources by non natives While the Americas were accidentally discovered when Christopher Columbus was looking for a new trade route to India, reports of natural resources discovered in the Americas were immediate, launch ing new expeditions to exploit natural resources Migration to the Americas occurred, introducing new people and cultures to the landscape, including Florida Crackers.
29 This thesis investigates the question of whether local ecological knowledge is a part of so called Cracker Culture and whether there continues to be intergeneration al transmission of this knowledge in light of the landscape changes to Palm Valley, Florida in recent times The underlying premise is that Cracker culture is inherently tied to th e natural landscape, with its preferred rural residential choice Activities are linked to the environment, including hunting, fishing, and gardening, thereby providing informal educational experiences, which are tied to family and identity Through analys is of differences, changes will be investigated.
30 CHAPTER 3 CONTEXT OF STUDY OF TRADITIONAL ECOLOGIC AL KNOWLEDGE Environmental History Location The study area is Palm Valley, which is located in northeast Florida, in St. Johns County, Florida, north of St. Augustine, and south of Jacksonville Beach St. Johns County is one of the two counties initially established in 1821 by Florida General Andrew Jackson, who was appo inted Governor of Florida (Austin 2004) The eastern border of both Palm Valley and St. Johns County is bounded by the Atlantic Ocean The western border of Palm Valley has historically been considered to be east of U.S. 1 and Durbin Swamp. palm swamp, near St. Augustine, split wide open by the The southern boundary of Palm Valley is located in the Guana Tolomato Matanzas National Estuarine Research Reserve (GTMNERR), so named for three rivers in St. Johns County The Guana and Tolomato Rivers are located in Palm Valley, with the Matanzas River located south of St. Augustine. The area se veral decades ago In 1999 it was nominated to become part of the GTMNERR region of the Carolinian DEP 2009 :5). The Guan a River has its headwaters in Ponte Vedra Beach, and runs south to the Tolomato River. This river system is a significant ecological resource for the area. The confluence of the Tolomato and Guana Rivers is depicted in Figure 3 1.
31 Figure 3 1 1942 A eri al map of the convergence of the Guana and Tolomato Rivers, in what is now the GTMNERR. From University of Florida photo archives. Palm Valley is bisected by the Intracoastal Waterway. In 1912, the Intracoastal Waterway dredging through Palm Valley was co mpleted by the Florida East Coast Canal and Tra nsportation Company (Neitz 2006 ). This connected the San Pablo River to the north, with the Tolomato River to the south, making a continuous inland waterway through Palm Valley The man made portion of the int racoastal waterway is known and in the past allowed a means to transport timber from the local sawm ills established in Palm Valley The sawmills no longer remain ; however two exi sting planned communities are named after this industry: Sawmill Lakes and Odums Mill. In 1915, the first Palm Valley bridge was built across the Intracoastal Waterway near the original headwaters of the Tolomato River The bridge was later replaced in
32 19 33 and was operated by the US Army Corps of Engineers (Neitz 2006 ) A third bridge was built in 1937 This drawbridge was later replaced by a four lane span in 2002. Palm Valley lies along the Atlantic Coast in the Upper Coastal Basin, and is drained into the Guana River and the Tolomato River, north of St. Augustine The Upper Coastal Basin extends about 10 miles inland from the Atlantic Ocean and consists of a series of linear estuaries parallel to the coast, within the Silv er Bluff terrace Some of these coastal features are less than 5,000 years old and were formed during changing sea levels during g lacial recession (Miller 1998 ). Along the northern border lies Ponte Vedra Beach, formerly known as Mineral City during the time of extensive mining of the a rea Over time, the border between Palm Valley and Ponte Vedra Beach has eroded or overlapped, primarily due to the prestige associated with Ponte Vedra Beach after the mining ended, and the country club lifestyle began in the 20th Century Geology North east Florida is located in the Coastal Plain physiographic province of North America The surface landscape features are determined by the geologic processes of marine terrace development during the Pleistocene Epoch, and perhaps even the Miocene The vary ing elevations were formed by the advance and retreat of the ocean over time The coastal landscape is geologically young (Miller 19 98 ) Tertiary a ge limestone forms the bedrock The Floridan aquifer provides the main supply of subsurface, artesian water for the region, and is generally several hundred feet below the surface The Floridan aquifer und er lies all of Florida and parts of southern Georgia Below the Floridan aquifer is a permeable bed abo ve salt water, which can intrude into the Floridan aquife r if pumping exceeds replenishment, and
33 especially in coastal areas Above the Floridan aquifer and the aqu i clude is the non artesian, shallow aquifer, which occasionally has surface expression (Miller 1998 ; DEP 2009 ). The soils are sandy and do not hold nutrients well bodies and sandy, droughty soils indicates a higher settlement potential for some 1998:17) The land surface is relativel y flat, and ran ges from sea level to 150 feet The current topographic map of Ponte Vedra Beach and Palm Valley is depicted in F igure 3 2. Due to the presence of surface water, however, the landscape is varied and a slight change in el evation can change th e habitat Water is a dominant factor in northeast Florida (Miller 1998) Figure 3 2 USGS topographic map of Palm Valley and Ponte Vedra.
34 Vegetative Communities During the Late Pleistocene, the environment was dominated by pine forest, with some sma ll areas of broad leafed trees such as oak and hickory, a nd open herbaceous communities Vegetation changed significantly during the Holocene (Miller 1998) Fourteen different habitat types have been presently identified in the Guana, using Florida Natura l Areas Inventory (FNAI) classifications ( DEP 2009 ) These habitats include: beach dune, coastal strand, mesic flatwoods, scrub, shell mound, xeric hammock, depression marsh, coastal interdunal swale, maritime hammock, tidal marsh, tidal swamp, unconsolida ted substrate, ruderal and open water A total of 576 different plants have been presently identified in the Guana, inclu ding non native species (DEP 2009 ) Fauna During the Late Pleistocene, megafauna occupied Florida, including mammoth ( Mammuthus jeffe rsoni ), mastodon ( Mammut americanum ), saber toothed cat ( Smilodon sp.), bison ( Bison antiques ), horse ( Equus sp.), ground sloth ( Megalonyx sp.) giant beaver ( Castoroides ohioensis ), giant armadillo ( Holmesina sp.) and giant tortoise ( Geochelone sp.) Other species include d muskrat ( Ondatra zibethicus ), peccary ( Platygonus compressus ), dire wolf ( Canis dirus ), bear ( Tremarctos floridanus ), and jaguar ( Felis onca ) Many species became extinct during the Holocene, including the megafauna There are two theorie s of extinction: 1) over hunting, and 2) habitat change Following these extinctions, the largest game an imal was the white tailed deer Fish and shellfish also became an important food source during the Archaic period (Miller 1998 ) Native animals histori cally used for food sources are: deer, black bear, gray and fox squirrel, raccoons, opossum, marsh and cottontail rabbits, red and gray foxes,
35 gopher tortoises ( G opherus polyphemus ) turtles, alligators, otters, porpoises, manatees, shellfish, fish, shrimp frogs and some snakes One of the most important modern commercial fishing ventures is shrimping (Miller 1998 ; WPAa 1939 ) The Spaniards brought pigs, horses, chickens, cattle, sheep and goats to Florida The most important food stock was the pig, due t o its rapid and efficient growth and prolific b reeding The only domesticated animal in North America prior to contact was the dog, and perhaps turkeys (Miller 1998) Forty five mammals, forty nine reptiles and twenty one amphibians have been presently id e ntified in the Guana (DEP 2009 ). Present Climate The Northeast Florida climate is humid subtropical, characteristic of the southeastern United States Atlantic coastal plain Rainfall averages about 50 inches a year, occurring mostly from June through Sept ember, with more frequency and amount along the coast Snow and ice are rare The normal summer rainfall pat tern is afternoon thunderstorms. Tropical storms and hurricanes also occur, and can cause up to 30 percent of the annual rainfall (Miller 1998) Th e mean annual temperature for Jacksonville is about 68 degrees Fahrenheit The average daily summer temperature is between 70 and 90 degrees Fahrenheit The average daily winter temperature is between 45 to 70 degrees Fahrenheit Extreme temperatures range from above 100 degrees to 12 degrees Fahrenheit Freezing temperatures occur about a dozen times a year in Northeast Florida (Miller 1998) Anthropogenic Changes Native Americans occupied Flo rida for the past 10,000 years While this is a relatively sho rt length of time in human history, there is no doubt that there were anthropogenic changes to the landscape based on human occupation The ecology of
36 the region has changed based on both natural phenomena and human induced changes Human activities, inclu ding burning, timbering, farming, herding, gathering, hunting, ditching, draining, dredging, filling, affect and change the environment Environmental factors and technological adaptations influence culture, including size and complexity of social groups, migration, timing and patterns of movement and settlement (Miller 1998 ) Indigenous Horticulture and Agriculture At some point in time humans began intentional manipulation of plants beyond procuring food and disposing of unwanted parts In t he Eas tern W oodlands of North America, t he transition to manipulation of the environment related to procurement of floral resources resulted in what has been dubbed the Eastern Horticultural Complex, generally applicable to the pre historic southeastern United States and based on repeated occurrences of certain plants in the archaeological record In the beginning of horticulture, there are single crop species that were cultivated, but this rapidly changed with the emergence of the Eastern Horticultural Complex (Smith and Yarnell 2009) The Eastern Horticultural Complex is set forth in Table 3 1 Tropical cultigens clearly were transported to the Eastern Woodlands well after the adoption of the Eastern Horticultural Complex Corn (Zea mays L.), common beans ( Phaseolus v ulgaris L.), and cushaw squash ( Curcubita argyrosperma ) are non native cultivars that were dom esticated elsewhere (White and Weinstein 2008) Corn was present in the Eastern Woodlands for about a millenni um before its widespread use, all the while the East ern Horticultural Complex thrived Like corn, beans also took awhile to obtain great importance in the agricultural scheme in North America although beans are hard to identify in archaeological assemblages and therefore their use may not be
37 well document ed (Hastorf 1999) Similarly, cushaw squashes ( Curcubita argyrosperma ) did not appear in the Eastern Woodlands until about 1000 AD, although pepo squashes had been around for thousands of years (Scarry 2008) Corn became one of the key components of the ea rly pioneer diet in Florida Squash and beans were a lso important components of that diet One of the key factors in adopting new cultigens is the similarity to existing, native cultigens, both in processing and cultivation (Roth 2006) The incorporation of European species into Native American horticultural practices demonstrates this theory Peaches ( Prunus persica L. ) are of European origin but were added to Native American orchards as documented by the observations of Lawson in 1701 and Bartram in 1773 (Hammett 2000:277) The relatively quick adoption of peaches is likely due to the fact that native plums ( Prunus spp. or Prunus umbellata Elliott ) are very similar to peaches ( Prunus persica L. ) (Hammett 2000:277) It has been suggested that Florida may be the entry point for some traveling plants (Riley et al. 1990) Certain components of the Eastern Horticultural Complex have been identified in Florida, such as chenopod (Hutchinson et al. 1998) and sunflower (Organ et al. 2005), although references iden tifying other species are not always clear While chenopod has been found in some Florida sites, the botanical remains do not necessarily include the Eastern Horticultural Complex, but rather, demonstrate other plant foods, including sabal palm berries ( Sa bal palmetto (Walter) Lodd. ex Schult. & Schult. F) and other fruits, along with panic grass ( Panicum sp. L. ) and arrowhead ( Sagitarria sp. L. ), a root food source (Hutchinson et al. 1998), demonstrating perhaps unique components associated with Florida.
38 C orn had a major role in provisioning the early explorers of Florida, including the De Soto expedition Once colonization was established, the Spaniards attempted to utilize European styles of food and food preparation This effort, however, was not entirel y successful, with the incorporation of native food products and preparations, Alegria 2005) Thus, Native American food products and practices were incorporated into the colonial culture, and traditional ecological knowledge merged with European based knowledge with regard to food and agriculture Table 3 1. Eastern Horticultural Complex Cultivation Date Species and source of data 5025 cal BP 5000 BP 4840 cal BP 4400 cal BP 2000 BP 200 0 BP 3800 cal BP 3800 cal BP 2900 cal BP 1000 BP Pepo squash ( curcubita pepo var. ovifera) (Smith and Yarnell 2009) Ragweed ( Ambrosia trifida ) (Pickersgill 2007) Sunflower ( Helianthus annus L. var. macrocarpus ) (Smith and Yarnell 2009) Marshelder/Sumpweed ( Iva annua L. var. macrocarpa ) (Smith and Yarnell 2009) Maygrass/ Canarygrass ( Phalaris caroliniana Walter )(Pickersgill 2007) Little barley ( Hordeum pasillum ) (Pickersgill 2007) Chenopodium (C b erlandieri ssp. jonesianum Moquim Tandon ) (Smith and Yarnell 2009) Bottle gourd ( Lagenaria siceraria ) (Smith and Yarnell 2009) Erect knotweed ( Polygonum erectum L. ) (Scarry 2008) Amaranthus / Pigweed ( Amaranthus spp. L. ) (Fritz 1995) Fire Important anthropogenic changes occurred to the landscape due to fire. Nat ive Americans maintained rangeland through the use of fire The burning served the purpose s of clearing land, maintaining range, releasing nutrients into the soil, encouraging tender new growth for animals to feed upon, and to drive game during hunts (Mill er 1998) Such indigenous use of fire is widespread and is a function of
39 traditional ecological knowledge (Berkes et al. 2000) Fire maintains grassland and rangeland, which would otherwise revert to woodland and forest (Chalmers and Fabricius 2007) Human s around the world have intentionally used fire to manage landscapes as grasslands, rangeland and cultivated areas (Chalmers and Fabricius 2007) The long leaf pine communities in Florida are fire adapted and require regular burns to be maintained Fire su ppression lead s to replacement by hardwood forests (Miller 1998). consideration in assessing ecology. Fire is also an important consideration in locating structures and residences in order to avoid destruction during forest fires. Thus the use of and knowledge of fire across the landscape is a component of traditional ecological knowledge. Population Data Florida was sparsely populated for the first 400 years of colonial contact In the early 180 0s the population was barely 1,000 people (Haase 1992) The U.S. Census records report that the entire population of St. Johns County in 1900 was 9,165 people The present population of St. Johns County is 190,039, according to the 2010 c ensus The present racial composition of St. Johns County is: White: 89.3%, Black 5.6%, Hispanic 5.2%, Asian 2.1%, American Indian .03% The growth of St. Johns County is set forth in Table 3 2 In 1900 there were 9,165 residents in St. Johns County, slow ly growing over the next few decades The population increased rapidly from the 197 0s onward Palm Valley is now a separate community district for the census In 2000, the population in Palm Valley was 19,860, growing slightly to 20,019 in 2010 There ar e few
40 parcels of land in Palm Valley that have not been developed, or are not otherwise owned by the government, such as the Guana State Park Many individual lots are being converted from modest homes or trailers to large estates since most lots in Palm V alley are at least one acre in size The new town of Nocatee has been approved and partially built in the western end of Palm Valley, and additional growth is expected to occur west of the Intracoastal Waterway Thus urban sprawl will continue to occur west of Palm Valley, with little change east of the Intracoastal Waterway due to the la ck of undeveloped land. East of the Intracoastal Waterway, f uture g rowth is limited by the St. Johns County Comprehensive Plan, especially since it is in a State designated coastal high hazard area Interestingly, when the WPA sent writers across Florida in the 193 0s the writer In the 194 0s about 16 families lived in Palm Valley, estimated to be between 50 and 100 people (Sid Mickler personal communication 2011). Thus Palm Valley was sparsely populated up until sometime in the 197 0s when u rban sprawl began to spread into the area Table 3 2 Census data for St. Johns County, Florida Year Population 1900 9,165 1910 13,208 1920 13,061 1930 18,676 1940 20,012 1950 24,998 1960 30,034 1970 30,727 1980 51,303 1990 83,829 2000 123,135 2010 190,039
41 Early Historic Background In the beginning God gave man dominion over the earth and all things therein contained, so ever since, man has bee n busy killing off the animals and birds, cutting down t he trees and draining water off the land, and wondering why frosts are worse lately than they used to be L awrence W ill, Cracker History of Okeechobee Ponce de Leon arrived at the northeast coast of Florida on April 2, 1513, which is the first officially recorded contact wi th N ative A mericans in Florida Based on the hostile reactions of the N ative Americans to Ponce de Leon and other explorers, it is postulated that there was prior European contact in the form of slave seeking raid s from Caribbean islands, which were occupied by Europ ea ns prior to mainland occupation In addition, when Ponce de Leon arrived in the Gulf of Mexico in 1502, he entered the land of the Calusa, which was ruled by a chief named Carlos, who had a Spanish speaking interpreter, su pporting the notion of prior Spa nish contact Later, in 1537, Spain granted exploration rights to Hernando de Soto, allowing him to conquer Florida and seize treasures (Miller 1998) Fort Caroline, located at the mouth of the St. Johns River, and north of Palm Valley, was established in 1564 by France and was the first per manent colony in North America Jean Ribault wrote about his 1562 encounter with the Timucuan Indians at the mouth of the St. Johns River, and described their agriculture of corn, beans, gourds, squash, cucumbers, citro n, peas, and unknown roots a nd other plants (Miller 1998 ) Notably, citron is not a native species, and this may be an early example of the incorporation of new, exotic species into N ative American agriculture
42 Ribault also reported that the Timucuan wome n wore Spanish moss, an interesting use of a native plant species Fort Caroline was later conquered by Pedro Men endez for Spain (Miller 1998 ) Spain established a c olony in St. Augustine in 1565 Spain established a mission system, which relied upon nati ve labor for food production, with limited success While crops were grown under this system, the soil was poor and yields were small Father Juan Rogel reported in 1661 that the N ative Americans would leave in late spring when the acorns ripened, and gath ered back together every two months for festivities, but not in the same location (Miller 1998) The Spaniards adapted indigenous food and pottery (Rodriguez Alegria 2005:551) St. Augustine relied upon Spain for food and provisions on a regular basis and never truly became self sufficient (Miller 1998) In 1696 the Castillo de San Marcos was built in St. Augustine, after numerous attacks by Timucuans, English and Fre nch The fort was built of mined coquina stone, which is lithified shell and sand that has hardened, and was an important bu ilding material (Miller 1998 ) The Castillo de San Marcos still stands today, as well as other examples of coquina based constructio n Diego Plains, Predecessor to Palm Valley During the time of European colonial exploration, Florida was claimed as a territory by Spain Lying between Fort Caroline and St. Augustine was an area known as Diego Plains, later to be re named Palm Valley An old mission church called Church of the Palmettos was reportedly built in Diego Plains, north of St. Augustine, in the mid 160 0s (Neitz 2006)
43 Land was divided among settlers via the issuance of land grants by Spain Don Diego de Espinosa, a resident of St. Augustine, was provided a Spanish land grant in 1730 to property located in St. Johns County, Florida at the present location of Palm Valley / Ponte Vedra Beach (Jones 1993) A cattle ranch was e stablished called Diego Plains The meat, tallow and h ides of the cattle provided export items (Miller 1998) The land was known as Diego Plains for the next hundred plus years This ranch was later fortified and called Fort San Diego (Miller 1998) Espinosa fortified his ranch to protect it from hostile N at ive Americans by building a fifteen foot high wooden palisade around the ranch buildings The fortification also included two bastions and became known as Fort Diego (Jones 1993 ; Neitz 2006 ). The Defeat of Fort Diego In 1739, Spain and Great Britain were a t war in the colonies General James Oglethorpe was the head of the English Colony of Georgia and was charged with attacking Spanish settlements General Oglethorpe was sent to attack St. Augustine in 1740 ( Committee of the General Assembly of South Caroli na 1978) D uring an expedition in Florida, Oglethorpe attacked Fort Diego with 400 of his Georgia regiment (Van Campen 1959) A garrison of fifty seven men led by Espinosa attempted to defend the fort, but surrendered on May 9, 1740 Oglethorpe reported ca pturing nine swivel guns, eleven 2 pound falconettes cannons, seven small arms, and a stockpile of ammunition (Jones 1993; Neitz 2006) Fort San Diego was defeated by General Oglethorpe in 1740 (Miller 1998) After capture, Oglethorpe had a ditch dug aroun d the Fort, then left a few troops behind as he continued onward to assault St. Augustine (Jones 1993) Oglethorpe reported on the difficulty with the Florida terrain, including the thick timber, underbrush and palmetto, as well as the mosquitoes, sand gna ts and
44 poisonous snakes By 1743, Oglethorpe abandoned the fort, leaving it in ruins (Jones 1993) In 1918, Jess Henson and his son Robert Henson, Jr., dug up a two pounder falconette in the woods, 30 inches in length, and 150 pounds, which is believed to have been from Fort Diego (Jones 1993 ; Neitz 2006 ) The cannon was originally displayed in a storefront window on Bay Street in Jacksonville, and later was contro lled by the State (Jones 1993 ) Its present whereabouts are unknown (Jones 1993; Neitz 2006). Fort Ruth, a civil war outpost, was located in Diego Two quarts of musket balls were found on Flavian M ) The precise locations of these historic fort sites are presently unknown, although the State has placed a historic mark er in the general vicinity depicted in Figure 3 3 Figure 3 3 State h istoric m arker located off Landrum Lane in Palm Valley, 2011. Photo by author. Turpentine and Timber The natural resources of the area provided both subsistence and industry for the Crackers and ot hers. Diego continued to be a remote timbering and agricultural area for the next hundred plus years Enterprises included sawmills, indigo and sugar cane
45 fields, among others Due to its remoteness from urbanized areas in St. Augustine or Jacksonville, li fe was very rustic and the inhabitants were true pioneers and had to rely on their own resourcefulness and the land to eke out a living in Palm Valley The harvesting of timber was one of the first industries, starting with the Spanish contact period when Pedro Menendez built a ship in St. Augustine Live oak trees were used to build ships in the early colonial days Cypress, cedar and pine were also harvested (Kennedy 1942) Timbering became a major industry in northeast Florida (Miller 1998) In 1831, Joh n James Audubon visited St. Augustine, calling i t 1998:155) By 1870 railroads were used to ship the pine and turpentine A decade and a half later, b y 1 885 much of the long leaf pine forests had been timbered, leaving a graveyard of stumps (Ray 1999). The long leaf pine forests were not replanted. In the late nineteenth century, what wood had not been timbered, was exploited had been completely cut down by 1932 (Miller 1998) Due to the discovery of pulp made from second generation pines in 1933 (Kennedy 1942 ) pine timbering continues today for the various pulp mills New growth, planted pine timbering continues to this day Much of the present forest land is pine plantations grown for pulp production (Miller 1998) The slash pine is the tree of choice for the present timber industry in the region due to its rapid growth, especially as compared to long leaf pine growth rates. Prior to the large scale timbering of the old growth pines, the turpentine industry was important in Cracker country Remnants of this industry remain on stumps of trees
46 that were long ago tapped for turpentine The tree trunks were repeatedly slashed to t ap 3 4. ey 2007). Figure 3 4 Cat face on a pine stump located in Palm Valley in 2011. Photo by author. Change of Ruling Nations, Arrival of the Crackers Not long after the English raids on Fort San Diego, Picolata and St. Augustine, Spain ceded Florida to England in February 1763, under the Treaty of Paris While Spanish rule was based on a combination of government and church control, English rule was more commercially based, and therefore achieved more success in a short time than the lengthy Spanish rule s to settle the lands, rather than setting up missions and converting natives as the Spanish had done (Miller 1998)
47 The origin of Cracker Culture has been linked to the migration of Scottish, Irish and borderland English to the United States, and then th roughout the south after Spain ceded Florida to Great Brita i n This migration to the United States began around the 169 0s and throughout the 170 0s prior to the Revolutionary War (Berthelot et al. 2008; Tindall 1995) When Spain ceded Florida to the Brit ish, people migrated south to Florida and were remote from the colonies, and presented a problem for British officials (Ste. Claire 1998) Many of these people were to be identified as Crackers By this time few Timucuan Indians survived Lower Creek Indi ans from Georgia, however, started to move into the former Timucuan territory The Creeks later branched into the early Seminole tribes (Miller 1998 ). Not only did the Creeks move into to the vacant territory, but Celtic immigrants migrated south from the Carolinas and the British colonies into Georgia and Florida as Spain withdrew from the region. Spain regained Florida under the Second Treaty of Paris in 1783, after the conclusion of the Revolutionary War (Miller 1998). Spanish officer Don Vicente Manuel de Zespedes y Velasco reported back to Spain from St. Augustine about his problems with the Crackers, who had migrated to Florida during British rule This Spaniard recommended that Spain exert control over the St. Marys River along the Florida Georgia bor der to prevent the influx of Crackers, who were cons idered to be renegades The original Crackers were not of Spanish origin. The Spaniards believed that the original Crackers came via the British colonies, and some bred with local Native Americans since f ew women migrated from Europe then (Lewis 1984) Under Spanish occupation in the early 180 0s the population of the Spanish settlements of St. Augustine, St. Marks and Pensacola was barely 1,000 (Haase 1992)
48 Spanish rule later ceased and Florida was ced ed to the United States via a treaty signed with Spain on February 22, 1819, leading to the Territorial Period of Florida (Miller 1998) In 1824, the new Florida territory was surveyed with townships laid out so that the public land could be divided and s ettled Land sales bega n out of St. Augustine in 1827 The number of settlers to the area increased after Florida became a territory (Haase 1992). During territorial time, steamboats provided a major mean s of transportation in Florida. ch was built during the British period, crossed the St. Johns River at C owford, north of St. Augustine. Cowford was renamed Jacksonville, and incorporated in 1832, with less than a thousan d residents (Miller 1998). Plantations and subsistence farming were the main industries at this time. In the 183 0s the Seminole Indian Wars led to some abandonment of the interior of Florida by settlers In the 183 0s Seminoles to Oklahoma. The Seminole Wars occurred from 1835 1842, until Osceola was captured and died in captivity Some Seminoles survived by hiding out in the Everglades (Tindall 1995) After the passage of the Armed Occupation Act in 1842, the settler population began to return (Miller 1998) One trave The number of settlers increased after Florida became a state in 1845 (Haase 1992). The Civil War and Reconstruction The Civil War is one of the most common events associated with the South However, due to the fact that most people who were considered to be Crackers were
49 not slave owners, the war was not necessarily a defining event in the non plantation component of the South as regards the abolition of slavery In fact, a Cracker may take offense at being called a redneck since that term is often associated with a white racist Crackers and rednecks are not synonymou s terms The term Cracker, however, has been used as a racial epithet directed at white people Under Spanish rule, Florida was a haven for runaway slaves, but under British rule slavery was established Florida sided with the Confederacy during the Civil War, but was quickly brought under the control of the U.S. Navy This occupation destroyed the plantation economy that relie d upon slave labor (Miller 1998 ) After the Civil War, settlement of Florida was encouraged by the United States government by dee ding swamp and overflowed lands to th e state Henry M. Flagler, the railroad magnate, took advantage of these deeds and acquired land for his railroad that was built during the late nineteenth and early twentieth century (Miller 1998) After the Civil War Florida tourism was promoted as a winter vacation resort and also as a refuge for the ill In 1888, Henry Flagler, who cofounded Standard Oil with John D. Rockefeller, opened a resort in St. Augustine, along his railroad, the Florida East Coast Railway President Grover Cleveland was a guest in 1890, along with the Rockefellers and Vanderbilts (Miller 1998 ) One common sport was to shoot alligators and use their parts for souvenirs and goods (Rogers 1955) When their population declined by the 192 0s th e Alligator Farm in St. Augustine became a popular place for tourists to see an alligator Similarly, another sport was to shoot herons and collect their feathery plumes for sale (Miller 1998 ; Will 1977 ), which led to the decline in population and later le gal protection
50 of Florida With the dredging of the St. Johns River that started in 1880, thereby removing the sand bars that had limited the size of ships entering the riv er for hundreds of years, Jacksonville became a major port city (Miller 1998 ) All of these efforts had the effect of increasing population in Florida The native population was decimated and much of the interior of Florida was sparsely occupied While the Creeks moved into Florida where the now extinct Timucuans once resided, the population never reached the pre contact levels How Palm Valley Got its Name The area under study was originally called Diego or Diego Plains due to the Spanish land grant In t he early 190 0s the name changed to Palm Valley Since cabbage palms and saw palmettos dominated much of Palm Valley, the residents harvested the fronds for shipping throughout the United States and Canada for Palm Sunday festivities (Neitz 2006 ). The palm buds were cut and stacked, then wrapped in burlap for shipping This re naming of the area to Palm Valley demonstrates a clear effort to break from the past Spanish history, and establish a community identity based on local culture The Palm Valley Commun ity Center was established in 1948, and a War surplus barracks was purchased from Camp Blanding and relocated to Palm Valley via the Intracoastal Waterway, where it is located along Canal Boulevard.
51 A B Figure 3 5 Photos from 2 011 A) Refurbished Palm Valley Community Center that was originally a war surplus building from Camp Blanding B) State h istoric m arker located in front of the Palm Valley Community Center Photo s by author. Foundation of the Country Club Lifestyle that Led to Urban Sprawl All we need is one more damn developer All we need is one more Mickey Mouse another golf course another country club another gated community JJ Grey Lochloosa The original post office for the area was in Palm Valley ; however, the post office was later relocated to the swanky Ponte Vedra Inn and Club Ponte Vedra Beach lies adjacent to Palm Valley to the east and north, and was originally named Mineral City in 1918, due to the mining of rare trace metals that were found in 1916 During the peak of mining operations, the National Lead Company built a clubhouse, polo fields and a golf course for its employees When the mining ended in 1928, this property was converted to a private club and resort and the name was changed to reflect this ch ange in community identity and to attract residential development of the beachfront property (WPA 1939a) The Florida highway system was improved after World War II, which also
52 led to increased settlement of Florida (Miller 1998) All of these transportati on projects opened up Palm Valley for increased commercial use and residential settlement. While the coastal region of northeast Florida is characterized by coastal marshes, coastal strand, cabbage palm and oak hammock and sand pine scrub forests, almost a ll virgin forest has been cut Development, however, has caused the greatest amount of change in vegetative communities, creating impermeable surfaces and introducing e xotic species (Miller 1998 ). The residential development of the area started in Ponte Ve dra Beach when the mining ended in 1928 The beachfront and adjacent neighborhood was the first area to develop in suburban style The area, like much of Florida, was marketed as a retirement destination, and the resort lifestyle was promoted This urban s prawl occurred in many areas of Florida, including the so resulting in the demolition of beachside cracker cottages and their replacement by modern houses with no architectural style li n ke d (Jackson 2003) During the depression the WPA sent writers to document Florida, including Palm Valley, However, Palm Valley was known as a center for moonshine distilling during prohibition Th e landscape of in the state a few places where the forest primeval may still be seen in all its pristine 39) Aerial photographs taken in 1942 are depicted in Figure 3 6, showing the desolate nature of the community, with the northernmost portion of Ponte Vedra Beach showing some development around the Ponte Vedra Inn and Club, shown on Figure 3 6B.
53 In the 19 7 0s the Tournament Players Club, a premier national golf organization, relocated to the former Diego Plains land grant, and was developed into a gated community called Sawgrass Figure 3 7A is an aerial photograph taken in 1971, prior to urban sprawl. I n comparison, Figure 3 7B is an aerial photograph taken in 1980, and shows the arrival of urban sprawl coinciding with the developme nt of Sawgrass and other developments. The marketing of this area identified it as Ponte Vedra Beach, although it is in Palm Valley Due to the moving of the post office from Palm Valley to Ponte Vedra Beach, both communities have the same Ponte Vedra Beach postal name and zip code. Marketing of the area also includes it in the greater Jacksonville area, even though it is in a different county. In addition, Jacksonville and Duval County provided jobs, services and schools for Palm Valley residents due to its proximity and ease of access. Thus, contrary to a county based community (Arensberg 1955), Duval County to the north provi ded the school system for early Palm Valley residents, and continues to be a source of jobs and commercial services for the community. Thus while Palm Valley is the community under study, it had ties to adjacent Duval County and Jacksonville due to proxim ity, as well as being under the political authority of St. Johns County, with its seat of government in St. Augustine, south of Palm Valley. While today there are many housing subdivisions and several shopping centers in Palm Valley and Ponte Vedra Beach there are relatively few high density condominiums and a 35 foot building height restriction is presently in place Horse farms and small ranchettes are still located in Palm Valley, especially in the areas that originally subdivided and developed from 19 50 1980 In addition to the golf courses and man made recreation areas, there are also conservation areas, with the entire southern
54 boundary of Palm Valley encompassed by the Guana State Park and the GTMNERR Thus there continue to be an abundance of natur al resources in Palm Valley, despite the increased human habitation However, west of the Intracoastal Waterway is a large development called Nocatee, which expands urban sprawl into the pine plantations and swamps that dominated the sparsely populated ar ea. Nocatee is still under construction and 15,000 residential housing units are planned, along with millions of square feet of commercial and industrial development further exacerbating urban sprawl A B
55 C D Figure 3 6 Se ries of Aerial maps from 1942 A) Palm Valley canal, with dredge spoil piles on the west bank, B) Ponte Vedra Beach, with development of the Ponte Vedra Inn and Club, C) west of the Palm Valley Canal, showing Palm Valley Road and D) the center of Palm Vall ey, showing Canal Boulevard and Palm Valley Road From University of Florida photo archives. A B Figure 3 7 Series of Aerial maps of Palm Valley/Ponte Vedra Beach A) from 1971with little sprawl B) from 1980 showing arrival of urban sprawl From Univ ersity of Florida photo archives.
56 CHAPTER 4 CRACKER CULTURE I remember my grandpa tellin me about the early days of Florida comin up the way of the wilderness JJ Grey, Florida Origin of Cracker Culture Cra cker culture originated after Europeans made contact with the New World, so the history of Cracker culture has developed over the past few hundred years McWhiney (1988) has linked t he origin of Cracker Culture to the migration of Scottish, Irish and borde rland English to the United States, and then throughout the south although there are immigrants of various other origins that migrated to Florida The distinction between English and Celtic cultures has been postula ted as an explanation of the north south cultural divide in t he United States Many aspects of cracker culture have been linked back to Celtic origins (McWhiney 1988) Even today, authors that consider themselves to be Crackers have Celtic origins (e.g. Ray 1999) Not all Crackers are of Celtic origin, since some are of Spanish or Iberian origin (Cash 1941:25). Over the years, the origin has expanded and today Florida Crackers have a variety of origins The migration of people identified as Crackers began around the 169 0s and throughout the 17 0 0s prior to the Revolutionary War (Berthelot et al. 2008; Tindall 1995) Prior to the Revolutionary War the South was mostly wilderness, with the exception of Charleston, Savannah and New Orleans Notwithstanding the long history of Crackers in the sout hern United States, anthropological studies specifically directed
57 not focused much on studying the plain folk of the United States. The various subcultures of the So uth are of interest to anthropologist s especially in light of adjustment to communities that were once remote, but are now subject to changes brought by progress (Pearsall 1966). Accordingly, the history of Crackers as well as the history specific to Flo rida in general, and Palm Valley in particular, is instructive in understanding the changes to the culture brought by urban sprawl. examines the distinction of the southern cult ure and specifically addressed Crackers clearly using that term in describing the intracultural variation in the South The early (Cash 1941:23) Crackers were raised with outdoor activity, as opposed to traditional, indoor schooling 1941:31) pressing throng of his fellowm en, rigid class distinctions, the yoke of law and government, economic imperatives all these bear upon him with crushing 1941:31). Self sufficiency is a key characteri stic of a Cracker, being lord of his domain in the wilderness (Cash 1941 ; Ste. Claire 1998 ) Thus while Crackers are people who are individualistic, self sufficient, and have a preference for living in the backwoods, they by
58 no means are the only people wi th these characteristics. In the South, and especially southern Georgia and Florida, the use of the term Cracker continued to describe certain people. In the beginning, the South was settled along the coastal areas, with the soils of the interior of the So uth considered to be too poor to support a plantation With the invention of the cotton gin, however, the backcountry soils could support cotton harvests, which opened the interior areas up to more plantation farming between 1800 and 1860, quickly changing the landscape The expansion of the plantation system after the invention of the cotton gin caused forests to be destroyed to create more farm land The Cracker lifestyle was based on the forest, and this change in landscape had devastating effects on nut rition due to the loss of diversity of foods Crackers became more reliant upon hops and cornpone (Cash 1941) that subset of the southern population, others have struggled with defining an describe the non slave holding, non elite southern population, which included the majority of the population (Owsley 1949). For purposes of this paper, the term is used to describe Florida and south Georgia people who identify as such. A unique historic and cultural factor in the development of th e Cracker lifestyle is slavery i n the plantation system in the South Crackers generally did not own slave s since slaves were associated with plantations and also because Crackers tended to be either poor or self sufficient. With African slaves providing the manual and menial labor on plantation s there was not as much pressure on poor whites to provide labor,
59 allowing them to pursue their own lifestyle Another unique aspect is that Crackers were often related by blood to the plantation owners, with some plantation owners having once been poor (Cash 1941) While Crackers were poor, and at the bottom of the wh ite social order, their social From the vantage point of the frontier settlement, poor white homesteaders sat at the top of their small, isolated world. Regionally, however, social rela tions were being constructed Over one hundred years ago, Thus historically speaking, Cracker status was considered in relation to African American culture Thus the Cracker occupied a unique and unusual niche in the American South A predominant characteristic of Cracker culture is strong family ties (McWhiney 1988 ; Hill and McCall 2009 ) relationships of isolated groups, have produced an extended cons anguine group in which the importance of family sentiments as a basis for social order cannot be The parents are the disciplinarians of the family, while the grandparents are a source o f affection and permissivenes s Kinship is the basis of loyalties and a key part of the community coh esiveness When many relatives reside in one county, kinship provides a powerful political action group (Hill and
60 McCall 2009) Accordingly, in this study, a family was selected as the population to determine the questions about traditional ecological knowledge. Origin of Cracker Shakespearean Use The use of words and terms can have a history unto themselves, demonstrating the dynamic and fluid nature of terms, especially a s they relate to people and their identities originated through name calling, and has a history of perjorative meaing (Lewis 1984) describe a person was by William Shakespeare, who wrot e in King John circa 1595: Ste. Claire 1998) A Cracker was someone who cracks jokes Thus the first documented use of the term was to call someone a name mid 180 0s ze poor or rogue settlers of the rural south, While term cracker was also used to describe settlers as far north as Maryland (Ste. Claire 1998; Lewis 1984) Generally, Cracker was used to describe the Scot s Irish settlers in the south (Ste. Claire 1998) Crackers were backwoodsmen and people who lived primitively, and subsisted by hunt ing and trading with Indians (Lewis 1984)
61 Cracking Whips and Cracker Cattle sound People were called Cracker due to the cracking of whips at horses pulling carriages or to d rive cattle (Ste. Claire 1998) describe a southern cowboy, who drove free range cattle with the crack of a whip w general as primitive in their dress as the farmers of the remotest parts of 2009 :45)(quoting Buckingham 1842)) Thus the cracking of whips was a cultural signifier and identity marker, announcing the cattl e trail used by cowhunters to drive cattle and an elementary school in Highland County Florida is named Cracker Trail Elementary School (Ste. Claire 1998) Cracker cattlemen cracked their whips as a form of communication since the sound could be heard fo r miles (Stein 1995) Thus it appears that once again, other people used the passed by cracking their whips The Spaniards were the first to raise cattle in Florida when, i n 1521, Ponce de Leon brought Andalusia n cattle to Florida during his second expedition (Yarlett 1985) During the 180 0s and the first half of the 190 0s cattle were raised on the open range in Florida by what were known as Cracker Cowboys (Otto 1984) I t appears that the on that started with either name calling or identification based on sound, to adoption of the term
62 as an identity marker In fact one famous cowboy, Jacob Summerlin, w ho is reputed to be the first white child born after the end of the Spanish occupation of Florida, is called ) Another famous Cracker Cowboy is se image was drawn by ar tist Frederic Remington asleep, dead drunk in the middle of a field His friends lit campfires all around his God! Dead County Cattlemen Assoc. 2011). O pen range cattle ranching necessitated the use of a whip to herd cattle in the piney woods and palmetto scrub The open range herding was accepted by the State of F lorida such that there was a law that required farmers to fence their crops to keep the cattle out, rather than requiring the cattle herders to install fences to keep the cattle in. The Cracker Cowboys usually owned small homesteads, but raised their brand ed cattle on open range, which included unclaimed or unfenced public lands The open range closed in 1949 The cattle raising practices originated in the Carolina Low Country in the late 160 0s (Otto 1984) T h us there was a long tradition of open range cattle farming in Palm Valley, which situated the cattle farmers across the landscape due to the cattle roaming free. The cattle raised in Florida during this time pe riod were known as cracker cows (Yarlett 1985) or Florida scrub cattle and were descendents of longhorn criollo breeds which had been brought to the New World by the Spaniards These scrub cattle were small, but hardy and tolerant of the heat and humidity of Florida (Otto 1984) These cattle were used for beef, jerky, tallow and hides (Miller 1998) Photographs of cracker
63 cattle, as well as the cracking of whips used to drive the cattle are depicted in Figure 3 8. A B C D Figur e 3 8 Series of Cracker Day photos A) Cracker cattle B) Cracker cattle C) Cracker cattle a nd D) whip cracking demonstration at Cracker Day, Elkton, Florida 2011. Photo s by author. Herders often burned the pine flatwoods during the late winter in order to remove dead gr ass, fertilize the soil and stimulate new growth for the cattle to graze upon (Otto 1984) Thus, the practice established by indigenous peoples of burning the landscape continued Fire suppression policies later changes these practices Fire suppression wa adapted ecology, especially the long leaf pine forests
64 When the calves were born, they were penned to keep them from predators, which also caused the cows to return to feed the calves, thus allowing opportunity to milk the cow s Predators included panthers and wolves (Otto 1984) drive them Whips were also used to gather the cattle, but lariats and lassos were not used (Otto 1984) herding and cattle drives occurred until the practice was banned In 1937 a cracker cowboy drove cattle 160 miles without encountering a fence (Pleasants 1977) Cracker cattle continue to exist today and the cracking of whips is demonst r ated at the Cracker Day festival in Elkton, Florida organized by the St. Johns County Association It is clear that Flo rida cowboys consider themselves Crackers, and stories of Florida Cracker Cowboys continue to be published (Plowden 2 009). Corn Cracking who relied on ground corn as a chief The term term originated in Georgia, and as settlers moved south into Florida from Georgia, the name also tr aveled with them (Stein 1995). In describing Crackers, an early writer wrote: These people, who live in the manner described, are known by the name of called from the circumsta nce that they formerly pounded all their corn, which is their principal article of diet It was done by placing the corn on a flat rock, and then beating it with another, but now the hand mill is used by many, which facilitates the process of cracking the corn, although
65 the meal made by the mill is not much finer There are but a few water mills 2009:45)(quoting Burke 1850). The use of corn in meals is ubiquitous among Cracker cuisine Various types of bread products are made with cornmeal, including corn bread, corn pone and ho cakes Ho cakes are made with cornmeal, salt and water, thin in texture, and are fried in a skillet (Rawlings 1961) Ho cakes have been exalted in song by self proclaimed Cracker JJ 2001b ). The horticultural practices of Crackers w ere not considered to be advanced or ambitious and haphazardl ) hog and ) That was the key to how the plain folk lived: in the literal sense of the phrase, they lived high off the hog. When the larder got low, they simply stuc k another hog For vegetables, almost no tillage was necessary, since green gardens in the southern soil and climate, once planted, grew wild, reseeding themselves year after year if they were appropriately neglected, as was also the case with pumpkins, s weet potatoes and several other vegetables. One agricultural practice was to use the area of the cow pens for gardens since the soil was enriched by the m anure (Otto 1984 ) Another rustic reference to Crackers who were poor is the crackers poor people ate hardtack, cornmeal mixed with water and lard, baked outdoors on a rock by ) Thus, Crackers were also associated with rural ways, including grinding their own corn, which is also as sociated with a lower economic status, although it is also consistent with self sufficiency, which is an indic a tor of Cracker identity (Ste. Claire 1998).
66 Moonshine used cracke which freely flowed at election campaign rallies of ) The stereotype of a Cracker was sometimes expanded to include illegal enterp rises in general (L ewis 1984 ) The practice of moonshining in the south has been argued as further evidence of the transposition of Celtic culture into U.S. southern culture their Celtic ancestors, probably made as much whiskey as they bought; indeed, the illegal manufacturing of whiskey, called moonshining both in Ireland and in the South, has always been a respected activity where Celtic culture prevailed Both used whisk ey as medicine (McWhiney 1988 ) Palm Valley was a local center of moonshine distilling during the prohibition era (WPAa 1939) The Eighteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution was ratified in 1919 and prohibited the manufacture and sale of alcohol, but wa s repeal ed via the Twenty first Amendment in 1933 Use of the T Regardless of which is considered, the import was fairly pejorative in nature since it either referred to a braggart, to whip cracking, or to poor, southern people who had to use primitive means to process corn for food or alcohol The term Cracker is used as a moniker for a country or backwards person socially isolated
67 (McCarter 2010) Much like Jeff Foxworthy has capitalized on redneck jokes, Ernest Mickler took the h umorous approach to being considered white trash and published a profitable use of humor, even if the rest of the family did not appreciate the implication of being called white trash. While the were usually at least a step above the poorest, since they were land owners and also usually owned livestock, thus differentiating themselves from a mere economic class (Kimelman 2000) Being a Cracker is more of a country lifestyle, rather than just an economic status Rather than simply calling Crackers poor or otherwise referring to a low social status, an alternative, and perhaps more accurate description is that Crackers are self reliant, self sufficient, honest, and have a simple, direct approach to people and problems (Ste. Claire 1998). Crackers are an unpretentious people, scatt ered on farms and in rural communities of inland Florida and in the small towns of Main Street, Florida And there are even some like I, who were born in the bigger coastal cities, who believe that the love for the land, and God, and family super s ede the v alues of fast paced lif e and consider it a n honor to be calle d a Cracker (Stein 1995:xx). By the beginning of the 190 0s the term was used more affectionately, and, for example, was used in ball team names (Ste. Claire 1998 ) In response to the commerc ialization of Florida during the 193 0s Florida residents joined forces against the tropical image that was being marketed primarily by out of s tate speculators (Nelson 2008 ) used derogatory moniker, was re packaged and refor matted to provide the label for a diverse and often divisive group that nonetheless
68 sed to identify a native, non elite Floridian who wants exemption from the plastic 0s the term once again became a pejorative, eroding into a racial slur for bigoted backwoo native writers in Depression 2008:227). Crackers were often described by outsiders in relation to their social status a nd culture. Travelers and writers in the 19th and 20th centuries wrote about the Cracker culture they encountered in the South. These descriptions created a stereotyp e Cracker for the rest of the country to read about. fodder for writer s traveling through the state looking for colorful anecdotes for a northern reading public The misunderstood Florida backwoods settlers wer e caricatured in cartoon and parodied in print acro ) Remington also is known for his depiction of Cracker cowboys of Flori da, that he created from his 1890 visit to De Soto County, Florida (Stein 1995) It has been noted that Abraham Lincoln, whose family originates from North Carolina, has the physique of a typical Cr acker of that time (Cash 1941 ). Many notable novelists als o described and wrote about Crackers. One of the most notable authors who described Crackers wa s Majorie Kinnan Rawlings (Bigelow 1965)
69 stoic and fiercely independent Primitive, pre Cracker culture she encountered when she lived in Florida Even today, biographies of Rawlings, including those directed at child ren, explain Cracker identity (e.g. Sammons 2010) Marjory Stoneman Douglass, in Florida: The Long Frontier (1967), described the South after the Civil War: Keen eyed Yankee visitors had already written about the people who made up the almost unseen back on them; thin bony wives, and sallow, white headed children They had retreated after the war into deeper wilderness, in the immemoria l rugged frontier life of log cabin and clearing, hunting and fishing They were seen driving rickety oxcarts along pine woods roads, or coming in barefooted to boat landing stores to trade skins or deer meat for chewing tobacco, snuff, bacon, calico, powd er Sometimes they worked at logging or sawmilling They had taken the place of the almost vanished Indian in the remote country where they kept alive the legends, the ballads, the tunes, the customs of their Georgian, Carolinian, Scotch Irish, Irish, Engl ish, or even German ancestry They were, as they had been, proud, secretive, unlettered, suspicious, enduring as time They had taken the land for their own and had held it, making it America It would be a long time before anyone noticed them more closely (quoted in Ste. Claire 1998). of Florida or Georgia, and perhaps other southern states Stories about Florida, including fiction and non fiction, often refer to the local or native Floridians as Crackers, if they lived in the rural countryside or back woods swamp areas Various books have been written containing short stories or anecdotes about Cracker Florida ( e .g. Will 1977; W ashington 1983; Bellville 2006 ; Burt 2009 )
70 Cr ackers have also been the subject of fictional novels (e.g. Denison 1887 ; Smith 1984) C (Whitfield 1993) considered a Cracker town, dominated by Cracker linguistics, which has since changed due to the international influence from the University of Florida (Hayes 1958) How ever, a graduate student in the Department of Anthropology at the University of Florida owns a registered Florida Cracker horse and also admits being a local Cracker. In recent years some people proudly proclaim themselves to be Crackers Probably the most famous self proclaimed Florida Cracker was Governor Lawton Chiles inspired statements are legendary evoking laughter among st Crackers and puzzlement amongst everyone else (St. Petersburg Times 1998 ). This statement is a classic Cracker type reference, using environmental knowledge of animal behavior likely learned through hunting, as an analogy to human behavior in a politica l setting In response to a political opponent again using humor by adapting a well known line from a serious political speech by President Kennedy poking good natured fun at himself using the term Cracker (Sun Sentinel 1994 ) Petersburg Times 1998 ). Thus, in more recent times the use of the term Cracker has been a matter of pride about being a native Flo ridian during times of enormous
71 p opulation growth of the state. While the term Cracker can be used as an insult to a white person, especially when used by someone who clearly is not a Cracker, the use of the term is fluid, changing with the times and circu mstances. The present use of the term Cracker is less derogatory, and more a means of self identity. As used in this thesis, I apply the term to the family, rather than the term being a label that was brought forth by the family members as an identity labe l When asked if I really thought about it but I guess I am [ a Cracker ] communication 2011) Thus, based on my research into what people are considered to be Crackers, I have drawn the conclusion that this label is appropriate here, with no derogatory notions intended Based on the various descriptions of Cracker culture across time, the enduring theme is the connection with nature While Crack ers are the original white pioneers in Florida, not all white, native Floridians are necessarily Crackers coon, the incorporation of the environment is a natural part of the Cracker l ifestyle and identity, exhibited though subsistence, recreation, crafting, interior and exterior decoration, foods, speech and community. Historic Cracker Subsistence and Land Use Practices Food is an important aspect of society and reflects social meani ng and symbolism (Mintz 1985 ) The family dinner and family reunion are important rituals and ceremonies in Cracker culture (Hill and McCall 2009 kinship ties, to solidify group loyalties and to provide the occasion f or rendering the from scratch. Food was often cooked outdoors, in a kitchen attached to the hous e or in
72 a lean to (Stein 1995 ) In his book on Cracker architecture, whic h is intrinsically tied to the land, Haase notes: Raising crops, gardening, tending the land and the animals all this communion with nature must have had a mellowing inf luence upon the likes of these originally gaunt, suspicious and introverted settlers (Haase 1992:36). In Cracker culture, the family is the primary unit upon which economic production is based. Gender and age determine the tasks that each person performs in contributing to the econom ic unit (Hill and McCall 2009 ) Boys learn to hunt, fis h and throw a cast (Stein 1995:72). In the past, t he school drop out rate wa s often high especially since hunting and fishing skills were more important to the family business (Gibson 1996a) Hunting, fishing, herding and small scale farming exemplify cracker agriculture and subsistence practices Cracker culture was based on a subsistence e conomy (Hill and McCall 2009 ) Crackers prefer home made to store bought goods (Stein 1995) Hunting provided both subsistence and trade items Crackers were considered to be expert hunters (Lewis 1984) Both meat and skins were used for subsistence and t rade In nearby southern Georgia, raccoon hides were similarly sold to Sears Roebuck for $10 for a good hide (Ray 1994) Racoon, opossum, rabbit, squirrel, wild hog, rattlesnake, alligator, frogs, bear and deer provide wild meat Many varieties of birds a lso have served as food, including ducks, wild turkey, quail, songbirds, and wading birds Care must be taken when preparing certain animals as food head must be removed before cooking Raccoons have musk g lands which also must
73 be carefully removed before cooking, as Rawlings found out the hard way (Rawlings 1961). T urtles and their eggs a re also eaten Sea turtles were also gathered for food (Denham and Brown 2000) Turtles known as cooters were cooked in s tew and pie as well as fried (Rawlings 1961; Mickler 1986) There are both hard shell and soft shell cooters, with the soft shell cooter h aving more edible meat The alligator cooter is the most desired turtle due to its taste and white r meat, but it is a ggressive and can bite 1961:226) Gopher turtle s were eaten by both Crackers and Mino rcans, and w ere called Hoover chicken during the depression (Ray 1994) Fish, crabs, shrimp and shellfish are also part of the diet, as well as being used for trade Catching catfish with your bare Cracker famili es had gardens and grew vegetables, including potatoes, corn, sweet potatoes, tomatoes, okra, cow peas, green beans, peanuts, turnip greens, mustard greens, collard greens, and other vegetables. For sweets, sugar cane was often grown in the family garden ( Stein 1995) Palm fronds were harvested for export and sale to churches for Palm Sunday ceremonies (Kennedy 1942) Palm fronds were also put to various other uses: the green fronds were used for thatching and weaving, and the dried frond and boots were us ed as starters for fires (Neitz 2006 ) The heart of the cabbage palm is known as 4) Heart of palm was harvested both for personal use and for export It is a gourmet food
74 usually served in salads. Exported heart of palm is usually canned and later used in fresh salads. Unfortunately, the harvesting of heart of palm kills the entire tree (Kennedy 1942 ). Cabbage palms were dug up for landscapi ng in later years (Neitz 2006 ). Cabbage p alm berries were food for hogs (Neitz 2006 ). Cabbage palm and palmetto berries were also used for subs istence purposes (Kennedy 1942 ) Jonathan Dickinson wrote in 1699 about his shipwreck and encounters with native Americans along the east coast of Florida noting that they ate palm berries that were foul tasting Later, due to the lack of food, Dick in (Dickinson 1961) Palmetto ( Serenoa repens (W. Bartram) Small) berries were used to flavor the moonshine that was produced in Palm Valley during Prohibition (WPA 1939a) St. (Kennedy 1942:5) Other edible plants included blackberries ( Rubus sp. ) blue berries ( Vaccinium ssp. L .) and huckleberries ( Gaylussacia Kunth ) which could be made into jelly, pie and cobbler, and sunflower like Jerusalem artichokes ( Helianthus tuberosus L.) roots were pickled in a jar (Ray 1999 ) Wild greens and poke weeds were also used for salad or a side dish (Rawlings 1961). A plant called deer tongue (C arphephorus ssp. Cass.) was harvested for both u se and sale (Ste. Claire 1998 ). Deer tongue is used as an additive to tobacco and is used by major manufacturers today During his thousand mile walk th rough the south, John Muir encountered deer tongue, and Woods Botany (1862 edition), which Muir consult ed
75 fragrance even for years after they are dry, and are there fore by the southern planters (Muir 1991:20, n.1). Native ginseng ( Panax quinquefolius L.) was harvested for export to China John Muir noted that the proceeds from the sale of ginseng w ere one way of purchasing luxury goods such as coffee knew At that time ginseng root was valued at seventy cents a pound, and there was a law prohibiting it being gathered until Native chickory ( Cichorium L.) was used to make a kind of coffee (Ray 1999 ) Chickory is still used as an additive to some coffee brands today The gathering of Spanish moss ( Tillandsia usneoides (L.) L.) (which is neither a moss nor from Spain) also provided a native product for export The Spanish moss was gathered from trees, cured by hanging in the sun to dry, and exported for use in the furniture market as upholstery filling Spanish moss was desirable for t his purpose since it did not attract vermin and was resilient (Kennedy 1942) Spanish moss was also gathered for family use (Denham and Brown 2000). Wild grape s were also plentiful and in the past the vines that were five to six inches in diameter, with th ree to four berries to a cluster were used to m ake muscadine wine (Muir 1991 ) Elderberries have also been used to make wine (Rawlings 1961) Other berries and fruits, including huckleberries, plums and peaches were also gathered for family use. Two rare j ellies are made from mahaw ( Crataegus aestivales (Walt.) Torr. & Gray ) a type of hawthorn, and roselle ( Hibiscus sabdariffa L.) (Rawlings 1961) Pawpaws are also eaten, if they can be picked before wildlife eat them (Rawlings 1961)
76 Wax myrtle ( Morella cer ifera (L.) Small) berrie s a re used to make candles from the wax (Denham and Brown 2000) Crackers also used the natural resources in the construction of their homes Cracker homes were built of logs and rough hewn wood Cracker architecture is distinct, w ith a suite of architectural options that were used during the early pioneer period in Florida These architectural styles included: single pen, double pen, saddle bag, dog trot, and 4 square Georgian, among others. As a family and its needs for space aros e, additions were often tacked onto the main house Acknowledging the natural and recurring presence of fire from lightening strikes, Cracker homes were often buil t in a clearing, away from the forest (Haase 1992) Thus the Crackers utilized natural resou rces in their everyday living and subsistence patter n s, as well as for trade Given the importance of native flora and fauna in Cracker lifestyle, this thesis examines the present ecological knowledge of a native Florida family. I examine the data against the historic information about Crackers as well as the prior research on Crackers to determine if the family falls within the category of Cracker. I also examine the ecological knowledge of the family. Given the fact that much has changed in Florida since the origin of the term Cracker as applied to people in the deep South, I examine the current state of ecological knowledge and importance in lifestyle, especially in light of urban sprawl. Intergenerational differences are examined to determine if the exis tence of urban sprawl from the late 197 0s forward has altered the transmission or content of knowledge. The ecological knowledge of the Cracker family is analyzed in light of conservation efforts and possession of relevant, useful information about the ec ology of the region.
77 CHAPTER 5 TRADITIONAL ECOLOGIC AL KNOWLEDGE IN PALM VALLEY: A FAMILY CAS E STUDY The history and characteristics of Palm Valley provide a classic example of Cracker landscape Palm Valley contains swamps, marshes, creeks, rivers, mar itime hammock and coastal plain areas, which were sparsely populated in the past Even today, the population of Palm Valley / Ponte Vedra Beach is relatively low in density Living in rural areas such as farms, forests and swamps is a key factor in Cracker culture One reason that Cracker culture developed in the south is because it had a longer frontier period, where the rural areas took longer to be occupied than the northern United States (Berthelot et al. 2008) Using a community study (Arensberg 1955), t h is research was based on an ethnographic study of members of an extended family, as well as local residents, and data w ere gathered from participants from Fall 2010 to Fall 2011 The rationale behind studying a particular family is the great importance of family in Cracker culture, especially in a low residential density rural environment With multiple generations of the family living in or around Palm Valley, it provides a unique opportunity to investigate traditional ecological knowledge of Florida na tives who are still present o n the land where their ancestors settled shortly after arriving from Europe The Participants The qualifications to be a research participant were that the person had to have lived in Palm Valley, Florida at some point in the ir life Members of the Mickler family were specifically sought out since the family is well known in the area due to their long time presence in Palm Valley The present patriarch of the family has been actively involved in various local community organiz ations, including the Palm Valley Community
78 Center, the Beaches Historical Society and the Council on Aging The family is well known for providing oral histories of the area As a result, this family was selected as a sample of a Florida Cracker family I n order to find participants, various members of the Mickler family were contacted to ask for their cooperation and assistance The various members were also asked to provide names and contact inform ation for other family members who might be available for this study Palm Valley residents who were not related to the Mickler family were also us ed for a preliminary comparison The Origin of the Micklers The origin of the Mickler family in the United States has been traced to the mid 170 0s when Peter Mick ler arrived in the United States, settling in the Dutch Forks area of South Carolina It is unknown where Peter Mickler originated from, but based on the immigration pattern at the time, it is speculated that he arrived on a ship from Rotterdam, and may be of either German or French Hug u enots descent (Mickler 1 991) It is believed that Peter Mickler came to the United States due to the reign of Louis XIV and his campaign to discourage Protestantism, especially since in 1788 Peter Mickler was part of a petit ion to form a Protestant church in South Carolina (Mickler 1991) Thus, the origin of the Mickler family does not appear to come from Celtic origin in this instance, as postulated by McWhinney (1984). In 1759 John Michler received a land grant of 200 acr es in Georgia. In 1789, 300 acres of land were deeded in Camden County, Georgia to Daniel Mickler and his sons William and Jacob It is speculated that Peter, John and Daniel may be brothers, since John Benjamin Mickler of St. Augustine recalled a family o rigination story about three brothers emigrating from Germany
79 The Minorcan Connection In 1763, after the British took control of Florida from Spain, a Scottish physician named Dr. Andrew Turnbull was granted several thousand acres of land in Florida and established a plantation based colony named New Smyrna Dr. Turnbull recruited colonists from the Port of Mahon on the isle of Minorca, located in the Mediterranean off the coast of Spain These Minorcan colonists were under indentured contract, but later appealed to the British Governor of Florida to release them (Mickler 1991) In 1777, the New Smyna colony ended, with most of the surviving Minorcans moving to St. Augustine in July 1777 In 1783, Spain regained St. Augustine One of the best documented Minorcan families is the de Ortegus family. Lazaro Ortegus and Catalina Llegres were married and were both from Mahon, Minorca. They had a daughter named Ana Margarita de Ortegus. In 1814, Ana Margarita de Ortegus married Don Antonia Fernandez de Mier, who was from Cadiz, Spain. They had four children, and one of the daughters, Manuela, married Jacob Mickler. Thus the Micklers merged with the Miers and the Minorcans As Cash (1941) described, Crackers also originated from Iberian immigrants Members of the Mier family were also included in this study since they are part of the same family The descendants of the Minorcans retain their identity, primarily through food and a distinct variety of pepper known as the datil pepper The two participants with the Mi er surname in this study both self identified as Crackers, as well as being of Minorcan descent. Arrival in Palm Valley Jacob Mickler was deeded 160 acres in the southwest quarter of section 11, Township 17, range 33, issued by the St. Augustine land offi ce on July 16, 1843 (Mickler 1991)
80 moved to St. Johns County, Florida (Mickler 1991) The Miers likewise trace their roots in Palm Valley back to about the 185 0s Jacob and Manuela Mic kler had a son named Robert A. Mickler During the late 180 0s Robert Mickler, as a side business, gathered palm fronds to ship to the northern market to be used for decorations on Palm Sunday (Mickler 1991 ) Thus, consistent ions, the gathering of palm fronds for Palm Sunday services was a subsistence practice in Palm Valley among the Mickler family In 1894, Sydney A. Mickler was born in Palm Valley, Florida Sydney Mickler is s located at the present location of Pier from 1935 is depicted in Figure 4 1. His son, Sydney Mickler Jr. was a primary informant of this study and was born in St. Au gustine in 1926 and grew up in Palm Valley For 12 years he lived in nearby Jacksonville Beach, but moved back to Palm Valley and has lived there since Thus he has lived in Palm Valley for 74 of his 86 years Sid was interview ed as a primary local expert on the traditional ecological knowledge of Palm Valley Both family and non family members identified him as an expert or otherwise suggested that I talk to him about t his project. Figure 4 1. 1935 s ign for the Palm Valley Fishing Pier. Photo by author.
81 Methodology This research was designed around a specific family that has a long history of residency in Palm Valley, Florida, and as such, a non probability sample of family members was used The participants included several generations of the family, ranging in age from 12 years to 90 years old In order to preliminarily test the question of whether the extended Mickler family has a greater knowledge of the environment of Palm Valley, a convenience sample of twelve non Mickler residents participated in the same ques tionnaire and free listing exercise The non Mickler sample was selected based on residency in the Palm Valley area (east of U.S. A1A in Ponte Vedra Beach), with efforts to obtain similar ages and gender proportionate to the Mickler family sample While no n probability samples were used and there are limitations to this sampling technique, it is an appropriate method for pilot studies, and can form a basis for future study (Bernard 2011). The research methods used to gather information for this study co nsi sted of questionnaires, free lists and semi structured interviews The methodology was approved by the University of Florida, I nstitutional R eview B oard 2 Each participant was provided a consent form describing the investigation and informing them of the availability of the results of the study upon its conclusion. The adult participants were asked to sign the consent form Parental consent was obtained for juvenile participants The first step in this process was having the participants fill out a questio nnaire form The questionnaire sought background information on their residence history, education, work background, uses of native flora and fauna and other questions The questionnaire sought information about whether they hunted, fished, or gardened an d whether the participant used or knew of any home remedies or medicines using wild
82 plants or animals products Participants were asked to identify whether they used wild plants or animals products for crafting or construction Participants were also asked about how they learned this knowledge, how they thought their level of knowledge compared to others, and who they thought held the most knowledge The participants were interviewed Additional information was gathered from the Mickler family members who demonstrated a greater knowledge of the history and ecology of Palm Valley Each questionnaire asked to identify the family member with the most knowledge of local plants and the most knowledge of local animals, in order to preliminarily identify experts prepare two different free lists ; one for native plants and one for native animals Free lists are often used to determine topical knowledge and cultural saliency (Quinlan 200 5) The focus of this study is on topical knowledge, since this is a comparison of levels of knowledge across generations and as compared to the non family sample The free list of plant and animal names was used since the first factor identified by Berkes (1999) as establishing traditional ecological knowledge is ability to name the natural features. In a free list exercise, the participants are asked to list all of the things that t hey know in a particular domain (Quinlan 2005) For this study, the two domains were: 1) wild animals native to Palm Valley and 2) wild plants native to Palm Valley The participants were asked to exclude fish and insects, but to include mammals, reptiles, amphibians and birds When they had difficulty thinking of more animal s, but indicated
83 the animals you would the animals they listed For example, several listed the Florida panther, but not all have actually seen one Thus this study focused on two d omains, local plants and animals, but did not focus on the groupings or mechanisms for categorization or creation of the domains (Berlin 1992). In order to obtain local ecological knowledge, rather than knowledge of plants and animals in general, the free list question elicited native, wild plants and animals Thus if the participant thought that a plant or animal was exotic and not from this area, it should be excluded from the list There is some debate over how to determine whether a species is native or not, including whether natural dispersal methods that expand the range of a species into new areas should be accepted as native. This paper does not delve into this debate, and ultimately the distinction between native versus non native plants only made a difference in the results for one participant, which is more specifically explained below At the outset, it was unknown whether the correctness of whether a plant or animal is native to the area would result in a distinction among the responses of the p articipants Accordingly, a list of native flora and fauna was prepared for determination The initial list of animals is entitled to study the mammals and their life histories and habitat usage in the precise locale of the present investigation based and included t rapping of live
84 animal s over four years (Ivey 1947 ) This study also included interviews of several local residents, including Merlin Mickler, Eston Barkoskie and J. De Grove This graduate study provides a good baseline of the mammals that inhabited Palm Valley over 50 years ago In addition, this study provides descriptions of the various habitats that occur in Palm Valley The scientific names of the flora and fauna were identified and I searched to see if a determination has been made as to whether the flora and fauna are native to Northeast Florida. After completing the animal list, the participants were asked to provide a free list of all plants that they thought were native to Palm Valley The species list from the GTMNERR report was added since this natural area is located in large part in Palm Valley and the management plan lists 576 different plant species This list was used to determine whether or not the responses of the participants were correct in identifying native species since it includes a section on exotic species that have invaded the area If a participant named a species that did not occur on either list, then further research was conducted to establish the origin of the plant Since participants used common names, broad interpretatio n was given to whether the species was native or not If the common name could include a native species, then it was considered to be native Many common names encompass many different species, including predominantly exotic species, but if a local species would be captured by this common name, credit was given for correctness In the end, these distinctions did not make much difference, which will be explained further in the results A simple calculation of the number of plants and number of animals was us ed to compare participant s
85 While free lists can be further analyze d s S (Smith 1998) mple forms (Handwerker and Borgatti 1998) Since the focus of this study was the level of ecological knowledge of native plants and animals, rankings based on number of plants and a nimals listed were analyzed I ncorrect responses vis vis the native verses exotic distinction were included in the calculation and significant anomalies are noted in the discussion The data were also analyzed to evaluate the level of knowledge of the functions and uses of plants and animals in order to determine whether the second factor for traditional ecological knowledge identified by Berkes (1999) Information on whether the participants hunted, fished, shellfished or gardened was compiled and com pared to the family versus the non family group. Questions were asked of each participant about usage of plants and animals for crafting, construction, home remedies, or other purposes. The participants were also asked about their knowledge of the regula tions related to plants and animals in order to determine if the third factor for traditional ecological knowledge identified by Berkes (1999) was present This included knowledge of hunting regulations and the identification of species that are listed as endangered, threatened or species of special concern. The participants were also asked about changes to the presence of plants or animals during their lifetime to link changes associated with urban sprawl.
86 The fourth factor identified by Berkes (1999) for presence of traditional ecological knowledge is worldview, cosmology and ethics. This information was evaluated based animals and their relationship with them. Photographs we re also taken to document examples of visual representation indicating cosmology, worldview and ethics related to plants and animals. Limitations This study is not intended to be a definitive statement on the state of traditional ecological knowledge for all people who consider themselves to be Crackers, or for that matter Florida natives. Instead, this study is intended to be an inquiry into whether all four factors of traditional ecological knowledge exist, and to establish what the nature of the ecolog ical knowledge is in this population. Since a family was used as the population, the size of the sample is obviously limited. In addition, this study only examines these questions at a single point in time. A long term study across time would be useful in measuring changes to traditional ecological knowledge as urban sprawl continues its progression across the landscape. Additional tests could be developed to measure ecological knowledge, including field identification methods used on the participants to de termine their ability to correctly identify the plants that they could name. While I was able to conduct some field identification with two of my primary informants, a study could be designed to field test all participants in order to quantify additional m easures of ecological knowledge, apart from name identification and oral description. Additional quantitative analysis could also be conducted to further refine knowledge and correlation of factors.
87 CHAPTER 6 TRADITIONAL ECOLOGIC AL KNOWLEDGE RESULTS AND D ISCUSSION The oretical Ecological Knowledge: Names of Natural Phenomena The first factor in establishing the presence of traditional ecological knowledge is knowledge of the names of natural phenomena (Berkes 1999) In order to test whether this first fac tor of traditional or local ecological knowledge is present, the participants were asked to prepare two freelists: native plants and native animals Fauna Based on all of the identifications by all family participants, a total of 145 animals were listed as native to Palm Valley A total of 34 mammals, 35 reptiles, 10 amphibians, and 66 birds were identified by the participants as being native to Palm Valley Forty five mammals, 49 reptiles, 258 birds and 21 amphibians have been presently id entified in th e Guana State Park and Wildlife Management Area (DEP 2009 ) Notably, with regard to the birds there are 24 species of warblers, 14 species of sparrows and 9 different tern species, demonstrating that there are many species of fairly common birds In additi on, the GTMNERR report ( DEP 2009 ) lists 7 species of mice, 6 species of rats, 3 species of bats and 3 whales as present (DEP 2009) which explains the differences between the mammal lists It is likely that few Americans would know all of these species nam es Several participants identified the stump tailed moccasin as being present in Palm Valley, although the GTMNERR report (DEP 2009) did not list this particular species even though it is ubiquitous throughout Florida Based on the freelists, the top ten ranking of animals are listed in Table 6 1 and shows the total number of participant responses, as well as a division between family and other, non family local participant responses. Most animals were identified to the
88 species, although a few wer e identified by family name For the animals identified by family name, there are a large number of species inhabiting Palm Valley, and in addition to the family name, certain species were also identified For example, while duck ( A natidae) was listed, sev eral ducks including wood ducks ( Aix sponsa L.) mallards ( Anas platyrhynchos L. ) and teals ( Anas discors L. ) were also listed Table 6 1 Animal n ames Rank Name Scientific Name Total Responses Family /Local Responses 1 Squirrel Sciurus carolinensi s 22 13 9 2 tie Racoon Procyon lotor 21 12 9 2 tie Cardinal Cardinalis cardinalis 21 11 10 4 tie Rattlesnake Crotalus sp. 20 13 7 4 tie Deer Odocoileus virginianus 20 12 8 6 Sea gull Laridae 19 11 8 7 Alligator Alligator mississippiensis 1 8 8 10 8 tie Moccasin Agkistodon sp. 16 12 4 8 tie Osprey Pandion haliaetus 16 10 6 8 tie Wild hog Sus scrofa 16 10 6 The most frequently named animals include four deadly species: rattlesnake, alligator, moccasin and wild hog Four of the top t en species are common birds in the area Two species, squirrel and raccoon can be seen in urban and rural environments Deer is the largest common land mammal, and is fairly common in the area There was not a complete consensus among all the participant s on the animals However, there was complete consensus among the family for two species: squirrel and rattlesnake The family participants have a high level of consensus, with almost all members naming the top twelve ranked animals The youngest family me mber was the exception and failed to name six of the top ten animals While the family members had a higher consensus on the animals, an exception is alligator, which is the only category where other, non family local participants listed this animal more o ften than the family
89 members Notably two family members (Donna and Sid), later identified as experts, excluded wild hog from the list since this animal is not native to the area and was introduced by Spanish colonists demonstrating an acute knowledge of the animals and an understanding of the distinction the question posed Table 6 2 shows the top ten ranked bird responses There is a high consensus on cardinal among both groups, with the non family local participants having a significantly lower degree of consensus on birds as compared to the family. Cardinals are ubiquitous across the United States, and is one of the few predominantly red birds (males) making them easily distinguishable for even the most novice bird watcher. Table 6 2 Bird n ames Rank Name Scientific Name Total Responses Family /Local Responses 1 Cardinal Cardinalis cardinalis 21 11 10 2 Sea gull Laridae 19 11 8 3 Osprey Pandion haliaetus 16 10 6 4 tie Egret Ereidae 14 8 6 4 tie Owl Bubo sp. 14 9 5 4 tie Duck An atidae 14 11 4 7 tie Hummingbird Archilochus sp. 13 10 3 7 tie Dove Columbinae 13 10 3 9 tie Hawk Accipitridae 12 9 3 9 tie Woodpecker Picidae 12 7 5 Flora Table 6 3 shows the top ten ranked plant responses with pine and cabbage palm tie d for the top spot The top named plants are ubiquitous to Florida Many of these plants are often located in backyards Several plants are edible (blackberries and wild grape), and therefore have additional saliency Poison ivy ( Toxicodendron radicans (L. ) Kuntze) is a plant to avoid and therefore has additional saliency
90 Table 6 3 Plant n ames Rank Name Scientific Name Total Responses Family /Local Responses 1 tie Pine Pinus sp. L. 22 13 9 1 tie Palm / Sabal palmetto 22 13 9 Cabbage pal m 3 Oak Quercus sp.L. 17 13 5 4 Palmetto Serenoa repens 15 10 5 5 tie Live Oak Quercus virginiana Miller 13 8 5 5 tie Poison ivy Toxicodendron radicans 13 7 6 7 Cedar Juniperus virginiana L. 11 11 0 8 Blackberries Rubus sp. 10 9 1 9 tie C ypress Taxodium distichum 9 9 0 9 tie Spanish moss Tillandsia usneoides L. 9 6 3 Based on a comparison of the responses between the family and the other non family local participants, there was complete consensus on the top three plants pine, palm/cab bage palm and oak -with all 13 family members identifying these trees Like the animals, there was no complete consensus on plants among the local, non family participants The family members had the majority of the responses in the top categories, and f or two species -cedar and cypress -only family members identified those trees These responses demonstrate that th is Cracker family has extraordinary local ecological knowledge when compared to the local, non Cracker population Notably, many particip ants named species that are not native, and are exotic species, many of which can be purchased at local nurseries and cannot survive without human care Both sets of participants included some non native plants in the list The family included 11 non nativ e plants out of the 120 total plants identified by the family In comparison, the other non family locals listed 22 non native plants out of a total of 72 total plants identified by the group Thus the error rate was significantly higher for the non family local participants as compared to the family participants If a plant has a clear origin on another continent or not in the southeastern United States, it was
91 considered to be non native If the common name was too generic to specifically identify a plant but would include a plant native to the southeastern United States, it was considered to be native In ranking the participants o n the number of plants o r animals listed, however, all responses were included Based on an analysis of the clearly incorrect responses, only one person would have dropped in ranking The rest of the participants had minor, incorrect responses that did not affect their ranking On average the family members named 41 animals each and the non family members named about 29 animal s each. The average number of plants identified wa s 28 for family members and 16 for non family participants. There does not appear to be a clear trend by either gender or age, with the exception of the youngest member, at 12 years old, having the least kn owledge of animals, and lesser, but not the least knowledge of plants. Given the number of plant species identified out of the total 576 plants identified in the DEP 2009 a greater proportion of animals are known as compared to the universe of plants. Thi s trend of knowing proportionately more animals than plants is also present in the local, non family sample Thus, it appears that whatever system of education is used to learn about plants, it is not thorough and there are many more plants to learn about, especially as compared to animals While other indigenous populations, especially those in the tropics, have a greater breadth of plant knowledge, the landscape under study here has been heavily fragmented and impacted, with only 539 total plants identifi ed by scientists (DEP 2009). Notably, the local participant who identified the largest number of plants named many non native, exotic plants, including asparagus fern ( Asparagus setaceus (Kunth) Jessop) kudzu ( Pueraria DC.) sago palm ( Cycas revoluta T hunb.) cr a pe myrtle
92 ( Lagerstroemia indica L.) and loquat ( Eriobotrya Lindl.) among others. This high number of incorrect responses skews her ranking in the plant category and demonstrates a lack of plant knowledge with regard to the native aspects compr ising the landscape. These plants do not thrive in the wild in the area (DEP 2009) If all responses are included, including the incorrect non native plants, 8 family members are ranked in the top 10 list of plant names, ranging in age from 28 to 85 year s old, with family members holding the top five spots. The fifth ranked respondent, however, is the non family local respondent with a high number of incorrect responses, which, if limited to correct responses, would eliminate her from the top 1 0 ranking f or plant name knowledge. Notably, the youngest family member at 12 years old, listed more plant names than two family members, tying with an 81 year old male family member. This youngest member also knew more plant names than nine non family local particip ants, tying with a 53 year old local male participant compared to any other participant, despite the fact that she dropped out of high school In fact, none of the participating family members have a college degree, yet had a far greater knowledge than the non family local participants, some of whom had college degrees, including a lawyer, a physician and a person with a Master of Science degree Technical Ecological Knowledge Us e of local food resources is an aspect of traditional ecological knowledge There are two aspects of traditional ecological knowledge: theoretical and technical Theoretical knowledge is the ability to name ecological resources The technical aspect of tra ditional ecological knowledge is the practical skill of finding and using the natural resource, which is a higher level of mastery. More detail about the environment is
93 learned when there is more active involvement This includes where and when to find the resource, as well as how to prepare and use the resource, which is more detail oriented (Setalaphruk and Price 2007) Members of the Mickler family have hunted, gardened, gathered wild fruit, and have exhibited a high level of mastery of local ecological knowledge Faunal Usage assertion that Crackers are expert hunters, the Micklers are a family of hunters When he was growing up, Sid Mickler and his family hunted the following animals for their hides: a l ligator, deer, otter, raccoon and fox Deer hides were used for rugs and chair coverings Otter hides 2010 personal communication) A good raccoon hide sold for $2. Fox hide s sold for 50 cents, and were full of fleas although the fur was highly desired They did not hunt bobcat which was also full of fleas Almost all family members have hunted, including the youngest great granddaughter in this study Two female family mem bers do not hunt Every member responded that they ate wild game, including: deer, squirrel, turkey, frog legs, alligator, rabbits, raccoon, turtles, ducks, doves, quail, rattlesnake, and wild hog Some of these animals are not eaten today, with the younge st family member reporting eating only squirrel All generations also reported that they have gone fishing and shrimping In the past and prior to urban sprawl, the Mickler family hunted alligators for trade similar to the practices documented by Gibson (1996) Alligator hides were sold, but the rest of the alligator was discarded Alligators were too common to be a novelty There was a problem with living in the woods and swamp and disposing of waste meat
94 father caught a 10 foot alligator, dug a m oat, and built a fence to keep it in For about three years, the alligator lived there and they fed it the scrap meat, until it finally escaped Sid Mickler 2010 personal communication). The one eyed alligator was named O le Nelson (Neitz 2006) When Sid restaurant that Sid discovered that alligator tasted good, which he wished he had known growing up. Donna, disp lays an alligator hide in her home depicted in Figure 6 1C. The Mickler family had a beehive when Sid was growing up When asked if the disappeared to o fast to use for any Sid Mickler 2010 personal communication) Sid had beehives during his adult life His daughter Donna also has beehives, and maintains a self service honey stand, complete with a warning about the goat that butts depicted in Figure 6 1A and B Donna used to take a hive over to the front yard enterprise since their land is slate d for a new highway overpass due to the projected traffic increase caused by the Nocatee development Other Mickler family members also have or have had beehives At the time of one interview, a family member had two queen bees and was getting ready to spl it the hive In maintaining bee hives, not only are the Micklers procuring local honey, they are providing a service to all who benefit from the pollination by their bees.
95 When Sid was growing up, the Mickler family would go on outings together to gather food Canaveral to hunt for turtle eggs, which were sold to the bake ry for extra money (Neitz 2006 ) When Sid had kids of his own, he would frequently take them to the beach and cast net for fish Thus the family learned through participation and observation, which is a typical method of learning traditional ecological knowledge (Berkes et al. 2000) Learning in the family setting is also consistent with the transmission of traditional ecolog ical knowledge (Setalaphruk and Price 2007). A B C D Figure 6 1 Photos from Twenty Mile Road in Palm Valley A) service honey stand B) warning sign on honey stand C) Alligator hide and D) bobcat killed when Bu tler Boulevard opened Photo s by author.
96 Floral Usage Just as both William Bartram (1928) and John Muir (1991) noted over a hundred years ago, grape vines were in great abundance throughout the south and in Palm Valley The oldest members of the Mickler family recall ridin g down A1A with their parents, where they would get out and shake the trees that had grape vines wrapped around them, making the abundant grapes fall to the ground as the children gathered them Their mother also made grape jelly from the wild grapes that the family would gather Both Sid and Donna presently have grape arbors on their property Many other native berries were gathered for use, including huckleberries, blue berries, mahaw berries, and elderberries. The mahaw berries were used to make a delic ious jelly that the berries must be picked at the precise time of ripeness or the jelly will either be bitter or will not jell (Rawlings 1961 :221 ) Mahaw trees were intentionally plan ted in their yards. Various members of the Mickler family, both male and female, make homemade jellies and sauces, as depicted in Figure 6 2 When Sid was growing up he spent a lot of time exploring the outdoors. There were times when Sid would be hungry and have to look for food in the wild. Sid reported Sid Mickler 2010 personal communication). Sid also has tried palmetto berries when he was h ungry, much like Dickinson (1961) and his party during their journey to St. Augustine from 1696 169 7 after their shipwreck Most family members have eaten wild berries Sid also reported eating cattail roots
97 Donna also explored eating wild foods For ex ample, she ate some wild sea oats since they seemed like they would be a food, not knowing that some indigenous communities in Central American use sea oats as food (Austin 2004). Stepp 2004). Figure 6 2 Photo by author. Gardening at gardening is important to Cracker culture, gardening continues to be a practice among the Mickler family The Minorcan connection is further asserted through the cultivation of datil peppers, grow n from seeds that are not commercially distributed, and a re treated as secret family treasures The Datil pepper plant is depicted in Figure 6 3B. Datil peppers are a variety of peppers that
98 w as developed in the St. Augustine area in the Minorcan community (WPA 1939b) The datil peppers are a prime example of a Minorcan identity marker Various sauces and condiments are manufactured using datil peppers Many family members reported that they had vegetable and herb gardens with an example depicted in Figure 6 3 A variety of vegetables and herbs have been grown i n these family gardens, including: carrots, cabbage, potatoes (sweet and Irish), snap beans, butter beans, peas, field peas, tomatoes, cucumbers, eggplant, corn, beans, green beans, collards, broccoli, cauliflower, onions, bell peppers, datil peppers, wat ermelon, pumpkin, cantaloupe, turnips, mustard, lettuce, radishes, okra, squash, sunflowers, cilantro, lemon grass, basil (many varieties), mint, chili peppers, and curry. Family members also grew fruit, including: strawberries, persimmons, grapes (many va rieties), peaches, pears, oranges, grapefruit, figs, and mahaw. Surprisingly, the oldest female member of the family did not garden. However, she worked outside of the home in addition to raising children corn, beans and squash continue to be a part of Cracker food culture Only two members of the original Eastern Horticultural Complex are used by this family: sunflowers and squashes, with the small seeded weedy species not in use by this family Like Native and peaches, exotic species have also been incorporated by this family, as demonstrated by the cultivation of exotic herbs such as basil, cila ntro, curry and lemongrass
99 A B C D Figure 6 3 A) garden entrance guarded by a loofa gourd, B) Minorcan datil pepper plant C) herbs in wheel barrow with chia pet donkey, called and D) exotic h erbs with antique tiller Photo s by author. Construction and Crafting One of the factors in determining the presence of traditional or local ecological knowledge is knowledge of the use of the plants (Berkes 1999) There are two types of knowledge: theoretical and technica l (Setalaphruk and Price 2007) Construction and crafting using native products is a prime example of technical ecological knowledge.
100 using logs of cabbage palms, logged fr om the location of where CR 210 once intersected Neck Road Cabbage palm trunks were used as piling for the pier and withstood storms that rocked the pier (Mickler1991:98). This was a private pier, and there was a charge of thirty cents per day to fish Sy dney and his children would catch shrimp for bait to sell by using cornmeal and canned mackerel as bait, and catching the shrimp with a cast net (Neitz 2006). They used a windmill to aerate the water to keep the shrimp alive When there was no wind, they u sed a hand crank (Neitz 2006) A storm destroyed the pier in the late 194 0s (Neitz 2006:99). While there is no longer a pier at that location, St. Johns County purchased land in the location of the historic pier, installed a dune walk over and parking fac Until World War II, the Mickler family harvested cabbage palms, and the p alm fronds were harvested for export and sale to churches for Palm Sunday ceremonies just as observed by Kennedy (1942:6) elsewhere in Florida Most family members have used native plants or animals for crafting. The crafts included: grape vine wreaths, deer antler chandelier, archery bows and arrows, forts from palm fronds, mats from p alm fronds, pine needle baskets, cedar for handles, sticks for bird carving legs, driftwood for carving base, glue from deer, tanned hides for chair covers and rugs, leaves to stain cloth, bees wax for candles, turkey feathers and feet for decorations, Chr istmas decorations using greenery, mistletoe, pine cones and berries. Most family members reported using wild flora and fauna in crafting and play The youngest great granddaughter listed using palmetto fronds for forts and hideouts,
101 bamboo for teepees, g rass for bracelets and dandelions for crowns, necklaces and bracelets, demonstrating hands on education through use and experimentation with the plants This activity supports the fact that learning traditional ecological knowledge is based on interaction with the environment (Chalmers and Fabricus 2007; Zarger and Stepp 2004) Other members of the family make craft objects, including grape vines for wreaths, ferns and other greenery for flower arrangements Various items were used for Christmas decoration s, including pine cones, cedar branches, mulberries, holly, magnolia leaves pine needles, Spanish moss and sea shells. Bees wax was used to make candles Leaves were used to stain cloth and for imprints in concrete floors depicted in Figure 6 4A When a t urkey walked across the wet concrete it left tracks in the floor, which Donna left in place as an item of interest in the history of the creation of the floor depicted in Figure 6 4B She likes to collect material cul ture of prior times, and incorporates them into her style of interior and exterior design The most striking design features are her exterior designs, which she has elevated to an art form One example of incorporating unique, rustic design is the siding of her pole barn, which is the section of wood with the bark on it that is removed by milling depicted in Figure 6 4C The mill would throw it away, so Donna got it and put it to functional and artistic use, as well as recycling Sid Mickler is a well kn own artist in the area and carved birds out of wood, usually with a driftwood base depicted in Figure 6 5 He would give these birds as gifts as well
102 as items for charity auction at the local Catholic Church, Our Lady Star of the Sea He also made gifts f or family members to commemorate special events, such as the birth of a grandchild In addition to crafting, native flora and fauna are displayed in and around the home Shortly after J. Turner Butler Boulevard was opened, providing a new east west highwa y to the beaches, a bobcat was run over A neighbor picked up the carcass and stored it in the freezer intending to mount it one day This neighbor never took the bobcat to the taxidermi st but instead, it was given to Donna, who now proudly displays the f irst road kill bobcat from Butler Boulevard depicted in Figure 6 3D Other natural items are displayed in the home A cypress knee is proudly displayed on the shelf with family pictures depicted in Figure 6 4D There appears to be ongoing social reprodu ction of the Cracker lifestyle and the attendant connections with the environment and traditional ecological knowledge Family plays a large role in this cultural continuation Learning to hunt, fish, and garden is learned in the family and continues to be a source of transmission of traditional ecological knowledge There are also ritual commemorative practices that preserve this tradition and knowledge. The crafting of goods using natural products is one such practice In addition, especially as regards Donna, the history is being preserved by keep ing such items as taxidermied animals that have oral stories that accompany them, such as the stuffed bobcat previously mentioned mantle, much like family photos She also has collected
103 Cat faces are the markings on trees that were made during turpentine harvesting in the past A B C D Figure 6 4 ead photos A) leaf imprint on concrete floor B) unintended turkey tracks on concrete floor C) recycled pine bark for pole barn siding, with barbed wire and antler wreath, and D) cypress knee on mantel with family photos Photo s by author.
104 A B C D Figure 6 5 carved birds A) white ibis B) gift celebrating the birth of a grandchild C) bird and D) bird on driftwood Photo s by author Home Remedies I asked the participants about any home remedies using local plants or animals Due to the low response, I expanded the question to any home remedies not just those using local flora or fauna products This expanded the list to: salt water, spider webs, aloe vera, tulsi, tobacco, Three participants listed spider webs as a remedy to stop bleeding, including one participant who learned of this home remedy when responding as a police officer to a call where a knife fight
105 occurred and a woman was bleeding profusely butchered Another black woman reached up on the porch and swept down all the Tom Voutour 2010, personal communication) Three other participants identified spider webs as a quick remedy when cut in the woods Due to the sparse knowledge of home re medies using native flora or fauna, it appears that any prior knowledge has been lost. This is likely due to the efficacy and convenience of modern remedies. The use of aloe vera, however, indicates a willingness to use home remedies and to adopt non nativ e plants as home remedies The original inhabitants of the Palm Valley area were the Timucuan tribe of Native Americans. Unfortunately, the Timucua n tribe was decimated by disease and warfare during the Spanish colonization Thereafter, Seminoles started inhabiting the area beginning in the 170 0s Seminole remedies, although at least nine do not appear to be plants. Of a previous list of plants used in Native American remedies, the best known pla nts used for Seminole native remedies are: wax myrtle, huckleberry, blue flag or iris, elderberry, button snakeroot, ginseng, goldenrod, mallow, maple, pennyroyal sage, sassafras, saw palmetto, sumac, sundew and willow (Snow and Stans 2001:41) Of these 15 best known Native American plant remedies, 9 were identified as known native plants by the participants in this study Snow and Stans (2001) 23 were identified as known native plants by the participants in this stu dy Despite this knowledge of many plants that have been used for remedies, none of the participants identified them in home remedies Thus the native knowledge of
106 plant remedies did not transmit to this family In fact, very few plants were identified in home remedies The most frequently cited plant used for a home remedy is the non native aloe vera plant The only other plants mentioned were tobacco, wild onions (for a horse remedy), and tulsi tea, an herb from I ndia grown by one participant. Ecological Knowledge of Land and Resource Management Systems The third factor in establishing traditional ecological knowledge is knowledge of the land and resource management system and institutions that govern them (Berkes 1999) As a family of hunters, the Mickle rs are aware of the regulations restricting hunting As would be expected by Putz (2003) the Micklers also use fire to manage the land and dispose of organic debris This study was conducted during a drought, and the family members ceased using fires due to the risk of starting a wildfire, demonstrating knowledge of both the regulations about fire usage as well as practical considerations Threatened and Endangered Species The family exhibited knowledge of species listed by the state or federal governmen t as protected The federally protected species include: Florida panther ( F elis concolor coryi ), Florida black bear ( U rsus americanus floridanus ), wood stork ( M ycteria americana ), manatee ( T richechus manatus ), and indigo snake ( D rymarchon corais couperi ) ( DEP 2009 :156 57) At least two participants have seen a Florida panther Another participant has heard a Florida panther scream, but did not see the panther Florida panthers have more recently been caught on camera by private parties in Palm Valley, both east and west of the Intracoastal Waterway. A Florida black bear was recently killed in Fall 2010 trying to cross I 95 in St. Johns County, Florida he State listed species of special concern identified by the
107 participants are: American alligator ( A lligator mississippiensis ), diamondback rattlesnake ( C rotalus adamanteus ), gopher tortoise, king snake ( L ampropeltis getula getula ), swallow tailed kite ( E lanoides forficatus ), white ibis ( E udocimus albus L. ), snowy egret ( Egretta thula ), roseate spoonbill ( Platalea ajaja L. ), bald eagle ( H aliaeetus leucocephalus L. ), osprey ( P andion haliaetus L. ), painted bunting ( P assirina ciris ), and brown pelican ( P elec anus occidentalis L. )( DEP 2009 :156 57) A few other species were identified generically, such as egret, heron, tern, but were not specifically identified to a degree to which it was determined to be the listed species Most participants have seen bald eagl es in Palm Valley One regulatory change that the family is aware of is the state protection given to gopher tortoises Gopher tortoises have been used to make turtle soup or gopher stew er tortoises and sell them to country folk for $1.00 apiece out of the back of pick up trucks This practice has ceased, although the state wildlife agencies still have problems with poaching S pecies Changes Traditional ecological knowledge includes cha nges in the environment from a historical perspective (Chalmers and Fabricus 2007) Several family members had observed changes to the composition of the animals Two participants noted that there is now a brown lizard that inhabits Palm Valley This is a recognition of the invasion of the Cuban brown anole ( Anolis sagrei ) an exotic species that is now throughout Florida A whitish colored frog, likely the Cuban treefrog ( Osteopilus septentrionalis) has been observed and was identified as originating in Cu ba The Cuban treefrog is considered to be an invasive species and is a threat to biodiversity since it eats native frogs
108 Several participants have seen coyotes ( Canis latrans ) on both sides of the intracoastal waterway In addition, comment was made tha t Canadian geese ( Branta Canadensis) have not been seen in the past, but are present now, appear ing in disturbed settings such as neighborhoo d ponds. Due to the decline in Canadian geese populations in the 196 0s the Florida Fish and Wildlife Service rein troduced Canadian geese to Florida, including adjacent Duval County Canadian geese eat grasses, and are adapted to urbanized areas, including golf courses, and some have ceased to migrate Chinese tallow trees ( Triadica sebifera) were also noted as recent arrivals in Palm Valley In addition to observations about the arrival of new species, there were reports of less frequent observations of otters, toads, frogs, and spiders. The recognition of the changes to the species composition is a classic example o f the usefulness of traditional ecological knowledge especially for land management practices (Davis and Wagner 2003) This information can help in biodiversity conservation, environmental assessments and education (Berkes et al. 1995) Unfortunately there does not appear to be any structured use of this information by organizations or the government Traditional Ecological Knowledge, Cosmology and Ethics Cosmology is the fourth factor in identifying the existence of traditional ecological knowledge (Berke s 1999) Family members have religious icons displayed in the yards. environmental The grotto, poem and verses demonstrate this connection and are depicted in Figure 6 6 the incorporation of environmental features into her belief system A live oak tree was
109 planted by her driveway that she and her husband hauled from many miles away The tree is lopsided, showing the burden of being dragged many miles to its final destination The trees are a significant part of living in the woods Donna lives in an area dominated by pine trees that are planted in rows, demonstrating that the prior land use was a timber farm, which still occurs in the area Living amongst the pine trees, Donna explained that the sound of the wind in the pines is magical and she never heard it until she lived on Twenty Mile road, since her childhood home was not located in a timber area The Twenty Mile Road area is now surrounded by a new town called Nocatee, which is planned to have in excess of 30,000 residents at build out. Prior to this planned development, only a few dozen families inhabited the 15,000 acres that is now a part of Nocatee Portions of Nocatee have been built, including a highway and some internal roads Donna noted that the roads were elevated above the natural surface level of the land, essentially placing her and her neighbors in a hole When the tim e comes, Donna plans to move further out to the country since it is not her desire to live in a planned community She is concerned, however, that whoever purchases her land would have to bring in fill dirt to bring the land up to the level of the surround ing development to keep from being flooded based on the altered hydrology The fill would mean that all of the trees on her land would be destroyed, a fact that clearly bothers her The ecological knowledge of this Cracker family is threatened by the exte nsive residential and commercial growth that has both occurred and been approved for future development The families that still reside in Palm Valley are now surrounded by
110 extensive development While they live on lots that are at least an acre, the open woods, fields and swamps are being drained, bulldozed and paved on a daily basis This loss of habitat will likely result in the loss of these natural educational opportunities that the families experienced in the past With the high density development, a special trip to a park will have to be made to have access to the vast natural resources with which these family members grew up dream house and get rid of the trailer they presently reside in ; however, the new town of Nocatee sprung up in the surrounding 15,000 acres and the plans were put aside In time, her family will leave since they will no longer be living in the country Only the slowed economy has delayed the inevitable departure from Palm Valley A B Figure 6 6. Garden photos A) Hand painted prayer in garden, B) religious grotto in garden Photo s by author.
111 A B Figure 6 7 Series of photos A ) patron saint statue by grape arbor, and B ) e ntrance to Sweet Photo s by author Intergenerational Transmission: Family Comparison The results of this study demonstrate that the Mickler family has a wide ranging knowledge of the flora and fauna of Palm Valley Table 6 4 sets forth the family compari son for animal names Table 6 4 Comparison of f amily k nowledge of a nimal n ames Gender Age Number of Animals Freelisted FEMALE 51 69 MALE 85 53 MALE 62 53 MALE 28 53 FEMALE 46 48 FEMALE 59 43 FEMALE 77 43 FEMALE 26 39 MALE 53 38 MALE 81 35 FEMALE 31 32 FEMALE 91 17 FEMALE 12 14 Table 6 5 sets forth the family comparison for plant names.
112 Table 6 5 Comparison of f amily k nowledge of p lant n ames Gender Age Number of Plants Freelisted FEMAL E 51 65 MALE 28 34 FEMALE 46 33 MALE 62 32 MALE 53 32 MALE 85 30 FEMALE 77 29 FEMALE 59 27 FEMALE 31 19 MALE 81 18 FEMALE 12 18 FEMALE 26 16 FEMALE 91 9 The oldest generation consisted of four family members ranging from 77 91 years old including Sid, his sister, and the two Miers While Sid had a vast knowledge of flora and fauna, and was most often listed as the person within the family with the most knowledge, his 91 year old sister had very limited knowledge Thus the older generati on does not necessarily have the greatest knowledge, and it may well depend on the individual While Sid describe d many activities he participated in related to the land, his sister was not nearly as active in the outdoors This generation ranked second (t hree way tie), sixth, tenth and twelfth in knowledge of animal names In knowledge of plant names, this generation ranked sixth, seventh, tenth and thirteenth in ranking The second generation consisted of five family members ranging in age from 46 to 63 The overall most knowledgeable person was Donna and she is in this generation My key informant, Sid, correctly selected Donna as the person with the most knowledge Donna named 65 plants, with the next closest participant naming 34 plants Her knowledge of plants is remarkable in comparison to the entire sample
113 knowledge of animals is also remarkable, but not quite as extreme in comparison, naming 69 animals, with three people tying for second place, each naming 53 animals Donna clearly has a gr eat knowledge of local flora and fauna The members of this generation ranked first, second (three way tie), fifth, sixth and ninth in knowledge of animal names For knowledge of plant names, this generation placed first, third, two members tied for fourth and eighth place This generation is skewed slightly toward the middle to top rankings The third generation consisted of three members ranging in age from 28 31 years old These three family members ranked second (three way tie), eighth and eleventh in knowledge of animal names, and ranking second, ninth and twelfth in knowledge of plant names Notably, the person who ranked second in both plant and animals names During his first year of school, his teacher informed Donna that he was not doing well, to which she responded that he had more common sense than the adults at the school This study demonstrates that doing well in school does not equate with greater local ecological knowledge daughter While her knowledge of animals was the least in the family, she has a greater knowledge of plants than her peers in this study, as well as a greater knowledge of plants than 11 othe r participants, both family and non family, tying with a 81 year old male family member and a 53 year old male, non family member in knowledge of names of plants It would be worth following up on the family to determine if these trends continue along thes e lines, especially as regards the youngest generation
114 Urban sprawl did not begin in Palm Valley until the late 197 0s Thus the first two generations in this study became adults prior to the urban sprawl impact on the environment. The third generation, however, was born during urban sprawl and a rapidly increasing population in St. Johns County. Nonetheless, members of the third generation continued to have extensive knowledge and use of the native flora and fauna. The families, however, did not live in the new, urban sprawl areas, and were west side of the Intracoastal Waterway, which did not develop into a major sprawl pattern until about the past five years. Thus whi le the third generation was born during the advance of urban sprawl, there were still undeveloped areas during their childhoods. In addition, the Guana State Park and adjacent beaches, rivers and marshes provide fairly intact environmental resources, that now abut urban sprawl, but still provide a haven and natural resource. The fourth generation would be worth follow up study since urban sprawl has reached across Palm Valley and St. Johns County, thereby limiting natural resources and providing a fragmente d environment. With regard to the question of experts, t he two names that had the highest response to the question about which family member had the greatest knowledge were Sid and Donna As it turns out, these two had the greatest knowledge for their resp ective generations of names, but it was clear at the time of the interview that Sid was quite tired, which may have had an impact on the results One non timers persons with the most knowledge, which is consistent with other indigenous groups who have tribal elders as the experts in traditional ecological knowledge
115 CHAPTER 7 CONCLUSION S The Mickler family collectively provided information on all four of Berkes (1999) traditional ecological factors: 1) names of natural phenomena, 2) functions and uses of phenomena, 3) land and resources management systems, 4) cosmology. Thus it is clear that relative newcomers to a region can possess traditional ecologic al knowledge and establish a new line of such a system. As Hill and Helvely (2009) found, the key appears to be a close knit family, where learning and activities take place. Collectively, this family has spent a lot of time in the woods and swamps of Flor ida and have taken note of new species such as Cuban anole, Cuban toad, and Canadian geese as well as the rarity or non existence of species, such as the otter, Florida black bear and Florida panther Even the loss of abundance of spiders, toads and frogs during the years is noted by family members Given the educational levels of the family, with none of the participants having completed any college degrees, and some not completing high school, the knowledge of the local flora and fauna was outstanding In addition, the correct identification of native flora and fauna was excellent In addition to this knowledge, the Mickler family identified native flora and fauna that were not identified in the DEP 2009 While there is some discontinuity in the knowledg e of the local flora and fauna, the knowledge is not being presently lost, and in fact there appears to be some increase in knowledge, especially as it relates to native plants There is a large disparity in plant knowledge as compared to animals, for both Crackers and local participants, and this disparity is worth further thought on the need for more education about plant species, especially given the large number of plant species that exist The fact that the environment has been heavily
116 impacted since c olonization may explain a lesser knowledge of plants. Timbering was and still is a major industry in northeast Florida, and has result ed in mono culture tree farming of slash pines, to the exclusion of many other species, and natural communities that are s upported by such species like long leaf pine. There does not appear to be a loss of traditional ecological knowledge, and certain family members becom e experts, with a keen interest in the environment and outdoors This expertise is recognized by other fam ily members and apparent in the homes and lifestyles of the experts based economy, the younger members of the family still enjoy outdoor activities such as fishing and hunting, and demonstrate a solid knowledge of flora and fauna It appears that perhaps the middle aged members take more interest in this knowledge and are in a position to pass this tradition on to their children and grandchildren, although such a conclusion would need more participants to verify the age differences There also appear to be experts that emerge in each generation, with at least one family member per generation demonstrating a greater knowledge than their cohort While the Mickler family originates from Europe and are therefore immigrants to this area they have established roots in this area Given the fact that there are no recognized indigenous or Native American tribes in this region, and have not been since the first Mickler arrived in Palm Valley, the Micklers filled the niche of the new indigeno us people It appears that Crackers, with their love of the outdoors, backwoods, and living off the land, are the new indigenous people of the area Unfortunately, with the rampant development and commercialization of Florida as a tourism, retirement, comm ercial and residential destination, the Florida Cracker culture too is threatened
117 With the preference for living in the country, urban sprawl threatens this lifestyle, leaving the family members with the decision to either live amongst the urban sprawl wh ere their family has resided for more than a century, or to uproot and move further out into the country While there are limitations to this study, especially based on sample size, which is constrained by family size, the findings were quite clear that t he knowledge is being passed to the new generations It would be worth expanding this study or using this model with other similarly situated Cracker families or similar groups in other parts of the country who have historic roots in remote areas that were once pioneer borderlands The Mickler family is as indigenous a group as can be found in this region The Crackers are a sort of neo indigenous culture in the sense that they occupied backwoods regions that were vacant or being vacat ed by the original Na tive Americans, with whom they shared a love of living with nature Much like many other indigenous groups, they share an oral history style that passes information on from generation to generation The ecological knowledge demonstrated by the Micklers was not learned in school or from books; it was learned from family and experience Thus traditional ecological knowledge can occur in neo indigenous groups and experts can arise amongst them Local peoples, even those who started here as immigrants, can bec ome experts in local ecological knowledge, developing their own traditional ecological knowledge Local, state and federal regulators, as well as educators, should appreciate and acknowledge this alternative form of knowledge and useful resource Families such as the Micklers, and subcultures such as the Florida Cracker culture, should be recognized and sought out in making land use and conservation decisions
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128 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH Deborah Andrews graduated from the University of Maryland with a B achelor of Arts in Psychology Thereaf ter, Deborah graduated from the University of Florida School of Law with honors, joining the law firm of King & Spalding in Washington, D.C., after taking the Florida Bar. Deborah is also a member of the District of Columbia Bar, as well as the bar of vari ous federal courts including the Middle District of Florida, the District of Columbia, the District of Maryland, the Fourth Circuit, the District of Columbia Circuit and the U.S. Supreme Court Bar Deborah later moved to Florida and established her own law practice As an attorney, Deborah practiced environmental and land use law, administrative law, litigation, corporate regulatory matters, estates and trusts While in Florida, Deborah has worked primarily on public interest matters, specializing in envir onmental and land use issues, as well as continuing her civil litigation practice Deborah has worked on a variety of environmental issues, including issues related to wetlands, water quality, beaches, estuaries, wildlife, habitat, potable drinking water a nd consumptive use of water, conservation, park preservation, management and acquisition of public lands, urban sprawl, transportation, coastal construction, and alternative energy sources Deborah was appointed to the St. Johns County Buffer Committee, w hich studied impacts to wetlands and wildlife, and the need to buffer water resources In 2000, Judicial Circuit She has also received several awards from the Sierra Club Deborah has also served on various local community boards and has been active in local and state issues In 2010 Deborah returned to the University of Florida to pursue graduate work in environmental anthropology