Thursday, July 13, 2017

July 14, 2017

Castillo de San Marcos

Here’s a view of the Castillo’s north wall seen from the south curtain of the gun deck. Note the contrast of new and old coquina, and the lack of strangers’ heads poking from every available aperture (yet another perk of being some of the first people there in the morning.) The cannon seen at center right is “El Milanes”, forged in Seville in 1764. (Yes, the artillery at the Castillo is authentic, and covers a variety of time periods). Various pieces can be seen on this photo. Fun fact: Before the reconstruction period which ended in 1756, the rooms were smaller and had flat roofs. In the 1740s/50s, each chamber was vaulted and enlarged and the courtyard became much smaller.

Pena-Peck House

The Pena-Peck House along St. George Street is a historic beauty with an interesting past. Once inhabited by Dr. Seth Peck and his family, it’s now owned by the St. Augustine Women’s Exchange and hosts a small, classy gift shop. If you time your visit right, you may be able to tour this home full of 19TH century furnishings, though I’ve never had the opportunity to do so. Be warned that opening times may be subject to small tweaks and you’ll have to hope for the best.

(c) 2015-2017 St. Augustine Fridays

Thursday, July 6, 2017

July 07, 2017

Fountain of Youth Park

The ‘Founders Riverwalk’ at the Fountain of Youth Park is one peaceful place. Blue skies, fantastic scenery, usually pretty quiet . . . this pier was damaged by Hurricane Matthew last October, but the folks in charge had it up and running by our trip in March of this year. I’m always tempted to sit and close my eyes to listen to the rushing of the inlet, especially if it’s warm and sunny with a nice breeze. Too bad they don't let you sleep here overnight.

Tolomato Lane

This pretty thoroughfare is called Tolomato Lane, named for the Tolomato Cemetery which you’ll find if you walk the entirety of the street, turn left and cross Cordova Street. I think this photo has a very tropical look for some reason, indicative of St. Augustine’s unique personality and charm. Note the gate and the tabby wall at left, and the colorful “Old City Gates” plaque” on Kilwin’s Chocolates at right. The bronze bust which can be seen above the gate is located on the Oldest Wooden Schoolhouse grounds.

(c) 2015-2017 St. Augustine Fridays

Thursday, June 29, 2017

June 30, 2017

Castillo de San Marcos

Whether you’re a kid, a history enthusiast, an artillery-lover, or a random person who’s never had the pleasure of being up close and personal with an 18TH century cannon, the Castillo gun deck is the place for you. When I first visited in 2001, I knew I was going to love this place because I was already in love with the Civil War era artillery at Gettysburg National Military Park. Most if not all of these pieces are much older than that. Unfortunately, I don’t know the age of this particular piece shown on the photo.

Fort Matanzas

Fort Matanzas, built circa 1742, hasn’t had it easy. Last October during Hurricane Matthew was the most recent blow. The ferry service, which was suspended when damages were assessed, just opened recently after eight months of repair. This historic inlet known for the massacre of French Protestants in 1565 has had more than its fair share of unrest, but it has remained beautiful after all these years. The sand, sea, and sky were here long before the Spaniards arrived.

(c) 2015-2017 St. Augustine Fridays