Thursday, March 31, 2016

April 01, 2016

Memorial Presbyterian Church

Out of all the beauty and grandeur the lovely 19TH century Venetian-style church has to offer, I found myself fascinated by this model of the original chapel. This coquina structure, built in the early 1830s along St. George Street across from the present-day parish school, was torn down after the new, larger church was dedicated in 1890. So if you would have visited St. Augustine in the Victorian era, all decked out in your bustles and parasols and bowties and bowler hats, and you decided to stroll St. George Street to explore the town’s houses of worship, this is what you would have seen. Though the Memorial church is much grander, this smaller chapel has an air of simple beauty about it.

St. George Street

Usually I try to avoid getting vehicles in my photos, but I think the trolley adds to the flavor of the image. We were standing along pedestrian-only St. George Street, looking down toward Hypolita Street with its unique shops, and there came a Red Train, one of the city’s most famous features. At right is the Columbia Restaurant, while the tree with the vine crawling up its trunk is rather interesting. I love fantasizing about living in (or at least vacationing in) the upper story of the house at left, sitting on the balcony on a cool Florida morning, smelling the salt air and watching the sunrise. (Now I’ve made myself “homesick” again. Great job, me). 

(c) 2015-2016 St. Augustine Fridays

Thursday, March 10, 2016

March 11, 2016

**It’s vacation time. Next post will be Friday, April 01ST**

 Castillo de San Marcos

This old fort is a photographer’s paradise, a hodgepodge of angles and symmetry. This particular room was part of the old officers’ quarters and, in an earlier incarnation, functioned as the Castillo’s first chapel. (The current chapel is located across the courtyard and to the right). I happen to think the modern benches cheapen the photo, but having visited during many a heat wave, I can see why they’re necessary. The Spanish well (seen at right) adds a bit more historicity to the photo. If you’re wondering about the door on the right, it’s now called the Indian Room and was used in Spanish times as a provisions room.

Fountain of Youth

Here’s another view of the Spanish-style mission church built at the Fountain of Youth Park a few years back. I love the simplicity of the benches and the similar color and texture of the wall, as well as the old-fashioned lantern hanging overhead. (You can see the bottom of it in this shot). I’m not sure how long church services were in the late 1500s, but I can imagine folks sitting on these benches wished they were just a little shorter. 

(c) 2015-2016 St. Augustine Fridays

Thursday, March 3, 2016

March 04, 2016

Mission Nombre de Dios

This scene has so much going for it, I don’t know where to start! First of all, this is called the Rustic Altar, and is a replica of the first primitive altar used at St. Augustine’s founding in September 1565. The backdrop is amazingly beautiful . . . clear blue waters, palms, marshes in the distance. At far left you can see part of the Fountain of Youth Park complex. Most interesting to me is the gravestone at right, as I am a self-proclaimed taphophile and love not only reading the names on stones but researching people’s lives. I went through the entire Find A Grave database to discover the identity of the person, and as close as I can tell, the stone belongs to Maggie Scott, who was the wife of C. Scott and died in November 1890 just before her 20TH birthday. If anyone has visited this stone and knows whether or not it is indeed Maggie Scott’s, feel free to let me know in the comments.

St. George Street

If you love watching historical interpreters do things old-school, Colonial Quarter’s the place for you! (Honestly, they didn’t pay me to write that . . . I’m just being cheesy). Here you can see a 16TH century-style caravel rising from the ground, nail by nail, plank by plank. Fascinating stuff. I wouldn’t recommend pestering the workers if any happen to be on hand, but they’re glad to answer questions. The plaque at right explains the what’s, why’s, and how’s of the project. And no, they probably won’t let anyone just walk in and start hammering away without a care in the world, though I admit it would probably cross my mind.

(c) 2015-2016 St. Augustine Fridays