The “Old Senator”
Years ago, I stayed at the Howard Johnson Express Inn on San Marco Avenue, and I became acquainted with this old gentleman. No, it’s not somebody in one of these cars, or staying in one of the rooms . . . it’s the huge live oak. Amazingly, this tree has stood exactly in this spot for about 600 years. (That means it was already 150 years old when Pedro Menendez and San Agustín’s first Spanish settlers arrived in 1565). We’ll say it began growing about 1417. It was already somewhere around one hundred years old when Juan Ponce de Leon arrived in “La Florida” in 1513!
Plaza de la Constitucion
The Plaza de la Constitucion is home to the old “slave market” (seen at left) which many argue was never used for that purpose, as well as various monuments, historic artillery, and other interesting gems. The St. Augustine Cathedral Basilica can be seen in the center of the photo. This is a great place to look at, but not so much to walk . . . not only is the traffic constant, but finding a safe place to park along the street can be a nightmare.
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