A collection of blogs and musings from the people that work at the St. Augustine Lighthouse & Museum - Florida's Finest Lightstation.

September 2009 Archives

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September 28, 2009

09/28/09 Presentation: "Gator in the Weeds: Exploring the History of the Steamboat Alligator and other Ocklawaha Riverboats" (UPDATED)

The Alligator as she last appeared.

Presentation Title: "Gator in the Weeds: Exploring the History of the Steamboat Alligator and other Ocklawaha Riverboats"
Speaker: Mr. Brendan Burke, LAMP
When: Monday, September 28th, 2009, at 7:00 pm
Where: Clay County Historical Society, OId Clay County Courthouse, Green Cove Springs.

LAMP archaeologist Brendan Burke will be giving a presentation focusing on the past year's search for the Alligator. Operating as a passenger vessel on the Ocklawaha River during the late 19th century and into the early 20th century, the Alligator was also converted into one of Florida's earliest reserach vessels. C. B. Moore's hunt for native mound sites was, for a number of year, headquartered onboard the Alligator. Last winter LAMP was involved in a search for the Alligator and has been investigating one wreck site in particular on the shores of Crescent Lake. Come hear about our expedition to find the Alligator!


Directions: Take your best route from St. Augustine to Green Cove Springs. Cross the Shands Bridge and follow the road until you hit Hwy 17. At this highway, turn right. At the second lighted intersection in town, turn left on to Walnut St. Follow the road around for about five blocks. The Old 1890's County Courthouse will be on the left side of the road. You can park on the road or in the parking lot of the School Board opposite. The lecture will be held in the downstairs meeting room.

September 25, 2009

The Newest Shipwreck in the Oldest Port

Posted by: Chuck Meide in LAMPosts, Shipping News

The 69' fire rescue boat Patriot, on route from Canada to Tampa, ran aground at the inlet attempting to make it into St. Augustine's harbor for the night. She was eventually pulled to safety by the tugboat Albert Pike, seen in the background.

Its the same story that it ever was. Late Wednesday night a vessel on route from Canada to Tampa made its way into the St. Augustine Inlet, seeking a safe refuge for the remainder of the night. It is probably safe to assume that the captain and crew were unfamiliar with the dynamic environmental conditions that prevail in the waters around our nation's oldest port. And so around 11 pm the 69' vessel found itself stranded near Porpoise Point at the north end of the inlet, as have ships for centuries attempting to make safe harbor in St. Augustine.

Continue reading "The Newest Shipwreck in the Oldest Port" »

September 22, 2009

An Adventure Through Pacific Time (Guest Blog by former LAMP intern Karson Winslow)

Note from Chuck Meide, LAMP Director: Karson Winslow, a graduate student from Flinders University in Australia, was one of our two first LAMP interns under the First Coast Maritime Archaeology Project. She worked with us from July to October 2007. When she left us, it was one of the few times that our entire LAMP staff was jealous of our intern's next job, which was cruising the South Seas as a crew member on board an authentic tall sailing ship. At that time we invited her to guest blog her experiences, and now that she is back home in the U.S.A. she has taken us up on her offer. Prepare to enjoy her account of blue seas, green isles, white canvas, and wooden decks . . .

I spent a year doing something that people only dream about, if they know it even exists. When I discovered a way to see the South Pacific through the eyes of an early explorer, I knew there was no way to let an opportunity like this sail away.

After saying farewell to the Lighthouse team in St. Augustine, I joined the Tall Ship Soren Larsen in Auckland, New Zealand with only a small notion of what would lay ahead.

Continue reading "An Adventure Through Pacific Time (Guest Blog by former LAMP intern Karson Winslow)" »

September 15, 2009

The Third Annual Papa Jim Regatta

Posted by: Brendan Burke in LAMPosts

Race boats at the Hartley dock ready for the Papa Jim Regatta.

There was extra cause for celebration and excitement along the banks of Salt Run this past Labor Day. For the past three years the Papa Jim Regatta, in honor of the late Jim Hartley, has been hosted by the Hartley family and SPARS, a local group dedicated towards teaching people of all ages, especially youth, the benefits of sailing.

Continue reading "The Third Annual Papa Jim Regatta" »

September 1, 2009

09/01/09 Presentation: "Florida's Fleet: An Ebb Tide of Shrimping"


Presentation Title:
Florida's Fleet: An Ebb Tide of Shrimping
Speaker: Brendan Burke
Time: Tuesday, September 1st, 2009, 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm
Place: Flagler Room, Flagler College, downtown St. Augustine

Join Brendan Burke, Maritime Archaeologist at LAMP (Lighthouse Archaeological Maritime Program) in St. Augustine, as he presents the findings of a recent oral history and archival research project concerning the area's long and active shrimping and shrimp boat building industries.