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

April 2012 Archives

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April 30, 2012

5/1/2012: SAAA Meeting and Lecture (LAMP Research Update)

Posted by: Chuck Meide in LAMP Events, LAMPosts

When: Tuesday, May 1, at 7:00pm
What: St. Augustine Archaeological Association Meeting & Lectures by Local Archaeologists
Where: the Flagler Room, Flagler College
Who:Chuck Meide (Director, LAMP), Robin Moore (St. Johns County Historic Resources Specialist), and Sarah Miller (Florida Public Archaeology Network, Northeast Regional Director)

Join us for the St. Augustine Archaeological Association's last meeting before breaking for the summer! We'll hear from three local archaeologists: Chuck Meide of the Lighthouse Archaeological Maritime Program, St. Johns County Historic Resources Specialist Robin Moore, and FPAN Northeast Director Sarah Miller! Each will be providing their annual update overviewing the results of their program's research in the last year.
This event is free and open to the public.

April 26, 2012

The Bounty Safely Docked in St. Augustine

Posted by: Chuck Meide in In the News, LAMPosts, Shipping News


We blogged the other day about the impending arrival of the replica tallship Bounty. As of 1:00 pm yesterday, after two weeks at sea, the Bounty crossed through the Bridge of Lions and safely docked at the City Marina. Some of our Lighthouse volunteers, including Maurey Keiser, escorted the proud ship in with his own sailboat, some of us watched from the Bridge, and some of us witnessed the arrival with binoculars from the top of the tower. What an exciting day, and what a beautiful ship!

From the St. Augustine Record:

As the HMS Bounty made its way through the Bridge of Lions early Wednesday afternoon, the crowd of people on the bridge burst into applause. Hundreds of others, stationed all along the waterfront from the Castillo de San Marcos to the St. Augustine Municipal Marina, waved and cheered the three-masted wooden vessel as boats of all shapes and types buzzed around the harbor, escorting the ship.

The Bounty will be open for tours Friday through Sunday. Tickets are available at the City Marina.This Saturday marks the 223rd anniversary of the original mutiny on the Bounty, which took place on April 28, 1789.

The St. Augustine Record compiled a great slideshow of the Bounty's arrival, and also this video below. Its great to see a historic sailing ship in our port, and to imagine how for centuries tall masts dotted our harbor like a forest on the water.

4/26/2012 Volunteer Barbeque and Introduction to our New Volunteer Coordinator, Loni Wellman

Posted by: Chuck Meide in Events, LAMP Events, LAMPosts

What: Volunteer Appreciation Barbeque
Where: Front lawn of the Keeper's House, St. Augustine Lighthouse & Museum
When: Thursday, 26 April 2012 from 12:30 to 2:30 pm
Who: All Lighthouse and LAMP volunteers are invited to welcome our new Volunteer Coordinator, Loni Wellman!

We are having a Thank You Barbeque for all volunteers on April 26 from 12:30 until 2:30 here at the Lighthouse front lawn. Come enjoy yummy barbeque (slow-cooked by our own Rick and Lee) and great company! Volunteers will receive a small thank you gift from the St. Augustine Lighthouse and Museum. This will also be an opportunity for everyone to meet Loni, our new Volunteer Coordinator.

After a lengthy search and grueling interview process, we are pleased to announce Loni Wellman as our new Volunteer and Special Projects Coordinator. She will start with the team Monday, April 23, 2012. Loni earned her M.A. in Museum Studies from Johns Hopkins University and her B.A. in history from Flagler College. She has worked at several museums in various capacities, including the Children’s Museum of Memphis, Art and History Museums-Maitland, Orlando Science Center, and the Center for Science and Industry, Toledo. Her experience will be an asset to the organization, and her enthusiasm will undoubtedly be contagious!

We would also like to extend a big THANK YOU to our dedicated and long-time volunteer Lee McConkey for providing his time and input as part of the interview and selection team.

April 25, 2012

4/25/2012 Lecture: Why a Chalupa?

Posted by: Chuck Meide in Events, LAMP Boatworks, LAMP Events, LAMPosts


What: Lecture, "Why a Chalupa?"
Where: St. Augustine Yacht Club
When: Wednesday, April 25, 2012, 5:00-6:30 pm
Who: Dr. Sam Turner, LAMP
Food: Beverages and light dinner available for purchase

This lecture is co-sponsored by the St. Augustine Maritime Heritage Foundation, and LAMP and the First Light Maritime Society. Dr. Sam Turner will be speaking about our joint project, to build an archaeologically and historically authentic replica of a sixteenth century watercraft used by the first Spanish settlers in St. Augustine.

April 24, 2012

The Bounty Comes to St. Augustine!

Posted by: Chuck Meide in Events, In the News, LAMPosts, Shipping News


Tomorrow morning, sometime around 0800, the tall ship Bounty should be arriving off the St. Augustine Inlet and preparing to sail into Matanzas Bay. She is a replica of the well-known British naval vessel which saw the infamous mutiny against Captain Bligh in 1789. Drawing 13 feet of water, she will have to wait for the high tide in order to enter the harbor and cross under the Bridge of Lions and dock at the City Marina, where the public can tour her decks on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.

From the St. Augustine Record:

The HMS Bounty, a replica of one of the most famous ships in the world, was built for the 1962 MGM movie, “Mutiny on the Bounty” starring Marlon Brando and Trevor Howard. The Bounty has also appeared in several other motion pictures over the years, including “Treasure Island,” and two of the “Pirates of the Caribbean” movies starring Johnny Depp.

The Bounty, which has just begun its 2012 East Coast tour, will come through the St. Augustine Inlet, possibly as early as Wednesday, and tie up at the St. Augustine Municipal Marina, where she will be available to the public for tours Friday through Sunday.

Continue reading "The Bounty Comes to St. Augustine!" »

April 19, 2012

5/5/2012 Lecture: The Caribbean World of Juan Ponce de León and His Discovery of Florida

Posted by: Dr. Sam Turner in Education, LAMP Events, LAMPosts


What: Lecture: "The Caribbean World of Juan Ponce de León and His Discovery of Florida"

Where: Flagler College Ringhaver Student Center
When: Saturday May 5, 2012 10:00 - 11:00AM


Where: The Gallery, St. Augustine Lighthouse & Museum
When: Saturday May 5, 2012 1:00 - 2:00PM

Who: Dr. Sam Turner, LAMP

This is one of a number of lectures sponsored by the Florida Humanities Council and organized by Flagler College as part of the Viva Florida 500 commemoration. The series runs in various locations in St. Augustine May 3 -6, 2012. More information on these events can be seen here, but please note the place and time of Dr. Turner's lectures are mistakenly transposed at the linked webpage; the correct times and places are as listed above.

4/19/2012 Lecture: Lost Ships

Posted by: Dr. Sam Turner in LAMP Events, LAMPosts


What: Lecture, "Lost Ships"
Where: R. B. Hunt Elementary School
When: Thursday April 19, 6:30 to 7:30
Who: Dr. Sam Turner, LAMP

Private lecture for a local Boy Scout Troop will discuss the nature of shipwrecks and some of the history associated with wrecks in the St. Augustine area.

Ring Power, with its roots in St. Augustine's maritime industry, celebrates its 50th Anniversary

Posted by: Chuck Meide in In the News, LAMPosts

Diesel Engine Sales Company, or DESCO, one of the largest companies building shrimp trawlers in the world, became the widely recognized and successful Ring Power in 1962. Here are photographs of DESCO employees posing for their 1200th boat launching in the 1960s along with the present-day employees of Ring Power outside the company headquarters at St. John's County World Commerce Center.

Here at the First Light Maritime Society, we have long celebrated the rich history of the shrimping industry centered in St. Augustine (we even had a shrimping float in the Easter Parade one year!) Our port was known for its shrimp boat building, and the most successful of these companies by far was DESCO, or Diesel Engine Sales Company. This company became Ring Power in 1962, and we are pleased to congratulate them on turning 50 years old this year!

You can read more about the company's history and its maritime roots in the great front-page story in the St. Augustine Record. The founder of the company, L.C. "Ring" Ringhaver, worked his way up through the DESCO ranks to become sole owner, and subsequent founder of Ring Power. His youngest son, Randy Ringhaver, now serves as the chairman and president. Mr.Ringhaver is a strong supporter of our community's maritime heritage and the company has provided funding for, among many other community charities, our publication of an upcoming book on St. Augustine's shrimping history--Shrimp Boats Are Coming--written by our partner Ed Long. Another recent donation was made to the museum's collections, a compilation of DESCO company photographs.

April 16, 2012

LAMP Boatworks Update

The most recent project at the LAMP Boatworks. Foreground left is the Chaisson dory tender, a 17' spritsail skiff to right, and a 1760s ship's yawl in the background.

A quick update, since I’ve been remiss in sending one for a while. I hope this finds you all in kindred spirits and enjoying this fine weather. Things around the boatworks have been heating up this spring and continue to simmer at a solid pace.

Continue reading "LAMP Boatworks Update" »

April 15, 2012

Meetings Regarding Oil Exploration off the East Coast

Posted by: Chuck Meide in LAMPosts

BOEM, the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (formerly known as Minerals Management Service), is hosting a series of meetings along the Atlantic coast of the U.S., to solicit public commentary regarding a proposal to use geological and geophysical activities in support of oil and gas exploration and the development of renewable energy sources off the Atlantic coast. Two of those meetings are in Jacksonville on Monday, 16 April 2012.

Continue reading "Meetings Regarding Oil Exploration off the East Coast" »

April 11, 2012

4/11/2012 Lecture: An Underwater Archaeologist's Adventures in Lifelong Learning

Posted by: Chuck Meide in LAMP Events, LAMPosts

What: Lecture, "An Underwater Archaeologist's Adventures in Lifelong Learning"
Who: Chuck Meide
Venue: The 23rd International Conference on College Teaching and Learning
Where: Sawgrass Mariott, Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida

LAMP's Director Chuck Meide was invited as a Featured Speaker at the International Conference on College Teaching and Learning, whose theme this year is "Lifelong Learning."

Continue reading "4/11/2012 Lecture: An Underwater Archaeologist's Adventures in Lifelong Learning" »