Galitz JE's

The Galitz Journal for friends and family

My First Field Trip

As a volunteer at the local Magnet School, I was invited to chaperone a field trip today.

Our group of 80 students visited Miami Cemetery and waved hello at the Julia Tuttle grave marker surrounded by palm trees. The other names that seemed familiar were Burdine and Seybold. There was a fancy Jewish cemetery in the center. For the most part the graves were plain. The oldest cemetery in Miami is in Coral Gables and it has more interesting sculptures. The last burial appeared to be in 2000. It was probably 90 degrees in the shade, I’m glad I brought a bottle of frozen water.

Second stop was Lummus Park near Downtown Miami which contained the oldest surviving structure in the city of Miami and the oldest surviving homestead. Both landmarks were moved from their original locations on the Miami River and Wagner Creek (the stream that runs through the Civic Center/UM region) .
Click here for old historical picture

The William English Plantation Slave House / Fort Dallas (c1847) is Miami’s only landmark from the days of slavery. In 1925, it was moved to Lummus Park.

The Wagner Homestead was built (c1857) by a white pioneer, William Wagner age 21, who came to Miami with Everline, his Creole wife, age 38. The interracial marriage was more accepted in the remote frontier.

We received an interesting brochure about the history of Florida which had information about the Black Seminoles and John Horse — an unfamiliar topic for me.

Stopped at Bayside for lunch and then had a guided tour of the Historical Museum. Thought it interesting that our old acquaintance, James Kelly, was honored there for being Miami’s famous Irish fiddler.

I found out that Florida wasn’t named for being a land of flowers. This appellation never made any sense to me. Florida was named because Juan Ponce de León landed on the peninsula on 2 April 1513, during Pascua Florida (Spanish for “Flowery Easter,” referring to the Easter season).

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