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Upcoming event in St. Augustine

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Col. Abolt wanted me to post the information about the St. Augustine event coming up in a couple weeks. I can't figure out the new facebook format, so am posting it on my blog. Here it is:

The Second Seminole War
A 175th Anniversary Event
Welcome Friends!

The 175th anniversary of the 2nd Seminole War (1835-1842) begins this April in historic St. Augustine Fl. The 7th USI Living History Association, along with The Fountain of Youth Park are pleased to present an outstanding living history event. Your participation is greatly needed and appreciated.

The 2nd Seminole War is America’s longest Indian War. It was a transformative event, not only for the American people and its army, but for the Seminoles as well. The city of St. Augustine would play an important role during this conflict. It is fitting that this first event of the 175th Anniversary should take place here.

Contained below is some information to help you prepare for the event.

The dates for the event are April 23-25, 2010. April 23 is a set up day. No formal activities for the public are currently scheduled for that day.

The event will take place at The Fountain of Youth Park in St. Augustine.
The address is:
11 Magnolia Ave
St. Augustine FL 32804

The site is beautiful. There is plenty of shade.

The year is 1835. Tensions are beginning to arise between the citizens of the Florida Territory, the Administration of President Andrew Jackson in Washington, and the Seminole Nation. St. Augustine, is the gateway to Florida. It is filled with citizens, speculators, soldiers and the occasional Seminole venturing into the area.

War has not yet broken out. Hence there will be no armed conflict represented.

Fort Marion is currently garrisoned by US troops. The city militia is gathering for its monthly drill. There is an air of uncertainty. War will erupt in December of 1835.

Florida is not operating in a vacuum. Other national interests are being debated such as tariffs, the so called permanent Indian Frontier, impending statehood for Arkansas, the Jackson administration, the Texas question etc.

This is a first person interpretive event. Participants should be prepared to discuss these themes not only with the public, but amongst themselves. Those uncomfortable with first person interpretation may use third person when speaking with the public.

The following historical impressions are encouraged and desired for this event. US Regular Infantry, Artillery and Dragoons, uniformed and non uniformed city militia, citizens of St. Augustine, Seminoles both male and female.

One of the wonderful things about this event is the location in a city. This is not a far flung wilderness outpost. Ladies and gentlemen are encouraged to sport their finery. St. Augustine was a refined city of long standing.

If you are doing a civilian impression and not falling in as one of the militia, then there is no need to bring long arms or accoutrements.

You may begin arriving on site by noon of Friday April 23. Please check with the Headquarters tent for your camp location. Do not set up your camp until you have been shown your area.

There will be a designated parking area. Unload your gear and move your vehicle to that area. No vehicles may be in camp overnight during the event. This is not Andrew Jackson’s Used Car Lot!

The Fountain of Youth is an admission fee park. When arriving please let the fee booth know you are a part of the 7th INF Living history event.

The overall commander for this event is Steve Abolt. Joe Blunt will serve as liaison between the site and participants. When in military formations COL. Abolt will command the Regular troops. LT Blunt will command the city militia.

All participants staying on site should be in period tents. For those members of the 7th INF the company tents will be there for your use.

All tents which are open to the public should be kept neat and orderly. If you do not want visitors in your tent please keep the flaps tied shut.

During public hours please no slat chairs, and other anachronistic items in the company streets. Firewood will be limited. The Commanding Officer has no compunction about using your slat chair for additional fuel. Do your part and police your area. Eventually the authenticity of any event rests mostly in the individual participants hands.

There will be places to rest and relax in the period tavern. More information on that will be found further down in this package.

There is a modern restroom available for out use along with a water point. There will be no port-lets. The location of the restrooms to the camp is no farther than we encamped at the Spanish Quarter Village two years ago.

Firewood is available for the cook fires only. If you feel you need a campfire…in Florida…in April??? You will need to bring your own. BE AWARE this is an archeological park. No fire pits may be dug! Fires will be placed in designated areas only.

Bedding straw will be provided only if requested prior to the event. If you do not contact us concerning your need of it, then none will be provided. We are trying to keep costs down. Your help is greatly appreciated.

The city of St. Augustine has many fantastic hotels and B&B’s. Those who want a more genteel experience can certainly stay in one of these. All participants staying off site are asked to be on site by 9 a.m. Saturday and Sunday.

Participants have two options for meals during the event. They may opt to feed themselves or pay into the meal plan. Cost of the meal plan is $20 per person. Four meals will be served. There are three meals on Saturday and one on Sunday. All are on their own for Friday.

To participate in the meal plan contact Joe Blunt at mudcatsgt@earthlink.net You may pay prior to the event or at the event. If you pay at the event the payment must be in cash. No checks. However to participate you need to contact Joe now. Don’t procrastinate. Hunger is a gnawing thing!

We are going to be operating a period tavern at the event. The tavern will be set up in COL. Abolt’s marquee. (Actually it is Mrs. COL’s. He bought it for her. They’ll be staying in another tent.)

The tavern will be a first person gathering place. There will be refreshments, games, music, news and gossip of the day. The tavern will operate Friday evening, all day Saturday and into Saturday evening.

Participants who desire alcoholic beverages in the tavern have the following options. They may provide their own in a period bottle. The bottle mist be deposited with the tavern proprietor. You will be served from your own bottle. Or, we will have certain period cocktails available. These are not free. As we cannot sell alcohol, nor would we want to, those desiring these special drinks must purchase, for cash only, period chits. These chits will be exchanged for drinks. Lemonade will be available free of charge.

The following rules for the tavern are hard and fast. There are no exceptions.

1. No smoking in Mrs. COL’s marquee. You may smoke in the area outside under the fly.
2. No drunken or lewd behavior. Do that somewhere else. Violate and you are gone.
3. No consumption of alcohol during public hours.

We want the tavern to become more of a permanent part of events. This is a trial. Further use of the tavern depends on you. We don’t need a tome of rules. Use your common sense. But, please be aware, there is no leeway in regards to unacceptable behavior.

We have never had a problem when we have used this at previous venues. I am sure we won’t have a problem here. But all need to know exactly where I am coming from before participating.

The event opens to the public at 10a.m. Saturday and Sunday. Public programs on Saturday will end at 4:00 pm. The event will end in total at noon on Sunday. A schedule of daily activities will be posted at the Headquarters tent.

Those wishing to demonstrate the firing of long arms will have an area set aside. No random discharge of weapons. Anyone who wishes to fire must provide their own cartridges. It is recommended that all participants, whether Regular or militia have a full cartridge box in case of need during the drill sessions. Participants are responsible to provide their own cartridges.

It should go without saying, but to emphasize: No live rounds are permitted.

Our main area of interpretation will be at the Fountain of Youth Park from 9-4:00. However many of the artillery wish to garrison Ft. Marion. In order to facilitate this and to help the NPS we need to know how many of you will be going there prior to 4:00. The park must issue a press release on April 14. Therefore we need to know your intentions by April 12. Please respond back to Joe Blunt. Mudcatsgt@earthlink.net It is our intention to take everyone to the Castillo after 4. That information is below.

As has been our tradition we will place a Memorial Wreath at the National Cemetery on late Saturday afternoon. We usually march from the Castillo to the Cemetery. This is a distance of 1 mile.

The Fountain of Youth Park is located 1 and ½ miles north of the Castillo. To facilitate the Memorial Wreath service the following will be done. At 4:00 pm the event at the Fountain of Youth Park will wind down. Participants who wish to be a part of the ceremony will be driven to the Castillo.

We will march into the Castillo at 4:30 pm and garrison the post.. At 5 p.m. we will conduct Retreat, lower the flag and fire the evening gun. After the flag has been lodged we will march from the Castillo to the cemetery and place the wreath. One vehicle will proceed to the cemetery and park. This vehicle will ferry people back to their vehicles in the Castillo lot at the conclusion.

It is our plan to have as few vehicles as possible needed for transport. There will be a cargo van to transport a good sized number. Following the ceremony we will proceed back to the Fountain of Youth Park for the evening meal.

Our ceremony is simple, yet moving. Sadly these men have been forgotten in our Nation’s collective memory. While others may not remember, we do. You are encouraged to join us.

Because of individuals like yourself the 175th anniversary of this forgotten time will be a success. Having worked with so many of you in the past I have seen you carry yourselves with pride and honor. This is true for soldiers, civilians, Seminole Warriors and dependents.

I am honored to know you and to know you are considering joining us during the course of the 175th activities. Should you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact me at sacbg7@att.net

I look forward to seeing you all in formation!

I remain with deepest affection and regard,

COL C. Steven Abolt
7th Regiment US Infantry
Officer commanding
Current Location:
the hammock
Current Mood:
accomplished accomplished
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