Day 5:    Slurping from the Fountain of Youth

Main Page > 2007 Havin' Fun on US 1


Since the Boys savored Savannah a bit too much the night before, they needed to drag themselves out of bed in order to enjoy an early morning walk through the many Squares of Savannah !


Ogling Oglethorpe's Handiwork

Again the vision Oglethorpe had for Savannah was a planned city with many squares for markets and social events. These days the squares are surrounded by incredible Victorian houses and chi-chi, gentrified coffee shops. Which was just fine for Mike and Bone !!


General Oglethorpe and Poseur

Each Square was a "benefactor" and theme based primarily on Founders or Revolutionary War Generals.


Mike, jamming on 'joe and the "juju" !

With all the driving the past four days the Boys needed and wanted this walk, they strolled through all the major squares in Old Town, while dickering about family and politics.


Sunlight shining on the Spanish Moss

As they strolled they observed that each of the Squares had a "benefactor" and theme based primarily on Savannah Founders or Revolutionary War Generals. As Mike and Bone wandered around the sun rose and turned the morning mist into another steamy day, causing the Spanish moss on the trees to "stand out".


The Scene of the Crime !!

The Mercer Mansion

They eventually crossed one of the most famous and infamous spots in Savannah, the scene of the crime, the place where Jim Williams murdered Danny Hansford, The Mercer Mansion !!

Interestingly, as the Boys stood in front of the house, a very refined older women came out in a bathrobe to pick up her newspaper. Despite their grungy appearance the woman politely answered a few questions and conformed that she was in fact the current of the home!


Sherman didn't March Here !!!

The beautiful pictured above served as General William Tecumseh Sherman's Headquarter as he ended his infamous march to the sea from Atlanta. During his march he intended to ravage the countryside destroying the Confederates ability to make war. However when he arrived in Savannah, the area was so beautiful and the citizens so nice. with promises to acquiesce that he did not burn the city to the ground. Once more the powerful partying ju-ju of Savannah made a stern man gentle !!!


General Pulaski, Revolutionary War Hero

Bone and Bones (the mortal remains of General Pulaski) in Pulaski Square


The Scene of the Previous Evenings Late Nite Pizza Raid !!

By 9:00 AM the Boys wanted to start south. There goal for the day was to see St. Augustine and then be strategically placed so that they could be in Key West tomorrow afternoon, with that they bid a fond adieu to sunny Savannah!


The 12th State !!!

After an hour on the road the Boys passed into the last state of their Journey, the Peninsula State of Florida !!!


One old, old City, St Augustine!

Right after entering Florida Mike and Bone know they had to stop at the oldest city in North America, St Augustine !

Just how old is St. Augustine ? St. Augustine was founded by the Spanish in 1565. A few settlements were founded prior to St. Augustine but all failed, including the original Pensacola colony in West Florida, founded by Tristán de Luna y Arellano in 1559, with the area abandoned in 1561 due to hurricanes, famine and warring tribes, and Fort Caroline in what is today Jacksonville, Florida, in 1564.  The city was founded by the Spanish admiral Pedro Menéndez de Avilés on September 8, 1565. Menéndez first sighted land on August 28, the feast day of Augustine of Hippo, and consequently named the settlement San Agustín. Martín de Argüelles was born here one year later in 1566, the first child of European ancestry to be born in what is now the continental United States. This came 21 years before the English settlement at Roanoke Island in Virginia Colony, and 42 years before the successful settlements of Santa Fe, New Mexico, and Jamestown, Virginia. In all the territory under the jurisdiction of the United States, only (European) settlements in Puerto Rico are older than St. Augustine, with the oldest being Caparra, founded in 1508, whose inhabitants relocated and founded San Juan, in 1521.  In 1586 St. Augustine was attacked and burned by Sir Francis Drake. In 1668 it was plundered by pirates and most of the inhabitants were killed. In 1702 and 1740 it was unsuccessfully attacked by British forces from their new colonies in the Carolinas and Georgia. The most serious of these came in the latter year, when James Oglethorpe of Georgia allied himself with Ahaya the Cowkeeper, chief of the Alachua band of the Seminole tribe to lay siege to the city.  Spanish Colonial era buildings still existing in the city include the fortress Castillo de San Marcos. The fortress successfully repelled the British attacks of the 18th century, served as a prison for the Native American leader Osceola in 1837, and was occupied by Union troops during the American Civil War. It was removed from the Army's active duty rolls in 1900 after 205 years of service under five different flags. It is now the Castillo de San Marcos National Monument.


Heated Historical Interpreter !!!

A young fellow in an EXTREMELY hot looking Spanish wool outfit, regaled Mike and Bone with the history of the Castillo de San Marcos !

The National Park "Conquistador" relayed that the Castillo de San Marcos is the fort the Spanish built in St. Augustine to protect the Spanish from British depredations. It was known as Fort Marion from 1821 until 1942, and Fort St. Mark from 1763 until 1784 while under British control.  Over the first hundred years of St. Augustine, the city was defended by nine wooden forts. Following the 1668 attack of the English pirate Robert Searle, it was decided by the Queen Regent of Spain, Mariana, that a masonry fortification be constructed to protect the city. In October 1672 construction began on the fort that would become the Castillo de San Marcos.


Coquina !?!

The Castillo is a masonry star fort made of a stone called "coquina", literally "little shells", made of ancient shells that have bonded together to form a type of stone similar to limestone. Workers were brought in from Havana, Cuba, to construct the fort. The coquina was quarried from Anastasia Island across the bay from the Castillo, and ferried across to the construction site. Construction lasted twenty-three years, being completed in 1695.


Hot day in the Plaza

In 1670, Charles Town (modern-day Charleston, South Carolina) was founded by the British. Being just two days sail from St. Augustine, this was one of the events that spurred the fort's construction. In November 1702, forces under orders from Governor James Moore of Charles Town, set sail from Carolina in an attempt to capture the city.

Upon their arrival at St. Augustine, the British laid siege to the city. All of the city's residents, some 1,200 people, along with all of the fort's soldiers, some 300, remained protected inside the wall of the fort for the next two months during the attack The British cannon had little effect on the walls of the fort. The coquina was very effective at absorbing the impact of the shells, allowing very little damage to the walls themselves. The siege was broken when the Spanish fleet from Havana, Cuba arrived, trapping the British in the bay. The British were forced to burn their ships to prevent them from falling into the Spaniards' hands, and march overland back to Carolina. As they withdrew, they set fire to the city of St. Augustine, burning much of it to the ground.

After the siege of 1702, the Castillo underwent a period of reconstruction. Beginning in 1738, under the supervision of Spanish engineer Pedro Ruiz de Olano, the interior of the fort was redesigned and rebuilt. Interior rooms were made deeper, and vaulted ceilings replaced the original wooden ones. The vaulted ceilings allowed for better protection from bombardments and allowed for cannon to be placed along the gun deck, not just at the corner bastions. The new ceilings required the height of the exterior wall to be increased from 26 to 33 feet


Flags of our Fathers !

Ornery Oglethorpe !   Tensions between Great Britain and Spain had been on the rise for years, and in 1739 Great Britain declared war on Spain. The conflict was known as the War of Jenkins' Ear. As part of the war, British General James Oglethorpe laid siege to the Castillo and the city of St. Augustine. Governor Manuel de Montiano, the Spanish governor of St. Augustine, prepared the defenses of the Castillo and the Spanish colony. Oglethorpe set out from the newly-created colony of Georgia and invaded Spanish-held land. After capturing the Spanish outposts of Fort San Diego, Fort Pupo, Fort Picolata and Fort Mose, he marched his troops toward St. Augustine.

 General Oglethorpe landed his troops on Anastasia Island across the inlet from the Castillo and the city. He began firing on the Castillo in hopes that a sustained bombardment and blockade would force the governor of Florida to surrender. However, a small vessel managed to get through the blockade by evading the lone British ship guarding the Matanzas Inlet to the south of Anastasia Island and set sail for Havana, Cuba. When they returned, they found that the ship guarding the inlet had gone, allowing supplies to be brought to the Castillo without opposition. The coquina walls of the Castillo once again withstood British bombardment, and on the morning of the 38th day of the siege the British withdrew their forces from the area.


Spanish Conquistadors


Mike and Bone Protecting St. Augustine !!

Bone, on Guard Duty !!

Castillo de San Marcos  Protecting our Shores !

Mike and Bone thoroughly enjoyed the visit, but it was too darned hot !! With the sun beating down on them mercilessly, they withered back to the car and headed up a mile to where they hoped some soothing waters would revive their brittle old bones,,,, the elusive Fountain of Youth !


The Fountain of Youth

Fountain of Youth, your joking right !?! When Don Juan Ponce de Leon arrived in America with Columbus on his second voyage, 1493. Leon and his fellows, not Columbus, completed Spain's claim to the New World. Made governor of Puerto Rico in 1509 and later deposed, Ponce de Leon, at his own expense, equipped an expedition to the North in 1513. A few years previous, Amerigo Vespucci had discovered and claimed the South American continent for Spain. Two of the mightiest nations in the world stood opposed for proprietorship of half the globe. Ponce De Leon heard Indians tell of Bimini, a fabulous island in the North.

Historians do not unanimously honor at full value the beautifully romantic story that Ponce was seeking to find the fountain of youth. Yet it was not incredible to men in that age- when the very existence of a New World was hardly believable to those who had not seen it with their own eyes - that those who had touched these shores should believe in greater magic in this strange realm. And certainly there is no legend more appropriate to the beginning of America than that this new land should offer men a vision of eternal youth. Indeed it has! With his able navigator, Anton Alaminos, Ponce sailed and charted the ocean's main artery, the Gulf Stream, shaping the destiny of oceanic transport for all time to come.


" Hey don't get cross with me, X Marks the Spot !!!"

Ponce de Leon?

The Fountain of Youth National Archaeological Park in St. Augustine is the site where Spanish conquistadors first came ashore in what is now the continental United States. On April 3, 1513, in the season of "Pascua Florida" - as Easter Season is known in Spanish (meaning Feast of Flowers) - Ponce de Leon's expedition sighted land in the present vicinity of St. Augustine and named it La Florida. When they landed, the priest who had accompanied the soldiers said a Mass of thanksgiving as the native Timucua Indians looked on. Ponce de Leon took possession of the continent for Spain. In later years pioneering Spaniards came to know St. Augustine Inlet as Barra de la Florida although there is no direct evidence that Ponce de Leon himself gave the inlet this name. With the landing of Ponce de Leon, Spanish claim to Florida was established. Spain was thus set squarely against England on this continent. Ponce de Leon's claim in effect, covered all of America from Florida to Labrador, from coast to coast.

He planted his claim through the cross left behind portrayed above.


Well ?,, Ohh, Well !!!

The Spring House is where the stone cross was found. This is where the Tour Guide provided Mike and Bone water from the "Fountain of Youth", which ensures that they will remain emotionally immature !!

After wandering around a bit more the Boys wanted to continue to head south not only to get closer to Miami, but also get into the air conditioning !!!

Heading South, looking for fevered dykes !!!

Though the sign was intriguing the Boys were on a mission.... Apparently the water from the Fountain of Youth had some effect, so to reclaim a bit of their misspent youth, Mike and Bone wanted to go to Daytona Beach !!!!


Looking for Beaches in Daytona

Daytona is still the place that you can pull right onto and drive down on the beach, so Mike and Bone boogied on down by the board walk, but since it was late in the day in the middle of the week in October, the college sweeties (that the Boys envisioned ogling at) were nowhere to be seen, unfortunately, However the Boardwalk was open and offered Mike and Bone the opportunity to replenish their rapidly depleting Tequila quotient in their bloodstreams !


Margieing the Boardwalk !!!

Walking up to the aging boardwalk the Boys saw that the Restaurant had a full bar and a comely barkeep with a studded tongue to boot ! Mixing Mike and Bone a coupla of margies the young lady regaled the Boys with her sad tale of her and her boyfriend's eviction out of their house during the two rounds of the frozen concoction that helps you hang on. Growing bored with her banter, the booze emboldened the Boys to order a round for the road and they set off for Greater Miami !


Mike and Bone Outbacking Tonight

A very pedestrian end Mike and Bone's goal was to make it to the outskirts of Miami, so after driving for about an hour in the dark the Boys stooped around 8:30 15 miles North of Miami in a very ordinary Clarion Hotel with a strong hankerin' for an Outback Streak. Grabbing some beef and beers was the right mooove for the tired traveller's who retired early around 11:00 PM, but ready for the final assault on US-1 !!