Daniel Garrison Brinton.

A guide-book of Florida and the South, for tourists, invalids and emigrants online

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Online LibraryDaniel Garrison BrintonA guide-book of Florida and the South, for tourists, invalids and emigrants → online text (page 1 of 9)
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Inquirer Printing House and Book Bindery, Lancaster, Penn'a.

1 3\U


This unpretending little book is designed to give the visitor
to Florida such information as will make his trip more useful
and more pleasant. In writing it I have had in mind the ex-
cellent European Guide-Books of Karl Baedeker, the best, to my
mind, ever pubhshed. Though I have not followed his plan
very closely, I have done so to the extent the character of our
country seems to allow.

I have borrowed from him the use of the asterisk (*) to de-
note that the object so designated is especially noteworthy, or
that the hotel thus distinguished is known to me to be well"
kept, either from my own observation or that of friends.

Most of the localities are described from my own notes taken
during an extended tour through the peninsula, but for much
respecting railroad fare, accommodations, and charges, I am in-
debted to a large number of tourists and correspondents wha
have related to me their experience. To all these I express
my warmest thanks for their assistance.

As of course such matters are constantly changing, and as I

shall be most desirous to correct any errors, and bring the

work fully up to the times in future editions, I shall esteem it a

particular favor if those who use this book will forward me any

notes or observation which will aid me in improving it. Such

communications may be addressed "care of Mie -Penn Pub-

/ lisliing Co., 719 Sansom Street, Philadelphia, Penna."

[' ^' , "" The map of the St. John River is based on that drawn by

ki'^ tey friend, Mr. H. Lindenkohlj U. S. Coast Survey.

Philadelphia, August, 1869.


Preface iii

Contents ,.. iv


1. Season for Soutliern Travel 9

2. Preparations for the Journey 10


1. Steamship Lines 13

2. Washington to Kichmond 14

3. Ptichmond to Charleston 18

4. Aiken, S. C, and the Southern Highlands 22

5. Charleston to Savannah 26

6. Savannah to Jacksonville 29


1. Historical. 32

2. Books «,nd Maps 35



3. Physical Geography of Florida. 1. Geographical For-

mation. 2. Soil and Crops. 3. Climate and Health.

4. Vegetable and Animal Life 37

4. The St. John River and St. Augustine (Indian River,) 52

5. Jacksonville to Tallahasse, Quincy, and St. Marks 81

6. The Oklawaha River and the Silver Spring 88

7. Fernandina to Cedar Keys. , 93

8. Key West, the Florida Keys and the Gulf Coast 97

9. The Western Coast (Tampa, Apalachicola, Pensacola,

Mobile) 1C6


I* When is a change of climate advisable ? 115

IE. What climate shall be chosen ? 120

III. Where is the best Southern winter climate? 128

IV. Some hints to Health-Seekers 130

Entered according to Act of CoHgress, in the year 1869, by

in the Clerk's OflB.ce of the District Court of the United States, in
and for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania.






The season for Southern travel commences in Octob '^r
and ends in May. After the latter month the periodi-
cal rains commence in Florida, and the mid-day heat is
relaxing and oppressive. About mid-summer the swamp
miasm begins to pervade the low grounds, and spreads
around them an invisible poisonous exhalation, into
which the travele:r ventures at his peril. This increases
in violence until September, when it loses its power
with the returning cold. When one or two sharp frosts
have been felt in >TewYork or Philadelphia, the dan-
ger is chiefly past; Nevertheless, for mere considera-
tions of health. \N"ovember is soon enough to reach the
Gulf States. Those who- start earlier will do well to
linger in som'e of the matiy attractive spots on their way
through the more Northern States. A congestive chill
is a serious matter, and even the lightest attack of fever
and ague can destroy the pleasure and annul the bene-
fit of a winter's tour.



The comfort of a journey is vastl}'^ enhanced by a few
simple precautions before starting. And if I seem too
minute here, it is because I am writing for many to
whom the little miseries of traveling are real afflic-

Before you leave home have your teeth thoroughly set
in order by a skilful dentist. If there has been a phil-
osopher who could tranquilly bear a jumping toothache,
his name is not on record

A necessaire containing soap, brushes, and all the et-
ceteras of the toilet is indispensable. It is prudent in
many parts of the South to carry your own towels.

Spectacles of plain glass, violet, light green, or light
grey, are often a comfort in the sun and in the cars, and
if the eyes are weak should not be omitted.

A strong, silk musquito net, with fine meshes, will be
highly prized in the autumn nights. A teaspoonful of
carbolic acid or camphor, sprinkled in the room, or an
ointment of cold cream scented with turpentine, will be
found very disagreeable to these insects, and often equ-
ally so to the traveler.

One or two air cushions take up but little room, and
should be provided for every invalid.

Shoes are preferable for ordinary journeys. In their
make, let reason and not fashion rule. The j should be
double soled, have lov/ and broad heels, lace firmly
around the ankle, and fit loosely over the toes. Eubber
boots or overshoes should be abolished, especially from
the invalid's outfit. Kubber overcoats, are equally ob-
jectionable. They are all Unwholesome contrivances.
A pair of easy slippers must always be remembered.


For ladies a hood, for gentlemen a felt hat, are the
proper head-dresses on the route.

In all parts of the South woolen clothing is required
in winter, and flannel under-clothing should be worn by
every one who goes there in pursuit of health. Kext
to flannel, cotton is to be recommended. It is more a
non-conductor of heat than linen, and thus better pro-
tects the body from changes of temperature.

Every person in feeble health— and those who are
robust will not find the suggestion amiss — should have
with them a few cases of devilled ham, sardines, potted
meats, German sausage, or other savory and portable
preparations, which, with the assistance of a few crack-
ers or a piece of bread, will make a good lunch. A
flask of wine or something similar, helps out such an
impromptu meal. Frequently it is much better than
to gulp down a badly cooked dinner in the time allow-
ed by the trains.

A strong umbrella, and a stout pocket knife, are in-
dispensable. Guns, ammunition, rods, and fishing
tackle should always be provided before starting. They
should be well protected from dampness, especially the
guns and powder. Florida is the paradise of the sports-
man, and those who are able should not omit to have a
'* camp hunt" while there. Tents, camp equipage, and
the greater part of the supplies should be purchased in
the Srorth, as they are dearer and not often the best
in the Sou het-n cities.

On arriving at a hotel, first see that your baggage is
safe •, then that your room is well aired, and the sheets
on the bed dry.
It is always well in traveling to have baggage enough


— always a bother to have too much. A good sized
leather traveling-bag will do for the single man ; but
where a lady is attached, a medium sized leather trunk,
which can be expressed or " checked through," and a
light traveling-bag, to be taken into the cars and state-
rooms, and carried in the hand, are the requisites.

Money can be transmitted so readily by certified check
or draft, that a tourist need not carry much with him.
He should, however, have a reserve fund about him, so
as to be prepared for one of those disagreeable emer-
gencies which nearly every veteran traveler has at some
time experienced.

Every one who visits a strange land should strive to
interest himself in its condition, resources, history and
peculiarities. The invalid, beyond all others, should
cultivate an interest in his surroundings. Nothing so
well sustains a failing body as an active mind. For
that purpose, local histories, maps, etc., should always
be purchased. I have indicated, under the different
cities, what works there are of this kind in the market,
and, in the introductory remarks on Florida, have men-
tioned several of a more general character, which should
be purchased and read before going there. (For fur-
ther hints see the last chapter of this work.)




In visiting the South Atlantic States the tourist from
the North has a choice of a number of routes.

Steamers leave ISTew York for Charleston, Savannah,
Fernandina, and Key West, advertisements of which
giving days of sailing can be seen m the principal daily
papers. Philadelphia has regular steamship lines to
Charleston, Savannah, and Key West. From Charles-
ton and Savannah boats run every other daytoFernan-
dina, Jacksonville, and Palatka on the St. John river.
The whole or a portion of a journey to Florida can be
accomplished by water, and the steamships are decidedly
preferable to the cars for those who do not suffer much
from sea sickness.

The most direct route by railroad is the " Atlantic
Coast Line," by way of Washington, Acquia Creek,
Richmond, Petersburg, Weldon, Wilmington, and
Charleston. From Philadelphia to Wilmington the
time is 28 hours, fare $21.90; to Charleston 40 hours,
fare $24.00 ; to Savannah, fare $33.00 ; to Jacksonville,
fare $38.65. Through tickets and full information can
be obtained in Kew York at 193 Broadway ; Philadel-
phia 828 Chestnut Street.


It is proposed to establish a direct line of steamers
from Kew York to Jacksonville. It is to be hoped that
this will be done promptly, as it will greatly increase
trade and travel.


Distance, 130 miles; time 7.30 hours.

Until the tourist leaves Washington, he is on the
beaten track of travel, and needs no hints for his guid-
ance ; or, if he does, can find them in abundance.
Turning his face southward, he may leave our capital
either in the cars from the Baltimore depot to Alexan-
dria and Acquia Creek, or, what is to be recommended
as the more pleasant alternative, he may go by steam-
boat to this station, a distance of 55 miles. The banks
of the Potomac present an attractive diversity of high-
land and meadow. A glimpse is caught of Mt. Vernon,
and those who desire it can stop and visit those scenes
once so dear to him whose memory is dear to us all.
The reminiscences, however, which one acquires by a
visit to Mount Yernon are rarely satisfactory.

From Acquia Creek landing the railroad passes
through a country still betraying the sears and scars of
conflict, though, happily, it is recovering in some meas-
ure from those sad experiences. Frtdericksburg (15
miles; hotel, the Planter's House, poor,) may have
enough of interest to induce some one to "layover" a
train. It is an unattractive spot, except for its histori-
cal associations. These are so fresh in the memory of
most that it is unnecessary to mention them.

Beyond Fredericksburg a number of stations are
passed — none of any size. The distance to Kichmond is
60 miles.



Hotels. — Ballard House ($4.00 per day) ; Spottsvvood,
Exchange (each $2 per day) ; Ford's Hotel on Capitol
Square ($2.50 per day); St. Charles ($2.00.)

Boarding ifowscs.— Arlington House, corner Main and
6th street; Valentine House, on Capitol Square ; Rich-
mond House, corner Governor and Ross streets; Mrs.
Bidgood's, 61 East Main street; Mrs. Brander, 107 E.
Franklin street, (all about $12.00 per week).

Telegraph Offices in Spottswood and Exchange Hotels-

Reading Rooms at the Y. M. C. A. The Virginia State
Library was pillaged in 1865, and the Virginia Histori-
cal Library bnrned.

Theatre. — The Richmond Theatre has a respectable
stock company, and is visited by most of the stars of
the stage.

Booksellers. — West & Johnson, 1006 Main St., (Brin-
ton's Guide-Booh.)

Churches of all denominations.

Richmond derives it name from the ancient burgh of
the same name on the Thames. The word is supposed
to be a corruption of rotre mont, and applies very well
to the modern namesake. Like Rome, it is seated upon
seven hills, and if it has never commanded the world,
it will be forever famous as the seat of the government
of the whilom Confederacy. It is situated at the Great
Falls of the James river, on the Richmond and Shoccoe
Mils, between which flows the Shoccoe creek.

In the early maps of the colony, the site of the present
city is marked as " Byrd's Warehouse," an ancient tracl-


ing post, we can imagine, said to Lave stood where the
Exchange hotel is now built. In 1742 the city was es-
tablished, and has ever since been the chief center of
Virginian life.

The capitol is a showy edifice, on Shoccoe hill. The
plan was taken from the Maison Quarre, of Nismes,
with some modifications, among others the Doric pillars.
It stands in the midst of a square of eight acres. In
this building the Confederate Congress held its sessions.
It contains, among other objects, a well cut statue of
Washington, dating from the last century, '■^ fait par
Houdin, citoi/en Francais,^'' as we learn from the inscrip-
tion, and a bust of Lafayette. Two relics of the old
colonial times are exhibited — the one a carved chair
which once belonged to the house of Burgesses, of
Korfolk — the other a huge stove, of singular shape,
bearing the colonial arms of Virginia in relief. This
latter is the product of a certain Buzaglo. It is eight or
ten feet high, and slopes from base to summit. A let-
ter of the inventor is extant, addressed to Lord Bote-
tourt, in which he speaks of it as " excelled anything
ever seen of the kind, and a masterpiece not to be ex-
celled in all Europe."

In the square around the capitol is an* equestrian
statue of Gen. George Washington, constructed by
Crawford, and erected February 22, 1858. Its total
height is sixty feet. Around its base are six pedestals,
upon which are figures of Thomas Jefferson, Patrick
Henry, Marshall, Gov. Kelson, George Mason and An-
drew Lewis, the latter an Indian fighter, once of celeb-
rity in Western Virginia.

To the left of this is a small statue of Henry Clay,


erected by the ladies of Virginia, made by Hart, and
inaugurated in 1860.

On the eastern side of the square is the residence of
the Governor, and on another side tlie City Hall, a
handsome edifice with Doric columns.

St. John's Church, on Richmond Hill, is the oldest
church edifice in the city. The tower and belfry are,
however, a modern addition. From its church-yard,
dotted with ancient tombs, one of the most charming
views of the city can be obtained. In this ciiurch, in
1775, the young and brilliant orator, Patrick Henry,
delivered his famous oration before the Virginia Con-
vention, which concludes with the famous words, "Give
me liberty, or give me death."

The Tredegar Iron Works, Libby Prison, at the cor-
ner of Thirty-fifth and Main streets. Belle Isle, and
Castle Thunder, will be visited by most tourists as ob-
jects of interest. ^Hollywood cemetery, near the city
is a quiet and beautiful spot, well deserving a visic.

In the fire of April 2, 1865, about one thousand build-
ings Were destroyed, but the ravages of that disastrous
epoch are now nearly concealed by new and handsome

The Falls of the James are properly rapids, the bed
of the river making a descent of only eighty feet in
two miles. They furnish a valuable water-power.

^Hollywood Cemetery, one mile from the city, is a
spot of great natural beauty. Here lie the remains of
Presidents Monroe and Tyler, and other distinguished
men, as well as of many thousand Confederate soldiers.
A rough granite monument has recently been erected
m memory of the latter.


Butler's Dutch Gap and Drewy's Bluff, and the fa-
mous battle fields near the city, will be visited with in-
terest by many.

Those who would visit the mineral springs of Virginia,
will find ample information in Dr. Moorhead's volume
on them, or in that by Mr. Burke. Both can be ob-
tained of West & Johnson, booksellers, Main street.

The Katural Bridge, one of the most remarkable cu-
riositiea in the State, 'is best approached by way of
Lynchburg, from which place it is distant 35 miles, by


From Richmond to Petersburg is 32 miles on the
Richmond and Petersburg railway. The earthworks
and fortifications around the latter town, memorials of
our recent conflict, are well worth a visit from those
who have not already seen too many such curiosities to
care for more.

64 miles beyond Petersburg the train reaches Weldon,
on the Roanoke river, a few miles within the boundary
of Korth Carolina [GoucVs Hotel.)

From "Weldon to Groldsboro, the next stopping place
of importance, is 78 miles, 7.30 hours. It is a place of
about 5000 inhabitants, half white and half colored.

Hotels. — Griswold Hotel, Gregory's Hotel, both $3
per day.

Boarding Househj Mrs Tompkms, $2 per day.

The road here intersects the IS'orth Carolina, and At-
lantic andlSTorth Carolina railways, the latter running to
Morehead city and Beaufort, on the coast, (95 miles)
and the former to Raleigh, the capitol of the State, (48


miles) and interior towns. From Goldsboro to Wil-
mington is 84 miles.

Hotels. — Purcell House, $4 per day ; Fulton House,
$3 per day.

Boarding Houses. — McRea House, Brock's Exchange,
about $2 per day, $40.00 per month.

Newspapers. — Post^ republican, Journal, democratic.

Steamboat Line to Fayetteville , N. C, (130 miles, fare
$5.00) ; to Sraithville, at the mouth of Cape Fear, (30
miles, fare $1.50.)

Wilmington (16,000 inhabitants) is on Cape Fear
river, 25 miles from the sea. It is well built. The staples
are turpentine and resinous products. The vicinity is
flat and saudy. At this point the railroad changes from
the Kew York guage, 5 jfeet, to the Charleston guage,
4 feet 8 inches.

The journey from Richmond to Charleston can also
be made by way of Greensboro, Charlotte and Colum-
bia. This route leads through the interior of the coun-
try, and, though longer, offers a more diversified scene
to the eye.

To Greensboro, on the Richmond & Danville and
Piedmont Railways, is 189 miles ; thence on the Korth
Carolina Railway to Charlotte, 93 miles; then on the
Charlotte & S. Carolina railway to Columbia, S. C, 107
miles (Mckerson's hotel, $3.00 per day, newly fitted up) ;
thence by the Columbia Branch of the South Carolina
Railway to Charleston, 130 miles.

Salisbury, K. C, 150 miles south of Greensboro, is the
most convenient point to enter the celebrated mountain
regions of Korth Carolina. A railway runs thence to
Morgantown, in the midst of the sublime scenery of the


Black mountains, and in close proximit}'' to the beauti-
ful falls of the Catawba. Charlotte {hotel^ the Mansion
House), is in the center of the gold region of iSTorth
Carolina, and the site of a United States Branch Mint.
It is also the scene of the battle of Guilford Court House,
during the revolutionary war.

The capitol, in Columbia, is considered a very hand-
some building.


Hotels. — ^Charleston Hotel, Mills House (newly fur-
nished), both on Meeting Street. Charges, $4.00 per
day. ^Pavilion Hotel, Mr. Butterfield, proprietor, $3.00
per day, also on Meeting Street. Planter's Hotel, Church
Street, Victoria House, King Street, both $2.50 per day.

Telegraph Office^ on Broad near Church Street ; branch
office in Charleston Hotel.

Post Office^ on Hazel Street, near Meeting.

Churcfies. — Roman Catholic, Episcopal, Huguenot,
Methodist, &c.

Theatre^ at the corner of King and Market Streets.

Bathing Houses. — One of salt water near the battery ;
two, with water of the artesian well, one at the well,
the other in the Charleston Hotel.

Livery Stable, 21 Pinckney Street, connected with the
Charleston Hotel.

Street Cars run on several of the streets ; fare, 10 cts.,
15 tickets for $1.00. All the hotels have omnibuses
waiting at the depots.

Physician. — Dr. Geo. Caulier, 158 Meeting Street.

Newspapers, — The Daily Courier, the Daily News.

Depots. — The depot of the iSTortheastern E. R. from
Wilmington to the north, is at the corner of Chapel

^ 21

and Washington Sts. ; that of the road to Savannah is
at the foot of Mill street ; and that of the S. C. R. R.
to Aikin, Augusta, Atlanta, etc., is in Line street, be-
tween King and Meeting streets.

Bookseller. — John Russell, 288 King street. (Brin-
ton's Guide-Book.)

Libraries. — Charleston library, 30,000 vols. ; Appren-
tices' library, 12,000 vols.

Charleston claims 40,000 inhabitants, the whites and
blacks being about equal in number. It is curious that
since the war the mortality of the latter has been twice
as great as of the whites.

The city is seven miles from the ocean at the junc-
tion of the Ashley and Cooper rivers, and has an ex-
cellent harbor, surrounded by works of defence. On
the sea line is Port Moultrie ; Castle Pinkney stands
at the entrance to the city ; south of the latter is Fort
Ripley, built of palmetto logs ; while in the midst of
the harbor stands the famous Fort Sumter.

The ravages caused by the terrible events of the late
war have yet been only very partially repaired in
Charleston. The greater part of the burnt district is
deserted and waste.

The history of Charleston,, previous to that event, is
not of conspicuous interest. The city was first com-
menced by English settlers, in 1672, and for a long time
had a struggling existence. Many of its early inhabi-
tants were Huguenots, who fled thither to escape the
persecutions which followed the revocation of the edict
of Kantes. A church is still maintained in which their
ancient worship is celebrated.


Of public buildings, the ancient church of St. Mich-
ael's, built about 1750, has some claim to architectural

The fashionable quarter of the city is the Battery.
*Magnolia cemetery, on the Cooper river, is well
worth a visit. It is one of the most beautiful in the
South. It was laid out in 1850, and contains some hand-
some monuments.

The Custom House is a fine building, of white marble.

Those who wish to visit Fort Sumter, and review the
scenes of 1861, can be accommodated by a small sailing
vessel, which leaves the wharf every morning at 10.30

In the church-yard of St. Philip's is the tomb of John
C. Calhoun. A slab, bearing the single word "Calhoun,"
marks the spot.

The museum of the Medical College is considered
one of the finest in the United States.


"Within the past ten years the advantages for invalids
of a residence in the highlands of the Carolinas, Geor-
gia and Tennessee have been repeatedly urged on the
public. The climate in these localities is dry and mild,
exceedingly well adapted, therefore, for such cases as
find the severe cold of Minnesota irritating, and the
moist warmth of Florida enervating. Aiken, S. C,
Atlanta, Ga., Lookout Mountain, near Chattanooga,
East Tennessee, and other localities offer good ac-
commodations, and have almost equal advantages in


point of climate. Like other resorts, they do not agree
with all invalids, but they are suitable for a large class.

One of the best known and most eligible is
AiKEK, South Carolina.

Distance from Charleston, by the South Carolina
Railroad, 120 miles. Time 8 hours. Two trains daily.

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Online LibraryDaniel Garrison BrintonA guide-book of Florida and the South, for tourists, invalids and emigrants → online text (page 1 of 9)