Saturday, May 12, 2012

St. Augustine Field Trip

Well, it was an incredible day!  We made great time and got to the Visitor's Center in time to take a look around before walking over to the fort.  "Mrs. HAVE to see the cool water fountain right outside those doors!"

And it was cool!  We read the signs at the cemetery near the fountain and learned that a lot of the people buried there died from Yellow Fever.  One of the girls on the trip had just read Fever 1793 and another was reading it now, so it was great to have a real world to text connection first thing!

We strolled over to the fort and had a wonderful tour by Matt in the Hat!

He was very enthusiastic and had the crowd interested in everything fort related!  We got to sit in the barracks on a very uncomfortable "mattress" made by stuffing fabric with Spanish moss...not Spanish or a moss!  It was a beautiful day for our tour!

After the fort, we were picked up by a trolley that gave us all a spectacular tour of the city.  We saw Henry Flagler's old is now Flagler College, complete with stained glass windows in the cafeteria designed and created by Mr. Flagler's friend, Mr. Tiffany.  Gorgeous!  We went past a hotel that used to house the largest indoor swimming pool.  When people came to St. Augustine, they were there for a long time and needed activities to do while there.  Mr. Flagler saw to it that they were not bored!

After the trolley ride, we were let out at the old jail.  We had our lunch from Subway and then toured the jail.  You DID NOT want to be a "guest" at this jail.  It was a hanging jail, so there were a few cells on Death Row.  The women prisoners had two cells on ground level.  There were no windows, so whatever it felt like outside, it felt that way inside.  Doesn't get too cool in St. Augustine, especially in the summer.  I do not envy those women.  PLUS, they had to cook for the male prisoners all day in the even HOTTER kitchen.  It was interesting to learn that the warden and his family lived on site.  The male section of the prison was just a hallway across from where the children slept.  The prison was designed by the same person who designed Alcatraz, so escaping was not an option.  We got to tour the men's quarters and see just how cramped and scary it would have been.  The lesson learned:  Don't do anything to end up in any prison!

This is our jailhouse tour guide showing us Death Row.

Our trip was very successful.  Students learned a lot about St. Augustine.  They were well behaved and respectful all day.  We thank our chaperones who joined us to help make for a successful trip!

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