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|Format Type||:||Kindle Edition|
|Number of Pages||:||136 Pages|
|Status||:||Available For Download|
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The Old City Gates, St. Augustine.—Frontispiece.New EditionWITH ILLUSTRATIONS BYCALVERT SMITHBOSTONLITTLE, BROWN, AND COMPANY1908Copyright, 1899, 1908,By Byrd Spilman Dewey,THIS LITTLE SKETCHIs dedicatedTO ALL WHO HAVE EVER LOVED ONE OF THOSE FAITHFULCREATURES OF WHOM WE, IN OUR IGNORANCEAND VANITY, ARE WONT TO SPEAK AS"THE LOWER ANIMALS."B. S. D.Opening: We do not count the first half-year of our married life, because, during that time we did not live, we boarded.Then we found we had developed a strong appetite for housekeeping, so we began to look about us for a house.In the small northern village where we must live, it was not possible to rent anything that suited us; so we decided to take what we could get until we could manage to build what we wanted.The house we took was one which had originally been built out in the country, but the town had crept around it until it now seemed to be almost in the heart of the village.While we were furnishing and embellishing this our first home, was, I think, the most entirely happy time of our lives.Julius often said, "I know now why the birds always sing so joyously when they are building their nests."No story included - just a whimsy
A short and fairly interesting, if cursory, glimpse into life as a Florida pioneer in the late 19th century. I came upon it after reading an excerpt about St. Augustine at Christmastime which was posted on Facebook. I discovered that the book is now free (public domain) so I thought I'd check it out. It's written as fiction with main characters named Judith and Julius, but it's actually autobiographical from the point of view of its author, Byrd Spilman Dewey. The couple's dog, Bruno, serves as the focal point of the story, with a very wild Florida as the backdrop for the family's tale.The Deweys are pioneers, but not so much in the vein of Laura Ingalls Wilder. They're a young, old-money wealthy white couple who kind of seem more to enjoy the idea of pioneering and homesteading than actually doing it (though maybe that's unfair; perhaps Dewey simply didn't go into that aspect enough in the book). They move around a lot, almost at a whim — St. Augustine, Jacksonville, Zellwood, and Eustis (these last not named specifically in the book, but determined by the intrepid authors of Pioneering Palm Beach: The Deweys and the South Florida Frontier). These locations worked out well for my curiosity as I grew up on the Northeast coast of Florida (and with family still in the Jax area) and now live quite near Zellwood and Eustis. (In real life, the Deweys later moved further south and founded Boynton Beach.)I suppose unsurprisingly for a book written by a rich white woman in 1899, there's a decent amount of casual racism. Also, the Deweys, attempting to absorb as much Florida local flavor as possible, hunt and eat gopher tortoises, possums, alligators, and other such animals, which made me sad to read about (especially as gopher tortoises are now a threatened species). Otherwise, it was a fairly enjoyable read and made me more curious about the Deweys and the impact they had on Florida history.
This delightful novel will warm the heart of any dog lover or person who loves animals. The book opens in the 1880s with a young married couple who decides to pioneer in Florida. The characters of Judith and Julius set out with dear dog Bruno on their grand adventure. Along the way their stories with Bruno show the connection between human and dog as few other books have. Some sad moments are there too with the loss of their infant child. The book is actually an autobiography of the Deweys as they pioneered in Zellwood and Eustis Florida. The Deweys later moved to Palm Beach and pioneered there too as Mrs. Dewey chronicled in her books The Blessed Isle and its Happy Families and From Pine Woods to Palm Groves.Mrs. Dewey's writing style is simple and lyrical, setting a tone of charm and enchantment that entertains as well as it did in 1899.The Dewey's biography Pioneering Palm Beach: The Deweys and the South Florida Frontier was published in 2012 by the History Press.
Adventures of an early Florida pioneer couple and their beloved dog, Bruno. I am not a dog lover, yet found Bruno very endearing. Wholesome, entertaining read.