Volunteer Reception at the Lincolnville Museum

On July 29th, The Board of Directors of The Friends of Lincolnville, Inc. held a reception for its volunteers. It also gave a chance for those interested in supporting the museum, to learn more about the museum, its projects and plans for the future. The Lincolnville Museum is a treasure trove of history, not only African American, but the history of this region related to all groups that settled here.

Honoring First Lieutenant George Friedlander

The St. Augustine Jewish Historical Society honored the memory of First Lieutenant George Friedlander on the sixtieth anniversary of his death.  The event took place at his graveside in the St. Augustine National Cemetery, 104 Marine St, St Augustine, FL , at 12 noon on Thursday, March 17th.  Also Hal Baumgarten MD joined the event at the grave of Lt. George Friedlander.

Hal Baumgarten was a 19 year old private on D-Day. Jewish and originally from NYC, Baumgarten was in Company B of the 116th Infantry Regiment of the 29th. He landed in the 2nd wave on Omaha Beach in one of the most heavily defended parts of Omaha, the Dog Green sector below the village of Vierville-sur-Mer (as depicted in the movie Saving Private Ryan). Hal was wounded 3 times on D-Day and twice more on June 7th. He had 23 surgeries after June 6, 1944, to repair wounds suffered on the Normandy coast of France. Hal has written several books about his D-Day experience. The first couple of waves at the Dog Green sector of Omaha Beach (often referred to as the D-1 or Dog-One draw) below the bluffs which led inland to the actual village of Vierville-sur-Mer, suffered a casualty rate of almost 80 percent in the opening hours of D-Day. “A” Company of the 116th was first in at 6:30AM and the majority of those 29th soldiers were dead or wounded by the time Baumgarten’s second wave landed just minutes later.

The public was welcome to join the event at the St Augustine National Cemetery.

The story goes that at some point late in early 1918, John Phillip Sousa arranged a luncheon with Navy Secretary Josephus Daniels (a known philo-Semite) to complain about the quality of the instruments being supplied to military band members.  Daniels invited George Friedlander, a First Lieutenant in the 306th Field Artillery, 6th Battalion, 17th Regiment to join him at the luncheon. 

 During lunch, Friedlander, a Jew from New York asked John Philip Sousa to create a march for the Field Artillery Corps.  Sousa took a Civil War melody called “Caisson Song,” changed the key, harmony, and rhythm and renamed it “U.S. Field Artillery.”

 Thus, in part, Friedlander, is responsible for the song:

 Over hill, over dale, we will hit the dusty trail

As the caissons go rolling along.

Up and down, in and out,

Countermarch and right about,

And our caissons go rolling along.

For it’s hi-hi-hee in the Field Artillery,

Shout out the number loud and strong.

Till our final ride, It will always be our pride

To keep those caissons a rolling along.

 A modified version is now the official song of the US Army, per ALARACT (All Army Activity) 124/2013.

Remembering Dr Martin Luther King Jr. in 2016

The procession began about noon on Monday outside of St. Paul AME Church on Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue, a church where King spoke during the civil rights movement. As people walked to the Plaza de la Constitución, they sang “This Little Light of Mine” and “We Shall Overcome.” In the Plaza, groups gathered for presentations in honor of King. Close to 200 people attended.

While the procession is held in honor of King annually on Martin Luther King Jr. Day, people also spoke of another civil rights leader, Dr. Robert Hayling. Hayling was a leader of the local movement and worked with King and others to bring about change. Hayling died in December.

Film: The Last Marranos; Screened at Flagler College

The St. Augustine Jewish Historical Society screened the feature film The Last Marranos on Tuesday, December 8 at 7 p.m. in the Gamache-Koger Theater on the first floor of the Ringhaver Student Center on the Flagler College Campus.  The 64 minute long French film is in Portuguese with English subtitles.  The movie screening portrayed the struggle for survival during the Spanish Inquisition was open to the public at no charge, the film was provided by the National Center for Jewish Film associated with Brandeis University. All were welcomed and a Q & A about the film followed. After the Q & A, First Coast.TV got a chance to speak with Rabbi Shapiro  about the film.

“Isaco” Timicuan Word for Joy

Isaco: First Annual Southeast Native American Gathering

The Fountain of Youth Archaeological Park proudly presented The First Annual Southeast Native American Gathering at the park’s recreated Village of Seloy on Saturday and Sunday, November 21 and 22, 2015. The gathering is called “Isaco,” which is the word for “joy” in Timucuan.

The event honored the Timucua and all Native Americans by sharing the culture and history of the Southeastern people. There were demonstrations of men and women’s traditional Pow Wow dancing, storytelling by contemporary native interpreters, and handmade arts and crafts on sale for every budget. At dusk, there was a Traditional Southeastern Social Stomp Dance exhibition.

Let us not forget that the Timucua tribe were the original residents in the St. Augustine area for centuries before the arrival of the Europeans.

 

Remembering the Minorcans

On Nov. 8th, 2015, the Menorcan Cultural Society celebrated the 247th anniversary of the arrival of the first Menorcan colonists in Florida with a celebratory event at the West Courtyard of the Cathedral-Basilica of St. Augustine by the Statue of Father Pedro Camps, where Father Willis spoke and gave a prayer among the attendees.Later they walked to the Tolomato Cemetery. This event included descendants from the original Minorcans in St. Augustine,

 

Obelisk Tour / Part 2

Compassionate St. Augustine’s OBELISK ART 450 Tour of Compassion is an International Public Art Exhibition Interpreting Freedom, Democracy, Human Rights and Compassion in the Nation’s Oldest City.

25 renowned artists who exhibit regionally, nationally and internationally were selected to create an artwork on the blank canvas of an 8.5-foot tall obelisk replica of the Monumento a la Constitucion on St. Augustine’s Plaza de la Constitucion.

First Coast.TV went to visit all 25 Obelisks at their present location, as they are being exhibited through out the city from Oct. 2nd/2014 thru Jan. 31st/2016. In part 1 we visited 12 Obelisks, and now in part 2 we visited the other 13.

The Obelisk Tour / Part 1

Compassionate St. Augustine’s OBELISK ART 450 Tour of Compassion is an International Public Art Exhibition Interpreting Freedom, Democracy, Human Rights and Compassion in the Nation’s Oldest City.

25 renowned artists who exhibit regionally, nationally and internationally were selected to create an artwork on the blank canvas of an 8.5-foot tall obelisk replica of the Monumento a la Constitucion on St. Augustine’s Plaza de la Constitucion.  

First Coast.TV went to visit all 25 Obelisks at their present location, as they are being exhibited through out the city from Oct. 2nd/2014 thru Jan. 31st/2016. In part 1 we visited 12 Obelisk, and hope to visit the other 13 in part 2.

 

A Book, Two Cities and One Destiny

St. Augustine Sister Cities Association and Flagler College presented Roman A. Alvarez and photographer Nardo Villaboy’s newest book on St. Augustine’s 90 year relationship with its sister city Avilés. This event took place on Wednesday, September 16, 2015, at 7:00 p.m in the Flagler Room.

First Coast.Tv got to talk with Roman A. Alvarez at the event.

The Voice of the Original People

First Coast.TV caught up with Sheldon Wolfchild, Steven Newcomb and Bill C. Billie at the St Cyprian’s Episcopal Church in Lincolnville, St Augustine, were the film/documentary “The Doctrine of Discovery: Unmasking The Domination Code” was screen to a packed church. After the film we got to speak to all three gentlemen.

This powerful and landmark documentary “The Doctrine of Discovery: Unmasking The Domination Code” is a result of the collaborative efforts by Dakota filmmaker and Director Sheldon Wolfchild and Co-Producer Steven Newcomb (Shawnee, Lenape). The film, based on Newcomb’s thirty years of research, and his book Pagans in the Promised Land: Decoding the Doctrine of Christian Discovery (Fulcrum, 2008), brings to the big screen an amazing and little known story.

The first Christian people to locate lands inhabited by non-Christians (“infidels, heathens, and savages”) claimed the right to assert a right of domination to be in themselves. On the basis of this religiously premised argument, the U.S. Supreme Court has defined the land title of the Indian nations as a “mere right of occupancy” subject to a right of domination on the part of the United States. The first “Christian people” that claimed “ultimate dominion,” said the Supreme Court, could grant away the soil while yet it was still in the possession of the “natives, who were heathens.”