In the shade of the old Ceiba tree

SITES and objects of remembrance–cemeteries, monuments and inscriptions–held a fascination for William Whitehead wherever he traveled. Although he could claim little facility with the local language, his first visit to Havana in March 1829 proved no exception. Long tradition had contrived to tell precisely the time and place of the city’s birth. It was to … More In the shade of the old Ceiba tree

Tyrannies

TRAVEL is risk. No matter how close or convenient the destination, no matter how safe the conditions may be, or may be thought, travel unmoors the self from the familiar, the dependable; it causes one to see the comforts of home as things that can be left, and even lost. These effects might be slow … More Tyrannies

Imprints

KEY West’s harbor resounded at dawn with the boom of cannon, as Old Glory waved from the porches of hotels, billowing even from the schooners and brigs in port. At noon a military salute was fired, and a crowd of citizens raised three loud hurrahs. It was Wednesday 4 March 1829, the day William A. … More Imprints

Bad blood

GUNSHOTS piercing the early morning quiet of Key West’s seaward side disrupted the dreams of few island residents. Their houses clustered near the harbor on the opposite shore, far from the smoke and noise. Either the participants themselves, upon their returning to town, or a newspaper published days later alerted most of the population to … More Bad blood