Meeting Speakers

May 18, 2010 Carlton & Rodney Higginbotham –Brothers Carlton & Rodney are members of Old Arlington, Inc. and their presentation was about the Murwin’s Fish Camp of Mill Cove that was in operation back in the 50’s.
April 20, 2010 Joan Jaques-Vinson – Joan was our speaker for August, 2007 and Cleve Powell is her first cousin.  Joan’s parents owned the Lone Star Stables.  Her great, grandfather was F. W. Bruce, who wrote the booklet Arlington, Past, Present and Anticipated, published in 1924.  Bruce Park is dedicated to and named after F.W. Bruce.  Joan’s parents are Claris Ruth Johnson and Tom Jaques.  In addition to Joan, they had Ruth, and George?  Joan is retired from the position of office manager for OB & GYN and Association: Drs. Hendrick, Fisher, Joans and Platock.  Joans has a lot of interests: plants, horses, history and her family to talk about.  Her presentation was about the parades along Arlington Road.
March 16, 2010 Mary Heston – Mary has been a long-time resident of Old Arlington.  Her presentation was about her life in Old Arlington.  Mary celebrated her 91stbirthday on February 19, 2010.  She was born in Jacksonville, the first of three children born to Richard Gilmore Barker and Elsie Shake Barker.  “Dick” worked with the sheriff’s department.  Elsie was a wife, mom, church goer and a “Sew n Sew.”  The Barkers lived on Swift Street, until they moved to Clifton.  Mary and her siblings went to Arlington Elementary and then Landon High School.Mary married Linden Heston in 1940.  Linden was a boat designer/builder.  They lived in Clifton until 1944 when they moved into the Heston family home while building their own house on the Heston property.  It took about three months to get the house livable.  Mary still lives on the same property, behind St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, on Heston Avenue.  Linden and Mary had seven children.  Five are still living.  She has 13 grandchildren and 26 great grand children, with one more great grandchild due in early 2010.
February 16, 2010 Rita Reagan – Rita has been an instrumental part of the Springfield restoration project.  Her presentation was about Norman Studios in Old Arlington.
November 17, 2009 Bruce Marley – Bruce installed Telephones in Old Arlington during its growth period. He was also in the Arlington Volunteer Fire Department and he has several stories to share. He is 80 years old and retired veteran as well. He went to Landon High School. His presentation was about his experiences working in Old Arlington.
October 20, 2009  Henry Beckwith– Henry is a long-time resident of Old Arlington. His presentation was about the communities he lived in while growing up in Old Arlington.
Mr. Beckwith grew up in Old Arlington. He lived in Clifton, and then moved to an old homestead on Mill Cove. He attended Arlington Grammar and Landon High School. He also attended University of Florida, and received a degree from Florida Southern. He was Chairman of Tompkins-Beckwith Mechanical Contractors, Inc. for many years.From web visitor (2009-10-12 1757): Hello,I noticed that Henry Beckwith is your next speaker. Please tell him “hello” from the Wells family. Henry has sold the “Beckwith property”, as it will always be known to us, but my brother, Walter Wells, continues to live in our old house. I live in Cambridge MA and it’s been years, of course, since I’ve seen Henry, but we’d like to be remembered to him. Our father, Dr. Samuel M. Wells had many patients in Old Arlington and used to do house calls almost every night. His office was in San Marco, but his territory was OA. Before moving to 7815 Ft. Caroline Road, we lived in Clifton.

Keep up the excellent work that you’re doing. I’m sending my membership dues in a day or so.

Nancy Wells Woods, Terry Parker ’64
From web visitor Shirley George (2009-12-27): Sorry to have missed the meeting that Henry Beckwith spoke.
Henry and I share the same grandson, Brian Henry Beckwith age 24. His son, Henry Hopkins Beckwith and my daughter, Karen Amber McGhee were married for many years and both attended Fort Caroline Jr. high school where they first met also Terry Parker high school.


September 15, 2009 Michel Oesterreicher -Author of “The Pioneer Family.” Her presentation was about “Life in Florida’s 20th Century Frontier.”
August 18, 2009 Emily Ruth Haines-Surowiec –  Emily Ruth Haines-Surowiec is from the family that ran the Haines Grocery at the Crossroads during the 50’s. Her presentation was about the grocery store. You can read about the businesses at the Crossroads, including the Haines Grocery, in Cleve Powell‘s History Column article for August 2009, titled, “Arlington: Built On Family Enterprise.”
July 21, 2009 Shane Owens – As a Boy Scout, Shane Owens surveyed the Memorial Park Cemetery (Arlington Park Cemetery).  His presentation was about his findings.
June 16, 2009 Mr. Ramon L. Day – Mr. Ramon L. Day has taught Advancement Placement History in the Duval County School System and was Chief of Staff for Congressman Charles Bennett. His presentation was about Florida’s Acquisition.
May 19, 2009 Joe Ripley– Mr. Ripley is the owner of the “Marabanong” mansion at Empire Point. Our May meeting was a tour of the Marabanong mansion (his home) at 4749 River Point Road.  Mr. Ripley told us about his home and some of its history. Marabanong is a New Zealand Maori Indian word for “Paradise.” It is a large white house with a turret (castle like) on top. There is a large pool in front of the house. The house was built ca. 1870-1876, and the pool was added in 1922. A home on the same property from before the Civil War owned by Thomas Perley was sold to Thomas Basnett, a noted astronomer from England. When the original 20-year-old house burned down, Mr. Basnett built the Queen Anne styled mansion right next to the original place. The 6,000 square foot house has 21 rooms and 5 baths. If you count the exterior windows, there are 121 of them, offering views in all directions. The two-story veranda offers an impressive view of Jacksonville and Old Arlington. The only surviving part of the original home is a brick structure on the river side that connected to the kitchen via an underground passageway. It is thought to have been a wine cellar for the original home. Originally, the property occupied all of the surrounding area, where now there are many other homes.

Mr. Basnett was married to Eliza Wilbur from New York, then an internationally known scientist. The pair wrote many books and articles. Mrs. Basnett was also a designer, and was developing an airplane at the time that the Wright Brothers took flight. While living in the home, she also patented a large astronomical telescope. Mr. Basnett did not live in the home long before passing away.

Sometime after Mr. Basnett died, Eliza married E. Mathieu Souvielle, a French throat and lung specialist. He converted the home into a resort for tourists and invalids with special lung and throat disorders. He provided transportation from downtown Jacksonville to the home via steamboat. Mrs. Souvielle became very involved in area civic matters such as the Home for the Aged, the League of American Pen Women, and the Illinois Woman’s Press Association. As a member of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, she took an active role in the Women’s Suffrage Movement. When Mr. Souvielle died in 1914, Eliza sold the home to a cousin, Grace Wilbur Trout and her husband George, owner of Trout Real Estate.

The Trout family added a pool in front of the home to entertain northern visitors. During the Trout family time, the property housed many animals, including exotic birds such as peacocks and colorful pheasants. Crocodiles were a natural for the small pools surrounding the property. The Trout family lived in the home until it was sold in 1983. The home sat dormant for a while and was eventually included in an auction that included several other homes. At the auction, Mr. Ripley states that there didn’t seem to be much interest in the home and he was able to purchase the home without much competition. Mr. Ripley added that the others may have known how much it would take to restore the home.

Mr. Ripley and his wife have put a lot into the home to restore it to its grandier days. They have also restored much of the grounds around the home. The Coy pond has been restored to its original appearance, and is stocked with a good supply of fish.

Mr. Ripley is a local attorney and retired judge. His dad owned Ripley Concrete Blocks on Landon Avenue and all the houses built in Arlington in the Boom era are probably made from his materials. Joe’s uncle, Wayne Ripley, was a State Senator.

April 21, 2009 Wayne Misenar & Bert Watson– Mr. Misenar and Bert Watson are members of the Jacksonville Historical Naval Ship Association and their presentation was about their proposal to anchor a retired Navy Guided Missile Destroyer in the downtown area as a new tourist attraction.Wayne Misenar, a founding member of the Jacksonville Historical Naval Ship Association and its Vice-President, moved to Jacksonville in 1984 as a newly commissioned Naval Officer to report aboard the USS Charles F. Adams at Naval Station Mayport. He served on the Adams for over four years and after retiring from the Navy in later years remained in Jacksonville with his family where he has worked as an Environmental Consultant.

Bert Watson is the founding member and President of the Jacksonville Historical Naval Ship Association. He has been working in association with the Adams Class Veterans Association for two years in their efforts to save the last remaining Charles F. Adams Class guided missile destroyer that once served the US Navy during the height of the Cold War years from its commissioning in 1960. Bert is a Washington lobbyist primarily for the defense contracting industry.

The Adams Class Veterans Association (ACVA) was formed several years ago from veterans of 23 individual ship associations that represent each of the 23 ships that were built in the Adams Class of Guided Missile Destroyers. ACVA’s sole purpose was to organize efforts for the rescue of the last remaining ship of the overall 23 built for the US Navy.

March 17, 2009 Mrs. Marilyn H. Tomlinson – Mrs. Tomlinson is a third generation Jacksonville native. Her start was in Murray Hill but she has been in Arlington since 1965. She attended Jacksonville Junior College. The year following graduation, the school moved to Old Arlington, and became Jacksonville University. Her presentation about the Elder Hostel that puts on programs for senior citizens. She also mentioned her involvement in the local AARP group and some of her experiences in Arlington.
November 18, 2008 Mrs. Irene Lumpkin – Mrs. Lumpkin has been a member of the Mt. Zion United Methodist Church for some time. Her presentation about the church history and the Harvey White Cemetery.
October 21, 2008 Mr. Jon R. Ferguson – Mr. Ferguson was president of the Southern Genealogist Exchange Society, Inc. until recently. His presentation about genealogy research and cemeteries, especially the Chaseville Road Baptist Church Cemetery at Jacksonville University, as he was involved in the remains that were moved to Evergreen Cemetery on N. Main Street.
September 16, 2008 Charlie Hamaker – His presentation was about the attack on the S.S. Gulfamerica, a ship that was sunk just off the Atlantic Coast, near Jacksonville Beach on April 10, 1942. Charlie has done quite a bit of research about the incident as a friend of his was on the ship.
August 19, 2008 Dr. William Clarke – Dr. Clarke is a retired physician who has had a practice in Arlington for over 50 years. His presentation about his experience in Arlington, however, his presentation will not be about practicing medicine. Dr. Clarke has seen a lot of changes during his time in Arlington and therefore has a wealth of information that he shared. One of his pastimes is flying, and generally he has another meeting on the third Tuesday, the same as our monthly meetings, so it is a special gift that we get him to be our speaker. The fact that we got him on National Aviation Day is a miracle.
July 15, 2008 Charles A. Gordon– Charlie is a second generation Master Plumber whose family many generations back has been skilled in the use of tools for plumbing, woodwork and other things. Charlie’s grandfather was a wood worker. As a result of that heritage, Charlie has a very fine collection of tools all categorized, some dating back to the 1700’s. His presentation included some of the tools he has collected. He has references to books and web sites where people interested in this hobby can get started or where we as a group could start an “Arlington” Collection for our one day museum.Charlie graduated from Landon High School in 1953. He operated Gordon’s Plumbing for many years and still works with his tools on occasions.
June 17, 2008 Charlie Hamaker -His presentation was about Exchange Island (under the Mathews Bridge), Capt. Swan and his daughter Eula, who passed away recently. Charlie got to know her well enough to learn a lot about their life on the island. Charlie Hamaker is a retired deep sea diver; he grew up in Clifton.
May 20, 2008 Marsha Pilling Dasaro– Her presentation was about the community of Oakwood Villa. Marsha came to live in Oakwood Villa Estates in 1945 and brings a unique perspective of what it was like growing up in the area. Recently retired from 38 years of employment with Florida Community College, Marsha enjoys water aerobics and gardening in her free time.Take a look at Marsha’s photography of the 2008 Tree Hill Butterfly Festival.
April 15, 2008 Cleve Powell & Ann Burt – Their presentation was about the historic sign project.
March 18, 2008 Bob Sikes– Born in Jacksonville, Duval, Florida on January 29, 1939 to Anna Lenorah Gilmore and John Elijah Sikes.His father was in the Boys Home, East Church Street in 1920 at age 15 as an office boy. He founded Sikes & Stowe, Inc. (Auto Body Repair Shop) in 1941. He attended Arlington Elementary (1-6 grades), Southside Grammar (7th grade), and Alfred I. DuPont High School (8-12 grades). He had a football scholarship to the University of Florida but did not attend (Algebra got in his way–He took the business courses in high school).

He worked for State Farm Insurance Company (1 ½ years), Army-active duty for training (6 months), Florida Army National Guard (3 years), Sikes & Stowe, Inc. (12 years), and The Travelers Insurance Company (25 years), retiring in 1998. He and his wife Janet then moved to Bostwick, Florida (the land that time forgot).

February 19, 2008 Shannon Palmer – Shannon Palmer is a retired mortician from New Orleans, Louisiana. Her presentation was about cemetery preservation.
November 20, 2007 Harlow Everett – Harlow Everett, is President of the surveying firm of Ellis, Curtis, Kooker, Inc. His firm was started in 1891 by Roland Woodward, who sold the company to its present group’s forefathers in 1909. Mr. Everett’s father worked for them in 1955 and Harlow started in 1972. They have some of, if not the oldest records in Duval County, and his presentation was about the LeBaron surveys, which split up the old plantations and the history they relate.
October 16, 2007 Lake Ray Jr. –Lake Ray, Jr., father of past Arlington City Council representative Lake Ray, III has been an Arlington institution. He has been a Field Civil Engineer, and helped construct the Mayport carrier basin, worked as a railroad engineer for Atlantic Coastline Railroad, co-founder of Harbor Engineering Company, which provided engineering and surveying services in the North Florida area. From marine structure to railroad, Lake, Jr. is knowledgeable about the local scene, and his presentation was about his experiences in Arlington and how it has grown. If you ever wanted to know about the boa constrictors of Arlington, Lake Jr. has the low-down.
September 18, 2007 Jerry Spinks – Jerry is president of the Jacksonville Historical Society for 2007. His presentation as about the “Grey” Hotel and its possible relocation. The hotel will be on the north side of the Mayport ferry where a new park will be created. The hotel will be moved along the St. Johns River (currently at New Berlin), to be placed in its new location. It will be a museum of sorts.
August 21, 2007 Joan Jaques Vinson – Joan Jaques Vinson is Cleve Powell‘s first cousin. Joan’s parents owned the Lone Star Stables. Joan’s great, grandfather was F. W. Bruce, who wrote the booklet, Arlington, Past, Present, and Anticipated, published in 1924. Bruce Park is dedicated to and named after F. W. Bruce. Joan’s parents are Claris Ruth Johnson and Tom Jaques. In addition to Joan, they had Ruth, and George?Joan is retired from the position of office manager for OB & GYN and Association located by Memorial Hospital; they started out in Arlington: Drs. Hendrick, Fisher, Joans and Platock. Joan has a lot of interest, plants, horses, history and her family to talk about. Her presentation was about her memories of growing up in Arlington and at the stables.

Pictured here, Joan is at the Lake Butler Museum, in Union County, Florida. Cleve Powell‘s Grandfather, Cleveland Johnson, was born and raised in Lake Butler (so was his dad Jesse Greene Johnson). This museum contains several references to the Johnson family.

July 17, 2007 Doug Hitzing – Doug Hitzing, owner of Arlington Auto Parts. Doug’s dad came to Arlington in 1960 and Doug grew up delivering auto parts on foot as a boy. His presentation was about his memories of growing up in Arlington and where he thinks it’s going now.
June 19, 2007 Cleve Powell – Cleve has been a past Vice-President of Old Arlington, Inc. His presentation was on the life of F. W. Bruce. Learn more about Cleve.
>May 15, 2007 Dean Bird – Dean’s Dean was a history teacher before retiring. His presentation was on the Indian Shell Mounds Photos along the St. Johns River and in Arlington. On the Indian Shell Mounds Photos page, it explains how we came across Mr. Bird, or how he came across us, and how he ended up being our speaker.
April 17, 2007 Don MacLean – Don was a member of the Arlington Community Club, the body that governed un-incorporated Arlington before the Jacksonville consolidation. He was also the first representative for Arlington after the Jacksonville consolidation. His presentation was a special event for all that attended.
March 20, 2007 Thomas Graham – Thomas Graham came from Flagler College in Saint Augustine. Dr. Thomas Graham is a native Floridian, receiving his education in Florida, and receiving his Ph.D. in History from the University of Florida.  He is a professor of History at Flagler College, and has taught there since 1973.  He has published several books relating to St. Augustine history, such as the Ponce de Leon Hotel, the Alcazar Hotel and others.  He has been a president of the St. Augustine Historical Society.
February 20, 2007 Carolyn Williams, Ph.D.– Carolyn Williams works in the Department of History at University of North Florida.Carolyn Williams, a native of Jacksonville, is an Associate Professor in the Department of History, Director of the Gender Studies Program, and Co-Director of the Bette J. Soldwedel Gender Research Center at the University of North Florida (UNF). She has received the following degrees: BA in Psychology from Immaculate College (Los Angeles), B.A. in History from UNF, M.A. in History from University of California at San Diego and, a Ph.D. in History from UCLA. At UNF Dr. Williams teaches classes in American History, Multicultural Studies and Gender Studies.

Her primary research is on women and reform in antebellum America. She concentrates on the relationship between religion and reform, and the connection between the struggle for racial equality and gender equity. Her most recent essay, “Women and Liberal Religion: Feminist-Abolitionists in Antebellum Philadelphia and Boston,” is in the anthology, The Meaning of Slavery in the North, published by Garland Press. In the fall of 2000 Dr. Williams received a scholar’s grant from the Florida Humanities Council. This grant funded oral interviews with elderly African Americans in Nassau County. A narrative was constructed from the interviews and has been donated to the Amelia Island Museum of History. Recently Dr. Williams completed a traveling exhibit on local African American photographer Ellie Lee Weems. This project was also sponsored by the Florida Humanities Council.

Dr. Williams had delivered a number of papers at professional conferences in American History, Multicultural Studies, and Women’s Studies. She has also lectured at schools, from the elementary to the college level, as well as museums and galleries, and has conducted a variety of workshops and forums. During the 1990-1991 academic year Dr. Williams conducted a series of workshops on “Infusing African American History into the Social Studies Curriculum for social studies teachers sponsored by the Duval County School Board. In the summers of 1997 and 2004, she conducted a Florida Humanities Council Summer Institute for Teachers on “Race in America.” Many of these presentations have been devoted to her interest in the experiences of diverse groups in America.

Her lectures, sponsored by the Florida Humanities Council, on the contributions of African American natives of Florida to the Harlem Renaissance, evolved out of her interest and research in the role of the arts. Creating better partnerships between local art activities and institutions, the schools, and other facets of the Jacksonville community, is a special goal of Dr. Williams. Currently, she is involved in a number of community projects. Recently Dr. Williams was offered a position in the Class of 2005 in Leadership Jacksonville, Ind. This organization was founded in 1976 “to stimulate the growth of leadership” in the community of Jacksonville.

She serves as the chair of the Executive Board of the Edward Waters College Community Redevelopment Association, president of the Durkeeville Historical Society, first vice president of the James Weldon Johnson chapter of the Association for the Study of African American Life and History (ASALH), vice president of the Norman Studios MuseumBoard, on the Executive Board of the Saint Augustine Historical Society, a member of the Florida Task Force for African American History Curriculum, a member of the advisory board of the Amelia Island Museum of History.
In addition to contributing to studies on gender and multicultural studies, Dr. Williams wants to raise awareness of and contribute to local history, particularly in the area of historic preservation. In July of 2001 she was appointed to the Jacksonville Historic Preservation Task Force. She serves as chair of the Northeast Florida Historic Preservation Commission, as a member of the Florida State Review Committee for Historic Markers, and the Jacksonville Historic Preservation Commission member.

November 21, 2006 Cleve Powell – Cleve Powell is a second generation Arlingtonian, being born October 21st, 1936 on Lone Star Road in the location where Tree Hill Nature Center is located today. Cleve’s great, grandfather was F. W. Bruce, who wrote the pamphlet, Arlington, Past, Present, and Anticipated, published in 1924. Cleve’s parents are Mary Louise Johnson and Ted Powell.In 1914, Cleve’s family moved from Mayport to the house where he was born and grew up in.

Cleveland E. “Cleve” Powell worked for the Army Corps of Engineers from June 1958 until March 1993. He worked on all river and harbor projects, including dredging the St. Johns River; space program projects at Cape Kennedy; the Cuban Missile project, part of which was located in Key West; crude oil storage in Louisiana and Texas; and flood protection projects in Puerto Rico. Cleveland E. Powell is a Distinguished Civilian Employee of the Jacksonville District of COE.

In 2000, Cleve joined the Old Arlington, Inc. organization. Cleve’s contribution to the organization’s collective history and to this website is exceptional. Cleve has been the Old Arlington, Inc. Vice President (2006), and now is the organization’s historian, and again filling the shoes of the Vice President for 2008 and 2009.

October 17, 2006 Melanie MacLean Cross – In Memory Melanie MacLean Cross, founding member and first president of Old Arlington, Inc. died Monday, February 18, 2008. The loss to our community is immeasurable, but we know the best way to remember and honor Melanie is to continue. . . . continue to preserve and promote and celebrate Arlington. We know Melanie will be celebrating with us.

Our thanks to Steve Matchett, also a founding member of OAI, for providing this lovely tribute to Melanie.

She would tease that she was a year older than me, and for that I should afford her the due respect, settle our philosophical or political difference at hand, quietly, and of course, in her favor. Though our disagreements were very rare, my respect for Melanie Cross would never ebb.

Melanie and I started crossing paths more than twenty years ago at such exotic places as City Council chambers, Planning Department conference rooms, Terry Parker libraries and just about any venue where an Arlington topic was on the agenda. Melanie’s passion for Arlington involved not only the issue at hand, but extended back generations to its first settlers and generations ahead to incorporate its new residents. No person was as schooled on Arlington’s past, and no person cared more for its future.

So over lunch one day, Melanie and I were sharing our Arlington concerns and observations. Springfield revitalization was just underway. Riverside/Avondale and San Marco had well-established historic preservation efforts. Would the same be possible for Arlington? Would Arlington have to suffer decades of Springfield-type decline before revitalization efforts (and leaders) would appear? Melanie’s response to the vision and the call was like that of Isaiah’s, “Here I am, send me.”

Her founding of Old Arlington, Inc. involved incorporating the group, identifying priorities, documenting history, and establishing a headquarters. It meant phone calls too numerous, meetings everywhere, grant applications, speaking engagements and recruiting. Open houses and closed doors. Starts and sputters, victories and losses. She was untiring in her efforts, and attended to every detail. She often reminded me of a school teacher, peering over her glasses, smiling, prodding gently, but firmly holding you accountable to your assignment.
The last time I would see Melanie would be – where else – at an Old Arlington meeting a few months ago. Melanie was looking good and having a good day, but I think it was maybe one of the best days of her life. The meeting was more reflection than agenda, and the room was overflowing with long-time Arlington residents and anecdotes. It seemed like a big family gathering with lots of old stories, each one energizing her more. Afterwards, we spoke of the vision back then and the meeting that night. And as we began filling in some of that in between, a beatific smile slowly appeared on her face – rare, self-acknowledgement that this group she had founded would survive her, and that their efforts would impact future generations.

I learned from Melanie that the heart of old Arlington was the intersection of Chaseville Road (University Boulevard.) and Arlington Road, and that it was known then simply as the “Crossroads”. With her passing, Arlington has lost a part of its heart, a part that I will fondly recall whenever traveling through that intersection, which to me, will forever be known as Melanie Cross-Roads.

We are all saddened, and terribly grief stricken. Please bear with us, and to help in our healing process, perhaps you can share a favorite Melanie Cross story, or a photo you had boxed away somewhere. There are so many (very many) stories that we need to gather and share about Melanie; now is the time to celebrate the happiness that Melanie left us. Send any photos via e-mail. Please send your thoughts to us (via the form below).

Webpages found that mention Melanie MacLean Cross

2008-02-21 13:25 Roberta Pridgen Thomas
I was Melanie’s Algebra II teacher at Terry Parker. Might have been in my Analysis and Trig, but I think it was Algebra II. I have my grade books around somewhere. Melanie was a quiet and very hard-working student. Always serious about things. She was all business about her school-work, too.Later, in 1980, I ran into Melanie quite often as I attended UNF. Melanie was very active in the UNF programs at the time. I think she may have been on some of the Student Boards, an officer, perhaps. But I do remember that she was extremely involved in the “fencing club” and she would put on exhibitions at the UNF campus. Yes, she was athletic as well. Always fit as a fiddle and energetic. I just remember her lovely, flowing long hair and her exhuberance and passion for life — every single day. Melanie never wasted a second of her time while here in this life form. Pity that we all cannot say the same. Also, to this day, I have never heard anything but words of admiration and respect for her. She was a lovely lady….in all ways and manner. We shall miss her spirit and passion. But she has left her mark and we must carry it forth.

2008-02-21 11:28 Sherron Rouse Owen:
My prayers and thoughts are with the family. Our numbers are getting fewer and fewer. Arlington will always be home to me and the many wonderful memories of the “Crossroads”, and Sal’s Drug Store, etc. May God Bless You and be with the entire family. Sherron (daughter of Grace & JT Rouse).

2008-02-22 21:32 Cleve Powell:

My thoughts and prayers are with Melanie’s family. She was the driving force that got me interested in researching and recording Arlington history. I will do my best to see that her efforts are not lost. I will miss “running” things by her that I found and just talking to her in general.

September 19, 2006 Harry & John Richard, descendants of Francis Richard –Louis Joseph Francois (Francis II) Richard

Francis Richard and his wife Donna Bianne owned a sugar cane plantation on the Island of Hispaniola. Francis was from Italy and his wife was from St Marc, Santo Domingo (her parents were from France). They were warned of a slave rebellion by their workers, and left the island on Richards’s schooner with their four children along with many of his workers. They arrived in Florida during the second Spanish period and settled on the East Bank of the St. Johns River ca. 1795 after a brief stay in Cowford. In all, Richard was granted some 30,000 acres in northeast Florida of which some 16,000 were located in or contiguous to the Arlington area. He got several grants along the east shore of the river from Chaseville Point south to his 600 acre grant in the Clifton area, which he called Strawberry Hill. One of his sons, John William Richard was granted 250 acres in 1803 south of Strawberry Creek and generally bounded on the west by Silversmith Creek and what is now Arlington Road on the east, running south crossing what is now Atlantic Boulevard. I believe his plantation was called Oakwood.

August 15, 2006 Edward A. Mueller– Mr. Mueller has written several books on the maritime history, especially on steams boats that traveled in the Florida area. His presentation on August 15th, 2006 was a special event for all that attended.Ed’s slideshow covered numerous steamships that both visited Florida, and those that worked up and down the St. Johns River. It was fascinating to see how some steamships “evolved” over time, some switching from stern to side paddle wheels, and still others switching to coal when it became available in the 1880s, and on to one ship that was built in Jacksonville in 1913 but is still in operation today, but up in Vermont.

Edward volunteers at the Jacksonville Maritime Museum on Mondays until 3 P.M.  You should stop by and visit to get the full understanding of his presentation.

June 20, 2006 Lloyd Dagley -Lloyd Dagley has lived in the Arlington area all his life. His presentation was a special event for all that attended.
May 16, 2006 Mrs. Althea Fowler
April 18, 2006  Noble Enge
March 21, 2006 Manning Woodley
February 21, 2006 Johnny Friedel – Mr. John (Johnny) Friedel grew up in Arlington near Strawberry Creek and has a lot of information on the Francois Richard Mill, plus his memories of the crossroads etc. He is retired AF, electrician, GE repairman, and has had his own appliance repair business. He currently lives in Clifton.
January 17, 2006 Anson T. Macy (passed away August 2006)
November 15, 2005 Vic LaNoble
October 18, 2005 Wayne Doolittle, Arlington Fire Department, retired
September 20, 2005 John Salas – Mr. Salas works for the Saint Augustine Historical Society.
August 16, 2005 Unknown
July 19, 2005 Annemarie van Hemmen – Annemarie van Hemmen worked for the Saint Augustine Historical Society at the time she spoke to us. She has since moved to another state.
June 21, 2005 Cleve Powell – Explanation of Government Land Office Survey Field Notes, how to read maps and understand land titles.
April 19, 2005 Dr. Wayne Wood – Author of several books regarding Jacksonville.
March 15, 2005 Bryant Mickler – Mr. Mickler worked for the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office for many years. His presentation included some history of breaking up the moonshine stills that were operating in Arlington back in those “good-ole-days.” Mickler Road is named after his family, who lived in the area.
November 16, 2004 Marvin Bailey
October 19, 2004 Glorious Johnson -Glorious Johnson was a City Councilwoman at Large.
August 17, 2004 Larry Motley – Larry is the son of Jane Gray Gilmore. Mr. Motley is compiling the genealogy of the Gilmore family, as well as the history of the Gilmore community. Mr. Motley invited Warren Potter, a caretaker for Archibald Gilmore in his later years to accompany him. Archibald homesteaded the Gilmore area in the late 1800s and was the prime force in the development of the community school, church, and railroad station.
June 15, 2004 Joe Knetsch – Joe Knetsch of Tallahassee, Florida, is author of “Florida’s Seminole Wars 1817 through 1858”.Dr. Knetsch is currently the historian for the Division of State Lands, Florida Department of Environmental Protection. He serves on the Board of Trustees for the St. Augustine Historical Society, is Citizen Support Officer for San Luis Mission State Historical Site (Tallahassee) and recently finished a second term on the State Historical Markers Board. He is a recent recipient of the Community Service Award from the Daughters of the American Revolution, San Luis Chapter. Dr. Knetsch holds a Bachelor of Science degree in history and economics from Western Michigan University, a Masters Degree in history from Florida Atlantic University, and a Ph. D. From Florida State University. He has authored over 150 articles on various aspects of Florida history. He is also the author of a textbook on Florida Surveys and Surveyors.
May 18, 2004 Julius Olson – Julius Olson is the owner of the Olson Shipyards.
April 20, 2004 Dan Schafer – Dan is the author of several books regarding Jacksonville metro history.