(Perry School- Built circa 1885; unused since 1930)
As I prepare to move across the country to Napa, there are a list of to-do’s, to-see’s and to-photograph than I will ever be able to finish. Undeterred though, I am trudging along crossing things off what has become my ‘Florida Bucket-list.’ Admittedly, I have had a love-hate relationship with the Sunshine State over the past 15 years. But as I look back and survey my personal journey with this place, I am keenly aware of how fortunate I am to be from a place that has nurtured me in so many ways and provided so many opportunities to my growth, as a photographer and as a person. But, I digress.
Before I can say goodbye to this hot, humid and wonderfully peculiar state, there are a few places I will be visiting over my last weekend here. A few beautiful, significant and forgotten places. I cannot explain how I have found myself so attached and entangled in places that before 3 years ago, had nothing to do with me. These structures and their incredibly interesting histories have drawn me closer to my roots as a historian and created a photographer in the process.
I have a vested interest in their preservation and only wish I had access to the resources required to ensure their preservation. These are truly natural history museums in their truest form. No red velvet ropes. No fancy carpets. No admission fee. It pains me to think of the what their fates might be. Although even I struggle to think of a solution or purpose for structures like these in present-day. Almost each of them is isolated in rural Florida; an aspect of their histories which have both saved them from vagrants and vandals, but also removed them from the scope of most preservationists.
(Trinity Methodist Church- constructed in 1890)
I imagine it might be the last time these eyes will glance upon the school and church I will be visiting this weekend. For now, I will be continually grateful that I have been able to capture such significant pieces of history and architecture and share them with you.
More photos of both buildings, as well as more of historic Florida can be seen here.