The old Chautauqua Building.
A few weekends ago, I drove over to DeFuniak Springs, Florida, just north of Destin. DeFuniak Springs has one of only two almost perfectly round, spring fed lakes in the world. Surrounding beautiful Lake DeFuniak are lovely Victorian homes.
A typical Victorian style house that surrounds Lake DeFuniak.
But this weekend, there were also Confederate Soldiers, Early Settlers and a Muscogee Indian tribe taking up residence.
A Muscogee Indian boy doing a traditional dance by Lake DeFuniak.
The encampment was part of an educational presentation of the Chautauqua Assembly, an organization that was highly popular in the 19th and early 20th centuries. Used to promote adult education and entertainment in a circuit of cities throughout the U.S., it died out, along with many other good things, with the advent of television and newer forms of entertainment.
Beautiful hand sewn quilts were displayed at the early settler's camp.
Yes, it's a real raccoon on the spit. Really. I didn't hang around to see if they ate it.
I was afraid they would be neighborly and want to share.
This is the owner of A Southern Seamstress in Marianna, FL. She creates historically correct, one of a kind costumes for each customer. Her work was absolutely amazing. I can't imagine having to wear so many layers of clothing in the pre-airconditioned South.
Thank goodness for the classy look of halter tops, Daisy-Dukes and flip-flops!
(Too bad you can't detect sarcasm and eye rolling in print)
A Blacksmith at work.
Like DeFuniak Springs, many of the original Chautauqua cities have made recent efforts to revitalize the program. The keynote speaker for this year in DeFuniak Springs was Former First Lady, Rosalynn Carter.
I just loved this little traveling desk officers would have used in the war.
Local artists displayed their work. This was one of my favorites.
Another beautiful handmade dress.
And one more pretty house on the way home.
From Fairhope, DeFuniak Springs is just under two hours away.
Get on I-10. Drive East. Get off I-10 and you are there.
You don't have to BYOR (bring your own raccoon). They have real restaurants too.