070504.Bath, Goodbye

May 4, 2007 at 2:49 AM | Posted in Architecture, Bath, people, Ruins, somerset | 4 Comments

To the Moon!

Not the final post, just saying goodbye to the Southgate Mall.
070429.##.SO.Bath.jpg 021
Originally, I would have had an uninterrupted series of South Gate Mall but I lost internet for a while. This is just a preview of what’s to come. These five boards cover the remains of the former Merchant’s Passage.
I will be going to Windsor Castle for the final day of class. We’ll be given a tour of the conservation working going on there. I’m excited to see as much as possible.

*The one thing I won’t see is the Queen. She’s in Richmond and Jameston today for the 400th anniversary commemoration. Jameston’s importance is that it was the first English colonial settlement of the original thirteen colonies that formed the United States of America, and in effect, began the process of spreading the English language across the planet.

I: However, Jameston wasn’t the first colony in the US: Spanish Florida was! Why is St Augustine, FL historically ignored when discussing the US origins? A) The canon of US history was formed in the early 20th C by Protestants. Catholics should not be a prominent part of US history. B) More obviously, it wasn’t part of the original Thirteen Colonies. C) It raises the contemporary approaches to the treatment of Native Americans. The Spanish have been appropriately demonized for first enslaving the natives, and then after freeing the survivors forcibly converting them to Christianity but oppressing them as second class citizens. In contrast, the British…. um, they received gifts from friendly natives, such as Pocahontas (married and died in England) and Squanto (kidnapped by English in 1605, worked there for seven years and then sailed to Virginia in 1613 before making it back to Massachusetts in 1614, etc.). What ever happened to their tribes? Oh, right…the reason why this is mostly omitted form textbooks.

II: The second issue that comes up with US history is its continual celebration of Plymouth Rock, as the origins of the modern USA. WHY! Jameston, Virginia was founded first! Not only that, Pilgrims on the Mayflower basically hijacked the ship (by endangering the supply of ale), which was sailing FOR Virginia and steered it far north, to avoid the existing Dutch colonies in what would become New York and the existing French colonies in Canada. So why is Plymouth and everything that goes with it (Thanksgiving) so American?
A) Again, when the canon of US history was written, Virginia was (and is) associated with the racist rebellious South. Plymouth was safe in Union territory.
B) Plymouth was founded my “moral” religious folk [zealots] who were fleeing religious persecution (only to help create a theocratic colony and return to the Old World.) The Jameston colony was founded by “gentlemen adventurers” who were there to grow cash crops and return to their old homes with a quick handsome profit. Ironically, the descendants of these entrepreneurial immigrants would later blast every other immigrant group during the four hundred years that have followed who attempted to do just that.
C) Cannibals. I cannot stress how important it is (when seeking to be immortalized in bronze) to not eat a human cadaver, no matter how tempting. Apparently, gentlemen adventurers seeking quick profits plant mostly tobacco and not food. Where’s the profit in food when you can feast on the free flesh of your starved colleagues (and they did). In contrast, starving pilgrims at peace with God’s will accepted their 50% mortality rate.

Diverse European Settlement in the United States Before the 18th Century
1559 -Spanish-Pensacola Colony, NW Florida (destroyed weeks after being founded by a hurricane and deserted due to famine and native unrest)
1562-French-Charlesfort on Port Royal Sound (formed with twenty-seven men in southern South Carolina was abandoned after a year. Four died and one was left behind as the mutinous colonists built a ship and sailed to Europe, landing in England with seven survivors after cannibalizing at least one of the colonists). The Spanish burned and smashed every trace of the abandoned colony in 1564 to remove any legal claim before finally establishing the colony of Santa Elena on its site to prevent any future French incursions. It was settled with a few hurricane survivors from Pensacola and was itself immediately hit with a hurricane. Abandoned a third time (twice by the Spanish) twenty-one years later, it had served as the Spanish colonial capital of Florida for a decade.
1564-French Huguenot-Charlesfort (abandoned in favor of) Fort de la Caroline (but both named in honor of French King Charles IX, the latter deserted but now location of Jacksonville, Florida). The French attempted to attack the newly founded St Augustine’s in September 1565 but failed, forcing the Spanish to capture Fort de la Caroline and kill its male inhabitants before renaming it Fort San Mateo and eventually abandoning it.
1565-Spanish-St. Augustine, Florida (established as a Spanish beachhead to drive the French out of North America and thus the first permanent non-native colony in the U.S./North America, and where the first child of European ancestry (Martin de Arguelles) was born, hence the BBC doesn’t know jack.)
1607 -British-Jameston, Virginia Colony, (founded by a London joint stock company)
1614 -Dutch- Fort Nassau, New Netherlands (now Albany, New York)
1620 -British, (who had recently returned to England from exile in Leiden, Netherlands and departed from the Barbican section of London)-Plymouth Colony, (now in Massachusetts)
1638 -Swedish-Fort Christina, New Sweden (now Wilmington, Delaware)
1671- Danish-St. Thomas, Danish W Indies (now US Virgin Islands)
1699 -French- Biloxi, Louisiana (now located in Mississippi)

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4 Comments »

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  1. but isn’t that lizzie passing by in the photo?

    will you be leaving blogdom for good?

    a worried pod

    :0/

  2. you’d think they’d be well “over” all that celebrating colonialism stuff, wouldn’t you? good post.

  3. Over colonialism!
    Interestingly enough, or not, Virginia and a few other places still maintain their commonwealth status. That means that state schools, like William and Mary, remain Royally chartered….Margaret Thatcher quit her job over in your neck of the woods and went on to be the chancellor of that school.

  4. but you haven’t reassured me yet…..


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