Resuscitating a Dying City: Instilling Pride Through Public History and Archaeology

Author(s): Mischa Johns

Year: 2018


Palatka is dying. This is not a metaphor or an over-dramatic attempt to garner pity: Census reports show that more people are moving out of the city or dying than are moving in or being born. In August of 2017 the Washington Post came down to write an obituary on the quiet river town that was once known as the Gem of the St. Johns River. Buried in the ground and in dusty books in the historic society's museum are testaments to the city's rich historic and prehistoric past, yet few if any residents know to look...or know there is anything to look for. In a sleepy, disenfranchised river town where public schools barely mention its own history at all, efforts are under way to use history and archaeology as the backdrop to revive the Gem City's sense of pride by renovating the local historic society's museum and hosting a festival dedicated to Bartram's travels. Join us as we take a trip to a city that once bustled with life as one of the largest in Florida, and revive it by invoking a sense of pride using public history and archaeology to power our efforts.

Cite this Record

Resuscitating a Dying City: Instilling Pride Through Public History and Archaeology. Mischa Johns. Presented at The 82nd Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Washington, DC. 2018 ( tDAR id: 443535)

This Resource is Part of the Following Collections

Spatial Coverage

min long: -93.735; min lat: 24.847 ; max long: -73.389; max lat: 39.572 ;

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 19930