Is recognized as leader in reducing the nation’s dependence on imported oil through it’s commitment to advance transportation technologies and participation in the Clean Cities Program
June 29, 2016
On April 4, 2016, Historic Tours of America was honored to present the ACCORD Civil Rights Museum of St. Augustine with a breathtaking bronze bust of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. The bust was expertly crafted by the HTA Art Department from the original MLK wax casting found at Potter’s Wax Museum.
Taking part in this special event were St. Augustine Mayor Nancy Shaver, City Commissioner Todd Neville, Historian David Nolan, Katie Ross from Senator Bill Nelson’s office, and Assistant Superintendent of Schools, Martha Mickler.
Old Town Trolley is 2017 Best Guided Tour
Old Town Trolley Tours is proud to be named 2017 Best Guided Tour by “Best of St. Augustine”.
National Geographic Traveler
By Adam H. Graham
Florida’s fountain of youth
History books taught us that Spanish explorer Juan Ponce de León “discovered” Florida 500 years ago in 1513 while seeking the fabled fountain of youth. But before the peninsula was claimed by de León, it was home for more than 12,000 years to Paleo-Indians who built civilizations around its water-filled sinkholes and left behind archaeologically rich middens (giant piles of oyster shells) as proof of their bayside existence.
Today, finding a genuine slice of “Old Florida” can be a scavenger hunt. The breezy Spanish colonial city of St. Augustine is an exception to the rule. A pair of marble lions greets visitors crossing the regal Bridge of Lions into the walled city. Looming over it is Castillo de San Marcos, a 17th-century fort surrounded by a moat and occupied at various times by Spanish, British, Confederate, and U.S. soldiers. The fort’s warren of chambers echoes with the stories of pirates, three signers of the Declaration of Independence, Spanish-American War deserters, and even Seminole Chief Osceola, who was incarcerated here in 1837 for leading the native resistance against the U.S.
Along King Street sit historic Flagler College and the Lightner, an antiquities museum housed in an 1887 Spanish Renaissance Revival masterpiece. It was commissioned by oil tycoon Henry Flagler, who is credited with salvaging the city and planting Florida’s tourism seeds. St. George Street, St. Augustine’s main drag, may have become overly touristy and crowded with T-shirt emporiums and fudge shops, but the side streets still harbor scrubby garden courtyards and off-the-radar bars, such as the 130-year-old Mill Top Tavern, where you can imagine what Old Florida was like before it became the Sunshine State.
How to Get Around
The Old Town Trolley narrated tour route encompasses 23 hop-on and hop-off sightseeing stops, plus a free shuttle to St. Augustine Lighthouse & Museum. Purchase passes online.
Historic City News
June 7, 2010
Archaeologist Raphael A. Cosme told Historic City News local reporters that he is proud to announce a new exhibit has opened featuring his private collection of Spanish colonial artifacts at the St. Augustine History Museum.
The exhibit entitled “Treasures of Juan Ponce de Leon and Domestic Life in Spanish Colonial St. Augustine” held its ribbon cutting ceremony before a crowd of spectators, including Cosme and his family, last Wednesday, June 2nd.
Ed Swift IV, Director of Operations of Old Town Trolley Tours, presented Cosme with an award of recognition for his dedication to archaeology, for the discovery of Juan Ponce de Leon artifacts and for promoting and preserving Hispanic colonial folklore.
Cosme has been researching and investigating Spanish colonial artifacts for the last 25 years. His finds include a comb carved out of bone, buttons, glass, coins dating from 1500 to 1630, cattle bones, and other inimitable pieces.
“What makes this exhibit truly fascinating,” Cosme said, “is the fact that the site location of excavation could be the land boundary of Ponce de Leon’s temporary wooden house, which was built between 1519 and 1521.”
The St. Augustine History Museum, located at 167 San Marco Avenue, features a combination of historical displays and private collections that bring over 400 years of Florida history to life.
Cosme said that he is honored to have the opportunity to showcase his unique exhibit which is specifically intended to educate the general public on St. Augustine’s rich Spanish history. “Now the treasures of Juan Ponce de Leon will be accessible for public viewing.
On October 22, 2009, Old Town Trolley Tours of St. Augustine was awarded Member of the Year at the St. Johns County Chamber of Commerce Annual Dinner, held at the beautiful Sawgrass Tournament Players Clubhouse in Ponte Vedra, Florida.
Selected from 995 members, this was quite an honor, as it was presented in front of a large number of members. Mr. Don Wallis, Immediate Past Chair of the Chamber, made the presentation and thanked us for all of our help in the past several years with their Leadership St. Johns program for which we have provided transportation services.
Dave Chatterton, General Manager, accepted the award on our behalf, and Stacey Jackson, Office Manager, and Cindy Stavely, Director of Sales, were also in attendance.