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June 2019

Brian Magrane l Merchant Ship of 1622 Fleet

27-June from 6:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Old City Hall, 510 Greene Street
Key West, FL 33040 United States
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About the presentation: Dr. Brian Magrane will take the audience back in time to 1622 when the Spanish ruled Florida waters. He will tell the story of the Atocha’s lesser known sister ship, the Buen Jesus y Nuestra Senora del Rosario. Learn about life onboard a small Spanish merchant ship and what was found on the wreck site. Brian will discuss the coins and treasures recovered and how the Atocha and Rosario differed.  About the presenter: Dr. Brian Magrane is…

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September 2019

Distinguished Speaker Series | Willie Drye : Storm of the Century: Labor Day Hurricane of 1935

26-September from 6:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Margaritaville Key West Resort & Marina, 245 Front Street
Key West, FL 33040 United States
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Author and National Geographic News Contributing Editor Willie Drye unraveled the fascinating story of the most powerful hurricane in U.S. history in his highly praised book, Storm of the Century: The Labor Day Hurricane of 1935. The work of narrative non-fiction, which reads like a novel, has been hailed as the definitive account of this event. Drye's riveting yet meticulously accurate portrayal of the horrific power of this long-ago monster storm also was praised by some of the nation's most…

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October 2019

Historic Sail | Corey Malcom, PhD| The History of the Key West Bight

19-October from 10:00 AM to 12:00 PM
Key West Bight, 201 William Street
Key West, FL United States
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October 19, 2019 – (Key West, FL).  Sail into historic exploration with Key West Art & Historical Society and archaeologist Corey Malcom, Ph.D. What better way to learn about the historic significance of the Key West Bight than taking a morning sail through the Key West Harbor and beyond. Enjoy mimosas, fresh fruit, delicious breakfast pastries and create your own Bloody Mary aboard the classy and comfortable 75 ft. Argo Navis catamaran. The History of Key West Bight and Harbor…

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November 2019

Distinguished Speaker Series | Jeff Stotts: Mid 19th Century Key West African American community

7-November from 6:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Old City Hall, 510 Greene Street
Key West, FL 33040 United States
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Distinguished Speaker Series | Jeff Stotts: Mid-19th century Key West African American Community The community of Key West in the nineteenth century evolved from many cultural contributions. Most African descendants already living in mainland Florida had escaped prior servitude. Some were multi-generational descendants of freeman from the era of Spanish Florida, who had migrated into Key West. Many generations being mostly catholic, recently Americanized from Spanish rule, were never enslaved. These Afro-American merchants, businessmen, multi-skilled workers from St. Augustine, came…

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December 2019

Distinguished Speaker Series | Fred Borch: Key West in WWII

19-December from 12:00 PM to 1:00 PM
Old City Hall, 510 Greene Street
Key West, FL 33040 United States
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Military historian Fred Borch will talk about Key West’s role during World War II. When the war began, the Navy in Key West occupied just 50 acres on the edge of the island. By 1945, Navy operations sprawled across more than 3,200 acres. The Navy spent $70 million in building Key West into what some called “America’s Gibraltar” (after the British outpost in the Mediterranean), and more than 14,000 ships passed through Key West’s Harbor between 1942 and 1945. The…

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Distinguished Speaker Series | Fred Borch: Key West in WWII

19-December from 6:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Old City Hall, 510 Greene Street
Key West, FL 33040 United States
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Military historian Fred Borch will talk about Key West’s role during World War II. When the war began, the Navy in Key West occupied just 50 acres on the edge of the island. By 1945, Navy operations sprawled across more than 3,200 acres. The Navy spent $70 million in building Key West into what some called “America’s Gibraltar” (after the British outpost in the Mediterranean), and more than 14,000 ships passed through Key West’s Harbor between 1942 and 1945. The…

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January 2020

Distinguished Speaker Series | The Florida East Coast Railway: For 125 Years America’s Speedway To Sunshine

9-January from 6:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Margaritaville Key West Resort & Marina, 245 Front Street
Key West, FL 33040 United States
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Our speaker on January 9th will be none other than Florida East Coast Railway Company Historian, Barry University Adjunct Professor of History and Historian in Residence and Nova Southeastern University Lifelong Learning Institute Adjunct Professor of History Seth H. Bramson. Professor Bramson, who is America’s single most-published Florida history book author, has written five histories of and about America’s most exciting railroad and you don’t and won’t want to miss his talk, THE FLORIDA EAST COAST RAILWAY: FOR 125 YEARS…

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Distinguished Speaker Series | Grand Army Women: The Loyal Women of the North

23-January from 6:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Old City Hall, 510 Greene Street
Key West, FL 33040 United States
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Join us on January 23rd, for a fascinating talk by Robert J. Wolz about the lack of preparation on the part of all combatants to the role of women as army nurses and the civilian response. Then the organization of the Grand army of the republic (the union veterans and the Civil War) and eight organizations that formed as auxiliaries to support the widows, orphans, disabled and destitute army nurses. They literally raised millions of dollars to meet their need. …

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February 2020

Distinguished Speaker Series | Fred Borch: Key West and the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962 – NOON

13-February from 12:00 PM to 1:00 PM
Custom House Museum, 281 FRONT ST
KEY WEST, FL 33040-8313 United States
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Distinguished Speaker Series | Fred Borch: Key West and the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962 Thursday, February 13, 2020, from 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM On October 14, 1962, US Air Force spy planes flying over Cuba discovered that the Soviet Union was assembling medium range ballistic missiles on the island—missiles that could reach most of the United States in minutes and, if armed with nuclear warheads, posed a grave threat to Americans. In the days and weeks that followed,…

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Distinguished Speaker Series | Fred Borch: Key West and the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962

13-February from 6:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Old City Hall, 510 Greene Street
Key West, FL 33040 United States
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Distinguished Speaker Series | Fred Borch: Key West and the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962 Thursday, February 13, 2020, from 6:00pm – 7:00pm On October 14, 1962, US Air Force spy planes flying over Cuba discovered that the Soviet Union was assembling medium range ballistic missiles on the island—missiles that could reach most of the United States in minutes and, if armed with nuclear warheads, posed a grave threat to Americans. In the days and weeks that followed, the Cuban…

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March 2020

Distinguished Speaker Series | U-boats So Close to Home and The Finest Hours: The Coast Guard’s Greatest Rescue

5-March from 6:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Old City Hall, 510 Greene Street
Key West, FL 33040 United States
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Distinguished Speaker Series | U-boats So Close to Home and The Finest Hours: The Coast Guard’s Greatest Rescue Thursday, March 5, 2020, from 6:00pm – 7:00pm New York Times bestselling author Michael Tougias will appear at the Custom House on Thursday, March 5, 2020, from 6:00pm-7:00pm. He will be giving a two part multi-media presentation. The first part covers his new book U-Boats so Close to Home: A True Story of an American Family’s Fight for Survival During WWII. The…

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April 2020

Distinguished Speaker Series | The First Peoples of Key West: Archaeology at the Stock Island Site and Beyond

2-April from 6:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Custom House Museum, 281 FRONT ST
KEY WEST, FL 33040-8313 United States
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Distinguished Speaker Series | The First Peoples of Key West: Archaeology at the Stock Island Site and Beyond Thursday, March 5, 2020, from 6:00pm – 7:00pm Ryan Hark will be discussing his most recent discoveries in studying remains from the Stock Island archaeological site that was once located on a small island northwest of today’s Stock Island (where the County prison is today). He will be sharing new radiocarbon dates from the oldest human-made deposits at the site, which provide…

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October 2020

VIRTUAL Distinguished Speaker Series | David L. Sloan: The Haunted Dolls of Bone Island

23-October from 4:00 PM to 5:00 PM

VIRTUAL Distinguished Speaker Series | David L. Sloan: The Haunted Dolls of Bone Island VIRTUAL Webinar on Thursday, October 23, 2020, from 4:00pm-5:00pm Discover the bizarre and fascinating history of haunted dolls in the southernmost city with acclaimed author and ghost hunter, David L. Sloan. From Calusa totems and the mysterious doll heads of Rest Beach to Fort East Martello’s Robert the Doll and the Audubon House’s missing Peck doll, Sloan will share the true history and island legends surrounding…

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November 2020

VIRTUAL Distinguished Speaker Series | 85 Years Old and Still Growing at the Key West Tropical Forest & Botanical Garden

5-November from 4:00 PM to 5:00 PM

VIRTUAL Distinguished Speaker Series | 85 Years Old and Still Growing at the Key West Tropical Forest & Botanical Garden Virtual Webinar on Thursday, November 5, 2020, from 4:00 PM-5:00 PM Misha McRAE will be presenting the 84-year history of the Key West Tropical Forest & Botanical Garden from concept in 1934 to the present, with an introduction to the significance of its many functions it provides to the community, City of Key West, conservation, and to the world. About…

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December 2020

VIRTUAL Distinguished Speaker Series | The First Peoples of Key West: Archaeology at the Stock Island Site and Beyond

3-December from 4:00 PM to 5:00 PM

VIRTUAL Distinguished Speaker Series | The First Peoples of Key West: Archaeology at the Stock Island Site and Beyond Virtual Webinar on Thursday, December 3, 2020, from 4:00pm - 5:00pm Ryan Harke will be discussing his most recent discoveries in studying remains from the Stock Island archaeological site that was once located on a small island northwest of today’s Stock Island (where the County prison is today). He will be sharing new radiocarbon dates from the oldest human-made deposits at…

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VIRTUAL Distinguished Speaker Series | Key West in the 1870s, 1880s and 1890s: A History of Revolution and Change

17-December from 4:00 PM to 5:00 PM

VIRTUAL Distinguished Speaker Series | Key West in the 1870s, 1880s and 1890s: A History of Revolution and Change Thursday, December 17, 2020, from 4:00 pm-5:00 pm Key West in the last three decades of the nineteenth century was a unique piece of America. Cuban revolutionaries on the island organized their struggle against Spanish rule in Cuba. Shipping lanes connected Key West with the world and there was bi-weekly steamship service between Tampa, Key West and Havana. The economy boomed…

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January 2021

VIRTUAL Distinguished Speaker Series | The Dry Tortugas and Fort Jefferson, A History

14-January from 4:00 PM to 5:00 PM

VIRTUAL Distinguished Speaker Series | The Dry Tortugas and Fort Jefferson, A History Thursday, January 14, 2021, from 4:00 pm – 5:00 pm For over five centuries, the Dry Tortugas and its reefs provided the setting for the stories of pirates and privateers, soldiers and sailors, lighthouses and shipwrecks, naturalists and prisoners, fishers and tourists. Isolated 70 miles west of Key West, the islands of Dry Tortugas National Park appear to arise as if by magic, floating atop the waters…

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VIRTUAL Distinguished Speaker Series | Piracy and Key West: Commodore David Porter and the Mosquito Squadron by Fred Borch

21-January from 4:00 PM to 5:00 PM

VIRTUAL Distinguished Speaker Series | Piracy and Key West: Commodore David Porter and the Mosquito Squadron by Fred Borch Thursday, January 21, 2021, from 4:00 pm – 5:00 pm   Piracy was a major problem in the Caribbean in the early nineteenth century and Congress wanted to protect American merchant shipping. As a result, the Navy ordered Commodore David Porter to establish a base in Key West to end piracy. He arrived in April 1823. Hear historian Fred Borch talk about Porter’s West…

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February 2021

VIRTUAL Distinguished Speaker Series | The Last Turtlemen of the Caribbean: Labor, Conservation, and Boundary Making from the Cayman Islands to Key West

4-February from 4:00 PM to 5:00 PM

Virtual Distinguished Speaker Series | The Last Turtlemen of the Caribbean: Labor, Conservation, and Boundary Making from the Cayman Islands to Key West Thursday, February 4th, from 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm In her talk "The Last Turtlemen of the Caribbean: Labor, Conservation, and Boundary Making from the Cayman Islands to Key West," Sharika Crawford discusses the entangled histories of peoples and commodities that circulated across the greater Caribbean, which connected places like Key West to the Cayman Islands and…

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VIRTUAL Distinguished Speaker Series | Afro-Caribbean Migration to Florida

18-February from 4:00 PM to 5:00 PM

VIRTUAL Distinguished Speaker Series | Afro-Caribbean Migration to Florida by Magdalena Lamarre Thursday, February 18th, from 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm This program will examine the migration and settlement patterns of the various Afro-Caribbean peoples who made Florida their home and their contributions to its history and culture.  About the Presenter: Magdalena Lamarre was a Full Professor of History and Sociology at Miami Dade College until her retirement in 2016.  She earned a BA in History and Secondary Education from…

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