One of my 2 favorite spots in the St. Augustine area is Princess Place. This 1100 acre property was purchased from Spain by Francisco Pelletier in 1781, with ownership transferred in 1886 to Henry Mason Cutting, a man of wealth from New England. Located south of St. Augustine, Florida, on Kings Highway, it is maintained by Flagler County, and free of charge with donations accepted.
In 1887, Cutting built an Adirondack Camp Lodge on the property with servants quarters, tennis courts, a caretakers home, horse stables, as well as Florida’s first in ground swimming pool. Many visited the lodge, hunting the area with Mr. Cutting, and socializing with his wife, Angela Mills Cutting. Sadly, in 1892, he died leaving his widow with 2 young children to raise. She later remarried an exiled Russian prince, Boris Scherbatoff, (later changed to Scherbatow for fear of his life), hence the name change to Princess Place.
Descendants still live on the property which is open 7 days a week from 7 am to 6 pm. Fascinating tours of the home are given by park rangers Friday, Saturday, and Sunday at 2 pm. There is a movie about the property at the Visitor Center which is next to the Ranger Station on the side of the home. This is a must see.
Also on Kings Highway is the Florida Agriculture Museum, which is open Wednesday- Sunday 10-4. This is another fascinating trip in history telling the tale of the Cracker lifestyle. There is a charge, but worth the fee.
Tomorrow I will let you in on another St. Augustine area secret. Stay tuned.