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Provisional Site: Grandview

  • Why Provisional?
  • Commentary
  • Journal Entries
  • Images
  • Resources & Links
  • Coordinates

Why Provisional?

John Bartram’s Journal provides, for the most part, a day-by-day detailed description of each day’s events and his observations regarding the lay of the land and the resources available to support commercial and agricultural endeavors.  From these accounts, it is often easy to identify the locations where the observations were made despite the passage of nearly two and a half centuries. William’s Travels is another story altogether.  Although presented in the form of a day-by-day account of his journey, it is almost certainly a compilation of his two or more passages up and down the St. Johns.  It is unfortunate that details provided in Travels sometimes conflict with those contained in the earlier account of this same trip provided in his Report.  Where discrepancies occur regarding a particular site, it may be that the site was indeed visited by William, but that it occurred during the 1765-66 tour with his father rather than during his return visit in 1774.  If this is the case, it may be that though chronologically displaced, the description of the site is accurate but based on either his memory, personal notes, or even on a copy of the Journal, which he likely had a hand in writing. (Kathryn Braund, personal communication)

Many of the locations designated as official Bartram Trails of Putnam County Sites can be identified with certainty if not pin-point accuracy.  Most can be confidently narrowed down to within a few hundred yards of the actual location.  A few can only be described as being within a mile or so of the actual site.  When the location of a Bartram landfall cannot reliably be determined to have taken place on the east or west shore, it seems only reasonable to describe that site as “provisional.”

Rather than a cause for disappointment, the identification of a site as provisional should be seen as an opportunity for a Bartram aficionado to explore the various texts, mull over old maps and pull up Google Earth to determine for themselves where the landfall might be more accurately sited.

The inclusion of Grandview as a “provisional” Bartram Trail Site is a perfect case in point.  The commentary provided for this site provides as many of the details that the author could compile and the conclusions based on the best information available at the time.

The Route

On the morning of January 25, 1765, the Bartrams broke camp at Palmetto Bluff and continued up-river towards squire Roll’s which would be their destination for that night.  After proceeding south for several miles passing by and observing numerous swamps along the way, they went ashore.  The location of this landfall is one of the least well documented and most debated among all of the Putnam County Bartram Trail sites, hence it provisional designation. 

The Site

The site of the landfall was, according to the Journal: 1) several miles distant from the previous night’s camp; 2) a point of high ground which; 3) gradually descended to a swamp on the right-hand side.  John also observed that it: 4) appeared to be the site of an ancient Indian village or Spanish plantation and 5) that there were plenty of oranges.  From this description, a number of likely sites can be identified. 

Shaefer (2010) suggests that the hike took place at a location later called Fort Buena Vista, near the mouth of Deep Creek.  This seems a less likely location as it would have taken the route south easterly from the campsite rather than following the more direct southwesterly course from Palmetto Bluff. 

Harper (1942) contends that the stop between the campsite of December 24 and Rollestown was made a Forrester Point.  His commentary for December 25 states: “Again to shorten distances around curves, the party would have returned to the eastern shore to pass Forrester Point, the probable site of "an ancient plantation of Indians or Spanish." Half a dozen miles farther up the river, on the eastern shore midway between East Palatka and San Mateo, is the site of ancient Rollestown ("squire Roll's").”  (See Images Tab - Figure 1, yellow line) While this site makes sense from a navigational standpoint, being along the most direct route between the two points, it does not appear to meet some of the criteria provided in John’s Journal. Most notable, is the absence of a swamp on the right-hand side and, though the Journal mentions orange trees, we know from his Journal entry of January 30, that Forrester Point was home to a massive orange grove the extent of which received much more than the casual mention of “plenty of orange trees” contained in entry of December 25 (See Images Tab - Figure 2).   

Florida History Online suggests that the location of the hike was in present-day Palatka (See Images Tab - Figure 3).  While this site also meets some of the criteria mentioned in the Journal, such as the fine swamp on the right-hand side of the high ground, it is much farther (10.5 miles) than the “several miles” distance described by John Bartram. 

It must be noted that no mention of having crossed the River on the way to site is made in the Journal, though it is entirely likely that they had, by this time, left the west shoreline to cross at a point where the crossing would be shortest and provide the most direct route south.  If so, it is also likely that the exact crossing point was determined more by the wind velocity and direction than apparent distance since they were in a row boat and the distance judgment would have been rather subjective anyway given that that it is unlikely that they possessed a scaled map to assist in judging the distances at any given location along the River.  If they crossed the River to minimize the distance, it could have been at a number of places along their route.  One such route would be include a departure from the west shore at Whetstone Point (See Images Tab - Figure 1, red line) where the shoreline heads off in a westerly direction and passes most closely to the eastern shore, providing the shortest crossing and remains along the most direct route to squire Roll’s.  If their landfall was made directly after having crossed the River, one site that meets all five of the criteria provided in the Journal is present-day Grandview, a distance of just over five miles from the previous night’s camp. 

Determining if William Bartram established camp at or near present-day Grandview on his solo trip on the St. Johns in 1774 is at least as difficult as the determination of this as the location of the hike and observation of an ancient Indian village or Spanish Plantation described by John and William in January of 1765. If one uses the account presented in his Travels, it is quite possible that this was the location of the campsite used by William on his journey up the River towards Roll’s town.  If one agrees that Travels is a compilation of sites visited on both of his journeys on the St. Johns, then it is quite likely that the description presented in Travels may have been based on a landfall and hike on December 25, 1765 described in the Journal.     

If the first of William’s publications (Report) is, as Harper (Harper 1958) contends, the more accurate, then William’s route into Putnam County in 1774 began at a campsite two miles south of Picolata and terminated at Roll’s town in present-day East Palatka. If, on the other hand, Travels is an accurate account, then this portion of his trip took two additional days of travel and employed two additional campsites.

If one accepts that the account of William’s 1774 journey up the St. Johns as presented in his   Travels is a compilation of experiences, observations and locations visited during both his solo journey up the St. Johns in 1774 as well as that made with his father in 1765, then the discrepancy between the itineraries presented in his Travels and his Report can be very nearly resolved.  Employing this approach, one might conclude that the two campsites described so vividly in Travels but absent from his Report, are based on the campsite cataloged in the Journal on December 24, 1765 at, or near Palmetto Bluff and the location of the hike that occurred on December 25, 1765 between the campsite and Rollestown.  This is the assumption used in the determination of Grandview as a provisional Bartram Trail Site.    

The Route

William Bartram’s account of his entrance into Putnam County and the route presented in his Travels, begins with his departure from Fort Picolata sometime after noon (p 80).  He continued to ascend the river and early in the evening, after a pleasant day’s voyage, made camp on the west shore of the river (p 81).  The likely location of this campsite was Palmetto Bluff (Bartram Trail Site 1) where he had camped with his father on Christmas Eve, December 24, 1765.  It was not until the evening of the following day that William describes setting sail and crossing the river to make a good harbor on the east shore and setting up camp for the night (p 85).  Based on this account, present-day Grandview is a likely location for that campsite, as it fits his description of the site quite well and the distances and directions he describes having traveled also fit nicely. 

If one prefers to plot a route based entirely on the description in Travels, then one may conclude that the campsite on the east shore may have been at a number of locations between Federal Point and Forrester Point (Figure 1).  If, on the other hand, these sites described in Travels were, in fact, descriptions based on locations visited during his trip in 1765-66, this site and the route may well be those described in John’s Journal entries for December 25, 1765 (See Images Tab - Figure 4).  

The route he took in 1774 was most likely that described in his Report.  That description consists of six words: “Next day got about 30 Miles.”  (p 146) If this was indeed the case, he sailed from two miles south of Fort Picolata to Rollestown without making any landfalls in between, an actual distance of only a little over 17 miles rather than William’s estimate of “about 30” (See Images Tab - Figure 5).

The Site

Describing this site, William writes that the banks are about 12 or 15 feet “perpendicular from its surface but the ascent gentle.”  His arrival being early in the evening, and having spent “a great part of the day” exploring at his previous campsite, it is unlikely that he had sailed any great distance, though the wind was “fair” for sailing.  He described his location as high and airy commanding an extensive view of the River and its shores both upstream and down.  He described seeing a “promontory” projecting far out into the river, beyond the lagoon, half a mile distant from his observation point with a “magnificent grove” and palm trees.  He arrived early in the evening having sailed across the river from his encampment on the west shore (most likely Palmetto Bluff – Bartram Trail Site 1) and, finding some interesting specimens here, decided to establish his camp for the night though it was still early in the day.  The “magnificent grove”  he observed beyond the lagoon, may well have been the “great orange grove” at Forrester Point where he and his father made camp on the night of January 30, 1766 which would likely have been visible from an observation point at Grandview (See Images Tab - Figure 6).

Francis Harper suggests that the site on the west shore described by William in Travels was near Clarks Creek in Clay County rather than the site described in the Journal for the night of December 24, 1765.  He gives more weight to the information provided in William’s Report than that of Travels and based on both documents, proposes that the location of the next campsite, located across the River on the east shore, was in St. Johns County somewhere between Tocoi Creek and Racy Point, well north of Grandview.  This location fits the description of the campsite described in William’s Report, being about “two miles farther” and therefore south of Fort Picolata (p. 146).

"Cool hazy morning, thermometer 46 in the open air, (in which all my thermometrical observations up the river are taken). After several miles, [passing] by choice swamps near the river, we landed at a point of high ground, which has been an ancient plantation of Indians or Spaniards; many live oak-trees grew upon it near two foot diameter, and plenty of oranges; the soil was sandy but pretty good; we walked back from the river, the ground rising gradually from the swamp on the right-hand, where grow small ever-green-oaks, hiccory, chinquapins, and great magnolia, and in the swamp grows the swamp or northern kind 18 inches diameter, and 60 foot high, liquid-amber and red-maple 3 foot diameter, elm, ash, and bays; the plants were most sorts of the northern ferns, saururus, iris, pancratium, large long flowering convolvulus running 20 foot high, chenopodium as high, and 4 inches diameter, pontedereia and dracontium. Cloudy cool day, arrived at squire Roll’s, a bluff point 17 foot high, more or less, of which 5 foot is composed of snail and muscle-shells, mixed with black mould or rotten vegetables, intermixed with sand, 20 paces distant from the shore, and diminishing all the way to the yellow soil, on which grows large evergreen-oaks, evergreen shrub-oaks, where the pine-lands begin at 50 yards from the river; This shell-Bluff is 300 yards more or less along the river's bank, gradually descending each way to a little swamp, round the head of which the pine-lands continue down the river a good way, and a little way up it; the bluff seems all soil and shells, but back near the Savanna's is found some clay; there is a small Spanish intrenchment on the bluff about 20 paces square, and pieces of Indian pots; the river is very deep near the bluff, though there is a great barr opposite to the town, and a very rich extensive swamp."

THIS morning the winds on the great river, were high and against me, I was therefore obliged to keep in port, a great part of the day, which I employed in little excursions round about my encampment. The Live Oaks are of an astonishing magnitude, and one tree contains a prodigious quantity of timber, yet comparatively, they are not tall, even in these forests, where growing on strong land, in company with others of great altitude (such as Fagus sylvatica, Liquid-amber, Magnolia grandiflora, and the high Palm tree) they strive while young to be upon an equality with their neighbours, and to enjoy the influence of the sun-beams, and of the pure animating air; but the others at last prevail, and their proud heads are seen at a great distance, towering far above the rest of the forest, which consists chiefly of this species of oak, Fraxinus, Ulmus, Acer rubrum, Laurus Borbonia, Quercus dentata, Ilex aquifolium, Olea Americana, Morus, Gleditsia triacanthus, and I believe a species of Sapindus. But the latter spreads abroad his brawny arms, to a great distance. The trunk of the Live Oak is generally from twelve to eighteen feet in girt, and rises ten or twelve feet erect from the earth; some I have seen eighteen or twenty; then divides itself into three, four, or five great limbs,

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THE wind being fair in the evening, I sat sail again, and crossing the river, made a good harbour on the East shore, where I pitched my tent for the night. The bank of the river was about twelve or fifteen feet perpendicular, from its surface, but the ascent gentle. Although I arrived here early in the evening, I found sufficient attractions to choose it for my lodging-place, and an ample field for botanical employment. It was a high, airy situation, and commanded an extensive and varied prospect of the river and its shores, up and down.

BEHOLD yon promontory, projecting far into the great river, beyond the still lagoon, half a mile distance from me, what a magnificent grove arises on its banks! how glorious the Palm! how majestically stands the Laurel, its head forming a perfect cone! its dark green foliage, seems silvered over with milk-white flowers. They are so large, as to be distinctly visible at the distance of a mile or more. The Laurel Magnolia, which grows on this river are the most beautiful and tall, that I have any where seen, unless we except those, which stand

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on the banks of the Missisippi; yet even these must yield, to those of St. Juan, in neatness of form, beauty of foliage, and I think, in largeness and fragrance of flower. Their usual height is about one hundred feet, and some greatly exceed that. The trunk is perfectly erect, rising in the form of a beautiful column, and supporting a head like a an obtuse cone. The flowers are on the extremities of the subdivisions of the branches, in the center of a coronet of dark green, shining, ovate pointed entire leaves: they are large, perfectly white, and expanded like a full blown Rose. They are polypetalous, consisting of fifteen, twenty, or twenty-five petals: these are of a thick coriaceous texture, and deeply concave, their edges being somewhat reflex, when mature. In the center stands the young cone, which is large, of a flesh colour, and elegantly studded with a gold coloured stigma; that by the end of summer, is greatly enlarged, and in the autumn ripens to a large crimson cone or strobile, disclosing multitudes of large coral red berries, which for a time hang down from them, suspended by a fine, white silky thread, four, six to nine inches in length. The flowers of this tree are the largest, and most compleat of any yet known: when fully expanded, they are of six, eight and nine inches diameter. The pericarpium and berries, possess an agreeable spicy scent, and an aromatic bitter taste. The wood when seasoned is of a straw colour, compact, and harder and firmer than that of the Poplar.

IT is really astonishing to behold the Grape-Vines in this place. From their bulk and strength, one would imagine, they were combined to pull down these mighty trees, to the earth, when in fact, amongst

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other good purposes, they serve to uphold them: they are frequently nine, ten, and twelve inches in diameter, and twine round the trunks of the trees, climb to their very tops, and then spread along their limbs, from tree to tree, throughout the forest; the fruit is but small and ill tasted. The Grape vines with the Rhamnus volubilis, Bignonia radicans, Bignonia crucigera, and another rambling shrubby vine, which seems allied to the Rhamnus, perhaps Zizyphus scandens, seem to tie the trees together, with garlands and festoons, and form enchanting shades. The long moss, so called, (Tillandsea usneascites) is a singular and surprising vegetable production: it grows from the limbs and twigs of all trees in these southern regions, from N. lat. 35 down as far as 28, and I believe every where within the tropics. Wherever it fixes itself, on a limb, or branch, it spreads into short and intricate divarications; these in time collect dust, wafted by the wind, and which, probably by the moisture it absorbs, softens the bark and sappy part of the tree, about the roots of the plant, and renders it more fit for it to establish itself; and from this small beginning, it encreases, by sending downwards and obliquely, on all sides, long pendant branches, which divide and subdivide themselves ad infinitum. It is common to find the spaces, betwixt the limbs of large trees, almost occupied by this plant; it also hangs waving in the wind, like streamers, from the lower limbs, to the length of fifteen or twenty feet, and of bulk and weight, more than several men together could carry; and in some places, cart loads of it are lying on the ground, torn off, by the violence of the wind. Any part of the living plant, torn off and caught, in the limbs of a tree, will presently take root,

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grow and encrease, in the same degree of perfection, as if it had sprung up from the seed. When fresh, cattle and deer will eat it in the winter season. It seems particularly adapted to the purpose of stuffing mattrasses, chairs, saddles, collars, &c. and for these purposes, nothing yet known equals it. The Spaniards in South America, and the West-Indies, work it into cables that are said to be very strong and durable; but, in order to render it useful, it ought to be thrown into shallow ponds of water, and exposed to the sun, where it soon rots, and the outside furry substance is dissolved. It is then taken out of the water, and spread to dry; when, after a little beating and shaking, it is sufficiently clean, nothing remaining but the interior, hard, black, elastic filament, entangled together, and greatly resembling horse-hair.

THE Zanthoxilum clava Herculis also grows here. It is a beautiful spreading tree, and much like a well grown apple tree. Its aromatic berry is delicious food for the little turtle dove; and epicures say that it gives their flesh a fine flavor.

HAVING finished my observation, I betook myself to rest; and when the plunging and roaring of the crocodiles, and the croaking of the frogs, had ceased, I slept very well during the remainder of the night, as a breeze from the river had scattered the clouds of musquitoes that at first infested me.

IT being a fine cool morning, and fair wind, I sat sail early, and saw, this day, vast quantities of the Pistia stratiotes, a very singular aquatic plant. It associates in large communities, or floating islands, some of them a quarter of a mile in extent, and are impelled to and fro, as the wind and

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current may direct. They are first produced on, or close to the shore, in eddy water, where they gradually spread themselves into the river, forming most delightful green plains, several miles in length, and in some places a quarter of a mile in breadth. These plants are nourished and kept in their proper horizontal situation, by means of long fibrous roots, which descend from the nether center, downwards, towards the muddy bottom. Each plant, when full grown, bears a general resemblance to a well grown plant of garden lettice, though the leaves are more nervous, of a firmer contexture, and of a full green colour, inclining to yellow. It vegetates on the surface of the still stagnant water, and in its natural situation, is propagated from seed only. In great storm of wind and rain, when the river is suddenly raised, large masses of these floating plains are broken loose, and driven from the shores, into the wide water, where they have the appearance of islets, and float about, until broken to pieces by the winds and waves; or driven again to shore, on some distant coast of the river, where they again find footing, and there, forming new colonies, spread and extend themselves again, until again broken up and dispread as before. These floating islands present a very entertaining prospect; for although we behold an assemblage of the primary productions of nature only, yet the imagination seems to remain in suspence and doubt; as in order to enliven the delusion and form a most picturesque appearance, we see not only flowery plants, clumps of shrubs, old weather-beaten trees, hoary and barbed, with the long moss waving from their snags, but we also see them compleatly inhabited, and alive, with crocodiles, serpents, frogs, otters,

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crows, herons, curlews, jackdaws, &c. there seems, in short, nothing wanted but the appearance of a wigwam and a canoe to complete the scene.

KEEPING along the West or Indian shore, I saw basking on the sedgy banks, numbers of alligators*,

* I have made use of the terms alligator and crocodile indiscriminately for this animal, alligator being the country name.

some of them of an enormous size.

THE high forests on this coast, now wore a grand and sublime appearance, the earth rising gradually, from the river Westward, by easy swelling ridges, behind one another, and lifted the distant groves up into the skies. The trees are of the lofty kind, as the grand Laurel Magnolia, Palm elata, Liquid-amber styraciflua, Fagus sylvatica, Querci, Juglans hiccory, Fraxinus, and others.

ON my doubling a long point of land, the river appeared surprisingly widened, forming a large bay, of an oval form, and several miles in extent. On the West side it was bordered round with low marshes, and invested with a swamp of Cypress, the trees so lofty, as to preclude the sight of the high-land forests, beyond them; and these trees, having flat tops, and all of equal height, seemed to be a green plain, lifted up and supported upon columns in the air, round the West side of the bay.

THE Cupressus disticha stands in the first order of North American trees. Its majestic stature is surprising, and on approaching them, we are struck with a kind of awe, at beholding the stateliness of the trunk, lifting its cumbrous top towards the skies, and casting a wide shade upon the ground, as a dark intervening cloud, which, for a time, precludes

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the rays of the sun. The delicacy of its colour, and texture of its leaves, exceed every thing in vegetation. It generally grows in the water, or in low flat lands, near the banks of great rivers and lakes, that are covered, great part of the year, with two or three feet depth of water, and that part of the trunk, which is subject to be under water, and four or five feet higher up, is greatly enlarged, by prodigious buttresses, or pilasters, which, in full grown trees, project out on every side, to such a distance, that several men might easily hide themselves in the hollows between. Each pilaster terminates under ground, in a very large, strong, serpentine root, which strikes off, and branches every way, just under the surface of the earth; and from these roots grow woody cones, called cypress knees, four, five, and six feet high, and from six to eighteen inches and two feet in diameter at their bases. The large ones are hollow, and serve very well for beehives; a small space of the tree itself is hollow, nearly as high as the buttresses already mentioned. From this place the tree, as it were, takes another beginning, forming a grand strait column eighty or ninety feet high, when it divides every way around into an extensive flat horizontal top, like an umbrella, where eagles have their secure nests, and cranes and storks their temporary resting places; and what adds to the magnificence of their appearance, is the streamers of long moss that hang from the lofty limbs and float in the winds. This is their majestic appearance, when standing alone, in large rice plantations, or thinly planted on the banks of great rivers.

PAROQUETS are commonly seen hovering and fluttering on their tops: they delight to shell the

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balls, its feed being their favourite food. The trunks of these trees when hollowed out, make large and durable pettiaugers and canoes, and afford excellent shingles, boards, and other timber, adapted to every purpose in frame buildings. When the planters fell these mighty trees, they raise a stage round them, as high as to reach above the buttresses; on this stage, eight or ten negroes ascend with their axes, and fall to work round its trunk. I have seen trunks of these trees that would measure eight, ten, and twelve feet in diameter, for forty and fifty feet strait shaft.

As I continued coasting the Indian shore of this bay, on doubling a promontory, I suddenly saw before me an Indian settlement, or village. It was a fine situation, the bank rising gradually from the water. There were eight or ten habitations, in a row, or street, fronting the water, and about fifty yards distance from it. Some of the youth were naked, up to their hips in the water, fishing with rods and lines, whilst others, younger, were diverting themselves in shooting frogs with bows and arrows. On my near approach, the little children took to their heels, and ran to some women, who were hoeing corn; but the stouter youth stood their ground, and, smiling, called to me. As I passed along, I observed some elderly people reclined on skins spread on the ground, under the cool shade of spreading Oaks and Palms, that were ranged in front of their houses; they arose, and eyed me as I passed, but perceiving that I kept on, without stopping, they resumed their former position. They were civil, and appeared happy in their situation.

THERE was a large Orange grove at the upper

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end of their village; the trees were large, carefully pruned, and the ground under them clean, open, and airy. There seemed to be several hundred acres of cleared land, about the village; a considerable portion of which was planted, chiefly with corn (Zea) Batatas, Beans, Pompions, Squash, (Cucurbita verrucosa) Melons (Cucurbita citrullus) Tobacco (Nicotiana) &c. abundantly sufficient for the inhabitants of the village.

AFTER leaving this village, and coasting a considerable cove of the lake, I percieved the river before me much contracted within its late bounds, but still retaining the appearance of a wide and deep river, both coasts bordered, for several miles, with rich deep swamps, well timbered with Cypress, Ash, Elm, Oak, Hiccory, Scarlet Maple, Nyssa aquatica, Nyssa tupilo, Gordonia lasianthus, Corypha palma, Corypha pumila, Laurus Borbonia, &c. The river gradually narrowing, I came in sight of Charlotia, where it is not above half a mile wide, but deep; and as there was a considerable current against me, I came here to an anchor. This town was founded by Den. Rolle, Esq; and is situated on a high bluff, on the east coast, fifteen or twenty feet perpendicular from the river, and is in length half a mile, or more, upon its banks.



pared, myself for this night solitary repose[,] hoping for favourable weather next morning. The much wish't morning appeared, but without hopes of getting away[,] the wind very high & against me; I arose early, & hearing some Turkeys struting, took my Gun & went towards them, I soon saw two large Turkey Cocks & a Hen, & had the luck to shoot the two Cock, which were very heavey & fat[.] I barbecued them, for Provisions, on my Voyage; bad weather still continuing all this day, & next, till towards the even*., the wind seemed to lull; I repared to a sandy point a little distance from my harbour, to see how the River looket[.] the swell seemed to abate; a very agreeable smell come over the water from the Pine tops[,] these trees being now in flower[,] and soon observed incredible Clouds of small brown dragon flys, which come from the other side in such prodigious numbers, as for a time almost obscured the sun, the air was thick with them, as far as I could see upwards, but they quickly decended, down, & almost coverd the Trees and ground about me, they however proved most [65] Wellcome messengers, for a gentle Gale soon succeeded which was some more favourable to me; I got all thing aboard & soon reimbarked & had just time to cross the River to a Point of land, I long wanted to gain just before dark; having only time enough to prepare my lodgings before dark came on. Sonn after it began to rain, which continued all night & very windy[.] the rain abated in the morning[,] the wind yet very high & against me[.] I took a turn in the groves were I found abundance of Oranges and pretty evergreens, amongst the rest that very singular & beautifull evergreen commonly calld wild Lime; saw an Indian who was indeavouring to get up to a flock of Turkeys, he discoverd me & I went up to him. he told me in english he lived at a plantation about a Mile off, he was a slave bro't from the Musqueto Shore; about Noon the wind being more favourable I got twelve mile farther; come too at Picolata Fort. which I obse[r]ved was newly repared; got 2 Miles farther. stop't at an Orange grove. Next day got about 30 Miles[,] staid this Night at Villa Role[.]

Click the Image for a larger Image.


  • Figure 1. Three possible routes of the Bartram’s upstream journeys. The yellow line and green icon show the route and hike at Forrester Point proposed by Harper. The red line and red icon show an alternate route with stop at Grandview. The Blue line depicts the route described by William in his Report.
  • Figure 2. An excerpt from the 1888 US Coast and Geodetic Survey map of the St. Johns River showing Whetstone Point, Forrester Point and the swamp between the latter two. A blue star marks present-day Grandview.
  • Figure 3. Three possible routes of the Bartrams as they traveled upstream from Palmetto Bluff to Roll’s town. The purple hiker icon shows the location of the landfall of December 25, 1765 in Palatka (purple icon) proposed by Florida History Online.
  • Figure 4. Three possible upstream routes of the Bartrams with possible landfalls at Grandview (red line and icon) or Forrester Point (yellow line and green icon). The blue line depicts the route described by William in his Report.
  • Figure 5. The possible upstream routes of the Bartrams as described in the various accounts with a blue line showing the route described by William in his Report
  • Figure 6. Modern day contour map of the terrain at Grandview and Forrester Point showing the swamp that separates the two points

Resources and Links

Florida History Online. Journal.


Florida History Online.  New World in a State of Nature.  British Plantations and Farms on the St. Johns River, East Florida 1763-1784.


Diary of a journey through the Carolinas, Georgia and Florida : From July 1, 1765 to April 10, 1766 / John Bartram. Annotated by Francis Harper.  P. 74.


Schafer, Daniel L. William Bartram and the Ghost Plantions of British East Florida.  University Press of Florida.  Gainesville Fl. 2010.

Coordinates:  29° 42.005'N;  81° 36.124'W

The site of an Ancient Indian Village or Spanish Plantation; Grandview?