by Sidney Lanier
Sidney Lanier (1842-1881) wrote this account of Florida. Of it he stated, “The newspapers have abounded with communications from clever correspondents who have done the State in a week or two; the magazinists have chatted very pleasantly of St. Augustine and the Indian River country; and there are half a dozen guide-books giving more or less details of the routes, hotels, and principal stopping-points. But it is not in clever newspaper paragraphs, it is not in chatty magazine papers, it is not in guide-books written while the cars are running, that the enormous phenomenon of Florida is to be disposed of. There are at least claims here which reach into some of the deepest needs of modern life.”
Sidney Clopton Lanier was a poet, flautist, lawyer and professor of literature at Johns Hopkins University. Lanier has been remembered in numerous ways. The science fiction novel Macrscope by Piers Anthony used his poetry and biographical references, statues of Lanier’s likeness appear at Duke University and Johns Hopkins University, and the rock band Lutajuća Srca translated his poetry into Serbo-Croatian for the song, “Večernja pesma.”
This new edition of Lanier’s view of Florida is dedicated to David Rich, who has patiently educated several generations of his family about the state’s unique experiences.