1898 was a significant year in Key West history. The USS Maine was sunk in Havana harbor, a number of the sailors killed were buried in the Key West Cemetary, and the Custom House  became the site for the formal inquiry into the sinking of the USS Maine.

Threats of war had prevailed. There was an inevitable feeling that a war between the United States and Spain would occur. It did. The USS Maine was sunk in Havana harbor to flame the fires of war.

Many US sailors were killed. A good number were buried in the Key West Cemetary. On this date in 1898, a dedication of the plot where these brave men are buried was dedicated. It was estimated 10,000 people attended the ceremony. Can you imagine! There were not that many people in Key West at the time. They had to have come from all over the United States.

Later, a formal inquiry was held to determine the cause of the USS Maine being sunk. The cause was clear. However rules and regulations required a hearing. The inquiry was held at the Custom House.

The Custom House had been completed on 1891. It was a Federal building. It housed the post office, custom offices and federal district court.

Today the Custom House is home to the Key West Art and Historical Society. Best described as a museum with frequent art exhibits. Dear friend Sheila from the Chart Room recently joined the staff of the Custom House. Her office oversees the waters off Key West.

Daughter Lisa is a part of the history of the Custom House. When she first settled in Key West some 15 years ago, her initial employment was at the Custom House with the Key West Art and Historical Society. She was with the organization for several years. She served as Development Director. A major fund raising effort was underway at the time to secure funds for the repair and reconstruction of the Custom House. Lisa played a significant role in the fund raising and her effort was most respectable. She did her job. She raised a lot of money.

Yesterday was a bit busy. I started with an early morning pick up of my computer from Tim Reynolds. It is now fixed. I am doing this blog on it at the moment.

I walk and then do not walk. I am becoming frustrated with myself. Realizing I need some regimentation, I went to a gym yesterday to sign up. With a trainer and everything. I went to We Be Fit. The gym that advertises on television that it can keep seniors in good shape and probably add on to their years.

I wanted to sign up. They would not let me. I first had to have a one hour consultation with whoever my trainer was to be. Whoever was not there at the time. I would get a call later in the day to schedule an appointment. No call. I will call them this morning. I find it strange that sometimes people are not anxious to make a dollar. I was there with credit card in hand prepared to pay for the whole thing up front.

I lunched at Mangrove Mama’s. I have not been there in 10 years. It is up US 1. Somewhere north of Key Haven and south of Big Pine. I ate in the bar and read the newspapers. The bar is small. A couple of booths. I sat at a booth and enjoyed a fish sandwich.

Yesterday afternoon was spent completing preparations for last night’s blog talk radio show. The show went on at 9 as scheduled.

I spoke about the Iceland revolution that we never heard about in the United states. I am going to dwell on it during my friday TV/internet show. The heart of the discussion centers on the failure of the American press to tell us about it. I blame corporate ownership of the major media companies for hiding news that might hurt them.

Protesting is getting out of hand on the streets of the Ukraine. Police joined with demonstrators yesterday in Turin, Italy in support of the protestors. Greece remains in turmoil. Africa a series of revolutionary wars.

Any one of these happenings can kindle World War III. Not the Middle East, as I have been saying. These are dangerous situations. Are we paying attention as we should? Do we care?

Buffalo’s Tom Dixon wrote and said he had ordered 5 copies of my book The World Upside Down. I wrote back and told him that made for a total of 6. His 5 and my 1! Joking, of course. I certainly hope that more than 6 have been sold.

Enjoy your day!



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