The Cracker Culture in Florida History

Dana Ste. Claire

Forewords by James M. Denham and Rick Tonian

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"Ste. Claire is one of the few in the state who has given this often-maligned group their just due. Crackers aren't only a part of Florida history. To a great extent, they are Florida history."--Rick Tonyan, author of Guns of the Palmetto Plains: A Cracker Western

"Brings together vivid images of Florida's frontier people who did not just live but flourished in a time before air conditioning, mosquito repellent, and screens. . . . Ste. Claire's work reminds us that Cracker culture and ways offer positive legacies valuable for our present generation: self-reliance, self-sufficiency, honesty, and a simple, direct approach to people and problems."--James M. Denham, Florida Southern College, Lakeland

For over 200 years scholars have attempted to define the Crackers, but their name is as elusive as their nature, their character as tough as Florida’s hardscrabble countryside, and any real Cracker will tell you that's just the way they like it. Part history, part folklore, Cracker is a generously illustrated account of Cracker heritage, its rich history, and its disappearance as today's fast-paced society reaches even into the remote backwoods of the state.

From the language they spoke to the houses they built, from clandestine moonshine stills and cowhunting to "grits and gravy," Dana Ste. Claire offers a colorful and revealing tour of Crackerdom.

Dana Ste. Claire is former curator of history and a professional archaeologist at the Museum of Arts and Sciences in Daytona Beach.

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"As complete a reference as exists on Florida Crackers."
--The Florida Frontier Gazette

"With people moving into Florida at a rate of over 1,000 a day, the Cracker is also getting pushed out of his habitat. All of these 'transplants' need to get a copy of this book, so they can better appreciate what Florida once was."
--St. Augustine Archaeological Association Newsletter

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