Lower Suwannee Nat’l Wildlife Refuge

Eliza Waters

Lower Suwannee Lower Suwannee River

The Suwannee River originates in the Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge in southeastern Georgia and flows 265 miles southwesterly through upper Florida, into the Gulf of Mexico.

As I child I learned Stephen Foster’s American folk song, ‘Old Folks At Home’ and found myself humming it as I explored the Lower Suwannee River Wildlife Refuge. It is the official state song of Florida and has an interesting history, having been written prior to the abolition of slavery from the viewpoint of a slave, and subsequent revisions reflect less offensive lyrics.

palmetto Swamp palmettos

While the Park Headquarters were closed due to the recent government shutdown, the park gates were open dawn to dusk to visitors, of which I saw few. I pretty much had the place to myself, which was a strange feeling. Fifty-three-thousand acres with very few humans present is not a common occurrance for me. I had…

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