Walter Jones Historical Park, Mandarin Store and Post Office
CANCELED: April 4, 10 am – 4 pm
The special concert by Mrs. Kate is also CANCELED.

Mandarin Museum & Historical Society is participating in this 2020 Smithsonian Museum Day, a day designed to encourage people across the country to discover the wonderful museums in their own communities. At the Mandarin Museum, admission is always free, but on April 4, visitors will also receive the member discount on many museum store purchases, and all historic buildings in the Walter Jones Historical Park and the historic Mandarin Store and Post Office will be open.

In the Mandarin Museum, Dr. Keith Holland and several Maple Leaf divers will be present to answer your questions about the Civil War ship and the artifact recovery. You can also view exhibits that include: a special exhibit of artifacts from the Civil War recovered from the Union steamships Maple Leaf and Columbine; items related to Harriet Beecher Stowe, who wintered in Mandarin from 1867-1884; pottery of Mandarin artist Charlie Brown; and a special World War I exhibit honoring Mandarin resident Pvt. Marion Losco, who was killed in France in 1918. A gift shop of books, art and items related to local history is available in the museum, and it is the only place where you can purchase the Mandarin Frogs.

The historic 1898 St. Joseph’s Mission Schoolhouse for African-American Children presents the story of the Sisters of St. Joseph, who started a mission of education in 1868 for African-American children in the Mandarin area. The interpretive exhibits also honor the many honors African-American families of Mandarin who took advantage of the opportunity at this school and others like it in the south side of Duval County. Experience what a one-room schoolhouse would have been like at the turn of the 20th century and learn about the challenges that existed for the students and the teachers.

The historic 1875 Webb farmhouse will be open for tours, along with the Losco Winery and the 1876 Barn, all located within the farmstead area of the park. You may view the Wheeler Sawmill, the sugar cane grinder, the agricultural equipment in the barn and the wine making equipment in the winery. The farmhouse, furnished with items from the Walter Jones family and period pieces from the early part of the 20th century, allows visitors to visualize what life was like in our then sleepy little village called Mandarin. Life before electricity, before automobiles and paved roads, and before indoor plumbing! Life when it was peaceful and quiet and you knew all of your neighbors.

Within the park, “In Search of Valor” Civil War reenactors will display a salute to the common foot soldier of the American Civil War with a simulated encampment complete with period tents, weapons, uniforms, and soldiers’ personal effects. We encourage you to come by and take a step back into history and learn what it was like to be a foot soldier in America’s most challenging period.

And, in a special “Farewell Florida” performance, Mrs. Kate (Kate Carpenter) will be performing from 10:30-11:30 am at the schoolhouse. This is your last chance to sing and smile with Mrs. Kate before she moves to Indiana.

At the Historical Store and Post Office, we will be celebrating Miss Aggie Day, with a presentation of the 2020 Miss Aggie Award at 12:00 pm.