Press Release
Boardwalk Talk: Dr. Craig Buettinger “The ‘Inspector and Fumigator’ at Mayport: Florida Lawmakers’ Effort to Stop Stowaway Slave Escapes on the St. Johns River in the 1850s”
Thursday, September 19, 6:00 p.m.
In 1855, the Florida legislature created the office of Inspector and Fumigator at Mayport in an effort to stem the rising number of escapes by enslaved men who stowed away on ships departing Jacksonville for northern ports. This presentation will explore the largely unknown history of the rise, extent, and distinctive features of slavery in Jacksonville; tell what can be uncovered about the escapes (which were by nature hidden and secretive); and look into the work of the official charged with preventing them.

Craig Buettinger is Professor of History Emeritus at Jacksonville University. He did his graduate work at Northwestern University, arriving at JU in 1983 and retiring in 2018 after 35 years. He has taught Modern World History, Western Civilization, and courses on many topics in U.S. history. His research focus is on the history of slavery in northeast Florida.

The event is free to Museum members with a suggested $5 donation from non-members. For more information, please call 904-241-5657 or visit
About the Beaches Museum

Beaches Museum is operated by the Beaches Area Historical Society whose mission is "to preserve and share the distinct history and culture of the Beaches area." To learn more about the Beaches Museum, please visit our  website .

The Beaches Museum is generously supported by The Cultural Council of Greater Jacksonville and Florida Department of State, Division of Cultural Affairs.

Beaches Museum
381 Beach Boulevard
Jacksonville Beach, FL 32250