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Way Cold Nights, Sunny and Warming Days – Stuck

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Feeling marooned in southwest Florida while we wait on word on the Smart Car. What I thought might be a week seems like it may take ten days to two weeks.Moving up the road some to a Florida State Historical Site, Korsehan. Back in the day, 1894, one Cyrus Reed Teed brought his ‘followers’ to Estero to build the “New Jerusalem” for the new faith “Korseshanity”. The colony, known as the Korsehan Unity, believed that the entire universe existed within a giant hollow sphere. The colony began fading after Teed’s death in 1908. In 1961 the last four members deeded the land to the state of Florida.

A Teed biography presents: “As a young physician, Teed was always interested in unconventional experiments, such as alchemy, often involving dangerously high levels of electricity. In the autumn of 1869, during an experiment he was badly shocked, and passed out. During his period of unconsciousness, Teed believed he was visited by a divine spirit who told him that he was the messiah. Inspired, once he awoke Teed vowed to apply his scientific knowledge to “redeem humanity.” He promptly changed his first name to “Koresh,” the Hebrew word for Cyrus.

He denounced the idea that the Earth revolved around the sun and instead pioneered his own theory of the Universe, known as the Cellular Cosmogony. According to this theory, human beings live on the inside of the planet, not the outside. Gravity thus does not exist, and humans are held in place due to centrifugal force. The sun is a giant battery-operated contraption, and the stars mere refractions of its light.

Teed’s ideas, called Koreshanity caught on with others. Koreshanity preached cellular cosmogony, alchemy, reincarnation, immortality, celibacy, communism, and a few other radical ideas. Teed started preaching Koreshanity in the 1870s in New York, forming the Koreshan Unity, later moving to Chicago. Teed’s followers formed a commune in Chicago in 1888. Some followers also formed a short-lived community in San Francisco (1891-2). Small church groups existed in other towns.

Eventually, Teed took his followers to a small Florida town named Estero, to form his “New Jerusalem” in 1894. The ‘golden age’ for this community was 1903-1908, when they had over 250 residents and incorporated Estero. They built extensively, establishing a bakery, printing house (publishing their newspaper and other publications), their “World College of Life”, a general store, concrete works, power plant (that supplied power to the surrounding area years before it was available elsewhere in the region) and more. The colony was extensively landscaped with exotic tropical plantings. They tried to run several candidates for county government against the local Democratic Party but were never successful. Teed died in 1908. He was involved in an altercation between Fort Myers men and members of the Unity. Teed was severely pistol whipped by Marshal Sanchez, suffering injuries from which he never recovered, dying two years later. After his death the group went into decline.

The last remaining follower, Hedwig Michel, deeded the colony to the State of Florida in 1961. It is now the Koreshan State Historic Site.”

In addition to this history it has a number of RV sites where we will park ourselves until the car is done. There are a number of sites worth photographing nearby: Sanibel Island NWR and Cork Screw Swamp , an Audubon Reserve.

Right now it is not worth stirring until about 10 AM when the sun has warmed things up some. We find ourselves impersonating cold-blooded lizards during the day, finding the sunny warm spots and sitting there soaking up the sun and warmth immobilized.

Categories: Uncategorized
Posted by bigdawg on December 29, 2010

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