Category Archives: Stories of St. Martin

Ephemera

In the film Raiders of the Lost Ark, there is a key scene in a Cairo cafe. The evil archaeologist Belloq holds out a cheap watch and says that if he buries it for a thousand years it will become priceless. Although his character was on the wrong side of history, he had a point. …

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Invisible City

St. Martin is full of cities with stories. We know their past and their present day identity. For a small island, it has a surprising number of distinct cultural centers. That’s one of the things that makes it such a great place to live or visit. Philipsburg was a center of salt production in the …

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Invisible City

St. Martin is full of cities with stories. We know their past and their present day identity. For a small island, it has a surprising number of distinct cultural centers. That’s one of the things that makes it such a great place to live or visit. Philipsburg was a center of salt production in the …

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Mystery Machines

The backyard of The Old House in French Quarter was overgrown with trees and bushes that had been growing wild for years. On top of that, Hurricane Irma had downed branches and tossed debris everywhere. Volunteers had spent weeks clearing the yard before they finally reached the mystery machine. You could almost walk by and …

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History Exposed

The cycles of change between wet and dry on St. Martin have shaped the island’s wild spaces. Plants and animals that can’t survive the dry times don’t live here. Those that can have adaptations. Trees shed their leaves in dry times to conserve their moisture. Animals breed in the wet period when there is more …

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Setting Sail

What could be more Caribbean than traditional boat building and sailing? Island life has always been tied to the sea. The Caribbean is also a place that has a long tradition of self-reliance. Traditional boats are a symbol of these two characteristics. On St. Martin today we mostly get our food from the supermarket. It …

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A Christmas Story

Christmas House is one of St. Martin’s most popular and unique attractions. It is a tradition that goes back over 30 years and has touched many thousands of lives. It can bring a smile to anyone in the world, and it is also a deep expression of St. Martin culture. It all started as something …

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The Stories of Stuff

The written record of the past is full of holes. In fact, it is mostly holes. So many things were unwritten: everything before writing and the experience of those that couldn’t write. Land deeds, legal contracts and census records have often survived, but surely even more was lost through time. Countless letters and diaries have been …

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From the Records

History is the study of the past. Often it is defined as the study of the past as recorded in writing. This is a reasonable definition, but it also limits the the scope of what we can learn from history. The Old House in French Quarter has a history. A version of it was compiled …

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From the Records

History is the study of the past. Often it is defined as the study of the past as recorded in writing. This is a reasonable definition, but it also limits the the scope of what we can learn from history. The Old House in French Quarter has a history. A version of it was compiled …

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