The Mandarin Museum

Mandarin Museum is located near a historic point in Florida and has nothing to do with Chinese history or oranges. It preserves a local house that is now used as a museum and a stopping point for people who want to visit civil war sites. It also features a schoolhouse that was used by African-American children of the era. The Mandarin Museum and Historical Society preserve these landmarks as well as the artifacts housed in the museum.

The location is important because it is near where a confederate mine ship managed to sink a Union transport ship called the Maple Leaf. The historicity of this southern victory as well as its abundant treasure of salvaged artifacts makes this museum interesting to visit. As it is a historic landmark of importance to the United State, the preservation of its treasures is important, and simply visiting helps this cause.

The museum is named after Mandarin Point, and the road is named after the museum and the point. A point juts out into the sea and can be an excellent position for both observation and the placement of artillery cannons as well as a naval ambush. The battle occurred in this location and represents a display of Confederate resolve to secure their independence by assaulting a supply ship that was beneficial to the Union cause.

The adjacent river is called the St. Johns River, and it was the resting place for the Maple Leaf until it was explored by divers in the 1980s. The ship site remains a preserve but the many artifacts are now housed in the museum which pays homage to the civil war battle. As the Confederate mine or torpedo was assaulting an exhausted support and transport vessel, they had the advantage in firepower, although the historicity and gumption of the attack still make Mandarin Museum an important place to visit.

The Maple Leaf was a steamship that transported men and was similar to riverboats except that it was sturdy enough to travel out to sea. The ship was returning after unloading Union troops, so the destruction of the vessel did not cost many lives, but it was an impressive act of resistance during the later phase of the civil war. The Maple Leaf was destroyed due to a lack of armor similar to a warship but was dependent on a fairly large boiler. In spite of being exhausted of troops and supplies, the steamship excavation still provided a lot of treasures from the period.

For another interesting location in Jacksonville, stop by the Clark House Park.