Museum’s Coffee and Conversations Spring Speakers Series Digs into Florida’s Cultural Heritage

By Meaghan Goepferich Posted on February 13, 2022

The Old Courthouse Heritage Museum, located at 1 Courthouse Square, Inverness, FL 34450, would like to announce the speakers for their “Coffee and Conversations” Spring Series.

Museum’s Coffee and Conversations Spring Speakers Series Digs into Florida’s Cultural Heritage

These events will focus on important historical elements of Florida’s cultural heritage.

On Thursday, March 10, 2022, at 7:00pm, Betty Jean Steinshouer will present “Scribbling Women in Florida.” Betty Jean first came to Florida with “Willa Cather Speaks” in 1989. Floridians convinced her to add Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings to her repertoire, and she moved to the state to do her research. She has since toured 43 states, presenting Humanities programs on women authors (including five with Florida connections) and other topics. In 2004, she was named a Fellow in Florida Studies at the University of South Florida St. Petersburg. Her book about Willa Cather, Long Road from Red Cloud, was awarded the 2020 International Book Award for biography.

Steinshouer’s program details the lives of a dozen women authors who have put Florida on the map, between Reconstruction-era Harriet Beecher Stowe and Constance Fenimore Woolson, the Gilded Age’s Sarah Orne Jewett, the homesteading Laura Ingalls Wilder and her libertarian daughter, Rose Wilder Lane, environmentalists Marjory Stoneman Douglas and Rachel Carson, friends Zora Neale Hurston and Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings, and poets Edna St. Vincent Millay, Elizabeth Bishop, and Anne Morrow Lindbergh. They all gravitated to the Land of Flowers, and she presents the lessons they learned.

On Thursday, April 7, 2022, at 7 pm, Sean Norman presents “Chucochatti, Conflict at the Red Town, 1836.” Mr. Norman is Assistant Director of Gulf Archaeology Research Institute (GARI) and specializes in the geoarchaeology of coupled human-natural ecosystems in coastal environments. He received his M.A. in Applied Anthropology from the University of South Florida (USF) where he examined the relationship between landscape modification (midden deposition and mound construction) and changing sea level and climatic conditions. This was accomplished using soil coring and landscape modeling on geographic information systems (GIS) software and led to his interest in refining regional sea level reconstructions. Norman also possesses a graduate certificate in GIS from USF and a B.A. in History from Columbus State University, with a background in archival curation and genealogical research.

His presentation discusses the recent historical and archaeological investigations conducted by GARI to document evidence of the villages of Chucochatti and the U.S. military actions in the region. Established in 1767, Chucochatti was among the oldest Seminole villages located in Central Florida. Founded by Upper Creek migrants from Central Alabama, Chucochatti was unique for being a Muskogee-speaking village in predominantly Miccosukee-speaking region. Weakened by raids in the decades before the second Seminole War (1835-1842), the residents largely conceded to removal to the Arkansas Territory. Despite the village’s abandonment, the Chucochatti area was a focal point of General Scott’s 1836 campaign and was repeatedly reoccupied by Seminoles during the war.

All programs are free and open to the public and are hosted at the Old Courthouse Heritage Museum. Light refreshments will be served. Guests can join in-person at the museum or watch from the comfort of home by searching “Old Courthouse Heritage Museum” on YouTube. Call (352) 341-6428 or sign up at


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