• From early man until now

    Many of us think of recycling as a recent trend but humans have been recycling for a very long time, all the way back to prehistory. Early man would rework broken arrowheads so that they could be reused and not thrown away.  In 1690 the first recycled paper manufacturer in the U S was established near Philadelphia using cotton and linen rags to make paper.

  • My first trip to Cedar Key

    My daughter, Donna Leeward and I were showing in the Spring Art Show in Cedar Key this past March. When I looked at the old Island Hotel I was getting a strong feeling of déjà vu.

    In my mind I was going back 59 years to my first trip to Cedar Key. It was funny because at that time I didn't even know where Cedar Key was.

    One day out of a clear blue sky my dad asked me, "How long has it been since you had turtle steak?"

    Well, I guess it was at the Green Turtle Inn, halfway down the over-seas highway to Key West.

  • Conservation Corner: Good News

    If you watch the news on a regular basis, you know that good news is hard to come by. The nightly news content is usually about war and hatred, crime, natural disasters and various other sad stories with a feel good story thrown in at the end of the broadcast. But there is good news, especially concerning the environment. You just do not hear about it very much. So the following is just a few of the positive stories about the environment.

  • Dealing with that difficult person

    By Bob Denny
    My friend’s blood pressure jumped to 160/110! He told me he thought he was going to explode! It was a serious clash with a dominating supervisor. That was one of the most painful and challenging times of his life! It hurt so bad that he took a month off of work. With some helpful counseling, he worked out a good solution with the employer, and was able to return to his job and stay on until a happy and successful retirement. (His supervisor was transferred and given appropriate training on “management skills.”)

  • CRACKER COWBOY: The Guy Thompson Affair (Part 1)

    A couple of years into my cowboying in Marion County I got a call from a man who was living on the Castro farms, northwest of Ocala on Highway 27. He told me he managed the cattle operation for Bernard Castro and he had heard that I was day working and had some good dogs. He had a similar arrangement with Castro that I had with the Double F Ranch out at Moss Bluff - we could day work on the side on our own time.

  • CRACKER COWBOY: Bad cows with bad horns

    The Double F at Moss Bluff in Marion County was like about every other ranch I ever worked on; it had one or two bad cows that would go out of their way to hook your pants off. Once we identified them, we made it a practice to tip their horns, so they couldn’t do as much damage.
    One time while receiving cattle from Dixie County for the Perry Brothers at the Baseline cow pen at Belleview, one of the semi-drivers told us to watch out for a little scrub cow and don’t turn your back on her. She had killed a horse back in Dixie County.

  • Bill Roberts' CRACKER COWBOY: The Heather Island Bull

    By Bill Roberts
    I was day-working in Marion County for a group of cattlemen that had cattle in several pastures, including the Ocala National Forest, where the cattle, more or less, roamed over a large area.
    This was the end of the open range, as encounters with automobiles became more frequent, especially of Highway 40 from Ocala to the East Coast.

  • The end of the open range in the Big Scrub

    By Bill Roberts

  • Cows in the marsh at Wiles Road


  • What is the economic impact of area springs?

    By Annette Long, President