On this episode of The Reference Desk, Katie is bewitched by Key West.
As the southernmost point in the continental U.S., Key West, Florida, takes some work to get to. But you’ll find this place of weirdness, inclusivity, and strange history well worth the voyage. From its beginnings as a shipwreck paradise to its current vibrant mix of American, Spanish, and Caribbean influences, Key West is full of great stories. We’ll cover the history of this cayo Hueso from its indigenous people to Spanish colonization to modern times, through a look at some of the elements that make Key West so wonderfully unique: The Conch Republic Secession, the very creepy Carl Tanzler and his corpse bride, the story of the notorious haunted Robert the Doll, and the evolution of Fantasy Fest. Stick around until the end for books about and in Key West, our first-ever content overlap, and the best review of a lift-the-flap book you’ve ever heard.
Hester by Laurie Lico Albanese
New World Witchery: A Trove of North American Folk Magic by Cory Thoman Hutcheson
Key West reads:
Hidden History of the Florida Keys by Laura Albritton and Jerry Wilkinson
Hemingway’s Key West by Stuart B. McIver
Last Train to Paradise: Henry Flagler and the Spectacular Rise and Fall of the Railroad that Crossed an Ocean by Les Standiford
The Last Train to Key West by Chanel Cleeton
The Key West Food Critic Mysteries series by Lucy Burdette
Naked Came the Manatee by Carl Hiaasen et. al.
Purchase these books and all of our other recommended titles here!
Key West Artists: