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  • Writer's pictureMel Dick

Sunrise at Mallory Square

So today, I thought I would do something different. Rather than going to Mallory Square to watch the sunset, I went at sunrise to see what it would be like. Well, the pictures above tell it all.....nobody there but me and the occasional jogger or cleaning crews. Did get a chance to see the the Yankee Freedom catamaran as it left on the 2+hour trip to the Dry Tortugas National Park....more on that in a future post. One of the many fishing boats heading out for the day, likely on it's way to fish the reefs near the National Park which is generally an overnight fishing trip but billed as the best reef fishing in the world. An early morning flight coming into the Key West International Airport. Lastly, a great mosaic done by local students.

Named for a former U.S. Senator, Stephen Mallory, Mallory Square celebrates sunset every day of the year. Thousands of tourists and locals flock to watch what many believe are the best sunsets in the world. When Key West constructed a pier for cruise ships, the locals made it a requirement that no ships could be moored for two hours before sunset so as to not ruin the viewing area. Two hours gives the ships enough time to head out to sea and return without ruining the views

The real story is that of Ellen Russell Mallory, the Senator's mother. She and her husband and two young sons moved to Key West in 1823, only 1 years after Key West became part of the U.S. At the time there were only a few fisherman and pirates in the area and she was the first white female settler. Shortly after moving, her husband and son died and she was left to fend for her own with her remaining son as one of the few females in Key West. She survived by turning her home into a boarding house for sailors and over the years became known for taking care of the many sick from various Yellow fever outbreaks and those in need during hurricanes. Known for her tough Irish personality she became the "First Lady of Key West". Her grandson Stephen Mallory Jr. also went on to become a U.S. Senator.

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