Photos and Words by Rachel Mulcahy
In between Tallahassee and Quincy lies a North Florida haven, known as Lake Talquin.
Lake Talquin covers 8850 acres, making it the largest body of water in Leon County.
This 14.5 mile lake was a result of the Jackson Bluff hydrolelectric dam impounding the Ochlocknee River. Stumps sit under the surface where there used to be a forest.
Visitors take advantage of the primitive views of wildlife on the lake conisisting of the red-shouldered hawk, bobcat, coyote, osprey, white-tail deer, bald eagles, and the gopher tortoise.
These lucid waters blanket more than ecological changes: they rest on the history of 18 deaths that happened beneath the surface.
August 18th 1962: the town of Quincy stood still as a heart wrenching tragedy took place.
What was supposed to be a carefree, exciting Sunday school church outing suddenly went awry.
A boat containing 18 children (from the ages of 5 to 12) and one adult capsized. The bow of the boat started to retain water.
The incident took place only 200 years from the boat landing at Lake Talquin.
A lone survivor was rescued by a fisherman. Later on he recalled the events. He remembered the wretched cries for help: “I can’t swim!”
Moss drips down, grazing the water, tasting the history of death here.
This history, and the sights that remain above them, give insight into the beauty of nature. It shows that nature absolves and consumes without thought. Nature moves on after we’ve died. Nature does not respect us.