Canright House Public Meeting

St. Johns County in partnership with the St. Johns County Parks Foundation, will host a community meeting beginning at 5 p.m., on February 8, at the Anastasia Island Branch Library, 124 Sea Grove Main St, St Augustine Beach, FL 32080, to discuss the plans for the relocation of the famous beach cottage known as the “Canright House.” The house is where civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was scheduled to stay as part of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference in May of 1964 until it was vandalized by segregationists. The house became a symbol of the Civil Rights Act signed into law by President Lyndon Johnson on July 2, 1964. The foundation has secured state funds to relocate the historic house, donated by the current property owner, from its current location at 5480 Atlantic View to the County’s Windswept Acres Park, located at 5385 A1A S. St Augustine.

Ryan Kane, St. Johns County Parks and Recreation Director, said, “St. Johns County is excited to secure a significant part of our country’s history at one of our community parks that sits on a scenic highway. Windswept Acres Park has the public access and resources to support the Canright House relocation.” Kane shared in a video release that the park is the perfect location for this landmark, as it is already home to a former Windswept Beach Cottage that represents the masonry homes that were common to the area in the 1950s.

Michael Payne, Executive Director of the St. Johns County Parks Foundation, said, “The St. Johns County Parks Foundation is proud to be a part of this historic project together with several community groups and collaborators. The impact that Dr. King has had on the American landscape and the world is immeasurable. Preserving a small part of his legacy for future generations in St. Johns County is something that should make all county residents proud, knowing that we are connected to this tremendous American legacy. Although this will be more of a static exhibit, the Foundation is grateful to have been able to facilitate resources, will and people to move this historic landmark to its projected new home.

The St. Johns County Parks Foundation is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization whose mission is to utilize charitable purposes to acquire, develop, maintain, improve, expand, erect, support, preserve, restore, fund, encourage and sustain parks and recreational facilities within St. Johns County, for benefit of the general public.