61st Annual Conch Blowing Contest
The builder of the Oldest House was Richard Cussans, who immigrated to the Island of Key West in about 1826 from the Bahamas. He was in his mid-twenties when he built the house.
Francis Watlington (1804-1887) Mariner, Pilot, Sea Captain. Born in St. Croix, V.I., he moved to Key West in the early 1830s with his young wife Emeline.
Cookhouses were very common in the 1700 and 1800s. Kitchens were separate from the main house for many reasons, but the most important issue was fire.
Emeline Johnson Watlington, born in New York City, came to Key West as the sixteen year old bride of Francis. She gave birth to nine daughters, sailing back to New York City and family for two births.