The Conch Republic

keys  006keys  002The Overseas Highway is the only way to get to the Florida Keys from the mainland.  Key West, the last Key that can be reached by land requires that you cross 42 bridges, including the seven mile bridge, located just past Marathon Key.keys  022

keys  003keys  001It’s a lovely drive, with beautiful waters surrounding you as you cross the bridges.  But this highway played a key role in the brief but memorable secession of the “Conch Republic”.

keys  023keys  014“The Conch Republic was established by secession of the Florida Keys from the United States of America, on April 23rd, 1982 in response to a United States Border Patrol Blockade setup on highway just to the north of the Florida Keys. This heinous act effectively isolated Keys Citizens from the U.S. mainland since the blockade was on our only land artery to and from the mainland. This roadblock portrayed Keys residents as non-U.S. citizens who had to prove their citizenship in order to drive onto the Florida mainland! Key West Mayor Dennis Wardlow along with a few other ‘key’ Conchs, went to Federal court in Miami to seek an injunction to stop the federal blockade, but to no avail.

keys  010keys  008Since the United States Government insisted on treating the Keys like a foreign country; the Mayor seceded from the Union, declared war, and began the Conch Republic’s Civil Rebellion by breaking a loaf of stale Cuban Bread over the head of a man dressed in a U.S. Navy uniform.  After one minute of rebellion, the now Prime Minister Wardlow turned to the Admiral in charge of the Navy Base at Key West, surrendered to the Union Forces and demanded 1 Billion dollars in foreign aid and War Relief to rebuild our nation after the long Federal siege!

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keys  017The Conch Republic has as its stated Foreign Policy, “The Mitigation of World Tension through the Exercise of Humor”. As the world’s first “Fifth World” country, we exist as a “State of Mind”, and aspire only to bring more Warmth, Humor and Respect to a planet we find in sore need of all three.”

keys  012keys  020keys  026Hector and I reach our destination, “the World Famous Geiger Key Marina and Smokehouse on the backside of paradise”, ten miles north of Key West, the capital of the Conch Republic.  We have a beautiful campsite overlooking crystal clear waters and mangroves.  And for one month, we will be residents of the Conch Republic.  An application for dual citizenship seems likely …

~ Brendakeys  024keys  015keys  013keys  027keys  025conch-republic-logo

7 thoughts on “The Conch Republic

  1. If you’re there next March, I’ll find a nearby hotel and spend spring break there.

    Again, your posts are a lovely, minivacation for me and I eagerly open every one.


  2. Thanks for bringing back memories…
    Steven was a fishing guide in the Keys one winter when we lived in the Adirondacks. I went down over Christmas to visit him and loved it! Beautiful sand, dolphins, key lime pie, pinkies, sun, warmth!!! And the Hog’s Breath was no slouch either!! Loved the open air restaurants, the breeze, and the easy going folk that live there. Enjoy!!
    Hugs ~ Rebecca

    • Welcome to our blog! Thanks for all of the nice comments! Congratulations on your “new” motorhome, our 2004 National Tropical has been great. There’s a lot to consider when going full-time, you should definitely take some longer trips in your RV first. Feel free to contact us with any questions and Happy New Year.

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