By foot, kayak, and horseback, the expedition team journeyed north from Everglades National Park, through the Big Cypress National Preserve, up the Kissimmee River to the Lake Wales Ridge, through the Ocala National Forest, and, finally, to the Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge in southern Georgia.
When their journey was complete, conservation photographer Carlton Ward Jr., documentarian Elam Stoltzfus, conservationist Mallory Lykes Dimmitt, and bear biologist Joe Guthrie had traveled 1,000 miles in 100 days.
ExhibitionThe ambitious trek ― the Florida Wildlife Corridor Expedition ― is the focus of a new exhibition opening Saturday, February 23 at the Tampa Bay History Center. Florida Wildlife Corridor Expedition: The Photographs of Carlton Ward Jr. will take visitors on a virtual expedition from the Everglades to the Okefenokee. The exhibition will feature a collection of large-format images taken by Ward, along with maps, video footage, audio clips, news reports, and equipment used by team members during the expedition.
The exhibit will also look at similar explorations undertaken by earlier explorers and naturalists William Bartram and Mark Catesby, both of whom traveled through Florida’s interior in the 1700s.
Ward is an eighth-generation Floridian whose photographs have appeared in such publications as Audubon, Smithsonian, Nature Conservancy and National Wildlife. His 2009 photo book, Florida Cowboys, won a silver medal in the Florida Book Awards, and Popular Photography Magazine featured him as one of three photographers working to save vanishing America.
Florida Wildlife Expedition: The Photographs of Carlton Ward Jr., is on exhibit at the Tampa Bay History Center through May 5, and is sponsored by The Mosaic Company, The Kimmins Family Foundation, WUSF Public Media, and the Tampa Bay Times.
DocumentaryThe History Center will also host the premiere of Elam Stoltzfus’ PBS documentary chronicling the expedition. Florida Wildlife Corridor Expedition: Everglades to Okefenokee will debut in Cotanchobee Park in front of the History Center on Sunday, March 3 at 6:30 p.m. before it airs on public television stations across the nation later this spring. The History Center will offer extended gallery hours until 6:30 p.m., along with family-friendly activities in Cotanchobee Park beginning at 4:30 p.m. The screening is free and open to the public.
Lecture and Book Signing
Ward’s new book, Florida Wildlife Corridor Expedition: Everglades to Okefenokee (9x12”, 160 pages), will be available at the History Center starting March 3, and he’ll sign copies during a Florida Conversations lecture at the History Center on Thursday, March 21 at 6:30 p.m.
Visit www.tampabayhistorycenter.org for more information.