by Mike Miller
(Mount Dora, Florida)
Former Pleasant View Inn
In 1968 I was working on the foundation exploration for the new nuclear power plant. It was being built on Hutchinson Island about halfway between Fort Pierce Inlet and Stuart Inlet.
I was living in Tampa at the time, so I spent Monday through Friday nights at a motel in Fort Pierce out near Fort Pierce Inlet. The motel had been the former barracks for a U.S.Navy Amphibious training operation during World War Two.
One of my Fort Pierce hangouts during those days was the Pleasant View Inn. It was an old mansion located on the west side of US-1 a few miles north of Fort Pierce. The old structure sat on a hill and had a view of the Indian River to the east.
It was called the PVI by locals, and was a casual restaurant and nightclub where I could get a meal, a drink, and some conversation with great background music.
The house had a reputation as having been a bordello, or the former home of movie star Gloria Swanson, or an Al Capone hangout. All kinds of stories abounded, but all I remember is the interesting older woman who owned the place.
Her name was Mama Sagy and she had some great stories to tell. She had been a professional singer in her younger days, and had owned other nightclubs up north. Her husband was named Bert and he was also a professional musician who played the violin and other instruments.
Mama told me about knowing the Dorsey brothers, Tommy and Jimmy, who had led big time orchestras during the big band era of the 1930s and 1940s.
My work on the nuclear power plant ended and I've been back to Fort Pierce many times since those days in the 1960s. Somewhere along the way, the Pleasant View Inn disappeared. The last time I saw the mansion was when it was a antique store called Treasure Coast Antique Mall.
I didn't have the heart to go in; I preferred to remember it the way it was.
I learned later that Mama Sagy's real name was Evangeline J. "Buddy" Sagy and she lived to be 101 years old, dying in Fort Pierce in 1999. That means she was in her early 70s when she was my conversational buddy.
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