The Bunnell Development Company Papers and Manuscripts

Material Information

The Bunnell Development Company Papers and Manuscripts
Alternate title:
Bunnell Home Builder papers and manuscripts
Alternate title:
Bunnell Development Company forms
Physical Description:
Volumes : illustrations, ; 29 cm.


Subjects / Keywords:
Housing development -- History -- Florida -- Bunnell ( lcsh )
Real property -- History -- Florida -- Bunnell ( lcsh )
Housing development ( fast )
Real property ( fast )
Travel ( fast )
Description and travel -- Periodicals -- Bunnell (Fla.) ( lcsh )
Description and travel -- Periodicals -- Flagler County (Fla.) ( lcsh )
Florida -- Bunnell ( fast )
Florida -- Flagler County ( fast )
History. ( fast )
Periodicals. ( fast )
serial ( sobekcm )
History ( fast )
Periodicals ( fast )


General Note:
Miscellaneous text and documents from the Bunnell Development Colony, Florida in what is now Flagler County.

Record Information

Source Institution:
Flagler County Historical Society
Holding Location:
Flagler County Historical Society
Rights Management:
All applicable rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier:
on10469 ( NOTIS )
1046991505 ( OCLC )
F319.B92 B86 ( lcc )

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Related Item:
Bunnell home builder

UFDC Membership

Florida Family and Community History


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BUNNELL DEVELOPMENT CO FLORIDA FARM LANDS < THOS. A. VERDENIUS, Gen’l Manager CHICAGO. III. JACKSONVILLE. Fla. BUNNELL, Fla'. I have mailed you my literature telling you all about the greatest colony in Florida; about a section of the state which is soon going to be known as a “second Hastings”—the BUNNELL DUPONT COL ONY. You are one of the many with whom I have corresponded more or less, but as yet I have not been able to interest you to the extent of sending me your order for a farm-home in our Colony.There is some thing which keeps you from sending me your order. What is it? Let us be perfectly frank with each other. I have been with you, and you should be the same with me. Perhaps you doubt what I have told you, and perhaps you have read statements in the newspapers against Florida, or some one has talked to you against the State. But I want to say to you right now, that the “knocker” cannot hurt Florida, nor can he hurt our colony. Every knock is a boost, and people are learning to their surprise what we can do here, and what great possibilities our section of the state offers to the homeseeker. Somebody is always ready to knock anything which is really worth while, be it an individual, a coun try or a proposition. More falsehoods have been told about the really Great Men of our country than about any one else. The man who is down and out is not a subject for envy or jealousy, and is not worth knocking. Thus it has ever been, and thus it is about FLORIDA, (which I consider the greatest State in the Union). But after all, people are coming to Florida in greater numbers than ever before. They have heard so much about the State, they want to see for themselves. You would be convinced of this statement if you could some morning watch the northern and western trains unloading their passengers by the thou sands in the Union Depot of this city. Tell me why Florida’s population has increased twice as rapidly as that of our entire country. Did you know that between 1900 and 1910 the population of the U. S. increased 21% and during the same period the population of Florida increased 42.4%. Its rate of increase was greater than that of any other state east of the Mississippi River. Will you tell me why? Just answer this question for yourself. I am so sure of this fact—if you could come here yourself, talk with me; take a trip over the col ony in the Company’s automobile; if you could meet our settlers could talk with them and see with your own eyes what they have done on their land, you would not delay a day longer in giving me your order for a 10, 20 or 40 acre farm. But, I realize that there are many who cannot make the trip here now, and perhaps you are one of this number. If so, this letter is especially for YOU. Never before have I sent out a piece of litera ture or written a letter which carried such convincing proof, in my judgment, as this letter to you today. You cannot afford not to read every word of this letter, and I feel that you will be glad to do so. The old saying, “IF THE MOUNTAINS WON’T COME TO MOHAMMED, MOHAMMED MUST GO TO THE MOUNTAINS” was never more applicable than here. If you cannot come to Bunnell, then I must bring Bunnell to you, and I am going to do my best in this letter to* show you the Bunnell-Dupont Colony and its possibilities in a way you have never seen them before. I realize that it is up to me, and I can do it. Could you be with me at Bunnell today, I would take you out to the home of one of our new sett lers, Mr. W. A. Mack, formerly of California. I would introduce you to this gentleman and to his fami ly, and I know that he would take pleasure in showing you his farm, his house, his garden, his straw berry patch, his fine potato field, etc., etc. But you are not here, and I cannot do this. So I shall do the next best thing, and give you a pic ture of Mr. Mack’s farm, and also a letter which I have recently received from this gentleman. In this way you can see what one man in the colony has done, and you can hear from his own pen just what he thinks of the colony and what he has done here. I want you to read my story on the inside cover, and next Mr. Mack’s letter, and you surely cannot but be convinced that these are nothing but plain, unvarnished facts, which can be verified at any time. If you have a family, read this story to them, and hand it to your neighbors to read. The Bunnell-Dupont Colony is attracting the attention of people everywhere. You perhaps know of the New South Farm & Home Company, which owns so much land in Florida, and when I tell you here that one of the Managers of this Company recently came to Bunnell and bought for himself a farm in our colony, you can appreciate what a man in his position thinks of our land. When you read this letter carefully, I trust you will fill out the enclosed order-blank for the num• ber of acres you desire, and send to me at once. This means that you will within a few days receive a contract for a farm-home in our colony, which will be worth many times what you pay for it now, long before you have made your last payment. j It was up to ME to show you these facts, and when you have read them, it will be up to YOU to ACT if you wish to secure one of these farms. I have given you the plain facts, and pointed out the oppor tunities. I have only a limited amount of choice farms left for sale, and these are all big bargains—No. 1 locations, and No. 1 soil. Are you going to secure one of them? Remember it rests with you. I have done my part. Sincerely yours, General Manager. After June 1st, the Sales Office and General Manager’s office of this Company will be located in CHICAGO, ILL., instead of Jacksonville, Fla. Until further notice from us, address all mail to 510 Consoli d a ted Bldg., Jacksonville, Fla, or to the Home Office at Bunnell, Fla.


MR. MACK LEAVES CALIFORNIA AND COM£S TO FLORIDA, HOPING TO BETTER HIMSELF Mr. VERDENIUS promised to make him a present of 40 acres if he found our colony in any way misrepresented. During the latter part of October, of last year, I had the pleasure of meeting Mr. W. A. Mack. This gentleman, in his California home, had read a great deal about Florida, and had come here for the purpose of securing a home, as he told me that the price of land was so high in California, the man of ordinary means could not obtain any. Mr. Mack had been in Florida for several days when I met him, and had visited va rious localities, but had found nothing to suit him. He was almost discouraged and ready to give it up and return to the Golden West when I met him one morning in Jacksonville. I told him about our Colony, showed him photographs, samples of products, soil, etc., and I found Mr. Mack a very good listener. When I finished my story he said, “If it is like you say, Mr. Verdenius, it is just what I am looking for,” and I replied, “Mr. Mack, if you find anything different from what I have told you, I will make you a present of a forty acre farm." Mr. Mack merely smiled and said that he would go and see, and as I was also going to Bunnell that day, we made the trip together. We took the evening train on the Florida East Coast, and when we arrived in Bunnell we found a great many people there, and the hotel crowded. The next morning our Field Manager took Mr. Mack over the colony, to see if he could find here what he had been look ing for, and I went along. It did not take Mr. Mack long to find a beautiful 40-acre farm in Section 34, Township 12, Range 30, a little less than three miles south of Bunnell, and not two miles west of Dupont. Just as soon as Mr. Mack saw this tract of land, it seemed to suit him. He took the shovel (which we always carry in the automobile), and dug holes everywhere, carefully ex amining the soil. We showed him the four corners of this farm, and pretty soon he said, “Mr. Verdenius, this is just what I want.” Naturally, it was very gratifying to see him so well pleased, especially as Mr. Mack is a man who understands farming, and knows good land when he sees it, as well as poor land. To use his own term, he is an “old rancher,” and that in the East means an old hand at farming. I asked Mr. Mack if I owed him the forty acres, and if he found that I had misrepresented the colony to him in any way, and his reply was—“Mr. Verdenius, this is the best land I have seen in Florida, and you have not made your statements half strong enough.” Now this is the exact story of how I sold one of my first farms in the Bunnell-Dupont Colony, and I left Mr. Mack in Bunnell very satisfied and I did not see him again for some time. I heard that he had sent for his family, and later on our Field Manager informed me that they had arrived, (and just here I will say) that Mr. Mack has a fine family, who are a credit to any community. The Mack family then began clearing their land, and I inquired occasionally about them, but being very busy in the Jacksonville office I did not have the opportunity of vis iting them until a few days ago. At that time I spent four days in the colony, being accom panied by a number of homeseekers, men and women from eight or nine different states, and one of the first things I did was to ask the Field Manager to take me out in the auto to Mr. Mack’s farm. I was most happily surprised at the sight of this place. It is unnecessary for me to say that I have always had, and shall always have the greatest faith in Bunnell’s possibilities, but here was “the proof of the pudding.” Here was a man who had been only 100 days on his farm, and in that time had built his house and fence, cleared and plowed his land, and had crops growing. The minute I stepped out of the auto I saw Mack’s broad smile, and I knew that he was still happy. I was glad to see him, and I felt truly honored to grasp his hand. I then met Mr. Mack’s family, and he took me over his place, showed me his fine Irish potato field, his strawberry bed, his grape vines just set out, (the. latter having been brought from California by his wife in her trunk; and we visited his garden, beautiful with its abundance of lettuce, carrots, turnips, onions, spinach and all kinds of truck, and he told me that his family of five had been eating from this garden for some time. With me that day was a Chicago gentleman, and as he looked over this infant farm he said, “This is sufficient proof. This convinces me what can be done here,” and this man at once determined that the land was good enough for him too, and he further said, “Your land hasn’t had half a chance, but when it will respond in this manner in three months, what will it not do in several months?” You have not been able to visit our colony as yet. You cannot talk .with Mr. Mack per sonally, or see his farm for yourself, but I have asked Mr. Mack to write me a letter, and same is printed on the back sheet of this letter. I know it will be very interesting to you. I have had a small picture taken of Mr. Mack’s place, to give you a still better idea. And this is the best I can do. You have the picture of.Mr. Mack’s place; you have read of what he has done in three months in our colony. If this does, not convince you, I beg of you to take the train and come here and see for yourself if this story, is not true. I will say to you the same as I said to Mr. Mack that day I met him, “I will give you a farm free of cost if you find that I have misrepresented our colony to you in any way.”. I want to say this to you also, Mr. Mack is not the only one who is making good here by any means. If you could come to Bunnell and would stay here for a few days, we could take you to one after another who are happy and satisfied and who are building up splen did homes for themselves. I have only taken Mr. Mack as one example. What has been done by Mr. Mack and others, can be done by you. Surely you cannot doubt such evidence as this. I have done my part, NOW IT IS UP TO YOU. I shall expect to receive your order for a farm soon.


THE CAMERA CANNOT LIE Below are two photographic reproductions of Mr. MackÂ’s Farm, in its virgin state, and under cultivation. Mr. Mack Came to Bunnel, Oct. 31, 1911. His family arrived, Dec. 3, 1911. He started clearing, Dec. 18, 1911. Built his home without the aid of a carpenter. Fenced 20 acres of land. Put down a well 21 feet deep. Has about 7 acres in potatoes. Two acres in melons and cu cumbers. Put out 2000 cabbage plants. Put out 1000 tomatoes plants. Has a fine garden with lettuce, radishes, turnips, beets, peas and beans. And expects to sell at least $1000.00 worth of produce from his farm this year. And Mack Has Only Started All this in a little over 100 days. Can you beat it ? HERE IS THE HOME OF A CANADIAN Mr. Mack is not the oniy prosperous colonist-He is but a singly example. L _____ People from all over the United States have bought land here, and a great many from Canada. Canadians make splendid settlers, for they have suffered so many hardships in the cold north, that they revel in the climate of the balmy south. Here is the home of one of our settlers, who came to Bunnell with his family, last December, from Alberta, Canada. While his friends in Canada spent their money for coal during the long winter, just passed, this family lived comfortably in their tent, un til he could complete their little home. This Man LEFT CALIFORNIA FLORIDA FOR HIM MR. MACK AND OUR FIELD MANAGER This is a picture of a portion of the 20 acres of land which Mr. Mack has not yet put under cultivation. In the back ground is his home. Here is a portion of his 20 acres which is cleared, and is planted to Irish potatoes. We want at least 100 more Canadian families to secure homes in our Colony this Summer.


Belov, own you win ^ A v n ivi s jen of his experiences since ocating in our Colony How he built a temporary home for $51.08. How he fenced 20 acres of land at an actual cost of $5.60. READ THIS LETTER, IT WILL BE AN INSPIRATION TO YOU Mr. Thomas A. Verdenius, Bunnell, Florida, Apr. 2, 1912. Jacksonville, Florida. Friend Mr. Verdenius:— Your welcome letter of March 30th just received. It strikes me from the tone of your letter, that you wish to keep tab on me to see if I am working or playing. You also wish to know how I like Florida by this time, and what I think of its possibilities, compared with California (my former home). The one great reason why I like Florida better than California is that it seems to be the natural place for the man of ordinary means, or with no means at all for that matter, in which to build his home. There are so many ways one can turn himself here which he cannot do in California. Nature has done so much'for Florida, that it makes it possible for one to make a home here without much money; while in California if you haven’t got a good big roll of money with which to pay for high priced land, and plenty of teams to work the land with, you have to be classed with the day laborer, and when you are in that class in California, your nose is on the grind-stone. Everything you buy there is so high, that unless you get good big wages, it is hard work to support a family and keep even. On the other hand, here in Florida lumber is so cheap, wood so plentiful, and land so easy to put in shape for planting, that in a few weeks one can almost be living out of the garden. Now just to let you know what it is possible for people to do here, I am going to tell you in as few words as possible what myself and family have accomplished since we came to Florida. I wish to say first that we left California with less than $900.00. You remember, Mr. Verdenius, it was in the very last days of October that you brought me ‘to Bunnell, and located me on the 40 acre tract, three miles south of Bunnell, where we are now engaged in clearing and planting. During the month of November all I did was to run around a bit, build a one room house, 12x24, with shed roof. This room has two good doors and four large windows, and cost me complete $51.08. And then I waited for my family to come on from California. Also during the month while waiting for them, I put down a well 21 feet deep. The work of getting a well is easy here, as I drove this well alone in a little over a day, and we have as fine water as any one can wish for. My family arrived here the 3rd day of December, and on the 18th day of the same month we began clearing our place, and since that time we have cleared and plowed ten acres of ground; have between six and seven acres of Irish potatoes growing; have put out 2000 cabbage plants, and 1000 tomato plants. And besides this we have a fine garden that we can resort to, to help replenish the table, with lettuce, radishes, turnips, beets, peas and beans. I have even imported rhubarb from the state of Iowa, an i it is growing fine. I have also put out 300 strawberry plants, which are doing splendidly, and have £ couple of acres put out to melons and cucumbers. Do you think this is all we have done in this length of time? No sir, not much. We have got out and set good strong posts eight feet apart around 20 acres of land, and cut nice cypress poles and nail ed them to these posts. So we have a hog tight fence, and all the cash it cost us was $5.60 for nails. This is how we can do things in Florida. Nature has put the material here for our use. We also built a nice chicken yard out of these poles, and I wish to say that the few chickens we have are doing as good as I ever saw chickens do. Also during this time we have built a kitchen, bath-room and pantry as a lean-to on the room I first built, covering a ground space of 10x30 feet. We did all our own work, and our team work has been done by a little yoke of oxen which I paid $70.OF for. So you see, Mr. Verdenius, that we have been quite busy since we came here, but we expect to get paid for this work. I expect +o sell at. least. $1 non on 7vn-H.h nf produce from our pmco during the first twelve months, and not only that, I will be laying a foundation for greater results. I will have every thing in shape so that next fall I can get ouij cabbage, lettuce, celery and potatoes in time to catch the big prices. I wish to say that during this time we have received the most courteous treatment from your Com pany in Bunnell. They have granted us every favor we 'have asked, for which we are very thankful We have all had the best of health since coming here, and our bright prospects for making for ourselves a good home, causes us to feel glad we came to Florida when we did. My future plans are to establish a fruit and truck farm. I expect to put out several acres of blackberries, raspberries and strawberries, and then take up a line of general trucking as fast as I can get the place ready for it. Again thanking you for your aid in getting a location, I am Very respectfully and truly yours, The Opportunity is given you today to secure a farmhome. Act promptly. Fill out the enclosed order blank for the number of acres you desire, and send to me at once.


AFTER YOU HAVE READ THIS LITTLE PAMPHLET, talk it over with your neighbor and fellow-citizen, Mr. William Moody. He will tell you what he thinks of our colony. Mr. Moody just left z Florida for his home in Fairbanks, Toronto, Canada. This was his -second visit to Florida. He did not make a hasty visit to our colony, but spent six weeks looking over our land and talking with our people, and this is what he told me before he left: “Bunnell-Dupont is the best colony in Florida. It is the finest property I have seen. If the poor man wants to make a home for him self and family, Florida is the place. I would rather live at Bunnell on two meals a day than in Canada on three. I prefer the sunshine of Florida every time to Canada’s bitter cold weather.”




Du Pont Free Lot Order Blank While They Last Use This Order Blank to Take Advantage of This Offer PRICE $30.00 PER ACRE~ No Taxes, No Brokerage BUNNELL-DU PONT TRACT Date ..1912 THOS. A. VERDENIUS, Bunnell Development Co., Chicago, Illinois, Bunnell, Fla. Please enter my order for a farm of .....Acres (Insert here the number of acres you wish to purchase, whether 10, 20 or 40.) of land, in Bunnell-Du Pont Colony, St. Johns County, Florida, for which I agree to pay $30.00 per acre, at the rate of..i...Dollars (Write in here the amount to be paid each month--$5.00 a month for ten acres, $10.00 a month for twenty acres, $20.00 a month for 40 acres, etc.) per month, until paid for, subject to the conditions on back hereof. Enclosed find $.as first payment on my farm, and I agree to make monthly payments of $. hereafter until my land is paid for. Upon receipt of this, please send me your legal acknowledgment and advise me which tract has been allotted to me. Name.Street.Town. R. F. D. No..County .State.. Age.Married or Single.Occupation. T r i \|| e ^ 5.00 a month for 10 acres I Wm \ a f r 20 acres 1 LK\1 I <3 20.00 a month for 40 acres ALLOTMENT : Section_Tp. Rg_BIk. Tr._ (Do not write in these spaces) ONE FREE LOT In Du Pont to the first purchasers while they last.


Terms and Conditions Exempt From Taxation.—The Bunnell Development Company agrees to pay the taxes due on this tract, until such time as a Warranty Deed shall have been delivered to the purchaser. No Interest.—The Bunnell Development Company agrees that the purchaser shall NOT be required to pay any interest whatsoever, either on the principal sum or on deferred payments, until such time as a Warranty Deed shall have been delivered to the purchaser. Thirteen Weeks’ Grace.—It is mutually agreed that when twenty per cent. ( 20 %) of said purchase price shall have been paid, The Bunnell Development Company will grant 15 days’ grace on each monthly payment; that when forty per cent. (40%) of said purchase price shall have been paid, The Bunnell Development Company will grant 45 days’ grace on each monthly payment; and when sixty per cent. (60%) of said purchase price shall have been paid, The Bunnell Development Company will grant thirteen weeks’ grace on each monthly payment. And that no interest shall be charged on such deferred payments during such days of grace. In Event of Sickness.—After ten per cent. (10%) of the payments have been made cn this contract, if the purchaser should be unable at any time to make a payment by reason of sickness, notice in writing may be given to the Bunnell Development Company of such inability, and the reason therefor, together with a note or letter from the physician attending the purchaser and upon receipt thereof, The Bunnell Development Company agrees that the purchaser shall thereafter have thirteen (13) weeks’ grace for the resumption of payments. Provided, however, that such ex tension of time by reason of sickness shall be limited to one such extension each year. In Event of Death.—In event of the death of the purchaser before completion of this contract, The Bunnell Development Company agrees that the heirs of the pur chaser shall succeed to all his rights, title and interest in said contract, and that such heirs of the purchaser may continue performance of this contract as fully and com pletely as the purchaser could do in his life time, and the Bunnell Development Company further agree to deliver a Warranty Deed to said property to such person as may be nominated by the said heirs upon the fulfillment of the conditions of this contract. Right to Sell or Assign.—It is mutually agreed that the purchaser may, upon prior notice to The Bunnell Development Company, assign or sell this contract to any person, and that such assignee shall succeed to all the rights and privileges under this contract. It Is Mutually Agreed by and between the parties hereto, that after the first pay ment shall have been made, if the purchaser shall fail to make the payments as herein specified, time being the essence of this contract and all its provisions, then and in that event the contract shall, at the option of The Bunnell Development Company, and without further uotice, be and become null and void, and all rights of the pur chaser growing out of this contract be forfeited as fixed and liquidated damages, ex cept the purchaser shall be entitled to all the rights and privileges growing out of the provisions in the next succeeding paragraph. Ninety Days to Inspect.—It is mutually agreed that the purchaser be allowed ninety (90) days from the date of this contract in which to make a personal inspection of the property, or to send a relative or friend, or to secure some friend in Florida to inspect the property; and if the purchaser, after such inspection, is not satisfied with his property, for any reason whatsoever, he or she may then give notice in writ ing, and The Bunnell Development Company shall then refund all payments made by the purchaser, together with interest at the rate of six per cent. (6%) per annum for such time as The Bunnell Development Company shall have had the money in their possession; provided, however, that unless such written notice is received by The Bunnell Development Company within ninety days from the date of this con tract, the contract shall be binding upon both the purchaser and The Bunnell De velopment Company. Public Roads.—A strip of ground fifteen feet wide is reserved on all section and half-section lines, to be used as one-half right of way for public roads. It Is Mutually Agreed that this contract is made in Bunnell, Florida, and that all payments on said contract are to be made to The Bunnell Development Company, at their offices at Bunnell, Fla., or Chicago, Ills. THOS. A. VERDENIUS, Gen’l Manager


After you have read this little pamphlet, talk it over with your neighbor and fellow-citizen, Mr. W. H. Gray, and read what he says below. Mr. Gray has just made a careful investigation of the Bunnell-Dupont Colony, and is in position to state tacts to you: “ I have been all over California, Oregon, Nevada, Utah, Idaho, Montana and a part of Washington, and I have never before seen land which will produce the crops that this part of Florida will produce. I saw crops of potatoes that will yield 60 bar rels to the acre, and the price at Bunnell was $8.00 per barrel. Here they have corn and sugar cane growing along side of the potatoes, eigh teen inches high ; then they raise a crop of pear and crab grass for feed for their stock, making three crops per year on the same ground. It needs no irrigation. The Lord takes care of that. If they had the same soil and climate in the West that has been provided for this section of Florida, the land would be worth $1,500.00 per acre. Strawberries ripen in December and continue to bear until July, and all other vegetables grow in abundance. Peaches, oranges, and grape-fruit thrive wonderfully here. It cost me but $250.00 to make the trip from Spokane to Bunnell, and return and it was the best spent money in my life.” W. H. GRAY, R. F. D. /4, Spokane, Washington.


TO ALL OUR BUYERS I know that you are very much interested in our BUNNELL-DUPONT COLONY, and I therefore take pleasure in mailing you herewith copy of a circular that I have just sent out to all our prospective customers. I trust you will read every word of this pamphlet, and I wish to impress upon you this fact, that Mr. Mack is not the only successful one in our colony by any means. Within a few weeks I will send you another letter, and in this way you will keep in touch with the progress being made in the colony from time to time. You will note at the bottom of the first page the fact that I will open an office in Chi cago, Illinois shortly, and before June 1st I will be able to give you our new office address there. All remittances and pass-books should continue to be sent to the Bunnell office, as at the present time, but address all other mail to the General ManagerÂ’s office, Jacksonville, Flo rida until June 1st, and thereafter to the new address which I will send you. Our aim is to make the Bunnell-Dupont Colony the greatest colonization proposition in Florida if not in the United States. We want you to help us in the future as you have done in the past. Any sugestions or advice you may have to offer will be greatly appreciated. If you contemplate a trip to our colony during the summer or coming fall, and if you pass through Chicago, I want you to visit our office there. We will welcome you at any time. Yours very sincerely, GENERAL MANAGER