Front Cover
 Brevard County

Title: Brief Description of Brevard County, Fla., or the Indian River Country. It's Climate, Health, Products, etc.
Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00004446/00001
 Material Information
Title: Brief Description of Brevard County, Fla., or the Indian River Country. It's Climate, Health, Products, etc.
Physical Description: Book
Publisher: Sub-tropical Executive Committee of Brevard County, Florida
Place of Publication: s.l.
Publication Date: 1888
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00004446
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: ltqf - AAA5899

Table of Contents
    Front Cover
        Front Cover
    Brevard County
        Page 1
        Page 2
        Page 3
        Page 4
        Page 5
        Page 6
        Page 7
        Page 8
        Page 9
        Page 10
        Page 11
        Page 12
        Page 13
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This pamphlet is published by the Committee ap-
pointed by the County Commissioners to disburse the
appropriation made to aid the County in making a credit-
able exhibit at the Sub-Tropical Exposition, at Jackson-
ville, for the purpose of setting forth some of the advantages
of Climate, Health, Products, etc., of Brevard County,
Florida, or the Indian River Country, or as a means of
giving reliable information to those who, for business,
health, or recreation, may be inclined to come among us.
We, also, take this method of expressing our thanks to
those who, by the contribution of matter or otherwise, have
assisted us in this work.


St. Lucie County formerly extended from Cape Canaveral south to Hills-
boro' Inlet on the Atlantic Coast, and west as far as Hillsboro' County line,
near the centre of the present county of Polk. In January, 1855. the name
was changed to Brevard, the boundaries changed, and "a county site
permanently established and located at a place known and designated as
Fort Pierce, and the name of said county site shall be Susannah." In 1862,
an act was passed, providing for the election of county officers. In 1864,
the county site was changed to Bassville, and some years later to Lake
View. In 1879, the southern part of Volusia County was added to Brevard,
and soon after Titusville selected as the county site, at which time the full
and efficient organization of the county began.
At this writing Brevard County extends from the northern boundary
line of township 20, to and including township 37, a distance of 108 miles.
It embraces within its present limits about 80 townships, or nearly 3,000
square miles. The whole of the celebrated Indian River section is embraced
in this county, with the exception of about twenty miles to the south of the
St. Lucie River, known as the Jupiter Narrows. So great is the interest
taken in this section that we propose to describe it at some length. Its
romantic scenery, its superb fishing, hunting and yachting, its unexcelled
fruits, its delightful climate, all combine to make it the Mecca of the tourist,
whether he comes for health or for pleasure.
The peculiar system of water communication extending along the
Atlantic Coast and separated from the ocean, generally by narrow strips of
land, or clusters of islands, and connected therewith by inlets at various
places, changes from the broad bays and sounds of the Virginia and Carolina
coast as we proceed southward, and when we reach St. Augustine they
assume such long narrow shapes, as to be called rivers, hence the Mantanzas,
Halifax, Hillsboro' and Indian Rivers are, in fact, immense bodies of salt
water, connected with the ocean by inlets, and subject near those inlets to
the influences of tide water. Imagine a body of water one hundred and
forty miles long, and from one to five in width, so straight that a line
stretched from one end to the other would not touch either bank, with a
very wide channel of twelve feet in depth, not an obstruction in the way of
rocks or sunken trees, and you can get an idea of what.Indian River is.
But to thoroughly appreciate, one must see it, and sail its entire course with


a well-posted skipper. "Why, sir!" said an old sea captain to me once,
"why, sir I've been round the world seven times, sir, and never have I seen
a finer body of water than this."
Lapping by one another for some ten miles, the Mosquito Lagoon to the
east and the head of Indian River to the west, they are separated by a
narrow strip of land, scarcely more than a quarter of a mile wide. At
Haulover, which, as the name indicates, is where sailboats were formerly
transferred from one river to the other, there is now a canal sixty feet wide,
through which steamboats, drawing three feet of water or so, can pass,
Northward the river extends for six miles, forming a huge basin, and
surrounded by immense bodies of hammock lands, rich and desirable, but
unfortunately mostly covered by old Spanish Grants. South of the canal,
about two miles, is the old Dummitt Grove, celebrated the world over for
its luscious oranges. The original wild orange trees were changed to a
sweet grove by transplanting and budding, in 1852, by the late Capt. Douglass
Dummitt and his brother-in-law, Gen. Wm. P. Hardee.
Nearly opposite Haulover is Aurantia, where some northern capitalists
once tried to establish an immense orange grove on the co-operative plan,
but which, for want of proper management and good judgment, failed.
Under more efficient management it is now quite a thriving place.
Eight miles to the south Titusville is located. As before stated, this is
the county site of Brevard County. Since the completion of the railroad to
this place, it has grown wonderfully, and improvement is still the watchword,
Here if the tourist is "on game or fish intent," he should get a sail-boat, and
taking advantage of a fair wind proceed southward, anticipating with perfect
safety a most delightful trip. Six miles below (south) the river is six miles
wide, and is known among boatmen as the "Bay of Biscay." Merritt's
Island lies to the eastward. This island is thirty-five miles long by six miles
wide at the north end, and is bounded on the east by Banana River, a broad
shall.-w body of water, abounding in fish, while still to the eastward lies
Cape Canaveral, with its superb light-house.
After passing Jones' Point, eleven miles south of Titusville, we reach
Hardeeville, with its immense wharf, and then the settlement of City Point
commences. For miles the bank isdotted with neat dwellings and flourishing
orange groves. The banks are generally low where the hammocks extend to
the river, and high in the pine land. South of Magnolia Point the bank of
the river changes from the sandy shallow shore, to bold rocky banks and
deeper water. At Oleander Point a well-known landmark to all boatmen on
the river, the noted Rock Ledge hammock commences, so named on account
of the shore being ledged with huge coquina rock. The water is comparatively
deep up to the rocks, so that wharves from forty to seventy-five feet long
will reach six feet of water. Just to the north of Oleander Point is the town
of Cocoa, quite a thriving village of half-a-dozen stores and two hotels.
Rock Ledge hammock isjust three miles long by an average width of half-a-
mile, and is one continuous orange grove its entire length, a large part just
coming into bearing. Near the centre of the hammock are two stores, two
large hotels and the post-office. On the island directly opposite, the river
bank is thickly settled by an enterprising people who are planting pine-
apples largely. The river is just one mile wide at this point. Georgiana,


five miles southeast of Rock Ledge on the east bank, is noted for its pine-
apple culture.
Southward to Eau Gallie the banks on both sides of the river alternate
from hammock to pine land, with houses every few hundred yards. The
point of Merritt's Island, and mouth of Banana River, is directly opposite
Eau Gallie. Here the beach commences, which separates Indian River from
the ocean. It varies from one mile to a few hundred yards across. Three
miles south of Eau Gallie is the enterprising settlement of Melbourne. The
river here has widened out to two miles, which is its average width until we
reach St. Sebastian River, some twenty miles south of Melbourne. St.
Sebastian River is quite a large body of fresh water, rising in the flat woods,
near the head of the St. Johns, and is noted for its fine fishing.
We now come to the Narrows, simply a number of islands in the chan-
nel of the river, and extending for several miles southward. After passing
through the "hole-in-the-wall," the narrowest part of the river, it widens out
again, and fifteen miles below is the inlet, with St. Lucie opposite. Near
here Fort Capron and Fort Pierce were situated during the Indian wars.
Twenty miles below we reach Eden, noted for its enterprising citizens, its
high bluffs and its large plantations of pine-apples and bananas. Waveland,
five miles south, is just over the line in Dade County, and near the mouth
of St. Lucie River. The western part of the county is generally flat pine
woods and prairies, devoted almost exclusively to stock raising. Thle broad
prairies bordering on the St. John's are fine grazing lands, and the settlement
of Fort Drum, thirty miles west of Inaian River Inlet, comprise some, among
the largest stockmen in this section of the State.
along the river are divided into pine and hammock. The latter is
subdivided in high and low hammocks. The high hammocks are densely
wooded with live-oak, water-oak, hickory, red-bay and palmetto, with an
almost impenetrable undergrowth of iron-wood, wild-olive, myrtle and
vines. The soil is either red or gray coquina, and is peculiarly adapted to
the growth of the citrus family of fruits. The low hammocks are heavily
timbered with the same growth, and in addition ash, magnolia and gum,
while the soil is black, and generally underlaid with marl. This land is
adapted to the growth of bananas, sugar-cane, corn and vegetables generally.
Unlike most of the high hammock lands of the State those on Indian River,
like Rock Ledge for instance, are perfectly healthy. The soil is of that
fertility that an orange grove will come into bearing and pay a handsome
revenue, before any fertilizing is necessary, an item of no small importance
to the poor man.
No more charming picture can be imagined than the palmettoes with
their long, fan-shaped leaves, lining the rocky bank of the river, and swaying
gently to the fresh morning breeze, while the oaks.and hickories lift their
proud heads far above, a huge mass of living green leaves, elaborately fes-
tooned with pendant masses of gray moss ; a background of orange trees, the
golden fruit contrasting so charmingly with the deep green foliage, and then
the foreground, the grandest body of water we ever saw, sparkling like dia-


monds in the first rays of the morning sun, while the waves dash a regular
monotone against the rocks at our feet-it is a lovely picture, fresh from the
hands of the greatest of all artists, Nature, and one which will live in the
memory for years to come.
are many and varied, of which the orange takes the lead. The Indian River
orange needs no description or eulogy at our hands. In whatever market
they may be placed they at once lead all others, both in demand and price.
Hundreds of tourists who visit us every season, invariably pronounce them
the finest ever tested. Those of our readers who have followed the price-
currents of the New York and other northern markets, have noticed that
Indian Rivers were quoted from fifty cents up to one dollar per box above
any other brands.
S: me groves here have netted, ten years from the setting, $1,000 to the
acre. During the season of 1886-7, my own crop sold for from $4.00 per
box in December up to $7.00 per box in April, netting the whole season
through, including all losses in transit, and all inferior grades, an average
of over $3.00 per box.
are receiving a good deal of attention, and previous to the freeze of January,
1886, gave promise of being grown as a fair source of profit. That freeze,
however, drew the line of successful -culture down toward the south end of
the county, and hereafter on the west bank of the river, as far south as Eau
Gallie, we doubt if we can grow more than are needed for home consumption.
A few banana plantations are proving profitable near the inlet.
grows to perfection and can be made a very profitable crop The Indian
River syrup is a very superior article, and when one gets it he knows he has
the pure juice of the cane, which cannot be said of the vile abominations
that come from the refineries of the North. The price by the barrel is about
fifty cents per gallon.
as a business, is followed to some extent, but our transportation is even yet
too slow for tomatoes and like perishable articles, and the freights too high
for much profit to the producer. When communication becomes both rapid
and cheap, fortunes can be made at this business. We have thousands of
acres of low rich hammock than can be utilized for this purpose. Drought
is the greatest obstacle. Irrigation will have to be adopted to make it a
certain success, and then we see no reason why nearly all kinds of vegetables
cannot be grown to perfection. We have often seen cabbage weighing
twenty pounds and over per head, while onions and tomatoes were all that
could be desired.



grows to perfection. Few persons like this fruit at first, but a taste is soon
acquired so that one classes them equal to the best. From them we make
jellies, preserves, marmalade catsup, besides canning them. The,guava
jelly, when properly made, is a very superior article, and finds ready sale at
remunerative prices. The fruit is too tender, and decays too soon to ship
any great distance.
Our lists of fruits comprise the following: Oranges, lemons, limes,
grape-fruit, citrons, shaddocks, pine-apples, sugar-apples, custard-apples,
guavas, bananas, loquats, pawpaws, grapes, and mangoes. A few cocoanuts
are planted along the river, but we do not know of any bearing within the
limits of the county.

is good at some seasons, and rather indifferent at others. Our list of fish is
large and varied. The mullet, channel-bass, crevalle, salt-water-trout, red-
fish, -pompano, jew-fish, and blue-fish, abound, especially near the inlet.
Green turtleare taken in great numbers in their season near Fort Capron.
They are shipped north, and readily sold at good prices. The best fishing
commences in June and lasts until December, when the mullet, our most
numerous and best table fish, go outside to spawn.
are very fine. Previous to 1878 they were apparently inexhaustible, im-
mense beds extending for many miles both to the north and south of the
inlet. The September storm of that year, however, destroyed nearly all the
beds, and only within the past two or three years have they become plenti-
ful again: With proper cultivation they can be grown in quantities, and
equal to any we have eaten.
is good, if the hunter goes after his game and knows how to get it after he
finds it. Deer are plentiful out on the St. John's prairies, and on the beach,
where it is not settled. It is no uncommon thing to see from ten to twenty
deer in a day's ride along the Lake Winder prairies. But if the sportsman
from the North wishes to take back a pair of antlers as a trophy of his
prowess, he must be prepared to put up with a great many hardships and
exercise an extra amount of patience. Wild-cats, raccoons and opossums
abound in our hammocks, and prowl round our hen-roosts at night. Occas-
ionally a panther is seen or heard, but the bear has retreated to the dense
swamps and jungles of the narrows, or ouit in the St. John's region, beyond;
the sound of civilization.
is unexcelled. Our rainy days are few and far between. During the win-
ter and spring months, such a thing as a rainy day is almost unknown.


Some seasons, August and September, give us an.excess of rain, but as a
rule we are too dry. Our winters are very pleasant, with now and then a
cold snap, accompanied by a heavy northern, and a light frost. Our summers
are generally cool and delightful, with a fresh breeze from the southeast.
For several years we kept a daily record of the thermometer, and day after
day for weeks at a time during June, July and August, the record was the
same, 68' at sunrise, 86' at noon and 78' at sunset. Each day the wind
would rise from the southeast, between 8 and 9 A.M., and blow steadily all
day, dying away after sunset, to be followed by a light land breeze all night.
But to thoroughly appreciate our climate one must be here to enjoy it.
of Indian Riyer is as good as any part of the United States. If one takes
reasonable good care of one's self, there is no excuse for sickness. By ex-
posure, and drinking impure water, one can get sick even here, and have the
double satisfaction of paying a doctor's bill, and swallowing a lot of naus-
eating drugs. When we first located here we were compelled, a1 all pion-
eers were, to undergo a great many hardships and much exposure. For
days at a time we would be wet by wading in the river, rafting, etc., and at
night we would sleep in our boat, or on the river bank, in wet clothing, but
so far as we could see, we suffered no ill effects. The same exposure in a
more northern climate would have laid us up with chills and fever, if not
worse. The drinking of impure water is, in our opinion, the prime cause of
nearly all sickness. As we are to have a separate contribution on the health
of this section by a gentleman more competent to deal with it than myself,
we refer the reader to that article.
is not perfect, yet it is so far superior to that of past years, that we feel well
satisfied. The railroad to Titusville gives the upper end of the county daily
communication with Jacksonville, and when the river steamer runs so as to
connect with the trains, that daily service is extended as far south as Mel-
bourne. We also have tri-weekly steamboat service through the Haulover
Canal on the Halifax. We have a daily mail service as far south as Mel-
bourne. A telegraph line has lately been erectedas farsouth as Jupiter, with
stations at the most important places, so that the tourist is at all times
within easy reach of the outside world. At all the places named on the
river good sail boats, with competent and careful skippers can be engaged
to visit important points, or cruise by the week in regular marooning style,
where the best fishing and hunting is to be had, or wherever the fancy and
inclination may direct.

is not to be found on Indian River, however, by any means. We have some
drawbacks like all sections and all countries we have ever seen. A gale
sometimes visits us and does more or less damage. Yet they are not of
yearly occurence, as some persons at a distance imagine. We have now


been exempt from one for several years, our last was on the 31st of August,
1880. The principal damage they do is to blow oranges off the trees,
sometimes upset a house if not securely built, and wreck any small boat
that may be caught out exposed to the storm. The damage to the orange
crop can in a measure be counteracted by growing the trees with low heads,
and by leaving heavy margins around the grove for protection. One
greatest annoyance is mosquitoes. We have lots of them, good lively fel-
lows, that mean business, and they keep a lazy man moving during the
months of July and August. Generally for some three months during the
summer they are bad, and come nearer demoralizing us than any known
factor in the make-up of the many ills that we have to bear in this life.
Sometimes they are bad for a couple of weeks, and then they will almost
entirely disappear, only to return again in great numbers, to torment us,
and perhaps to teach us the valuable lesson, that all the good things of this
world are not to be found in one place.
Sand-flies are bad only among the mangrove swamps, near the inlets,
and in the low hammocks, on calm days.
Poisonous snakes are very rare. Our rattlesnakes are huge hideous
monsters, but fortunately not especially vicious, and most easily killed.

can find no pleasanter locality to pass the winter than within the confines
of our county. If he wishes to live a hotel life "with all the modern im-
provements," he can do so. If he wishes to get up a party and charter a
sail-boat for the season, we know of no section where he could get more
real sport in hunting or fishing, or enjoy an out-of-door life to a greater
extent. 'Throwing aside all the restrictions of a fashionable civilization,
one can here live as Nature intended he should live. No breathing the
stifling, furnace-heated atmosphere of air-tight rooms, no shrinking at
the rude touch of a wintry blast, no dreaded fear of pneumonia, no doctor
to feel the pulse, and with a face as long as his prescription write it out,
no long-drawn bills for nauseating drugs; but instead NATURE free and
ever generous, will infuse new strength in this worn and tired system, and
renew the overworked brain with a new lease of life by giving, what so
many sadly need, perfect rest.
will find lands, and perhaps some few improved places for sale. But to all
parties who propose locating in Florida, we say most emphatically, come
and see for yourselves. The whole orange-growing part of the State is so
different from any other county, that all the articles or letters written in
description would fail to convey a proper or correct idea of its many pecul-
iarities. Therefore, we repeat, come and see for yourself, and then you can
decide, if you look about you intelligently, whether the change of a home
would be desirable.
In conclusion, we can truly say that we have no sectional feeling
against any other part of our State. We have too much pride in her pro-


gress as a whole, to wish ill of any section. We desire to have the Indian
River country and Brevard County to stand on their own merits exclusively,
and as far as we are concerned, we will never try to build them up, at the
expense of any other community.
H. S. Williams.

By Rev. Jas. H. White,

By our climate I mean,
1. Florida climate as distinct from that of other parts of the United
States, and particularly that of California.
2. Brevard County climate as distinct from that of other parts of the
State, and particularly that of the Central and Gulf Coast regions, west of
No part of the United States, except Southern California, makes even a
pretence at rivalry with Florida in climatic excellence. And because of
this our comparisons will be mostly between these States.
The rivalry between these regions is confined to four particulars:
1st. A desirable place for well people to live.
2nd. A health resort for the sick.
3rd. A winter resort.
4th. The production of citrus fruits.
It is not necessary to treat these points separately, as the same climatic
conditions are favorable to all of them. These conditions are :
1. Exemption from injurious cold.
2. oppressive heat.
3. sudden changes.
4. fogs.
5. mud.
6. dust.
I am aware that mud and dust are not necessarily climatic, yet in the
sense in which they are here used they are the products of climatic causes.
Frost is the great enemy of tender vegetation everywhere, and the
frost king makes frequent and destructive raids into regions, where by many
he is supposed never to enter.
This ignorance of climatic conditionsisquite general, but it issometimes
found, where it should cause a blush of shame.
A United States'official, writing upon the subject of coffee culture from


Bogota, S. A., after saying, "it is generally admitted that frost will kill it,"
further says, "I conclude, then, that coffee can be successfully raised over a
large part of California, where irrigation is practicable." Agricultural
Report, 1879, p. 32.
We here see how ridiculous a man can appear by writing of matters, of
which he has no knowledge.
The Commissioner of Agriculture seems to have acted upon this opinion
in good faith, for, in his report for 1880, page 17, he says: "A large dis-
tribution of coffee plants has been made in Florida and Southern Califor-
Now, these men ought to have known that coffee is a tropical plant, and
that there is no tropical or no frost area in California, and that the northern
limit of successful coffee culture on the Pacific Coast is reached in the State
of Sinola, at least 500 miles further south than any part of California. But
people of seeming intelligence from time to time yet reiterate the stale un-
truth that frost is unknown in Southern California. As to the successful
cultivation of coffee or any other tropical plant in the open ground, the
Commissioner might as well send coffee plants to Oregon as to California.
Oregon is much warmer than the Atlantic Coast in the same latitude,
because of the temperature of the Japan current that warms the waters of
the North Pacific, so that their temperature is much above the waters of
the Atlantic in the same latitude.
At the 45th parallel the mean temperature of Oregon is 53, and that
of Maine 410, but at the parallel of 32 45', SanDiego on the Pacific has a
mean temperature of 60, and Charleston on the Atlantic 66, being an in-
crease of temperature going southward on the Atlantic Coast of 25', but on
the Pacific Coast it is only 7. The reason of this is that the comparatively
cold waters of the North Pacific flowing southward along the coast, prevents
such an increase of temperature as is found on the Atlantic Coast, where
the cooling influence of the polar current is felt no further south than New
England. This is one reason why California is so much colder than
But to show the methods by which California has been boomed as a no-
frost region, I give the following that was taken from a California ex-
change by the Florida Dispatch of long ago: "The culture of coffee in
Southern California is becoming profitable. The plants grow as vigorously
as in the coffee countries of South America, and yield a bean of strong
aromatic flavor. The central and northern portions of the State are the
regions peculiarly favorable." Just think of the absurdity of cultivating
one of the most tender tropical growths with such a record, as follows, for
December, 1879, from the Signal Service Report for 1880, page 670: "Ice
formed in California at San Francisco on the 24th, Los Angelos 25th, Visalia
23rd and 25th. Red Bluff 23rd, 24th and 25th, 22 inches thick. Sacra-
mento, 23rd, 24th and 25th. Hooker's Lake, below the city, frozen over
sufficiently solid for skating. On the 25th the water-pipes of the city frozen
up." We have the counterpart of this fiction in one of Jule Verne's books,
where his hero finds plenty of ice for skating and an abundance of fruit, of
which the Guava is a favorite.

If the absurdity of such nonsense can possibly be eclipsed, it has been done
by an Arkansas correspondent of a respectable religious journal of Cincin-
nati, who says of that State: "The southern part slopes to the sun and
produces many fruits of the tropics."
Tropical fruits with the temperature only 6 above zero, as it was Janu-
ary 6, 1879, and at freezing or below for 25 days during the winter. Such a
temperature is tropical with a vengeance and a blizzard.
That it may be seen that even Southern California is far from tropical,
I quote from the S. S. Report for 1881, page 336, it says of Campo: "Frost
every month in the year 1880. January 28th, it fell to zero." Campo is
near the Mexican line, about 50 miles from the coast.
On page 577, it saysof San Diego: "First frost September 30th."
Page 486, of Los Angelos it says: "Heavy frost and ice January 28th
to February 3rd, 1880. Last frost of spring March 16th."
In 1880 there were three stations, where there was frost every month in
the year, and strange to say one of them was in Southern California, where
it is so often said, "frost is unknown."
The same year there were but two stations, where there was no frost, and
both of them were in Florida.
Texas has been often named as possessing an extended no-frost area, and
capable of producing tropical fruits, but after the discussion of the claims of
California, it will be but a waste of time to say anything about Texas. But
to make certainty doubly sure I will give a single fact from the S. S. Report
for 1881:
Brownsville, Texas, is at the mouth of Rio Grande in latitude 25.
In December, 1880, the temperature fell to 18', as it did, also, in Janu-
ary 1st, 1881, while Punta Rassa, in Florida, nearly one degree further
north, showed 39' and 43' as the lowest for the same months.
From the above it is quite clear that if any no-frost area is found in the
United States, it is in Florida, and the experience of January, 1886, makes
it equally clear that no portion of the main land is absolutely exempt from
frost, but for all practical purposes that part of the State, lying south of a
line from Cape Romano to Jupiter Inlet, may be regarded as strictly
North of this line there are places that are very seldom visited by frost,
severe enough to do any damage.
But at long intervals a polar wave of such severity sweeps over the
country that its icy breath is felt to the southern point of the peninsula.
There have been two within the memory of man. One in 1835 and
another in 1886. The coming of the next one is beyond the reach of mortal
ken-it may be a century hence, or it may be next winter.
But woe to the rest of mankind, when the real South Florida gets a
But absolute exemption from frost is not necessary to the successful
cultivation of many tropical plants.
I think that on the Atlantic Coast, south of 28', and on the Gulf Coast,
south of 270, tropical growths are in no more danger from frost than the
corn crop of Ohio and Illinois, or the wheat crop of Tennessee and Virginia.




But the products of a country are the best measure of its capabilities.
Florida produces many tropical growths that in the southern half of the
State are untouched by frost, except at rare and remote intervals.
Mr. Saunders, of the Agricultural Department at Washington, had for
years a standing offer of ten dollars for the first pound of coffee gfown in the
United States. This award was given to Mrs. Atzeroth, of Manatee, Florida.
But even SoutheTn California produces no tropical fruits, except the
banana and guava, and these to a very limited extent. And their produc-
tion is rendered possible in so frosty a region by the fact that they readily
sprout again from the roots, when killed down by the frost.
But Californians can brook no rivalry even from other parts of their
own State.
Papers in one region speak of other portions of the State as the 'quin-
ine belt." But rivalry from another State is absolutely unbearable. Flor-
ida for years has had large pine-apple plantations and a great variety of
other tropical fruits.
A place in California, where such fruits can be successfully cultivated,
has been a long-felt want. Genius has, at last, triumphed, and according to
the Press and Horticulturist, of Riverside, Cal., this El Dorado has, at last,
been found. Listen, O Earth, to the clarion blast of the big toot horn.
"California is a great State ; a State of many climates, in fact, a State
where almost every variety of climate over the known world can be found,
from the frigidity of the poles to the torridity of the tropics. The best
known portion of late years is the semi-tropical portion of which Riverside
is a favored spot.
"Now, interest is being called to what has been considered a desert, but
which by cultivation will prove the Tropical California, where all the pro-
ducts of the most favored portions of the tropics can be raised."
"The following letter, by a well-known citizen, is kindly furnished for
Here follows the letter *
From the enthusiastic gush of such a prelude one would naturally sup-
pose that the letter treated of tropical growths--not a word of it-and all of
this gorgeous gush turns to the most garrulous gammon, as we read the letter
and find that it treats only of semi-tropical products-grapes, figs, oranges,
pomegranates, but more particularly and principally of the date palm.
And the date palm is far from tropical. In Italy as far north as
the 44th parallel, a date forest exists. On the Atlantic Coast of North
America it reaches its northern limic on the islands of Georgia and South
Carolina. On the Pacific Coast it would probably flourish as far north as
Oregon. Was the editor ignorant of these facts, or did he presume upon
the ignorance of his readers?
A place for well people to live in, or a resort for the sick, should be
exempt from extreme heat.
"Our climate" in this particular compares favorably with that of Cali-


As a basis of comparison I will quote some of the maximum tempera-
tures of August, 1885, from the Monthly Weather Review of the Signal
Service Bureau:
Jacksonville, Fla.,.................... 940iSacramento, Cal.,,.....................105
Sanford, ......... ....... 94 Red Bluff ', .....................108
Key West, ................... 94 College City, ...................114
St. Augustine, ...... ....... 93 Poway, Southern California, .... .103
IslandHome,Merritt'sIsland,Fla., 94 Los Angelos, .....106
Limona, Fla.,................... 98 Murietta, ......111
|Fall Brook, ......115
September, same year:
Jacksonville, Ela., ................... 39 Limona, Fla., .......................... 97
St. Augustine, Fla........ ........ 89 Poway, Cal.............. ......... 103
Island Home, Fla.,.............. 89 Murietta, Cal., .....................107
Key West, Fla.............. ... 92 Los Angelos, Cal., ....................109
Fall Brook, Cal.,.......... .......110
In addition to the above from the Signal Service Record, the L(s Ange-
los Herald gives the following for the 21st day of the same month:
Colton, Cal., ........ .................108 San Fernando, Cal.,.................. 1100
Pomona, ..................... 109 Newhall, ......109 Ne ll,............112
Pasadena, ......... ..... .......118
With such a climate it is not strange that the people by the thousand
seek a summer residence elsewhere.
In point of healthfulness Florida loses nothing by a comparison with
California. Our death rate is one-fifth less than theirs, and from 1860 to
1880 theirs had increased nearly 37 per cent., while ours had decreased 7
per cent.
A Californian, writing to the Riverside Press from Florida, admits that
the death rate of Florida is very low, but says the people "go away to die."
Just the reverse of this is true. The mortality of the State is greatly
increased by those who come here in the last stages of disease only to die.
They come from nearly every State in the Union, not excepting California.
If these persons hAd come in the first stages of their disease, instead of the
last, most of them had been either greatly benefited or entirely cured. The
correspondent above referred to calls Florida "Old Malaria." The papers
of Southern California speak of other parts of the State as the "Quinine
Belt," and their northern neighbors retaliate by looking askance, as they
propound the ominous question, "How are your shakes?" It is quite cer-
tain that neither State is free from malaria, but with this difference in
Florida it usually develops in the form of a mild intermittent fever (com-
monly called chills or ague), that yields readily to medical treatment. In
California malarial or zymotic diseases are of a different type-often ap-
pearing as remittent or bilious fever, and frequently as the deadly typhoid.
Last winter the San Francisco Bulletin, speaking of the health of the




State, said : "If the proportion of deaths which sometimes occur from some
one of the zymotic diseases in one of these small towns in a single winter
season, were to occurin this city, there would be something like an epidemic."
Soon after the Los Angelos Express said : "The doctors again disagree.
Some say there is but little sickness in the city, and others say there is a
good deal. When a physician is ignorant of the true condition of a patient,
he calls it a 'reflex.'"
The Riverside Press then took up the subject, as follows: "Our article
on the sanitary condition of the city, especially as it relates to the reports
necessary to be made to the health officer, is bearing good fruit. * *
As regards the name of the fever, whether it is typhoid, malarial, remittent,
or intermittent, bilious, or what, we are not sufficiently posted to determine
-our best physicians, and we have some excellent ones in the city, differ on
the name, but they all agree on the cause."
In the next issue it sounds this note of triumph : "'Reflex' is no more.
The Board of Trustees have cut the gordian knot of difficulties between the
doctors, repealed the ordinance compelling doctors to report cases of typhoid
fever, and appointed a board of health."
If these passages mean anything, they mean that the deadly typhoid, a
disease more destructive of human life than yellow fever, is prevalent dur-
ing the winter in many places in California, even in Southern California, and
further that there was a dispute between the honest and dishonest doctors
about the name, the former calling it "typhoid fever," which must be re-
ported to the Board of Health, the latter disguising it under the name of
"reflex," which prevented the necessity of so reporting it.
From the last issue of the Press it appears that though "reflex" is "no
more," its ghost, even this early in the season, comes up to haunt the dreams
and torment the waking hours of the denizens of Riverside. Hear the note
of warning, "Riverside is a health resort, yet there are blemishes here that
are not conducive to a good state of health. These should be looked after.
A little timely work in this direction may be the means of
saving many lives and much sickness. Those who must use
the canal water, should see to it that none is taken into the system, even as
a drink, without it is first boiled to remove all possible chance of contract-
ing fevers or any disease from this source. This cannot be too strongly
urged upon our citizens. Feyers are developed from a lack of this precau-
tion more than any other means."
In the same article we find the following about our own State: Florida
is heavily afflicted with the yellow fever, so much so that * * inter-
course through the State is nearly stopped." The date of this is Nov. 19th.
While the truth is that at that date "intercourse through the State,"
instead of being "nearly stopped," was never more free in all parts of the
State, except in the region of Tampa.
The Press has taken a great interest in the afflictions of Florida. I
think since last May it has mentioned, magnified, emphasized, amplified
and exaggerated this matter not less than twenty-three times, and the above
is a fair sample of its truthfulness. But there is this difference between
our affliction and theirs. The yellow fever is only a visitor coming at long

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