A REPORT TO
Everglades National Park Commission
Committee on Lands and Boundaries
RELATIVE TO BOUNDARIES
Proposed Everglades National Park
October 19, 1936.
A REPORT TO
Everglades National Park Commission
Committee on Lands and Boundaries
RELATIVE TO BOUNDARIES
... for .
Proposed Everglades National Park
October 19, 1936.
October 19, 1936
Members Everglades National Park Commission,
In compliance with your instructions, we, the Lands and Boundaries Commit-
tee of the Commission, have the honor to submit this our report on the boundaries proposed for
the Everglades National Park.
Before arriving at the conclusions reached in this report, we have interviewed, either privately
or at public hearing, all persons who have expressed to us by letter, by wire, in person or through
the press, any interest in any phase of the matter and, while it has not been possible to reconcile
all conflicting expressions of thought, it is our unanimous opinion that the boundaries recom-
mended in this report will meet with general approval by the major portion of those whose in-
terests will be most affected, and will prevent either serious or strenuous attempts by influential
citizens and public bodies to prevent the establishment of the Park, or to circumscribe the area
recommended by us.
Before stating our recommendations we believe you should note carefully the following:
A. The wisdom of the establishment of the Park on a scale even remotely approach-
ing that at first proposed has been very bitterly questioned by a considerable pro-
portion-probably, the major portion-of those whose business, personal or poli-
tical interests would be seriously and, in their opinion, adversely affected thereby;
B. The absolute necessity of curtailing to some extent the originally proposed maxi-
mum area to be included in the Park has been apparent to its best friends since
the date the tentative boundaries were first made public:
C. The advisability of appeasing to some extent the marked hostility of power-
ful interests in the social, business and political worlds, so as to secure their co-
operation instead of their antagonism, has been demonstrated to us in no unmistakable
At private and public hearings and through correspondence, the Committee has found
that the originally proposed maximum boundaries evoked opposition from:
1. Hunters, in general, and the Dade County Chapter of the Isaac Walton League
2. The Fishing Industry, including
(a) Commercial fishing interests.
(b) Angler sportsmen,
(d) Shell fisheries;
4. Lad owners; and
5. Political Subdivisions.
The Committee has also found that the originally proposed maximum boundaries have obtained
chief support from
1. Civic organizations;
2. Scientists; and
3 Federal and State Officials.
In the firm belief that the majority of the Commission has little idea of the strong and
widespread opposition to the originally proposed maximum boundaries among those who will be
personally and directly affected, and the preponderant weight of the opposition thereto over the
support thereof, your Committee considers it highly advisable to discuss at some length the
viewpoints of the opposition and the support. We, also, desire to point out how we, through
explanation, education and effort, have been able to overcome the opposition to such an extent
as to enable us to assert with absolute confidence our belief that, if the recommendations of
this report be adopted, there seems no reasonable doubt the Park, if delineated accordingly, will
1. Hunters, in general, and the Dade County Chapter of Isaac Walton League in
There seems to be widespread apprehension among hunters and various hunting clubs, con-
fined almost exclusively to Dade County, that the state will be deprived of its favorite hunting
grounds in Monroe and Collier Counties. Led by officials of the Dade County Chapter of the
Isaac Walton League, every effort has been made to ensure the originally proposed 2000-odd
square mile Park being reduced to an area of approximately 930 square miles in the south
central portion of Monroe County.
At a public hearing held by your Committee in Miami June 27, 1936, the Isaac Walton
League of Dade County, with about 400 members in Dade County and none in Collier and
Monroe Counties, presented a petition bearing signatures of 1,500 sportsmen, not affiliated with
the League, praying that the Park's area be greatly curtailed, particularly as regards the exclusion
of waters off the south coast of the State, a tremendous acreage in the Everglades, all Collier
County and all those portions of Monroe County north of the south fork of the Tamiami Trail
in Monroe County, as well as large tracts bordering on the west coast of Monroe County.
From cross-examination, it appeared that the League was not directly interested in the large
water areas, the exclusion of which they advocated, and that the League's real aim was to ex-
clude some 8 or 10 townships (approximate only) in northern Monroe County and all the pro-
posed park area in Collier County, in order to preserve those areas for hunting. A spokesman
for the League thus summed up the League's attitude:
"If it is adopted as a Park, it will be the sixth largest in the United States. The
League feels and recommends to you that this area is sufficiently large to perpetuate
and maintain all the things for which a National Park should be created- That
is why we selected that area south of the Trail, 930 square miles."
At the hearing, your Committee learned that the Isaac Walton League and the vast majority
of hunters pay no hunting taxes or fees, other than State hunting licenses, in either Collier or
Monroe county, no rentals to the owners of the lands on which they hunt, that all landowners
are unanimous in considering hunters not only prejudicial to the interests of the owner but
extremely destructive, and that the owners would welcome some action being taken which would
permanently exclude hunters from the properties included in the proposed Park, cven though
the Park were not established. Representatives of owners of approximately 95% of the areas m
Collier and Monroe Counties which the League would exclude from the Park stated that many
millions of feet of very valuable cypress and pine timber had been wantonly destroyed by fire
and that several million feet additional are destroyed every hunting season. Without exception,
these gave their positive testimony that the fires are set by hunters and trappers, both white and
red, though chiefly white, and, to a very small extent, by passersby. A representative hunter at-
tempted to place blame for forest destruction by fire on cattlemen but it was pointed out that,
while whatever merit there might be to his statement as regards grazing districts, it could not
apply in the instance under discussion, because, in the entire area the League would exclude from
the Park, there was not a single head of cattle.
Your committee is of the opinion that the attitude of the Dade County Chapter of the Isaac
Walton League, as presented by the League's representatives, is motivated by selfishness almost
exclusively, that the League would subordinate the good of the tens of thousands, who will use the
Park, to the benefit of some 400 members of their organization and a comparative few hunters,
not included in the League's membership, who signed the petition presented to your Committee.
The Commission should clearly understand that the attitude of the Dade County Chapter is not
concurred in by all Chapters of the Isaac Walton League. Many individual members of other
Chapters have expressed their belief there is practically no merit in the conclusions advanced by
Dade County hunters and, in general, take an opposing position which may be summed up about
"The National Park Service gives complete protection to all forms of animal life,
and, being keenly interested in conserving game and animal life generally hunted, we
believe the Park will become an enormous breeding ground and act as a kind of re-
servoir for game. At present, largely denuded of game, the area to be included in
the Park will, within a few years, be naturally replenished necessitating the migration
of game birds and animals to areas adjoining the Park where they will be available,
subject to State game and ownership laws, for sportsmen such as we. Such has proven
the case along the borders of other National Parks and no reason is believed to exist
why the same will not be true with the Everglades National Park."
Your Committee sees little of real merit in the contentions advanced by The Isaac Walton
League of Dade County, feels the position taken by them is wholly untenable and does not believe
the Park should be confined to the relatively small area (970 square miles) suggested by them.
2. Fishing Industry, including Commercial Fishing Interests.
(a) Within the proposed maximum boundaries of the Park, Commercial Fishing ranks high
in the list of prosperous industries. Approximately 1/4 of the entire area consists of coastal and
sound waters where fishing has been carried on for generations- Many families know nothing other
than fishing. More than 100 fish handling and icing plants dot the southwest coastal region, from
Chokoloskee southward, the Cape, the sound and the key areas. The present annual catch is valued
at in excess of $5,000,000 and will, no doubt, greatly exceed that amount in years of more nearly
noml prosperity. Capital to the extent of $1,000,000 is invested in this industry which employs
meo than 1000 men, on whom probably in excess of 5000 persons are dependent.
The general attitude of the Commercial Fishing Industry toward the Park was explained
met courteously, very convincingly and extremely ably by Mr. Frank W. Denny, a leading mem.
er of the industry. Mr. Denny summed up his carefully considered statement as follows:
"We are in favor of and endorse a National Park in Southern Florida that shall
be large enough in area to preserve the wide range of natural flora and fauna. We do
not want the boundaries to be so greatly extended as to jeopardize any industry on
land or sea which is the sole means of livelihood of a very considerable proportion
of our people. Our fishermen make their living catching fish in the waters included
in the proposed maximum boundaries. They are people who know the fishing business
and nothing else. Fishing is their only means of making a living."
Fully realizing the force and correctness of the argument presented by the Commercial
Fhing Interests against the inclusion of the water areas, and believing that the National Park
Service would not be a party to depriving so large a number of workers of their sole means of
support your Committee, through its Chairman, addressed Mr. Arno B. Cammerer, Director of
National Park Service, under date of June 3, 1935, on the subject and requested specific infor-
mati. as to what effect, if any, "the inclusion of the coasts of Collier and Monroe Counties in
the Everglades National Park would have on Commercial and Pleasure Fishing on those coasts."
The reply of the Director, under the date of June 10, 1935, is so explicit and covers the sub.
ject so thorghly in the minds of your Committee that it is thought advisable and proper to quote
he prtI nt p-rtis thereof:
"I remember you discussion this matter with me as bearing on the fishing around
Everglades. I cannot see that the establishment of the Park can and will affect
pleasure or commercial off-coast fishing off the west coast of Florida in any way. One
of the great attractions in the national parks is the fishing, and we plant annually
many millions of fry and fingerling in park waters to meet the public demand for
this form of recreation. Obviously we would want to do everything within our power
to develop pleasure fishing in and around the park area to the utmost of our ability
at the proper time."
To aert suspicion in the minds of many who feared the establishment of the Park might
curtail their pleasure or business in so far as fishing is concerned, the correspondence was given
wide publicity. The result, as will be later referred to, among pleasure fishermen was highly
graifyitg Among Commercial Fishing Interests, with large capital invested, however, the as
urance was generally considered neither sufficiently ample nor conclusive.
Accordingly, under date of April 11, 1936, the National Park Service was again requested
to define clearly its attitude in such matters. In response, on April 23, 1936, the Director wrote
in part as follows:
"We appreciate your direct inquiry of April 11, relative to mooted questions in-
volved in the future administration of the Everglades National Park area. The very
fact that these matters are discussed is heartening for it shows that the whole quest-
ion of acquisition of this park is definitely before the public.
"Fish constitute a resource that is easily renewed through proper regulation and
restoration through planting. As a consequence, angling is advertised as one of the
great forms of recreation available in the National Parks. If some particular speci-
mens become depleted, the National Park Service regulates the take, just as a
State makes laws to conserve disappearing species. Certainly there need be no fear
on the part of sport fishermen, but rather anticipation that their activities will be en-
couraged under park status.
"Commercial fishing will constitute a newer problem. The only maritime park at
present is Acadia National Park in Maine. Along its shores the commercial fisherman
has been allowed to ply his trade as heretofore, only state restrictions being enforced.
This problem comes up again in connection with the proposed Isle Royale National
Park where fishermen have long supplied nearby markets. Whenever the question
has been asked, these fishermen have been informed that the National Park Service
does not contemplate any injustice to them, nor any curtailment of their legal oper-
ations. With these as a background, commercial fishermen using the waters surround-
ing the Everglades may expect equally fair treatment. As a conservation bureau, the
National Park Service would naturally have to keep an eye on commercial fishery
operations and see to it that the supply is conserved. Usually the same laws that
are in force outside a national park apply also within, and it would be reasonable
to expect that in the administration of this park care would be taken to provide re-
strictions similar to those in nearby waters unless the destruction of some variety of
of fish is definitely threatened. In other words, since the Everglades park area and
especially its coastal water area is so great. I have seen no reason why off-coast
commercial fishing may not be continued in the future as it has in the past without
injury to park values."
Your Committee feels that the fears of the Commercial Fishing Industry as regards its future,
if the coastal and sound waters be included in the Park, should be entirely quieted by the frank,
direct, official statements of the National ParK Service-an official Bureau of the U. S. Depart-
ment of Interior-and have concluded that such fears do not justify the exclusion of those par-
ticular areas from the Park.
(b) Angler sportsmen.
While some opposition to the maximum boundaries of the Park developed shortly after the
proposed boundaries became generally known to the angling public, all such opposition has been
almost entirely dissipated by the publicity given the letters, heretofore referred to, of the Director
of the National Park Service relative to fishing in National Parks. Your committee is of the opin-
ion that, insofar as pertains to angler sportsmen, practically 100% endorsement may be expected
of the area recommended. One of the most splendid organizations of this class, The Miami Beach
Rod and Reel Club of Miami Beach, Florida, as spokesmen for other fishing clubs, believes that
the establishment of the Park in the areas proposed will be a great boon to angling and will
attract many thousand enthusiastic sports fishermen to Florida.
Only two areas exist in the United States where sponge fishing is carried on to any extent.
These are in the general vicinity of Tarpon Springs, Florida, and Key West, Florida. Two vastly
different methods of gathering sponges are in use in the respective localities. In Tarpon Springs,
operatives ue deep sea diving apparatus while, at Key West, sponges are gathered by hooks. Ap-
parent considerable animosity exists between the sponge fishermen in the two localities, each
remaining strictly in his own sphere.
The so called "hookers" operate around Key West in waters of Monroe County exclusively,
under such regulations as may be prescribed by the Fish Conservation Department of the State
of Florida. These laws and regulations seem to be entirely satisfactory to those engaged in the
industry, who regard with distrust the possibility of their operations being supervised in any way
by the Federal Government, directly or indirectly, through the National Park Service.
Incidentally at the public hearing held by your Committee, it developed that the hurricane of
1935 was to the sponge industry somewhat of a blessing in disguise. It appears that the completion
of the railroad across the keys and shallow waterways some years ago caused the blocking of
of Card Sound with the result that the sponge bed--very prolific in that area formerly-soon
became badly depleted. The reopening of various waterways, caused by the demolition of en-
bankmaes, has had a beneficial effect on the sponge beds which will soon be producing again
"within the next few years."
Approximately 500 men are engaged in the Industry with probably 2,500 persons dependent
thereon for a livelihood The annual income to Monree County from this source was stated at
"around" $100,000 and the capital invested at about $500,000.
This is a sizable Industry, the which, despite the apparent feeling of those engaged therein
that they might not be as fairly treated by the National Park Service as by the Legislature of
Florida, must be assured of proper treatment, if the waters between the Keys and the Mainland
be included in the Park. That such fair treatment would be accorded this Industry by the Federal
authorities seem certain in the minds of your Committee who believes that, so far as pertains to
the Sponge Industry, no valid ground exists for the exclusion of this water area from the Park.
(d) Shell fisheries
About 25 years ago, a shell fish industry was established in Collier County which industry
bids fair to become a very prosperous one-canning of clams. It is not generally known that the
output of two such plants at Collier City is the largest not only in Florida but greater than the
output in any other state- This Industry naturally is interested vitally in what regulations might
be imposed thereon if the clam beds be included within the Park. At present there are few re-
strictions imposed by State authorities.
Practically no clam beds exist on the West Coast except those of shore, from % mile to 5
miles, extending from Rodgers River in Monroe County to Gallivan's Bay in Collier County, a
distance of approximately 35 miles. The U. S. Department of Commerce estimates the total area
of the clam beds at about 250 square miles, of which 75% lies within the maximum bound-
aries originally proposed for the Park. The largest and most abundantly supplied shallow beds
are of Coon Key, from Rabbit to Pavillion Keys, Clam Point, Alligator Point and Loseman's
River, where the "density" (clams per square yard) ranges from S to as high as 20.
The maximum annual haul in predepressio years amounted to 205,625 bushels of unshelled
lams; and the wholesale market value of the finished product of one cannery was $244,792. for
1932. Approximately 150 men are engaged at present in the industry, on whom about 750 persons
are largely dependent. Capital in the amount of about $250,000. is invested.
Despite that about 75% of the best producing beds lie within the maximum area originally
proposed for the Park, no voice in the Industry has been raised against the Park. The leader
in this Industry are favorably inclined to the inclusion of the water areas off the northwest coast
of Monroe and the southwest coast of Collier Counties provided they can be assured they will
be afforded fair play in any regulatory measures which may be promulgated by the National
Your Committee is of the unanimous opinion that such assurance should be given the Clam
Fisheries referred to and that such assurance should be extended to the Oyster Fisheries along the
same coasts, an Industry now in its infancy but with every promise of prodigious growth in the
not distant future.
Some opposition to the originally proposed maximum boundaries of the Park was expressed
to your Committee by Agriculturists, who are farming at present comparatively small areas with-
in those boundaries. In considering this opposition, it should be borne in mind that those who ex-
premed themselves are tenant farmers. Under (4) "Land Owners," we will discuss any such
opposition brought forward by the actual owners of the properties involved.
Representatives of tenant farmers cultivating approximately 1500 acres along the Tamiami
Trail in Collier County and an undefined acreage along the south fork of that highway in Monroe
County stated they operate under leases with the land owners for various lengths of time but,
as far as could be determined, it appears that no lease now in effect would extend beyond 1940.
As the farms are seasonally operated and the leases are for a maximum of 5 years, comparatively
little capital is invested in permanent structures and, except for the profitable returns heretofore
received and reasonably to be expected in the future, the tenant farmer per se would not be ser-
iously injured, financially or otherwise, if agriculture were excluded from the areas now utilized.
Mr. A. W. Lindgren, a very prospeous tenant planter in Collier County stated that practically
all of the most valuable farming land now available in extreme South Florida lies along the Tam-
iami Trail in Collier and Monroe Counties. He is of the opinion that
"Collier County and the extreme northern portion of Monroe County will, in the
near future, produce all the tomatoes and a considerable portion of the other truck
grown in South Florida. For these reasons, I do not believe that this territory should
be included in the Park."
While your Committee agrees with these Agriculturists that the areas now being cultivated
are highly fertile and produce magnificent crops-as is evidenced by the rentals paid (an average
of approximately $8.00 per acre per year), we are forced to the conclusion that, certainly insofar
as pertains to Collier County, there are other areas beyond the proposed limits of the Park where
soils and climatic conditions, equally favorable to the production of vegetables and produce, may
be located and secured on equally favorable terms as those now cultivated. We are, also, of the
opinion that, if the Commission secure the favorable endorsement of the land owners of the areas
involved, the opposition thus far expressed by the Agriculturists should not be considered of great
weight or moment. We feel that there is ample acreage available in portions of Dade, Monroe
and Collier Counties not included in the Park to meet all demands for winter produce for many
years to come.
4. Land Owners.
Securing the whole hearted support and co-operation of the Landowners within the area
proposed for the Park has been considered of paramount importance to your Committee. It is
our unanimous opinion that, if the acquisition of the lands required for the Park is to be assured
within a reasonable length of time and at sufficiently reasonable cost to justify its purchase, it
is essential that the Owners of the Land must be brought to feel that the establishment of the
Park is not only for the general good but for their particular benefit as well. If the desired
lands can not be obtained in a manner and to an extent considered mutually satisfactory, then
their acquisition can only be effected, if at all, after long, costly and irritating actions n the courts.
From the best sources available to the Committee, the status of the lands within the originally
proposed maximum boundaries is approximately as follows:
Dade Collier Monroe
Ownership County County County Total
United States Lands 0 0 0 0
Florida State Lands 308,480 3,840 207,137 519,457
Seminole Indian Lands 0 0 109,800 109,800
Privately Owned Lands 314948 204,029 244,120 763,097
Total Acreage In Park 623,428 207869 561,057 1392,354
Total Acreage of Counties 1,303,040 1,256281 600,740 3,160,061
Total Assessed Valuation of
Counties $62,88911 $1,613,500 $2,962250 $67,56.4661
Total Assessed Valuation of that *(1936)
portion of counties included in
proposed maximum boundaries
of Park $240,077 $147,040 397,565 $784,682
The number of landowners to be considered and consulted is surprisingly small for the large
In our approach of the larger Landowners, we, at first, were confronted with either marked
hostility or mere lukewarmnesss." Much effort has been expended in overcoming this rather seri-
ous obstacle to the establishment of the Park, and we feel we have been able to effect a rap-
prochment with the owners of the major portion of the acreage involved and have succeeded in
obtaining an attitude of helpful cooperation- This, in our opinion. augurs well for the prompt es-
tablishment of the Park, which, while probably not as extensive in area as might be desired by
some, including possibly the National Park Service, will be of sufficiently large area to meet with
hearty approval of equitably minded citizens and officials who appreciate the position of reasonably
fair minded ownership.
It is unfortunate that, through misinformed and, possibly, malicious persons and others, two
er eous impressions have been widely disseminated among Land Owner in the Park area. This
has wrought incalculable damage to the Park cause and has greatly and entirely unnecessarily
increased the difficulties of your Committee and others, equally as keenly interested in the Park,
which means so much to the future welfare of the Nation in general and to the prosperity of
South Florida in particular.
These impressions are:
First: That the entire project is merely a skillfully camouflaged plot on the part
of certain large Land Owning groups to unload on the State, at exorbitant prices,
their so called "boom time" purchases; and
Second: That the present day value of the area to be acquired is very small.
To the first may be attributed the lukewarmnesss" of most of the large Landowners. Most of
their holdings were acquired years before a Park was dreamed of and the so called "boom" of
1925. Most Owners agree the Park will prove, if properly administered, a great asset; a project
in the successful completion of which they would gladly have assisted; but now, that they are
being hailed by the press and public as "robber barons," they feel inclined either to have nothing
whatever to do with it or to oppose it
To remove this wholly erroneous impression, we have pointed out that neither the Commit
tee nor the Commission should be held responsible for nor should the Park be endangered by
the attitude or expressions of thought of persons in no way connected with either and, incidentally,
wholly irresponsible and largely irrational Similar charges are usually hurled at those who di-
rect any worthwhile project of as great magnitude as this. We are gratified that we have been
able to accomplish much in overcoming this feeling, although the results achieved fall far short
of being 100% perfect.
To the second impression, traceable to some extent to sources rather closely affiiated with
the Commission, is largely due a general disposition on the part of many large Land Owners
and almost all small ones to distrust and to regard with suspicion everyone connected with
That you may clearly understand the extreme difficulty of explaining away satisfactorily the
second erroneous impression, it is considered advisable to quote from one pubic document which
appears to be the chief source from which it emanated. From pages 14 and 15 of "Tropic Ever-
glades National Park," a pamphlet printed by the Government Printing Office in 1930 for use
of the Committee on Public Lands and Surveys, U- S. Senate, 71st Congress, 3rd Session, the
following quotations are extracted:
"The Tropic Everglades Park Association, an organization sponsored by and
maintained in the State of Florida to promote this project, estimates that the econom-
ic value of the entire area proposed for park inclusion very small (Italics ours.)
"Several attempts have been made to utilize th lade and the tip of the
peninsula for agricultural and other commercial purposes, bt in most cases the ex-
periments failed, and most of the area is at present a primitive wilderness. It is
available for use as a national park and has but little value (Italics ours) for other
purposes. With increasing population in the United States and further development
of agriculture and industry, conditions may change and it is felt that the present
time is advantageous to set aside the area while it is still in its natural condition.
"This information has been secured from the Tropic Everglades Park Asso-
ciation, and is the only information now available on this subject .... "
". The great bulk of the land that it is expected ultimately will be selected
for the park, in the opinion of the official investigators has little or no com-
mercial value (italics ours) and cannot advantageously be used for any other than
park purposes. Its primary value would lie in the opportunities offered for con-
svation of the tropical flora and the wild life-particularly the endless varieties
of birds and fishes--ad their enjoyment throughout the ages. It does not seem
possible that the land needed on an average would cost more than $1. per acre,
(italics ours) so that it would take about $1,000,000 to acquire it "
Readily apparent, it would seem, is the effect of such statements, appearing in a Government
doamet bearing the signature of the Secretary of the Interior of the United States, on Land
Owners already "lukewarm" to the Park project on account of other equally erroneous impres-
sism widely diseminated
That such statements are erroneous and misleading has been clearly demonstrated to your .
Committee by Agriculturists who annually plant several thousands of acres, on which rental
as high as $20. per acre per year is paid, and by landowners who have produced timber cruises,
showing in some areas millions of feet of virgin pine and cypress timber.
Despite that it is thought the representatives of the Tropic Everglades Park Association,
who furnished the data for the extracts quoted, must have erred in their zeal to push to a favorable
conclusion the bills at that time pending in Congress, the fact remains that Land Owners were
led thereby to question seriously the wisdom of establishing the Park.
That Land Owners must be accorded fair play and be assured of fair treatment in negotia-
tim leading to the acquisition of their holdings for Park purposes s the unanimous opinion of
That its efforts among and contacts with Land Owners have been successful to a marked
degree in removing much opposition and lukewarmnesss" to the Park is evidenced by the follow'
ing typical statements made either at public hearings or in correspondence with your Committee:
"We appreciate the time you have taken to clarify the situation, as well as the
courteous and considerate manner in which you have handled it with us.
"At first, antagonistic to the Park on account of the manner in which we have
have been vilified; later, opposed thereto on account of the totally false impression
which seems to be in the minds of Federal authorities as to the value of our prop-
erties: We are now agreed that the Park is highly desirable and are for its estab-
lishment as long as your assurance that we will be fairly treated, if our lands should
be included in the Park, is maintained. (Tamiami Land Development Co., owners of
242,559 acres in Collier County.)
"While we are not yet convinced of the wisdom of the inclusion of our holdings
in the proposed Everglades National Park, we now regard the matter much more I
favorably than formerly. You have assured us thit we have only equitable treatment
to expect from your Commission. We have accepted this assurance in absolute good
faith and shall exert our utmost endeavor to cooperate with you." (Empire Land
Co. of New Jersey and Delaware, owners of 76,895 acres in Collier County.)
"The west boundary takes in Ochopee. That land is very valuable. Some of this
land recently sold for $200. per acre and much of it for $100. per acre. If the west
boundary were accepted, you would run into lots of trouble in getting the Land Own.
ae to relinquish their rights. Land in this area rents for $10., $15., and $20 per
acre per year to farmers. It is too valuable to be put into the Park." (Mr. LR
A. Coachman, owner 185 acres in Collier County.)
"I fully appreciate the magnitude of the Committee's duties. As I am so heartily
in favor of the general idea of the Everglades National Park, it is my earnest hope
that, no matter what general lines may have existed in the minds of those interested,
there will result in and from your meeting a specific designation of the boundaries
of the Park.
"Within the proposed maximum boundaries, I own about a township in Collier
County and have no objections to the major portion being included but, as this is
all the property I own in the County, I want to retain about 6000 acres in the
Turner's River section. I personally think that Turner's River is entirely too im-
portant to the legitimate and proper development and progress of all South Collier
County to even consider it for a moment as a Park area.
"Turner's River will one day be an extremely important river for transportation of
lumber and produce from the area north of the Tamiami Trail to vessels in the Gulf.
There are innumerable water courses to the south and east which will, in my opinion,
possess, insofar as pertains to National Park purposes, all the advantages of Turner's
River plus none of its disadvantages." (Capt. J. F. Jaudon, controlling 12,891
acres in Collier County.)
"We have decided the Park, if established, will be highly beneficial to Collier
County. If you feel the inclusion of our agricultural lands and timber is necessary
'to round out the project,' as you express it, we will interpose no objection PRO-
VIDED; First, the Turner's River area is definitely excluded, and; Second, that our
holdings are not considered a part of that 'bulk' which 'in the opinion of official
investigators (we don't know who they are, but we do know they failed to inspect
our holdings in our presence) has little or no commercial value' (Lee County
Land Co, owners of 320,078 acres in Collier County-)
"I have thought a good deal over the situation which you explained to me in
Miami and the unpleasant relations that seemed to be brewing for some time,
and it has occurred to me that the best way and the. quickest way to clear up the
situation would be to have a conference between members of the Park Association
and the land-owners at which both parties could express their ideas and then each
have a better understanding of the attitude of the other ....
"... I would have little patience with anyone who might try to hold up the
Park Commission by asking an unreasonable price for his land, and on the other
hand I would have little patience with any individual who would undertake to un-
justly deprive property owners in the park area of their property without a reason-
able and fair compensation. .
"We wish to state that we had hoped that possibly half of our lands, (timber and
agricultural) could be excluded from the Park area, if such re-arrangement of lines
could be effected without too much disturbance of the controlling factors ....
"We believe, however, that the Park, when created, will be of such immense
value to Florida and its citizens that, without your Committee can see a feasible
way to accommodate the boundaries to our needs, we will not interpose any objection
to the lines now shown-" (Mr. D. A. McDougal, President, Chevalier Corporation,
owners of 159,305 acres in Monroe County.)
"After hearing what has transpired at your meeting, we have decided in favor
of the maximum boundaries so far as pertains to our property in Monroe County,
feeling that equitable treatment will be afforded as in acquiring this land for Park
"We will forgo a good deal rather than defeat the Park itself." (Mr. George F.
Cook, officer of Chatham Bend Co., owning 13,120 acres in Monroe County.)
"I am not in favor of the present boundary because I do not want to give up land
I have acquired, unless I am given certain considerations."
"Madam, what acreage do you own?"
"I own only two lots." (Mrs. M. M. Licklider, owner of two lots in subdivision
in Monroe County.)
"I am interested in a large area of the richest land in the world, five or six miles
on either side of the Tamiami Trail, beginning eight or ten miles west of the city
limits of Miami, where marl and muck are combined. We do not object to anything
if we can have assurance our drainage problems will be taken care of. We have con-
fidence in the Park Service." (Judge John M. Holland, interested in 12,000 acres
in Dade County.)
"We have no objection to our lands being included in the Park area. We are
very much in favor of the Park itself, and have no particular objection to the boun-
daries as now proposed." (Mr. W. W. Colson. Jr., representing Paradise Land Co.,
owners of 25,000 acres in Dade County.)
"I am so thoroughly imbued with the necessities of the Everglades National Park
that I hope it will be my privilege, when this Commission is ready to accept title
to land, to present.them with a deed to our small holdings there." (Mr. A. R. Liv-
ingstone, Miami, Florida, owner of small acreage in Dade County.)
"I have not the slightest doubt that, when the lands are acquired, the Land Owners
will be dealt with fairly. The Department of the Interior will continue to deal
fairly with those who are connected with the project in any way." (Mr. Ben H.
Thompson, National Park Service.)
5. Political Subdivisions.
The maximum originally proposed boundaries for the Park, as previously stated, embrace ap-
proximately 16% of Collier County, 48% of Dade County, and 93% of Monroe County.
Inasmuch as National Parks are Federal property, the areas included therein are not subject
to taxation for local, municipal, county or state purposes. In Florida, a considerable proportion
of the State gasoline tax is allocated to the various counties on a basis of area, population and
mileage of State roads therein. It is apparent, therefore, that, if any considerable part of the
area of a county is included in the Park, there will be a corresponding decrease in the rev.
enue of the county derived from ad valorem, acreage and personal taxes levied on the lands
and personal property included in the Park and, possibly, a decrease in the county's portion
of the gasoline tax allocated thereto.
Wit te facts in mind your committee fully expected that some oppition to the ma
With these facts in mind, your Committee fully expected that some opposition to the max
imum boundaries originally proposed would develop from the Boards of Commissioners of the
Counties affected. However, only the Board of Commissioners of Monroe County actively pro-
That Board, through its Attorney, lodged a most vigorous and, in the minds of your Com-
mittee, a most logical and sound protest against the maximum boundaries originally proposed being
adopted. They pointed out with great clarity that
"Probably the County most affected by the proposed National Park is Monroe.
At least 50% of the proposed area is in Monroe County. Monroe County has a
bonded indebtedness of $3,500,000.00. The proposed area will exclude from taxa-
tion 90% of our county, which will naturally throw on the shoulders of
people in the small portion remaining a tremendously increased burden of taxation.
"Another thing of vital importance that will affect us is our gasoline tax allocation.
"You take 90% of our County away from us in this maximum area.
"Monroe County is opposed to the inclusion of any part of Monroe County except
that lying wholly on the mainland. We will do all in our power to prevent it. We
will be bankrupt if you take it from us. We will oppose with whatever power and
by whatever means we possess the inclusion of any area other than the mainland."
"The people of the County as a whole feel if they give their consent to relin-
quishing all that portion of their County on the mainland of Florida, they are con-
tributing as much as they should be called on to do, as the area taken from Mon-
roe County alone is in excess of the combined area of the adjacent counties which
is now tentatively contemplated going into the Everglades National Park.
"Any further insistence on the part of the proponents of the Everglades National
Park for inclusion of the lands and bay bottoms-the water area lying south of the
mainland and north of the Florida Keys-will result in the creation of antagonisms
and resistances from the people of Monroe County, which might prove prejudicial
to the interest of the Park project as a whole."
Asked if his Board was vitally opposed to the inclusion of Key Largo and other keys on the
Atlantic seaboard and in Florida Bay, the Attorney for the Board replied:
"Key Largo is one of the most valuable portions of Monroe County. Other keys,
forming the chain down to Lower Matacumbe, and the keys in the Bay possess
enormous possibilities for development in the near future. Together, these keys con-
stitute the chief land resources of the County, with the single exception of Key West.
Include them in the Park and Monroe County faces the loss of a large potential
source of revenue."
While it is probable that legal means may be found to obviate the loss to the Counties in-
volved of any part of the gasoline tax allocation through the inclusion in the Park of any por-
tion of the respective Counties, it is certain that the taxing power of all those Counties will be
lessened and that the tax burden in the areas outside the Park must be increased. In the case
of Monroe County, this is so great, owing to the very large portion thereof proposed to be in.
cluded in the Park, your Committee is of the unanimous opinion that the position taken by the
Board of Monroe County is sound, just and reasonable and, further, that their offer to assist in
the establishment of the Park to the extent of backing the inclusion of all mainland Monroe
County in the Park is generous in the extreme and should be accepted without reservation.
It should, also, be borne in mind that the three Counties have expended several million
dollar in the construction of hard surfaced highways within the proposed Park and that bonds
ised to pay the cost thereof are still outstanding. While figures are not at this time available
to your Committee as to what portion of the cost of these roads was borne by the Counties
themselves, it has been ascertained that approximately $350,000. was expended by Collier County,
of which expenditure no reimbursement has been made by the State, although the roads thus
constructed are now State highways.
It is believed that, unless and as seems probable the Counties should be willing to
contribute such expenditures as a donation to he Park, they should be considered equally as
carefully and as justly as Land-Owners and given reasonable compensation therefore.
As pointed out in the beginning of this report, Your Committee has found that the maximum
boundaries originally proposed have received chief support from:
1. Civic organitions
2. Scientists, and
3. Federal and State officials.
This support has been remarkably strong, well directed, intelligently planned and excelleutly
presented. But, for the thorough knowledge and studied intelligence of the many eminent
scientists who have explored the recesses of the Park area and pointed out its wondrous wealth
of flora and fauna, its natural and scientific marvels; but, for the powerful backing of dozens
of civic organizations, manifested in countless ways on innumerable occasions when help was
sorely needed; but, for the influence, action and kindly help of Federal and State officials,
many eminent in political affairs; but, for these, it is ceratin that the dream of men of real
vision could never have been realized and that the indomitable courage and persistence of Mr.
Ernest F. Coe, in fighting the battles of the Park, would have been in vain.
And, while it seems possible that some of the chief supporters of the Park may have failed
to evaluate, at its real worth, the attitude and altogether human reaction of those individually
and directly affected by the establishment of the Park, your Committee feels that they have
done a magnificent job and that to them is due all possible praise for what has been accomplished.
Your Committee, having given most careful consideration and study to all points raised and
data presented by those opposing and by those supporting the originally proposed maximum
boundaries, have the honor to submit the following boundary description for The Everglades
National Park as most nearly perfectly furnishing the requirements of a truly tropical National
Park and, at the same time, affording security in their daily life to those directly and personally
affected by the great changes which must be made in the status of the area in which they
either live or find means of livelihood.
Namely, the following:
"Beginning at the northwesterly corner of the proposed Everglades National Park in Collier
County, at a point coincident with the northwesterly corner of section 2, Township 52 South,
Range 31 East;
Thence, easterly along the line between Townships 51 and 52 South through Ranges 31, 32,
33 and 34 East in Collier County, and continuing
Thence, on the line between Broward and Dade Counties, through Ranges 35 and 36 East,
to the northerly corner of Township 52 South, Range 36 East;
Thence, southerly on the Eastern Park boundary along the line between Ranges 36 and 37
East, through Townships 52, 53, 54, 55 and 56 South, into Dade County, leaving the line between
Broward and Dade Counties at the southwesterly corner of Township 51 South, Range 37 East.
to the northwesterly corner of Township 57 South, Range 37 East;
Thence, easterly on the northeastern Park boundary along the northern line of Township 57
South, Range 37 East (unsurveyed), as derived from the established official survey along the
Atlantic Coast in Dade County, to the northeasterly corner of Township 57 South, Range 37 East;
Thence, southerly on the eastern Park boundary along the line bteween Ranges 37 and 38
East, through Townships 57, 58, and 59 and into Township 60 South, to the mean high water mark
of Florida Bay on the shoreline of the mainland where said high water mark intersects said line
between ranges 37 and 38 East on the boundary line between Dade and Monroe Counties;
Thence, southwesterly on the southern Park boundary on the line between Dade and Monroe
Counties, along the line of mean high tide of Florida Bay on the shore of the mainland, to the
line between ranges 34 and 35 East in Township 61 South, at a point coincident with and mark-
ing the extreme southern end of the boundary line running north and south between Dade and
Thence, southerly and westerly on the southern Park boundary into Monroe County, along
the line of mean high tide of Florida Bay on the shoreline of the mainland, leaving the boundary
line running north and south between Dade and Monroe Counties at the point where the line
between Ranges 34 and 35 in Township 61 South intersects the mean high tide mark of Florida
Bay on the shoreline of the mainland on the boundary between Dade and Monroe Counties, to
Thence, northerly and westerly on a line in the Gulf of Mexico surrounding Cape Sable, not
closer than the three mile jurisdictional limit so as to include all of the islands north of Cape
Sable within the area of the Ten Thousand Islands off the coast of the mainland, to the line bear-
ing approximately North 27 degrees 05 minutes East (true) and passing through the common
corner of Sections 32 and 33, Township 53 South, Range 30 East, and Sections 4 and 5, Township
54 South, Range 30 East, on the boundary line between Monroe and Collier Counties (unsurvey-
ed), derived from the established official surveys along the Gulf Coast in Collier County;
Thence, northeasterly along the northwestern Park boundary into Collier County, leaving the
line between Collier and Monroe Counties at the common corner of Sections 32 and 33, Township
53 South, Range 30 East, and Sections 4 and 5, Township 54 South, Range 30 East, to the common
corner of Sections 23, 24, 25 and 26, Township 53 South, Range 30 East:
Thence, easterly on the Park boundary along the northern line of Section 25, Township 53
South, Range 30 East, and of Sections 30, 29, 28 and 27, Township 53 South, Range 31 East.
to tie common corner of Sections 22, 23, 26 and 27, Township 53 South, Range 31 East;
Thence, northerly on the western Park boundary along the western lines of Sections 23, 14, 11
and 2, Township 53 South, Range 31 East and of Sections 35, 26, 23, 14, 11 and 2, of Township
52 South, Range 31 East, to the northwestern corner of the proposed Everglades National Park,
heretofore described, and the place of begninng."
There is attached hereto a map showing
(a) In heavy black, those portions of the boundaries of Collier, Monroe and Dade
Counties which are touched by the Everglades National Park;
(b) In red, the proposed maximum boundaries of the Park;
(c) In green, the boundaries of the Park recommended by your Committee; and
(d) The areas included in the originally proposed maximum boundaries which are
not recommended for inclusion in the Park by your Committee, shown cross hatched
Brown in Collier County,
Blue in Monroe County,
Orange in Dade County.
From the best sources of information available to us, your Committee has gathered the follow-
in ertinen data which are ve informative and should be of vousiderblc ssrtaon in mrrivinu
at an understanding of our recommendations for an area smaller than that encompassed by the
maximum boundaries originally proposed for the Park:
Collier Dade Monroe
County County County Total
Total Area in Acres 1,256,281 1,30340 600,740 3,160,061
Max. area proposed in acres 207,869 623,428 561,057 1,92,354
Revised area proposed in acres 162,070 508,228 533,413 1,203,711
Acreage excluded in revised
boundadies 45,799 115,200 27,644 188,643
% Reduction orig. maximum 22% 18% 5% 14%
Total population in 1935 4,790 180,998 13,354 199,142
Pop. in max. proposed area 1935 488 1,800 1,200 3,488
Pop. in revised area in 1935 126 400 400 926
Pop. excluded in revised boun-
daries 362 1,400 800 2,562
Total Assessed Val. Real Est.
in 1935 $1,613,500 $62,988,911 $2,962,250 $67,564,661
Assessed Val. Real Est. in max. *(1936)
proposed area S 147,040 $ 240,077 $97,565 $784,682
Revenue from State Gas Tax
Allocation 1935 $ 136,807 $477,517 $190,343 804,667
With the above data and the testimony given us, we will now briefly review the facts which
caused us to arrive at the conclusions reached by us relative to the boundaries recommended by
us for the Park.
IN COLLIER COUNTY
The maximum originally proposed area for the Park was 207,869 acres; the revised area, as
now proposed, is 162,070 acres.
We have excluded the Turner's-River-Ochopec area (45,799 acres) chiefly because:
(a) Turner's River is the largest river in Collier County susceptible to such im-
provement as will provide water-borne transportation to deep water in the Gulf of
(b) Plans for this development were completed in 1928 and merely await finan-
cial recovery to be consummated;
(c) The extreme southeastern fork of The Big Cypress the only big stand of
cypress timber remaining in the United States makes from the northwest into
the slough leading to the headwaters of Turner's River in the western half of Town-
ship 52 South, Range 31 East, all of which township is included in the maximum
boundaries originally proposed;
(d) A var valuable rtand of dense long leaf yellow pine etendi northward
and eastward from the headwaters of the river;
(e) A saw mill with capacity of about 300,000 ft. per month has been operating
in the area since 1929;
(f) A combined cypress and pine saw mill, located on the proposed improved
River in Township 52, Range 31, merely awaits financial recovery to cut 300,000
feet per day;
(g) The value of the land around Ochopee, included in the maximum boundary
originally proposed, is so very great as to preclude its use for Park purposes;
(h) The town of Ochopee, founded in 1930, is located partly within the maximum
boundaries originally proposed and from this area an average of 550 carloads of truck
are shipped every winter, an average which without doubt will be quadrupled
within five years;
(i) The truck farm lands are valued at from $100. to $300. per acre, the cypress
stumpage at $8- and the pine at $6. per M feet. Of the former, 1256 acres were
cultivated in 1936 and a minimum of 6000 acres are tributary thereto; of the latter,
it is estimated that a 15-year cut awaits the completion of Turner's River improve-
ment and cheap water transportation, as an aid for the starting of which the State
Road Department has agreed to allot $25,000.;
(j) The capital, exclusive of land values, now invested in the Turner's River -
Ochopee area is conservatively estimated at $150,000.;
(k) The acreage of Collier County would be reduced approximately 17% if the
maximum boundaries originally proposed were adopted, and, if six additional town-
ships immediately adjoining to the north be set aside by the Government for an
Indian Reservation, as is being actively proposed by the authorities in charge of the
Indians, an additional 11% of its acreage would be withdrawn from the tax rolls;
(1) The withdrawal of approximately 28% of its total acreage from the tax rolls
would represent an increase of approximately 20% in the taxation to be bone by that
portion of the County not included in the Park and the Indian Reservation;
(m) The revised boundary excludes practically no islands in Collier County includ-
ed in the originally proposed maximum boundaries;
(n) Notwithstanding written communications of the Executive Chairman of
the EVERGLADES NATIONAL PARK ASSOCIATION to the contrary,'Turner's
River presents few, if any, of those outstanding characteristics so necessary for a
National Park not found in several other livers extending from the Gulf to within
a short distance of the Tamiami Trail, the cypress sloughs at the head of each of
which cross that highway.
The forest hammocks, bordering the banks of these rivers and the cypress sloughs
at the head waters thereof, several of which are included in the recommended bound-
aries in Collier County, reach back both to the East and the West; they show few
signs of the influence of fires, have almost identical jungle undergrowth and the
same general low-lying character; they have the same species of ash, maple, gum,
magnolia, oak and cypress intermixed with rubber, bay, stopper and other trees of
the tropics, as are found along Turner's River.
Along these rivers-all of them--can be found the sobal palm, on the trunks of
which grow the same types of orchids, ferns and other air plants, and below which
may be seen the same types of clusters of the grass fern, as along Turner's River.
Along these rivers-all of them--can likewise be found the same venerable oaks
equally as liberally festooned with creeping polypodium and equally as gracious hosts
to bromiliads, tillansias, orchids and several types of ferns, as along Turner's River.
Each of these rivers has characteristic flora and fauna practically identical with
those of Turner's River: None of them can possibly be developed as a means of water-
borne transportation: All of them are within the revised area.
IN MONROE COUNTY
The maximum area originally proposed for the Park was 561,057 acres; the revised area, as
now proposed, is 533,413 acres.
We have excluded all keys, water bottoms and islands (27,644 acres) and include only that
portion of the County on the mainland, chiefly because:
(a) The governing body of the County, as well as other citizens thereof, have giv-
en us to understand in firm and forceful language that, in surrendering 533,413 acres,
90% of the total area of their County, they have shown their great interest in the
Park, have done more than any other County, and that, if more is demanded of them,
they will use all the resources and power at their command to prevent, if necessary,
the establishment of the Park;
(b) We agree with the governing body of the County that Monroe has shown
a magnanimous spirit and that, however desirable the inclusion of the water bottoms
and keys in the Park might be, such inclusion would be greatly detrimental to the
County and would, most probably, result in the final and complete bankruptcy thereof;
(c) If 93% of its total area (as is included in the originally proposed maximum
boundaries) be surrendered to the Park, approximately 14% of its normal assessed
valuation would be lost and result in an increase being levied on the 39,683 acres re-
maining in the County;
(d) Unless some legal means can be found to prevent, the county's receipts
from that portion of the state gas tax allocation based on area may be decreased
annually by $60,000, based on 1935 returns:
(e) Despite the written communication of the Executive Chairman of the EVER-
GLADES NATIONAL PARK ASSOCIATION to the contrary.
the physical, biological and human interest features of southern Key Largo,
other keys in the chain to the south thereof, the water bottom areas in Florida Bay
and neighboring sounds and the islets therein are neither so valuable nor so great
as to prevent, even though they be excluded, the Park being both distinctive in com-
parison with other National Parks and of outstanding importance in the National
Park system; the forms of native wild life, both plant and animal, of the land
and waters in the key and sound areas neither differ from nor excell in either quan-
ity or variety the same forms existing in other portions of the Park to such an
extent as to render obligatory the inclusion of these areas in the Park.
While the National Park Service, no doubt, felt and, possibly, still feels that the exclusion of
Key Large and other keys would prevent the inclusion of Atlantic Ocean areas, with their mar-
velous marine gardens, essentially different geological structure and different flora, it cannot be
conceived that the exclusion of these features would nullify the fundamental purposes involved in
the establishment of America's only Tropical Park, and thus keep unseen the almost countless
other features in the Park, the exquisite and unique beauty of which THE EVERGLADES NAT-
IONAL PARK ASSOCIATION has proclaimed to the Nation.
The holders of Monroe County securities, based on land valuation, can neither be depended
on nor expected to consider their paper augmented in value by the surrender of 93% of the area
of the county and possibly, one third of the gas tax receipts for any purported increase in taxable
valuation of 7% of the area of the County remaining outside the Park.
IN DADE COUNTY
The maximum area originally proposed for the Park was 623,428 acres; the revised area, as
now proposed, is 508,228 acres.
We have excluded:
1. Township 56 South, Range 37 East,
2. All that area on the mainland east of the line between Ranges 37 and 38 East,
3. That portion of Biscayne Bay in Townships 58 and 59 South, and
4. Arseniker Key and all keys north and northwest of Key Largo;
All of the land recommended to be eliminated is susceptible of drainage and water control
and constitutes some of the most valuable land for the growing of winter vegetables and sub-
tropical fruits in the State of Florida. It is located below, or near the frost line and, due to the
close proximity of the Gulf Stream, is practically free of frost or any danger from frost during
the winter season.
The land is composed of a particular type of marl soil which is very prolific in the production
of practically all kinds of winter vegetables and sub-tropical fruits and, in this section, including
Key Largo, there are some 1200 acres of lime groves, producing what is known as the Key Lime,
which is recognized as being the finest lime grown. This is a budding industry and should be
encouraged and fostered, rather than discouraged through the creation of a National Park. The
vegetable and sub-tropical fruit industries, together with the Lime industry, employ several hun.
dred men, supporting a many families, and is, therefore, more valuable from an economic stand.
point for the production of these necessities than for inclusion in a National Park.
There was recently in course of development a large area of land in this section, which con-
templated water control, to be used for the growing of winter vegetables and sub-tropical fruits,
which has now been more or less abandoned due to the fact that it was located within the max-
imum boundaries originally proposed for the Everglades National Park. Therefore, if this land
is eliminated from the Park area, this project will no doubt be revived and concluded at an
In concluding this report, your Committee deems it advisable and proper to invite your at-
tention to the rather widespread idea that no major deviations from the originally proposed max-
imum boundaries is possible under the Act governing the establishment of the Park and that,
if other than minor changes be proposed, the entire Park project will fail of acceptance by
the National Park Service and the National Governmet.
While we do not pretend to have full cognizance of all information on this important matter,
the data to which we have had access do not indicate that the prevalent idea is either correct
From the report of the Secretary of the Interior-being a letter dated December 3, 1930-
submitted to the President of the U. S. Senate, pursuant to law, as to the desirability of estab-
lishing the Park, are exerpted the following:
1. "The inspection of the area was made during the period from February 11, to
February 17, 1930, inclusive, (Italics ours) by the following official representatives
of the department.
Mr. Horace M. Albright, Director National Park Service,
Mr. Ebert K. Burlew, Assistant to the Secretary of the Interior,
Dr. H. C. Bumpus, member of the educational committee of the National Park
Service, official collaborator,
Mr. Arno B. Cammerer, associate director, National Park Service,
Mr. Harlan P. Kelsey, Conservationist and landscape architect, member of Appalach-
ian National Park Commission, official collaborator,
Dr. Gilbert Pearson, president of the National Association of Audobon Societies,
Mr. Roger W. Toll, Superintendent Yellowstone National Park, National Park Ser-
The inspection was made by automobile, motor boat, house boat, skiffs, balloon
blimp, and on foot."
2. "Altogether there is a total of about 2000 square miles involved, or nearly
1,300,000 acres Possibly the best way to show the tentative (italics ours) boundaries
for this proposed Tropic Everglades National Park is by a map (see p. 16), which
is therefore attached as Exhibit A."
3. "As tentatively (italics ours) considered, and as indicated on the preceding
page map, the area is bounded ....."
4. "The great desirability of including enough of the key region that is located
between the Atlantic Ocean and the Bay of Florida, Barnes and Card Sounds,
so as to include some miles along the Atlantic Coast shore line, including outlying
waters, is apparent when one considers that the Gulf Stream flows northeastwardly
close in shore at this point. In the nearby waters of the Atlantic are wonderful
marine gardens and excellent fishing. On the keys included in this area are animal
and plant life and physical formations confined to this general region and not
found elsewhere in the Park area. For that reason a portion of this key region has
5. "Naturally, the final boundary lines are difficult to show at this time, and
even tentative boundary lines are difficult to determine without more intensive study
on the ground. Private holdings and local conditions must be fully considered. The
lines suggested, however, will give a very definite starting point for the Park since
they involve the maximum which might be secured and which upon study can be
reduced to a desired essential minimum. It is probable that such adjustments can
be made that will enable at least 80 per cent of the total area involved in the
boundary lines to be considered a satisfactory minimum for the Park." (italics
In the certification letter, appears this specific clause:
"It is obvious that in a project of this size and complexity some minor adjust-
ments of the boundary line will become necessary. Consequently it is understood
that such adjustments can be made in the future upon agreement between the authori-
ties of the State of Florida and the National Park Service, upon approval of the
*Secretary of Interior."
From the foregoing, it appears that the originally proposed maximum boundaries were never
considered other than as tentative; that final boundaries were purposely not shown; that local
conditions were not investigated but would necessarily have to be fully considered; that the
lines suggested would give merely a definite starting point, considering them only as the
maximum for which to strive but reducible to an essential minimum; that adjustments involving
as much as 20% of the maximum could be made; and that the final boundaries might be so
fixed as to be mutually agreeable and satisfactory to the State of Florida (presumably this com-
mission) and the National Park Service, upon approval of the Secretary of the Interior.
Certainly, it appears to us that four officials of the National Government and their three
official collaborators, each internationally and most favorably known in connection with Park
matters, would not attempt, after a trip of inspection lasting only seven days over a territory
where six different modes of travel from the most ancient, "on foot", to the most modern,
"balloon blimp"-were required, to set definite boundaries for a Park containing some 1,000,-
These gentlemen did nothing of the kind: they, in our opinion, delimited a maximum area
which would, depending upon the exigencies of the individual cases which might arise, be reduced
to an essential minimum.
In an efort to ascertain that "essential minimum," we have made our study of local feel-
ings, local desires, local hopes, local necessities, local needs: We submit this our report to you
in the hope it may be approved by you as being satisfactory to the State of Florida.
At this time, we make no recommendation relative to "land values constant with fair
consideration for all interest involved and methods of procedure in land negotiations"
LAND AND BOUNDARIES COMMITTEE,
D. Graham Copeland, Chairman
J. W. Hoffman, Member
Wm. R. Porter, Member