Ie ue'A! THE JOURNAL OF THE HISTORICAL
ASSOCIATION OF SOUTHERN FLORIDA
Editor: Charlton W. Tebeau
NUMBER XII 1 9 5 2
Newspapers of America's Last Frontier 3
By Jeanne Bellamy
We Chose the Sub-Tropics 19
By F. Page Wilson
Starch Making: A Pioneer Florida Industry 47
By Mrs. Henry 1. Burkhardt
South Florida's First Industry 55
By Ernest G. Gearhart, Jr.
An Early Map of Key West 58
William Adee Whitehead's Description of Key West 61
Edited by Rember W. Patrick
The Association's Historical Marker Program 75
By Oliver Griswold
The Treasurer's Report 77
List of Members 79
COPYRIGHTED 1952 BY THE HISTORICAL ASSOCIATION OF SOUTHERN FLORIDA
(" 6 4. is published annually by the Historical Association of Southern Florida
9 ,5* and the University of Miami as a bulletin of the University. Subscrip-
tion $3.00, Communications should be addressed to the Corresponding Secretary of the
Society, Post Office Box 537, Miami 4, Florida. Neither the Association nor the Uni-
versity assumes responsibility for statements of fact or of opinion made by the contributors.
This Page Blank in Original
Newspapers of America's Last Frontier
By JEANNE BELLAMY
Pistol in hand, the first newspaper editor of Florida's Gold Coast leaped
toward the office of his rival. The editor of the second newspaper met him at
the head of the stairs and hit him on the head with a printer's mallet. (3)*
Little more than half a century later, in 1950, the hamlet which was the
scene of that encounter had become a bustling city-one of two dozen
clustered together along the Florida shore of the Gulf Stream.
A motorist, journeying after sunset in the fall of 1950 from West Palm
Beach to Homestead, could tell only by signposts where one town ended and
the next began. Among cars, trucks and buses streaming along that highway,
he would have passed through a few stretches with no buildings along the
roadside, but nowhere in those 100 miles would he have been out of sight
of an electric light gleaming somewhere in the darkness. Much of his way
would have been neon-lighted.
Yet he would have seen only a fraction of the dwellings housing 700,000
men, women and children (20) in that 100-mile strip, the only sub-tropical
corner of continental United States.
Who could believe that all this came into being in half a century?
Scores of men and women living and working in this place in 1950
remembered how it looked in the year 1900, with only 5,000 inhabitants. (20)
These pioneers watched towns and cities spring up in the wilderness as people
rushed to America's last frontier.
The story of its newspapers is the story of the frontier itself.
In the autumn of 1950, this region had seven year-round daily news-
papers of general circulation, an eighth published daily each winter, and
more than two dozen other journals, mostly weeklies.
* The numerals in parentheses indicate a numbered and alphabetized list of references
at the end of the paper,
The combined circulation of the dailies in 1950 was more than 350,000.
Heading them in circulation was The Miami Herald. Its 1950 circulation of
193,011 daily and 222,310 Sunday-more than half the total of the whole
group-reached out into the entire region and far beyond. So did, to a
lesser extent, The Miami Daily News, with a circulation of 94,031 daily and
88,228 Sunday. (9)
The oldest newspaper of the region still alive in 1950 was The Palm
Beach Sun, published each Friday at West Palm Beach. It dates back to
In its youth, The Sun was what you might call a migratory newspaper-
a phenomenon of gold rushes, oil booms and the like. Started in Melbourne,
Fla., as The Indian River News, it moved to Juno, changing its name to The
Tropical Sun, then moved south again in 1895 to West Palm Beach. (19)
The migration of this newspaper paralleled the southward march of
Henry M. Flagler's railroad empire, which started the Gold Coast's first boom
just before the turn of the century.
Remember that Dade county in 1900 covered the whole region we are
discussing, and more. Its north boundary was the St. Lucie River. It arched
south along the coast nearly 150 miles to Card Sound, at the head of the
Florida Keys, and reached about 50 miles inland to Lake Okeechobee.
In those days, Key West, in Monroe county, adjoining Dade on the
south, was Florida's largest city with around 18,000 population. (20) It
had nearly 75 years of newspaper history before the first weekly moved into
the north end of Dade county.
Key West's first newspaper, The Register and Commercial Advertiser,
was born in 1829 and died in infancy. (11) From that year until 1894, Key
West had 11 different newspapers and a 12th which appeared briefly four
times between 1845 and 1899. (2)
The Key West Citizen, a daily in 1950, received that name in 1904 but
can trace its origin through two consolidations to 1894 when a group of
citizens raised $3,000 to start a newspaper. (2)
Remember, too, that in 1890 the population of the vast territory called
Dade county was 861 souls. (20) Came Flagler with his railroad and by
1900 the population had leaped almost 500 percent to 4,955. (20)
Flagler brought more than two steel rails and wood-burning locomotives.
At Palm Beach he built what was then the world's largest tourist resort hotel
-the seven-story Royal Poinciana, opened Feb. 11, 1894. To house carpen-
ters and other workmen, Flagler bought land on the west shore of Lake
Worth. (19) The workmen's settlement, then mostly tents and shacks, was
incorporated Nov. 5, 1894, by a vote of 74 to one, as the town of West Palm
In that same year, West Palm Beach got its first newspaper, The Gazeteer,
which by 1950 had become The Palm Beach Daily News, second oldest news-
paper along the Gold Coast.
The Gazeteer was consistently late in publication, and Editor C. M.
Gardner always explained his failure to make edition time as "having had
trouble with a drunken printer." Since he was the lone worker in his printing
plant, everyone knew the identity of "the drunken printer" and he became a
bit of a joke around town. (3)
The county seat of Dade county from 1889 to 1899 was at Juno, 12 miles
north of Palm Beach at the head of Lake Worth. Juno was the southern
terminus of a seven-mile narrow-gauge railroad which linked steamboats on
the Indian River with other boats plying south to Lemon City on Biscayne
Those familiar with small weekly newspapers will realize the advantage
of a county seat site, with its easy access to the legal advertising which often
is the financial backbone of such journals. Despite this, The Tropical Sun
moved from Juno to booming West Palm Beach in 1895.
So the fledgling town found itself with two newspapers--C. M. Gard-
ner's Gazeteer and Guy Metcalf's Tropical Sun. The warmth of their rivalry
may be measured by the fact that Gardner was the pistol-toter who was
knocked cold by a printer's mallet in the hands of Metcalf.
In 1896, The Gazeteer changed hands after a fire which destroyed its
plant. (3) It was bought by S. Bobo Dean, who had been associated with
Metcalf in Juno, and his brother, Joel S. Dean. They changed the name in
1897 to The Lake Worth News. (3)
Ex-Editor Gardner's disposition worsened after his plant burned, and
proved his undoing. (3) Families named Frank and Shrebnick ran adjoin-
ing stores on Narcissus street, West Palm Beach, and were constantly bicker-
ing with each other. One day, Gardner stood on the sidewalk outside the
Frank store and taunted Mrs. Frank. Her 17-year-old son, Marcus, drew a
line across the sidewalk and dared Gardner to cross it. Gardner did. Marcus
Frank shot and killed him. (3)
Mr. Shrebnick was the first to help young Frank, arranging bond to get
him out of jail, and the Franks and Shrebnicks became great friends. (3)
As for Marcus Frank, he expanded in business, became the owner of a large
department store in Ocala, Florida, and represented Marion county in the
Florida legislature for several sessions. (3)
In 1895-96, Flagler was pushing his railroad south from West Palm
Beach through palmettoes, forests of towering Caribbean pines and across
meandering water courses. He laid out the towns of Boynton, Delray, Deer-
field, Fort Lauderdale, Dania, Hallandale, Ojus and Miami. (8) At the
mouth of the Miami River, he built another big resort hotel-the Royal Palm.
For townsites, Flagler used chiefly lands given him by the State of
Florida under laws authorizing such grants to encourage the building of rail-
roads and canals. Millions of acres were granted thus to Flagler and others.
Railroads, which had made fortunes for men who flung them across the
continent, were a popular target in those days. Government control of rail-
roads was among the topics debated often in the 1890's in Congress and in
state legislature. (14)
During those years around 1900, in the Flagler-built boom town of West
Palm Beach, Editor Metcalf of The Tropical Sun was lambasting South
Florida's own railroad magnate. Metcalf's rival, Editor Dean of The Lake
Worth News, stood up for Flagler. (7)
Their clash grew loudest after the Florida legislature in 1901 enacted
the "Flagler divorce law," which added incurable insanity to Florida's list of
grounds for divorce until the law was repealed four years later. (7)
As soon as the law took effect, Flagler divorced his second wife, inmate
of an insane asylum in New York. Within a month, he married Miss Mary
Lily Kenan, for whom he built the palatial Whitehall at Palm Beach. (7)
Editor Metcalf of The Sun had plenty to say about this-all bad. In
reply, Editor Dean of The News hinted that Metcalf's motive was to make his
sheet such a nuisance that Flagler would buy it. (7)
"Flagler always believed that Metcalf's antagonism arose over a debt
the latter owed and did not wish to pay," recorded two Florida historians. (7)
"Flagler disliked him so intensely that he decided against being buried in
Palm Beach when Metcalf's father was elected to municipal office in the town
across Lake Worth.
"Editor Dean of The Lake Worth News supported Flagler not only on
the divorce issue but on the general practices of the (railroad) system. It has
been alleged on good evidence that the paper was indebted to Flagler, who
was 'pressing Dean rather hard.'... In 1905, Dean sold The Lake Worth News
to the Flagler interests and moved to Miami . He bought The Metropolis
and, as editor-owner, became the inveterate critic of the Flagler corpora-
This brings us to what was, in 1950, our region's third oldest newspaper,
The Miami Metropolis, which became The Miami Daily News.
But first let's wind up the story of the second oldest. The purchaser of
Bobo Dean's Lake Worth News was Richard Overend Davies of Cleveland.
The News became the scene of one of Florida's longest careers in journ-
alism-that of Miss Ruby Edna Pierce. She became its cashier in 1907, then
business manager on March 17, 1908. In 1910, she was made editor and
general manager, which post she still occupied in 1950. (13)
Not long after Miss Pierce took the helm, The News moved across Lake
Worth to the oceanfront resort. That was in 1913. The Palm Beach Daily
News was published every year from the middle of December to the middle
of April to give the winter colony its own daily newspaper. (13)
One month to the day after the first train chugged into Miami, The Miami
Metropolis published its first edition on May 15, 1896. (17) The six-column,
full-size weekly was named by Flagler, and its two pioneer editors might be
classed as Flagler partisans.
The owner and publisher was Dr. Walter S. Graham, who had left the
practice of medicine for law and was a member of the law firm of Robbins,
Graham & Chillingworth, with offices at Titusville, West Palm Beach and
Miami. The editor was Wesley M. Featherly, who came from Michigan. (17)
The first edition advertised bargains unbelievable to Miamians of 1950,
such as "fine business lots" on the south bank of the river at $300. The news-
paper also called for immediate incorporation of Miami, predicting that
"there will be 1,500 people before the first of July." (17)
Work on the Royal Palm Hotel was being rushed for the formal opening
on New Year's Day, 1897. People poured in on the Florida East Coast
Railway Company's new trains. "All kinds of eating places and sleeping
places opened up, some in tents, some in shacks and some in cheap houses,"
wrote John Sewell, who arrived in Miami March 3, 1896. "Some of them
would be built in a day."
Liquor was forbidden inside the town limits, so saloons mushroomed at
the north edge of the settlement. "The night after payday there were great
times, the workmen spending their money getting drunk, fighting, shooting
and killing," Sewell recalled. "I have known as high as three or four dead
men there after one night's jamboree. They had a number of dance halls,
and you could hear the dancing and music for half a mile around until the
dead hours of night." (17)
Miami was incorporated as a city on July 28, 1896, and in 1899 regained
the courthouse from Juno. "The rough element was cleaned out and condi-
tions bettered," Sewell reported. (17)
In that year, the three-year-old Metropolis was bought by B. B. Tatum,
former sawmill operator who had controlled a newspaper in Bartow, Florida,
in 1887, then four newspapers successively in Rome, Ga. (21)
The Metropolis flourished. By 1903 it had a circulation of 1,500, and
Tatum changed it from a weekly to an eight-page daily. (21)
It was also in 1903 that Frank B. Stoneman and A. L. LaSalle, Sr., carted
machinery from their printing shop in Orlando to Miami and started The
Miami Evening Record. A few years later it became The Morning News.
Tatum's real estate interests demanded increasing quantities of his time,
so be organized the Miami Printing Company to run The Metropolis. Secre-
tary-treasurer of the company was S. Bobo Dean, who came from West Palm
Beach and acquired a half-interest in 1905. (21)
During those years, Flagler had extended his railroad south to Homestead
and started surveys to a deep-water port somewhere in southernmost Florida.
(8) A preliminary survey in 1902-04 through swamps and forests to Cape
Sable produced an adverse report on that route. Late in 1904, Flagler gave
the order that the extension should go to Key West. The result was the
fabled "Railroad That Goes To Sea" over the Florida Keys, finished January
22, 1912, at a cost of $20,000,000. (8)
The thriving town of West Palm Beach wanted to take the county seat
from Miami, and it is to this era that The Palm Beach Post traces its origin
in 1908. (9) D. H. Conkling established a weekly named The Palm Beach
County, which later became the daily Palm Beach Post. The rivals for county
honors took their case to the state legislature. "There was no way out of
these dissensions except to divide Dade county," a writer of that era noted,
"so, in 1909, its northern part was lopped off with West Palm Beach as the
county seat, leaving Fort Lauderdale and Miami in the new Dade county." (8)
Talk of draining the Everglades had been snowballing for several years,
and by the end of 1905, one dredge was being assembled at Fort Lauderdale
and headed northwest from New River toward Lake Okeechobee. Large
tracts of public land were sold to finance the digging. High-pressure sales
increased the number of owners of Everglades land from about a dozen in
1909 to upward of 15,000 in July, 1911. (16) "The transformation of the
entire region from inaction to hopeful and confident activity was magical,"
(8) At the height of the drainage boom, The Fort Lauderdale News was
founded in 1910. (9)
Meantime, Miami's only bank had trouble. As its receiver, Washington
officials selected an Indiana attorney named Frank B. Shutts, who arrived
about 1907. In carrying out his assignment, Shutts met Flagler, who hired
him as his Miami attorney. (12)
The Stoneman-LaSalle newspaper experienced financial difficulties, and
Shutts bought it for $29,000, borrowed from Flagler. The newspaper
emerged Dec. 10, 1910, as The Miami Herald, a morning daily, with Stone-
man as editor and Shutts as publisher. (12)
Shutts had obtained the $29,000 loan from Flagler by the argument
that Miami needed a newspaper which would present Flagler's side of public
questions as well as the anti-Flagler side. (12)
This last was rip-snortingly represented by Editor Dean of The Metropolis,
who had transformed that newspaper from pro-Flagler to anti-Flagler.
Miami merchants expressed disapproval of Dean's views in a petition
intended for the eyes of the Flagler interests. Before delivering it, they
showed it to Dean. He told them he wanted to have the signatures checked
and would return the original. Next day, the petition appeared on Page One
of The Metropolis. (7)
This occurred at the height of a fight in which The Metropolis was
championing the demands of growers for lower freight rates. The merchants
were chagrined at seeing their pro-Flagler petition displayed to their custom-
ers. Some recanted. Those who didn't stopped advertising in The Metropolis.
It was shortly thereafter that The Miami Herald made its debut. The
$29,000 loan to Publisher Shutts did not remain outstanding long. An
accountant, checking The Herald's records for Flagler, noted that a large
automobile and the wages of a chauffeur were among the expenses of the busi-
ness. Flagler remonstrated, and Shutts promptly paid off the balance of the
loan, refusing to budge from his stand that a chauffeured car for the publisher
was a proper expense of the newspaper. (12)
As part of the drainage boom, a Colorado corporation acquired state
lands south of West Palm Beach, dug a canal and laid out the townsite which
became Lake Worth. The sales agents, Bryant & Greenwood, established
The Lake Worth Herald in 1912 as part of their promotion program. (18)
Something similar was going on at Florida City, just south of Homestead,
where settlers included men who worked on the railroad to Key West. Florida
City was laid out by the Tatum Brothers Investment Company. The Home.
stead Leader-Enterprise traces its history to this period. It was founded in
1912 as The Homestead Enterprise by J. A. Kahl, a Methodist minister, who
sold his interest in 1915 to A. C. Graw, former Philadelphia publisher. (6)
Aboard his yacht on the way to California, Graw and his family were
halted in Florida by the outbreak of World War I. Tatum Brothers induced
Graw to go to Florida City, and the yacht entered the Florida City canal on
February 16, 1915. Graw several years later started the first newspaper in
Hialeah at the instance of its developers, James H. Bright and Glenn Curtiss.
The year 1915 saw the creation of Broward county, named for Gov.
Napoleon Bonaparte Broward, whose drainage program touched off the boom
there. The new county's 720 square miles were taken about half and half
from Dade county on the south and Palm Beach county on the north. Fort
Lauderdale became the county seat. (8)
"It shares with Miami and West Palm Beach the expanding productive-
ness of the districts being steadily reclaimed. Large power boats operate
between Fort Lauderdale, the canals and Lake Okeechobee, taking supplies
and passengers westward, and returning with the products of the Everglades,
which are chiefly shipped northward over the Florida East Coast Line.
Pleasure boats also pass back and forth." (8)
It was also in 1915 that A. J. Bendle, who had bought Tatum's interest
in The Miami Metropolis, sold out to Bobo Dean, already half-owner. (21)
Not one of the newspapers, daily or weekly, published in this region in
1950 dates its establishment to the decade between 1912 and 1922. (9) It was
a lull between booms.
Interest in Florida properties had been stimulated in the first ten years
of the century when lumber and turpentine barons began selling vast acreages
from which they had made fortunes in naval stores and lumber. (1) Rail-
road-building brought a new wave of immigrants.
Fast-talking salesmen peddled Florida swamplands all over the country
on the strength of drainage work in the Everglades. Doubts began to rise
in 1911. Despite the clank of ditch-diggers, the black muck and peat soil
remained wet or under water, and vegetables which grew rankly at first
mysteriously wilted and died.
The result is recorded by J. E. Dovell in the appendix to Volume IV-A
of the Proceedings of the Soil Science Society of Florida:
"The enterprise became a subject of national agitation. A resulting
panic among purchasers of lands saw many payments on sales contracts
lapse . Several dealers in Glades lands were indicted for using the
mails to defraud. Accounts of these indictments were published through-
out the United States, especially in cities from which much money and
many settlers had come."
Still, the Land Where Summer Spends The Winter drew people from
afar. By 1922, subdivisions were springing up in rapid succession. That
year saw the start of four newspapers which still were being published in
1950-Lake Worth Leader and Palm Beach Times; the weekly Miami Beach
Times and Hialeah Review. (9)
The Delray Beach News dates from 1923, (9) dawn of the great Florida
real estate boom. The year also marked Bobo Dean's sale of The Miami
Metropolis to James M. Cox, former governor of Ohio, who renamed it
The Miami Daily News. (21) In 1924, Cox bought a site on Biscayne Boule-
vard for the 26-story, million-dollar News Tower. (21)
The same year saw the beginning of The Everglades News, founded at
Canal Point in March, 1924, by Howard Sharp, who had edited The South
Florida Developer as a weekly edition of D. H. Conkling's Palm Beach Post.
(15) Sharp's weekly was edited after 1934 By Paul Rardin, who became the
owner in 1937. (15)
The 20th anniversary edition of The Everglades News explained that
several publications had used the same name as early as 1912. The edition
also told of a novel premium given in the early days with each $2 subscrip-
tion to The East Beach News. (4)
The East Beach News was just a column of booster material inserted in
copies of The Moore Haven Times sent to Pahokee. The material was gathered
by Guy Stovall, who sold home-lighting equipment; Boas Levins, who ran a
meat market, and Paul Mansfield, who got a room for the project in the same
building with Levins' meat market.
"There was a sliding panel connection in the partition between Boas' and
Guy's rooms. Guy or Paul would knock on the wall, the panel would open,
a 25-cent piece would be laid on the ledge and from the other side of the wall
a two-handled jug would appear and the 25-cent piece would disappear.
"The subscriber would grasp the jug by the two handles, tip it to his
mouth, and when he gurgled twice, the jug would be snatched away and the
Conkling paid Stovall $500 for The East Beach News, but offered no
premiums for subscriptions. (4)
"There being no drink of shine as a premium," The Everglades News
related, "The East Beach News dried up and blew away."
The South Florida Developer-Conkling's weekly edition of The Palm
Beach Post-was bought by Edwin A. Menninger, who moved it to Stuart
on the coastline. Menninger continued The Developer, serving subscribers at
Lake Okeechobee from Stuart, until he brought out The Stuart News. (4)
At the height of the real estate boom, on July 26, 1925, The Miami Daily
News celebrated its 29th anniversary and the opening of its new plant with a
504-page edition weighing 71/2 pounds. It was the "world's largest single
edition of a standard-size newspaper." (5)
The Miami Herald set a world's record in 1925 with 42,500,000 lines
of advertising-12,000,000 lines more than any newspaper ever had carried
in a year's time. (1)
The News Tower was the northernmost of 16 tall hotels and office build-
ings completed along Miami's bayfront in July and August, 1925. They gave
the city its skyscraper skyline almost overnight. Steel skeletons of 14 more
rose at the same time in the city. (1)
The fateful year of 1926 saw the establishment of The Coral Gables
Riviera. (9) It was by no means the only newspaper started in the region
during the great land boom. None of the rest survived in 1950.
An afternoon daily, The Miami Tribune, was founded in 1924 with
N. B. T. Roney as its first backer. The editor was scholarly Clayton Sedgwick
On January 12, 1925, appeared the 40-page first edition of The Illustrated
Daily Tab, a venture of Cornelius Vanderbilt, Jr. At 26, he was publishing
two tabloids in California. He breezed into Miami in October, 1924, lined
up some backing and awarded $1,000 to the winner of a contest to name his
Miami tabloid. (1)
The splashy Tab had its plant in the old home of The Metropolis, just
east of the Central Fire Station on W. Flagler Street. The offices faced north
toward the old three-story Dade county courthouse. (1)
On the opposite side of the courthouse stood The Tribune's plant in a two-
story building on N. W. First Street. (1)
Between these two newspaper plants a lurid incident occurred. Clatter
of air drills and riveters at work on skyscrapers nearly drowned the sound
of gunshots which burst from the courthouse on the morning of September
27, 1925. The shooting foiled a jail break led by the notorious Heywood
Register of the Ashley-Mobley gang of bandits and bank-robbers. Two pris-
oners were killed, but Register played possum and was not hurt. (1)
You will gather from this that newspaper work in Miami in the 1925
boom-like the city itself-was far from dull.
Journalists poured into town along with men from all other walks of
life. They found jobs quickly on Miami newspapers, bulging with more ads
than they could print.
The real estate fever infected newsmen, too. Many would work a few
days or weeks, then vanish into the maelstrom to buy and sell.
So fast was the turnover that managing editors didn't know the names
or even the faces of all their employes, or how many would be likely to show
up for work on any given day. (12)
At the peak of the confusion, The Miami Herald newsroom was on the
second floor of its old building, approached by stairs from Miami Avenue.
One night, a chubby man wearing a derby appeared at the top of the
stairway, facing the bustling rim of the copy desk. He singled out a copy-
reader and asked: "Can you direct me to Colonel Shutts?"
"Shutts?" asked the copyreader absently. Then he addressed his co-
workers: "Anybody know a fellow named Shutts?"
"Sorry we can't help you," the copyreader said.
With a look of wonder, the visitor asked permission to use a telephone,
put in a call and beckoned one of the staff to speak to the party on the other
end of the wire. Through the receiver, the staffer heard:
"This is Frank Shutts, publisher of The Herald. Can't someone in the
office bring that man out to my house? He's Herbert Hoover." (12)
The News Tower provided a vantage point for watching the 1926 hur-
ricane. The story was told by Jessee 0. Irvin, a Herald copyreader at the
time of his death in 1950, who was working on The News in 1926:
"Wives of two News executives came to the office when the wind
got bad. After a big chunk of concrete hurtled down from the tower, we
put the women under the press. I wasn't scared until I happened to
glance out a window and saw tank cars on the railroad siding topple
and roll before the wind."
Irvin, staring in frightened fascination, saw a huge schooner bearing
down on the building. It veered off and careened out into the bay, then back
inland farther north, where it went hard aground.
"After the storm," Irvin recalled, "cars moved along Biscayne Boulevard
right under its prow."
On June 16, 1926, Vanderbilt's Tab vanished with the announcement
that E. A. Inglis had been appointed receiver. (1)
The next November, The Miami Tribune withered to tabloid size. In
February, 1927, it shrank to a weekly, and ceased publication in August,
Eight lean years ensued. Banks failed along the Gold Coast and else.
where in Florida. As late as Christmas of 1934, you could buy a full meal-
meat, potatoes, a vegetable, dessert and coffee-at several downtown Miami
cafeterias for the flat sum of 10 cents. A deluxe eatery charged 15 cents.
This was the era of the world-wide depression, yet new settlers continued
to move into Southeast Florida's 100-mil nd. Its population climbed
from 214,830 in 1930 (17) to 257,23 5 state census of 1935 and
387,522 in 1940. (17)
More newspapers were born in this period-The Hollywood Herald in
1929 and The Hollywood Sun-Tatler in 1932. (9)
The year 1932 also saw the debut of The Florida Sun, (9) which by 1950
had become a daily at Miami Beach under the ownership of George B. Storer,
proprietor of a chain of radio and television stations, who also had bought
The Coral Gables Riviera.
In 1934 The Redland District News made its bow in Homestead, capital
of a thriving agricultural district of tropical fruit groves and winter vegetable
It was a time of newspaper deaths and consolidations in many parts of
the country. In West Palm Beach, The Palm Beach Post, owned by D. H.
Conkling, joined forces with the Palm Beach Times, then owned by Sheriff
Robert Baker. Conkling and Baker each had borrowed about $100,000 from
E. R. Bradley, longtime operator of Bradley's Casino at Palm Beach, where
only rich visitors were allowed to gamble. Bradley took over the two news-
papers in February, 1934. (18)
The winter of 1933-34 brought out The Miami Beach Tribune, published
daily during that tourist season. It was backed by M. L. Annenberg, who had
made a fortune from racing news.
The tabloid Tribune resumed on November 15, 1934, as a year-round
daily. It set Miamians agog with such scare headline as: COSSACKS BEAT
BOY, 500 DIE IN KEYS HURRICANE, GRAND JURY PROBES CITY
A three-cornered war, replete with name-calling, ensued among The
Miami Herald, The Miami Daily News and The Tribune, which on January
1, 1936, became The Miami Tribune. It was the first newspaper in the region
to pass the 100,000 circulation mark.
The Tribune's guiding genius, Paul G. Jeans, gave Miami a movie-like
version of a tabloid in action. He often wrote of "the city hall gang" and
once quipped that the ideal tabloid headline would be: "Sex Fiend Slays Six
In Penthouse Orgy."
Jeans' impish humor came out in such tales as the story of the time he
sent investigators to track down rumors of jury tampering.
Criminal Court Judge E. C. Collins had been indicted January 17, 1935,
on a charge of accepting a bribe. Six jurors deadlocked four to two, and
The Tribune reported the outcome thus: "Four Fixed Jurors Save Collins
From Chains." (10)
Criminal libel charges were filed against Jeans and the reporter who
wrote the story. Jeans sent two hirelings to Ojus to look for a man named
by a tipster as the jury-fixer. Jeans' men found him, got him drunk and
heard him boast that he was "more evil in Broward than I am in Dade." (10)
That was the phrase which delighted Jeans, who died in the spring of
1937 in a highway accident.
On December 1, 1937, The Tribune ceased publication. It had been
bought by John S. Knight of Akron, Ohio, who had purchased The Miami
Herald from Shutts on October 15, 1937.
Tribune support had helped elect three Miami city commissioners-a
majority of the board-in the spring of 1937. The Herald and The News
called attention to their faults loudly and often.
The News coined the title of "the termites" for the three, who were
removed from office in a recall election 15 months after The Tribune folded.
For its role in the recall campaign, The Miami Daily News won the 1938
Pulitzer Prize for "distinguished and meritorious service to the community."
By this time the Gold Coast had entered a boom linked with the Federal
Housing Authority's guarantees of loans for home-building. This period saw
the birth of three more weeklies still published in 1950: The Fort Lauderdale
Record in 1935, The Dania Press in 1939 and The Belle Glade Herald in
An even bigger building boom began toward the end of World War II.
New weeklies sprang up in communities suddenly dense with homes. The
list included The Pahokee News, The Boynton Beach News, The Riviera
Beach News and several in Greater Miami-The Hialeah Home News,
Allapattah News, Little River Shopper and North Miami Sentinel.
Early in 1947, The Palm Beach Post and Times were purchased for
$1,050,000 by John H. Perry, who then owned six dailies and 15 weeklies in
Florida. The West Palm Beach dailies had come on the market because of
the successive deaths of Bradley and Barry Shannon, to whom Bradley had
left them. Perry also acquired The Palm Beach Daily News.
Before Bradley and Shannon died, The Palm Beach Post-Times figured
in an incident which received national publicity. It began on New Year's
Eve in the darkest days of World War II. (3)
Donald Whitehurst, who substituted in the slot of the copy desk when the
regular news editor was away, wrote a story contrasting the honor roll of
soldiers in downtown West Palm Beach with New Year's Eve cocktail parties,
dining and dancing in Palm Beach. (3)
The story appeared on New Year's Day, and Shannon, who had gone to
the horse races at Miami, was buttonholed there by several Palm Beach
friends. When he returned, he spoke severely to Don Morris, Post-Times edi-
tor, who not only fired Whitehurst on the spot but ran a Page One apology,
saying Whitehurst was a mere substitute desk man and had no authority to
publish such material without consulting the editor. The apology praised
Palm Beach for its war effort. (3)
While this may have mollified the resort-dwellers, it had the reverse
effect on readers with sons or relatives overseas. The story was reported in
newspapers throughout the country, and by a broadcaster on a nationwide
radio network. (3)
Probably the shortest-lived metropolitan daily in journalistic history was
The Daily Mail, a tabloid published at Miami Beach from January 11 to
February 28, 1950. It lasted exactly 49 days.
Nearly a month before he started the newspaper, Publisher Harry 0.
Voiler sued The Miami Daily News for $300,000 damages for saying Voiler
was acting as a "front" for "criminals, racketeers and hoodlums." Voiler
insisted that he and his wife, Louise, who was listed as "founder," owned all
the assets of The Daily Mail.
On January 25, 1950, while Frank Costello, New York racket bigshot,
was registered at a swank Miami Beach hotel, The Mail's leading editorial
remarked: "As for Frank Costello, The Herald's and The News' bogeyman,
we hope that while he is a guest at Miami Beach he enjoys our sunshine,
our flowers, our myriad attractions."
On the same date, The Pathfinder, a national newsmagazine, said: "For
the first time in many months, the Florida Gold Coast's $100,000,000 gambl-
ing syndicates thought they had a friend" in The Mail.
It ceased publication with Voiler's explanation that "we have run out
You will gather from this that The Mail bloomed and died at a time
when The Herald and The News were hammering hard against the activities
of gamblers and racketeers in the community.
Not all the region's newspapers agreed on the desirability of stamping
out illegal gambling. For example, Editor Knight of The Herald quoted
Editor Charles Francis Coe of The Palm Beach Post on January 28, 1950, as
writing: "Nice people will gamble. And so long as betting on a horse at a
race track is legal, while betting the same amount on the same horse away
from the track is illegal, nice people will gamble more than ever."
Knight's editorial comment was: "Editor Coe, meet Editor Voiler. Nice
people should get together."
Disclosures in testimony before a United States Senate committee investi-
gating interstate crime led to the suspension from office of the sheriffs of
Dade and Broward counties. As the 1950-51 winter tourist season began,
illegal gambling in both these counties was on a "sneak" basis.
This was a topic The Herald had been pursuing for more than 10 years.
"For disinterested and meritorious public service in 1950," The Herald was
awarded the Pulitzer prize for its "tireless campaign against crime and offi-
cial corruption and in behalf of good government."
The big daily also was an early and persistent supporter of plans for
building the Tamiami Trail, control of floods and droughts in the Everglades,
and the Everglades National Park, which was created in 1947 after intensive
efforts spearheaded by Associate Editor John D. Pennekamp.
The cosmopolitan atmosphere of the Gold Coast in 1950 was reflected
in the presence of a dozen journals addressed to special groups of the popu-
Among these were The Florida Echo for citizens of German ancestry,
established in 1925, and The Jewish Floridian, founded in 1928. (9)
Negro residents had a choice of four weeklies printed in Miami-The
Tropical Dispatch, The Call, The Times and The Whip.
Organized labor had two weeklies-The Miami Labor Citizen and The
Union Labor News in West Palm Beach.
The growing volume of legal news and advertising gave rise in 1926 to
The Miami Review. In 1950, it was being published five days a week. (9)
During the racing season, a Miami printing plant published an edition of
The Daily Racing News, the "bible" of race fans.
Miami also had a weekly named Miami Life, whose role is difficult to
describe. A nightclub owner once boasted to me that, by judicious use of
folding money, in the days when gambling casinos ran wide-open in Miami,
he arranged to have hawkers for this publication stand in front of crowded
Miami Beach hotels and bellow: "Gambling running wide open at Such-and-
such club," using the name of his establishment. There was nothing about
that in the papers they carried, but the stunt filled his gambling rooms, he
(1) Ballinger, Kenneth, Miami Millions, Miami 1936.
(2) Browne, Jefferson B., Key West, the Old and the New, St. Augustine 1912.
(3) Cole, Fenwick P., West Balm Beach, Florida, Letter.
(4) Everglades News, Canal Point, Fla., 20th Anniversary Edition, June 1, 1945.
(5) Federal Writers Project, The American Guide Series, Florida, New York 1939.
(6) Graw, LaMonte, Orlando, Fla., Letter.
(7) Hanna, Alfred Jackson, and Kathryn Abbey, Florida's Golden Sands, Indianapolis
(8) Cutler, H. G. History of Florida, Past and Present, Chicago, 1923.
(9) Johnson, J. Percy H., Directory of Newspapers and Periodicals, Philadelphia 1952.
(10) Jeans, Paul G., Tropical Disturbances, Miami, 1937.
(11) Knauss, James 0., Territorial Florida Journalism, Deland, 1926.
(12) Pennekamp, John D., Associate Editor, Miami Herald, Interview.
(13) Pierce, Ruby Edna, West Palm Beach, Fla., Letters.
(14) Proctor, Samuel, Napoleon Bonaparte Broward, Gainesville, 1950.
(15) Rardin, Paul, Canal Point, Fla., Letters.
(16) Senate Document 89, 62nd Congress, 1st Session.
(17) Sewell, John, Memoirs and History of Miami, Miami, 1933.
(18) Smith, Vernon L., Lake Worth, Fla., Letters.
(19) Travers, J. Wadsworth, History of Beautiful Palm Beach, Palm Beach, 1928,
(20) United States Census Reports,
(21) Writers Program: Florida, Planning Your Vacation, Northport, N. Y., 1941.
We Choose the Sub-Tropics
By F. PAGE WILSON
The story of a last frontier, seen through the eyes of a young
man from a northern business office, who, deciding such a career
would never satisfy, sought with his family a freer, more natural
life in the Farthest South. This was in early '95.
Ever southward! Our trim little sloop danced over the greenish-blue
between South Florida and the indigo blue of the Gulf Stream. Then she
turned sharply west and into a channel which divided two protecting islands.
A few minutes and we were in the smoother, crystal-clear waters of what
looked like an inland sea. It was Biscayne Bay.
We glanced across at the mainland shore, some three miles ahead.
North and South it stretched as far as eye could reach, an unbroken, curving,
low-lying mass of green. It was the "Bay Biscayne country" of old Spanish
maps, the "empty, island-bordered coast" of Ponce de Leon-"that great
domain of sun and sea and wondrous vital air." And now, nearly four
centuries later, thus it appeared to us.
Our captain blew three blasts on a huge conch shell. On closer approach
we discerned a little sailboat; the mouth of a river; some white trousers
hanging on a tree to dry; then the roof of a building. But what made us
tingle with excitement was to recognize those wide-plumed trees towering at
curious angles above the rest. Coconut palms, sure symbol of the tropic
shore we sought!
Too absorbed for words, we gazed upon this place, the one which
looked most likely after months of seeking and comparing. A far-down,
isolated little spot whose very name was in doubt, some sources giving Fort
Dallas, some Miami, others leaving it a blank! What after all did we know
beyond a few bare facts of its healthfulness and climate, its arresting posi-
tion on the map ? . Now such thoughts vanished. This was some other
world, new and alluring and very different; but one which spoke in silent
sureness of outstanding things to come.
THE NEW LAND
We landed at the south point of the river's mouth; my wife, our
small daughter( always called Bee) and myself. There to meet us was a
smiling, bare-headed, sun-tanned man in blue jeans and a shirt open-throated
to the February breeze. He was Hon. Frederick S. Morse, recently in the
State Legislature, with whom I had had some correspondence. Originally
from Boston but living here "because his health liked it", he was agent for
lands of the embryo Florida East Coast Canal Company.
"Just in time for breakfast" was his genial greeting . "Ever taste
a good ripe papaya?" He led us to his little "bachelor shack" close by.
"After that, we'll say how-do to the people around here, then take a little
sail down the Bay to a place for you to stay."
We had just sat down when, with a quizzical glance at our city faces, he
said, "There come some of the people now." Through the open door behind
us we saw a group of Seminole Indians, in brightly colored dress but of
stolid mien, landing from canoes with bundles of skins. "In from the
Everglades to sell their stuff at Brickell's," he told us, pointing to a sub-
stantial two-story frame building near by.
William B. Brickell was a man of the sturdy, adventurous type who had
traveled widely and made money in the Australian gold fields. Arriving in
1871, he had bought land, established this Indian Trading Post and lived
here with his family ever since, adding to his acreage from time to time.
They gave us a warm welcome coupled with curiosity. Visitors from the
North did not usually include women and children.
Next, we sailed (or paddled) across the river to the north shore. Here
was old Fort Dallas, a structure of native rock built in its original form as
an army post following the Seminole war of 1836-40. This, with the sur-
rounding land, had been purchased by Mrs. Julia D. Tuttle of Cleveland,
Ohio. Partly remodeled, it had been her permanent home since 1891. That
lady impressed us as a thoroughly capable business woman, one too who
knew how to be happy in the wilderness. Evidently glad to see new faces,
she was an almost unbelievable optimist as to the future of this chosen spot.
These two, old Fort Dallas on the north side of the river and the Indian
Trading Post on the other, were Miami's only two buildings. Each stood in
a fair-sized clearing with a few flowers and fruit trees and, of course, the
coconuts. Beyond that was dense jungle, merging further back into pine
forest almost as wild.
F. PAGE WILSON
Morse wanted me to see some large tropical fruit trees at an old settler's
place up the Miami river. The trip promised rough walking, however, and
the Tuttle ladies persuaded my wife to remain with them until our return.
Later when I saw the terrain, I was glad. It gave my wife a chance, too,
to hear about the country from the woman's point of view.
Miami (and the river) are said to have derived their name from the
Calusa Indian word "Mayaimi" meaning, some say "sweet water", others say
"Big Lake". Whatever the exact meaning of the name, the abundance of
fresh water at this point must have proved a boon to many a mariner
wrecked on the coral reef off-shore. It was to* be found also in springs on
shore and even in the middle of the salty Bay if one knew where to look.
The river's width and volume made it quite imposing. It was a surprise
then to learn that its sources, barely traceable in the vast expanse of Ever-
glades grass and water, were only half a dozen miles or so from its mouth.
Running toward the Bay in a south-easterly direction, the river reached the
coast ridge in two channels, the North and the South Fork. In the latter,
a stretch of protruding rock and boulders, partially damning the flow, was
known as the Miami Rapids.
The whole population of six was at the boat landing to see us off.
That was the last little oasis of human life before the void. The river,
quickly losing width, stretched before us like a curling, silver-grey ribbon
between green walls; an outer fringe of mangroves, then live-oak, gumbo
limbo, a lone mahogany. Occasionally we had a peep at some long-legged
bird, but this was not their time of day. We saw an alligator sleeping like
a log on shore and I thought I saw the snout of another unpleasantly near
our boat. We also saw that great cumbrous amphibian, the manatee or
sea-cow. But that was all.
The house at which we stopped, grey from sun and rain and half-hidden
in vines, was of the long, low type, mostly porch. The owner, whose name,
I think, was McNeill, was a tall lean man, brown as a nut but strong and
quick-stepping for his years. He led us over a very dubious "trail". We
edged in between clumps of tall palmetto, scrambled through lianas and
prickly vines, tore our shoes on jutting rock. But to see those trees was
worth it: mangos avocados, and two or three fruits still more tropical.
The mangos especially were a noble sight in full bloom. I thought of that
Garden of the Hesperides . "with tree following tree, flowering or
in fruit throughout the livelong year".
The old man, proud of his little grove, was full of plans for enlarging
it. Knowing the high value given these fruits by those familiar with them,
I asked if he had ever tried them in northern markets. "Shipping them?"
he laughed. "Many times. Trouble is to get them there before they rot
Oh well, transportation will come-some day".
Primarily, of course, our search was for the place and the climate
approaching most nearly our own desires. Still, wherever that might be,
it had to offer some fair promise for a living. I had always loved working
with trees. Hence the idea of some all-year outdoor land where, with small
stuff for immediate profit, we could make fruit trees the basis of a self-
supporting home. This poor looking soil of sand and rock could certainly
produce good trees. Many things had yet to be considered but I was almost
ready to believe that tropical fruit culture was the answer. A new industry
for the United States--and practically untried! But South Florida was
different-almost the only place in which it could even be tried.
Mrs. Trapp's boarding house was beautifully situated on a silvery-rock
bluff overlooking the Bay just above Coconut Grove. "Rough but we'll try
and make you feel at home," she said cheerily as she showed us to a room.
Her husband told us how, well past 70 and scarcely able to stand, he had
come here "just to die in the sunshine." Now, with his own hands he was
helping build a larger, two-story home of native rock. It was this family,
with the son Harlan, who developed and gave their name to a well-known
variety of avocado.
Morse was guiding us around outside when Mrs. Trapp emerged with
a tray of long, juicy drinks. We sat down under a big banyan. My wife
gave a little laugh as she said, "I'm trying to realize the change from what
we left a week ago. This sunshine and the blue, sparkling sea! And
sitting on a bench outdoors! I can hardly believe it even now."
Meantime, I'd been thinking. To "learn" this peculiar country in the
way it should be learned would take a lot of exploring. Better go slow
about settling on anything. I said as much to Morse.
He nodded vigorously. "That's the idea. You want to be dead sure
this is the place you really want. You know," he went on with the Morse
twinkle in his eye, "I'm glad to answer all those questions of yours-when
I can. But I can help best by helping you find answers for yourself. By
seeing places, hearing what people say on both sides. Isn't that so, Mrs.
"I guess so," she agreed. "Each one must do his own deciding. This
is a country you've got to like for itself. It can be pretty tough if you don't."
"What about you, Mrs. Trapp?" asked my wife with her woman's in-
stinct for concrete cases, "Do you really like it here?"
F. PAGE WILSON
"Like it!" she answered a little testily. "I love it . tho I couldn't
tell why. Certainly not for the money in it," she laughed.
On our way to see Morse off in his boat, a man turned from the road
toward Trapp's. "Hi! Colonel," cried Morse, "I'd like you to meet some new
arrivals anxious to size up what we've got here." Valentine, he explained,
was a surveyor and could tell us more about it than anybody.
"Great boy for the blarney, isn't he?" laughed the new-comer, as we
shook hands. "Well, any time you feel like roughing it, glad to take you
along." This, no doubt, was what Morse had in mind about meeting people.
I accompanied Valentine on several of his surveying trips. A couple of
times I held the chain when his assistant could not come. Searching for a
badly needed corner post could teach many things about a strange
The incident illustrates the friendly informality of the country. Every-
body I met was glad to help and my wife had the same experience with the
ladies. However, this was distinctly a "man's country". At the house, for
days together Mrs. Trapp was the only woman she saw.
The road referred to, between the bluff and the Bay, was the Indian Trail
through the jungle from Miami River to Coconut Grove. It was the nearest
approach to a real road in the entire region. In low spots, it was the favored
parade ground for regiments of the voracious, multi-colored, pop-eyed land
crab in search of a nice, newly planted tomato. Little Bee loved them if
nobody else did.
Another visitor at the house was introduced to us as the Duke of Ilade.
A picturesque and not unfitting title for the stalwart J. W. Ewan. He had
been superintendent of the Biscayne Bay Co's lands on Miami River up to the
time of their purchase by Mrs. Tuttle.
Morse drove up for us next morning in a sort of wide-wheel buggy cart
to take us over the Coconut Grove section. To reach the village, we ascended
-rare phenomenon in South Florida-a little hill. On the road along the
crest were some nice looking homes with a sweeping view of the Bay. Several
were of two stories and ornamented with the cupolas and scrolls favored at
that day. As to material, some were of mahogany or other wood found
afloat or on the beach; others of native Caribbean Pine heavy and hard to
work but astonishingly durable.
Among Grove buildings, I remember the Congregational Church, the
School, the Shone and Charles Peacock stores, and the Peacock Inn. It was
a little startling to note the enthusiasm with which the people here had gone
to work to get their great desire, a Public Library. But what stood out in our
minds was that this tiny settlement, a mere dot in hundreds of miles of
wilderness, without transportation, without what are called the necessaries
of life, should have drawn to itself so many noteworthy, or say, interesting
We came upon Ralph D. Munroe-the Commodore, as he was always
called, his blue eyes busy with a telescope in his beloved boathouse. A
naval architect from Staten Island, he had made this his permanent home
since 1888. His development of a light-weight, shoal-draft yet highly sea-
worthy vessel almost revolutionized sailboat design. Drawn to the Biscayne
Bay region by its ideal sailing conditions, he became interested also in pine-
apple canning, sponge fishing, mahogany from the Keys. But he loved it
too much to stand for any speculative over-painting of its advantages.
Long associated with the Commodore was Capt. Dick Carney, originally
one of an expedition to plant coconuts on the Beach. Also among the sea-
farers were Capt. Frow and Capt. Bravo. This reminds me of several other
sea captains living up or down the coast. Perhaps under the spell of voyages
in tropic seas, they could think of no better spot for retirement than this near
approach in their own country. Of the people in general, many were from
various parts of Florida but other states were well represented. We also
noted a good many English. Some were up-State orange growers migrating
further south: some, like the Peacocks, direct from the old country; others
from the Bahamas or Keys and locally known as Conchs.
Coconut Grove had its attraction, too for authors and artists. Kirk
Munroe, famous author of tales about the Coral Reef, the Everglades and
Keys, lived here many years. His wife was a daughter of Amelia Barr, the
well known novelist, and she too, I think, was a sometime resident. We heard
of more than one noted painter roughing it in the attempt to snatch the
brilliant coloring of local skies and waters. Earlier history tells of geologists
like Agassiz, of the bird lover Audubon, studying nature here in phases seen
After lunch at the Peacock Inn (shall we ever forget that delicious green-
turtle soup?), we made for the piney woods. The "road" soon petered out
into a sandy, bumpy trail over palmettoes, rock and roots. Now and then
we would come to the dwelling of some lone homesteader with its little clear-
ing and a few trees.
It was easy to see why those clearings were mostly small. First, the pine
trees had to be cut down and burned; then a tough, interlacing mat of
F. PAGE WILSON
palmettoes hacked out, one by one. This still left a mass of scrub oak,
myrtle and other stuff to be rooted out from a rocky bed. It was inch-by-inch,
hard work and all with hand tools. What a difference, I thought, between
the homesteader here and his brother on the western plains. There, in little
more time than it took to break one acre here, he could plow a hundred; then
look forward in three or four months to a bonanza crop. Something more
subtle must have been the incentive here.
In places, the monotony of the dull-green pine and palmetto was broken
by a spur of low glade or prairie. Here the soil, instead of sand and rock,
was of marl or sometimes sandy loam. It looked moister and more fertile,
though I saw none of it in use.
Ahead of us now we saw a large clearing with a nice bungalow and
thrifty young grapefruit trees. "John Ellis's homestead," Morse told us.
"He wants me to look over some hammock land with him in next section.
You'll like to see it, too."
Ellis, an experienced grower from Orange county, looked more like a
city business executive than a farmer. My wife was soon deep in talk with
Mrs. Ellis about homestead housekeeping, the insect plague in summer and
so forth. She agreed to stay with her and the children while we men tackled
the hammock. That, they told us, was the Florida name for jungle and a
pretty stiff proposition.
Jungle it was; an almost impenetrable wall of many kinds of hardwood
trees peculiar to the tropics. With axe and machete we cut a little
path toward the center. Here the trees grew larger, the soil more full of
humus from cycles of decaying leaves, nature ever more demanding. For
every space was filled; the ground with ferns and diverse shrubs; the trunks
of trees with epithytic ferns; the branches with orchids and a hundred air-
plants. A sort of three-story garden!
The hammock opened on one side to the Everglades. Ellis cast a
thoughtful eye over that vast expanse of watery saw-grass dotted in the
distance with little tree-embowered islands. Then he said, "It isn't just the
mystery, it's the immensity. And that long neck of land across the Bay, the
miles and miles of solitary Keys! To say nothing of the piney woods! This
country will surely have a host of how's and why's to settle for itself."
LEMON CITY AND NORTH
Our next long trip with Morse was northward. After a mile or so we
;topped to see William Oxer, an old-timer who had several kinds of citrus and
tropical fruit trees. He had such an abiding love for a certain spot under
a group of cocopalms overlooking Biscayne Bay that it was there he wanted,
very insistently, to be buried when he died.
As in other instances, I noted here that orange trees looked less thrifty
than either grapefruit or limes. My own preference, however, was still for
the more tropical fruits. Not only did they seem to be well adapted to this
soil, but climatic needs restricted them to a much smaller area in the entire
country than was the case with citrus.
Oxer had a little patch of tomatoes, green beans and other tender stuff.
Here, as elsewhere, I looked carefully for any sign of the great freeze which
had devastated most of Florida so recently. I saw none. However, had
crops then been planted on low land far back from the Bay, the story might
have been different.
Buena Vista, facing the Bay some two miles further up, was the site of
one of the more commodious homes, that of the Merritts-Pete and Z. T. and
their sisters Ada and Nan. Ada was principal of Lemon City School and
Z. T. county school superintendent for years.
Lemon City was our next stop. About as far north of Miami River as
Coconut Grove was south, it was the only other settlement of any size this
side of Palm Beach. The name is said to have been derived from proximity
to the Filer lemon grove, though this was really nearer Buena Vista. Among
the buildings were the Methodist Church, the School, Connolly's Hotel and
a number of residences.
There was also a Post Office. Until quite recently, mail for points on
Biscayne Bay had been brought by a carrier walking barefoot down the
Beach from Lake Worth, sixty-odd miles North. Some in Coconut Grove still
had their mail dropped by passing steamship.
Lemon City's main street contained D. R. Knight's general store, two or
three smaller ones, a barber shop and a saloon. It continued to the Bay where
there was a warehouse operated by L. W. Pierce, also a long wharf. A small
schooner ran between here and Key West. There, if tomato shippers were
lucky, it connected with the Mallory steamers for New York.
We sat on a sunny, breeze-cooled rail to watch the pelicans on top of
some sea-bitten old piles. Little Bee wanted to know why they looked so sad.
Why indeed, when each one enjoyed a throne to itself and, only a splash
below, all the fish it could catch? From a boat just in from the Bahamas
came laughter and the soft, broad accents of the colored sailors. They
unloaded a few baskets of early pineapples and the captain picked out for us
a couple of full ripes.
F. PAGE WILSON
As we sat and ate, James L. Nugent and Count Jean d'H6douville stepped
up from their boat and Morse made us acquainted. Of these two, a good
story is told. Belonging to highly placed families in Europe, cultured and
widely traveled, they had been close friends over there for years. Then
Nugent, on a supposedly brief visit to America, had-so far as his family
knew-become lost in the wilds of South Florida. To appease anxiety,
d'Hedouville came in search. He found him but, by this time, both liked it
here so well that they decided to stay. Nugent made several trips to Central
America looking for finer types of mango. He was now, with Charles F.
Siebold, planting a grove at Snapper Creek. D'H6douville acquired a large
tract on the Bay at Buena Vista.
Away from the dock, signs of town soon dwindled. A couple of miles
north, we came to a sizeable stream called Little River and turned inland.
Among the scattered settlers, I remember George and R. F. Potter, the Soar
Brothers and Bill Mattair; all with nice little homes and fruit trees.
A REVOLUTIONARY CROP
"Now," said Morse, "we're coming to a crop of tomatoes I want you to
see. If it isn't a fluke-and I don't see how it can be-it's going to change
this whole country. Notice the soil. Marl prairie. No rock. Easy to plow.
Dozens of attempts to farm these prairies have failed-until this." A spare,
thoughtful looking man now joined us and Morse, when he had introduced us,
said, "Freeman, it's just too wonderful to be true. How're you coming out,
if I may ask?"
"Not too bad. Lost some on the way North, but prices are away up and
plenty more to pick." I was wondering why this prairie experience should
be so different from the others when Freeman explained, "Just dropped a bit
of wet stable manure on the roots at planting. Not for fertilizer, only to get
them started. These prairies, you know, are under water all summer. Takes
the life out of them."
That was it, I supposed, and the manure re-started the bacterial action.
Be this as it might, word of that prairie crop and the mid-winter prices-
together with the freeze in the orange belt-was already bringing new-comers
to see this safer region. It was the beginning of the first little boom-
SOME MORE EXPLORING
In between these excursions with Morse, I made some alone or with
others. A man whom I met casually in Coconut Grove took me in his sailboat
two or three miles north of Lemon City to see George Ihle. A retired Navy
man, he was a veritable wizard in making things grow in white sand. Quite
early he had discovered that farming here was like farming nowhere else.
Many a good hint he gave me.
Among explorations which I made alone was one which nearly had an
unpleasant ending. It was in the wild area a few miles south of Coconut
Grove, known to the Indians as the Big Hunting Grounds.
It was here the U. S. Government had granted Dr. Henry Perrine a town-
ship on which to carry out his long thought out plans for a tropical farming
colony. He had already introduced several plants and trees from Yucatan
and other countries, descendants of which still exist. Because of the Seminole
War, however, he made temporary headquarters on Indian Key and established
there a large nursery. Then came the Indian attack on that island, not by the
Seminoles but by a remnant of the Calusas, former inhabitants of the lower
peninsula. The Doctor was killed, the house burned and his family escaped
only by hiding in a turtle crawl beneath the wharf.
Thus ended in tragedy a cherished dream which, placing less emphasis
on high-priced perishables, might have changed the whole course of South
My opportunity to see this district had come through a fellow-boarder.
He invited me to take a sail down the Bay to visit his old friend John Addison
at a spot recently re-named Cutler. After admiring the famous Addison
mangos, I had left the friends together and wandered off into the back-
country, arranging to return in time for dinner at 1 o'clock.
It was typical good-class piney woods. Here and there was a tongue of
low wet land which I either crossed or rounded. After a couple of hours of
hard but pleasant tramping in the crisp bright air, I turned back. Traveling
at least as far in the new direction, I came to an unfamiliar glade. That is,
from its size and shape, I was sure I had not seen it on the way out. The
water was deep, I saw moccasins and tried to get around it. But the further
I walked, the bigger it looked.
Meantime, the sunshine had given place to heavy overcast and I had
failed to bring my compass. Addison and the coast lay somewhere to the
East, but where was East? Really worried now, I could only continue
walking-on feet becoming sorer every moment from wet shoes.
Hungry, thirsty, I was wondering how it would feel to spend the night in
these woods when I saw a wisp of smoke. Hurrying, I came to a tent and,
two or three yards away, a man who was stirring something in a pot over
a makeshift fire-place. "Lucky you ran into me," he said, when I told of my
F. PAGE WILSON
plight. "Addison isn't far"-he pointed sideways-"but that way you were
going, there isn't a living soul this side of the jumping-off place. I'll see you
get to your friends all right. First, though, let's eat. You must be famished."
But I was not too famished to wonder a little about my rescuer. After
telling me his name was Sheldon, "You see," he explained, "I've been a shut-in
all my life. School teacher, up in Iowa. Just doing now what I've always
longed to do. Get out into the open, live with nature, be man enough to feed
myself. Well, it works all right. These sweet potatoes are from my little
patch yonder. And this tail of young alligator-well, I caught him in the
glade last night."
Another time, I looked over the homesteads northwest of Miami. Here
the S. A. Belcher family had two or three adjoining claims, later the site
of one of the largest groves. Here, too, near the river, was the Wagner place
with its two acres of orange grove, probably the largest in the region. In
1855, when the first William Wagner settled on that land, the Seminoles were
again on the war-path. A pioneer indeed!
Reaching home, I found visitors-John Ellis, whom I had met at his
homestead, and H. Price-Williams. They were two of a small group buying
a tract on the Miami River, and it had occurred to Ellis that we might like
to join. The offer was tempting, as I found on looking it over a day or two
later. However, the group or colony idea never did appeal to me. Besides,
land at $100 per acre looked rather steep for that place and age-certainly
too steep for my pocket. Later it became a millionaire's estate and, after
that, a subdivision built up with high-class homes.
WE SETTLE DOWN
Our purchase of a 25-acre tract was prompted by three facts: the soil
looked good and was of more than one type, including muck and hammock;
it lay prettily with a high spot for the house and a gentle slope back to the
Glades; there were several settlers, some with families, within a few miles.
It was west of Little River, near a spot later given a Post Office under
the name of Biscayne. Here, Mrs. Tuttle's father, E. T. Sturtevant, long
acquainted with the country, and his son Wheeler, had taken up homesteads.
Her daughter Fanny had another not far off, part in oranges under the care
of Jack Toms, a young English planter from up-State. These 160-acre "toss-
ups" with Uncle Sam were evidently considered good enough by some.
Faced now with the problem of building a house, I realized how little
I knew about it. The plan would need be of the simplest: just a living room,
bedroom, kitchen with out-door extension for pump, washing, etc. and, of
course, a porch. Lumber presented no difficulty. A saw-mill near Lemon
City was selling native pine at $10 per thousand. For foundation, I would
cut 2 ft. pine logs. Glass being unobtainable, the windows would need
As helper, I was lucky in getting a sturdy young fellow named Charlie,
of the sort able and willing to turn his hand to anything. We arranged, for
the building period, to sleep in a neighbor's shack, my wife and Bee staying
The house was half up when we had two very pleasant visitors, Mr. and
Mrs. Fino Soop, who lived two miles west. "Just to get acquainted and see if
there's anything we can do," he told me. Noticing his rather intent look on
the walls, I instantly felt foolish. We had nailed the sheathing on the inside
instead of outside of the frame. But he only murmured, "Kind of Swiss
chalet effect, eh!" and turned away. So I said nothing, though I did confess
later. Tolerance, I found, was quite a trait of these pioneers. Relying on
their own ideas, they did not question another's right to do the same.
When they had gone, I asked Charlie what he thought about that way of
putting on the sheathing. "Oh," said he, "I thought where you came from,
maybe they did it that way." I laughed and asked him where he was from.
"Born in Marion County, Florida" he told me, "but when father died, I went
north with mother . The snow was real pretty. But-well, the trees had no
leaves. I could never get used to that." Further prompting brought out that
he had come down here because his father had always wanted to. He managed
to make a living by 'gator hunting, trapping and odd jobs.
Bright and early next morning, Soop came again, with a friend. "Thought
you could do with extra hands on that roof," he explained. They put in a long
day's work and, at the end, I said something about payment. But they
wouldn't hear of it. "Some day," laughed Soop, "one of us may need a new
The water problem was solved with surprising ease. All we had to do
was to file teeth at the end of a 15 ft. length of galvanized pipe, jerk it up and
down thru the porous rock with occasional shaking to empty, then attach to
the top a kitchen pump. A few minutes of hard pumping and the water issued
clear and sparkling.
Digging at the edge of the Glades, I unearthed a pocket of yellow-brown,
powdery stuff which looked and felt like ochre. Most houses in these parts
seemed to get along without paint, but the garishly new look of ours was a
F. PAGE WILSON
constant irritant. So, mixing the ochre with the most likely looking oil I
could get and with kerosene for turpentine, I started to paint the house. The
front was nearly finished when the ochre ran out and I hurried to the "mine"
for more. But alas! though I dug in several places, all I could find was
barely enough to cover the front wall.
The building was now finished and I drove to town to meet my wife and
get furniture. The shock came when we learned that nobody had any. At last,
rather than face the vague delays of shipment from the North, we decided to
make our own. So we loaded up with such things as we could get: coal-oil
stove, pots and pans, some sheeting and sail-cloth, a whole bolt of netting for
mosquito bars and screens, also some old barrels and boxes. That night we
slept on sheets and under bars, but on the floor.
In the morning, all hands turned to furniture making. Nice round
hardwood branches from the jungle made legs for chairs and tables. Mat-
tresses we stuffed with shredded palmetto leaves, pillows with pine straw.
Sugar-barrels, cut down and covered with sail-cloth, dyed with tea, became
easy chairs; and the same stuff, corded at the four corners, made tempting
hammocks. Last, to relieve the backwoods bareness, my wife fixed up the
windows with pretty colored curtains.
Then she joined me and we gave an appraising look around; at the house
and "furnishings;" at the enfolding forest in which our clearing was such
a tiny gash; next, a little dubiously, at one another. The simple life. Well,
this was what we had come for-even if a little on the rugged side!
We had been in the house three weeks. On a couple of acres Charlie and
I had felled and burned the heavy timber. Now, with him gone, I settled
down with my trusty mattock to tackle the rock, palmettoes and other wild
Some believe that the highest civilizations are apt to rise upon a lime
foundation. If so, this region should be near the top; practically all parts
underlaid, at verying depths, with a porous, coral-like limestone rock. So far
as could be seen, it had but little bad effect on properly planted trees. The
roots made their way thru and it helped to retain moisture.
At or near the surface, however, it had to be grubbed out, adding greatly
to the labor of clearing. There was also the question of its disposal. Still, I
confess to a kindly feeling for this distinctive native rock. A boundary wall
which I had seen in Coconut Grove, its shell-pocked, oddly shaped pieces
weathered into mellow colorings, had reminded me of historic spots in Italy.
I would make similar use of ours.
OUR PIONEER NEIGHBORS
Coming from the city, we found the helpfulness of neighbors almost
startling. A woman walked two miles through the woods to bring my wife
a handy sort of cornbread; brought the ingredients, too, and taught her how
to make it. Many offered plants and cuttings so soon as we were ready.
Occasionally, one would come some distance with a mess of fish to share the
reward of his day's sport.
Among these neighbors were the Soops, mentioned before; he tall and
rugged, she the reverse, but both good sports with a ready smile. His father,
owning large hotels in Michigan, had expected him as a young man to stay
in the business. Craving something less humdrum, however, he had joined
in the Cripple Creek silver rush. Finally, after many ups and downs, he had
settled here as a planter and enthusiast for the South Florida way of life.
Others were the Douthits: the strong, agile old man, tobacco planter from
the Tarheel State and veteran of the redoubtable Stonewall Jackson brigade;
his three sons and two comely daughters; all real pioneers with roots deep-
planted in this old new land. The younger girl, just as graceful with a gun
as in a dance, opened the door one morning to spy a startled, fleeing deer.
She got it.
Then came Mrs. Pomeroy, a lone widow so wise with trees and chickens,
the legend said, that they answered to her call. She spied books; without a
word, pounced on them for a closer look. Then, out of dark, hawk-like eyes
in a deeply lined, leathery face, she searched my inmost being.
To break the spell, I murmured, "If there are any you'd like to read-"
"Thanks. I've got 'em," she replied, pointing to a little heap. Enigma.
Beyond that, she loved snuff and analytic novels, made an exquisite wine from
papayas, could talk deep wisdom in fine English but usually chose the worst.
Later, by a turn in this lady's family fortunes, the chance was given her
to return north and live in comparative luxury. Hers was a hard and lonely
life and everybody wondered what her choice would be. After weeks, a friend
asked her. "What!" she snapped. "Did you think I'd give up all this and
go back there?"
An irregular visitor at pioneer homes was one who carried the gospel
throughout that hundred miles of sparsely settled coast. Constantly on the go
but stopping off here and there wherever there was promise of half-a-dozen
for a church service, he was called the Peripatetic Parson. An earnest, norm-
ally good-tempered young man, he was apt to fume into hot argument at any
F. PAGE WILSON
reference to Darwin or his theories. Some of us, I am afraid, used to mention
them just for a little excitement.
One dark side of pioneer life was the food. It was terrible. No fresh
milk, no meat except "embalmed" beef out of cans or the atrocity they called
sow belly. Now and then when something happened to the schooner, even
these were missing and we had no coal-oil for light or fuel. A welcome
change from store food was when we caught a gopher, a small burrowing land
turtle. Or, occasionally, Indians stopped by with venison, always giving twice
as much as called for by the price. Later on, of course, with chickens, garden
produce and a little time for hunting and fishing, we fared better.
The absence of mocking birds was a disappointment. Then somebody
told us they liked human company and would come when they knew about us.
They surely did, sometimes singing us awake in the small hours. This reminds
me of the old saying: that Florida birds don't sing; its flowers have no scent;
its bees, having no incentive to store honey, are too lazy to gather it. Over-
generalizing seems to come quite easy to critics in this State.
Like other places, Florida has birds that sing and some that do not. And
so with flowers. Among the more odoriferous are the fragipanni, the oleander
and, among a dozen jasmines, one which throws scent enough to fill a forty-
acre field. As to the charge of laziness against its bees, this proved to be as
baseless as the others. We saw them working on orange and palmetto just
as hard as they ever did on apple. Then, in cutting down an old tree, I found
a large cavity brimful of wild honey. If further proof were needed, it came
later from a nationally known apiculturist. So persistent, he declared, was
the Florida insect through a long and busy season that it was apt to wear out
its wings and die!
THE GOLDEN STRAND
We had long wanted to see the Beach. Now we seized the chance for a
camping trip with the Soops, crossing the Bay in Capt. Fulford's boat. The
latter, keeper of the House of Refuge for wrecked mariners, the only building
there, had a homestead a few miles north in a place called Fulford from
It was a perfect day for a sail. We caught a few fish and, to Bee's great
joy, one jumped on to her feet in the boat. On the eastern shore was a for-
bidding barrier, fortunately at this point of no great width. Mangroves. Not
the straight tall trees of 60 to 75 feet like those at Little River, but a variety
whose roots and branches-one knew not which was which-crossed and criss-
crossed in and out of a black oozy mire. With luck and the aid of planks
thoughtfully pre-placed by Fulford, we got safely over.
Then over a waste of deep sand and palmettoes, we caught sight of the
ocean. One glimpse was enough to thrill. It was the same ocean as that a
thousand miles north, yet how different! "Aye," said the Captain, his sea-
blue eyes beaming as he saw our rapt look. "Some day we Americans will
realize what we possess in this little corner of the tropics. Even if it IS a long
way from what New Yorkers like to call the center."
"But nearer by that much to South America," I reminded him. "Some
day, that may be the part that's important."
The rest of the morning we spent in and out of the ocean. After lunch
and another swim, Soop and I walked down the Beach. He told me of a
place called Crocodile Pool from the number of those animals there. This
was part of the waterway afterwards developed into Indian Creek, Miami
"More likely 'gators, aren't they?" I asked skeptically. These were an
old story. We had seen them in the river, heard them bellowing in the Glade
"Not from what they say," returned Soop, "and I've a good notion where
it is." So we continued south along the water's edge until, on the right, we
saw trees and thick bush. There we turned and at last scrambled through to
It was a sinister, rather ghostly looking spot, dark with palms and oak
in a tangle of lianas. And there, sure enough, were the greenish, narrow-
snouted crocodiles, one lying on the bank, several just visible in the water.
A short look was enough, but we received a shock as we turned to go.
A terrific scream as of a woman in mortal agony, a sudden sound of rushing
and we caught a glimpse within a few feet of us, of a big, tawny, fierce look-
ing creature as it leaped from branch to branch. It was a panther.
That evening the moon was near to full and we joined two young men
from the mainland in a hunt for turtle. Provided with long poles, we searched
the Beach for tracks. Our first find was a nest containing well over a hundred
of the round, soft-shelled eggs and we stole a couple of dozen. Then we had
real luck: a loggerhead which must have weighed well over 300 pounds. After
plenty of excitement, we turned her over and our friends were kind enough
(to us) to do the killing.
THE TROPIC SUMMER
The rainy season had now started. Not that it rained all the time or
even every day; but that, when it did, it was apt to fall in torrents. A day
F. PAGE WILSON
typical of many might start with sunshine and a clear or partially clear sky;
followed in the afternoon by a banking of dark clouds, a strong, cool puff of
wind, then a grey curtain of downpour as it came marching through the
woods. In an hour, perhaps a few minutes, the sun again would be shining.
There might be two or three such days of rain, then two or three with little
And then came the mosquitoes! These had been worrisome enough for
weeks, but chiefly at night. Now they came in millions, day and night, and
many in the house. Venture out and, in an instant, hands and face would be
black and stinging. I tried to work outdoors, my hands in gloves, head and
shoulders sheathed in netting. They got me just the same. The only protection
was to light a smudge to windward. This first real blitz lasted into the fourth
day when a stiff blow from the East brought relief.
Other summer foes were the horse-and deer-flies. Horses or mules, unless
smeared with a compound of tar and axle grease, would be covered with little
blotches of blood. Nor were these flies averse to human prey. Ants and
roaches, too, were a constant trouble until my wife learned ways to control
them. Snakes? Yes, plenty of them, but not more so, I suppose, than in
other places equally wild. One learned automatically to avoid them.
How did pioneers like the summer? The answer calls for a sharp line
drawn between summer and the insect scourge which accompanied it. Toward
the season's end, most of us, I think, felt it had been more than long enough.
However, I liked the constant warmth, as free from extremes of heat as from
sudden change. After all, temperatures in the three hottest months averaged
barely 13 deg. F. higher than in the three coolest months of winter. I even
liked the way of the rain in quick and heavy showers that meant something.
Above all, I loved that inimitable cooling touch of the trade-wind on a sun-
As to the mosquitoes, they could have turned Heaven itself into the other
place. With ironical smiles we talked of our ideal outdoor land. However,
like our fellow pioneers, we learned to stress the future. Some day, with the
country filled with people, the swamps would be drained and the mosquitoes
vanish. Between blitzes, we tried to forget them-and nearly did.
Neither blazing sun nor tropic downpour had for us the terrors we had
read about. Never in my life had I felt so super-well nor so able to endure
long hours of the hardest kind of work. Little Bee was growing big and
strong, without any of the usual child disorders. My wife's only real com-
plaint was at the way we all perspired.
The prevailing good health was fortunate for there was no doctor within
miles. Even malaria, that common scourge of the tropics (and elsewhere),
was unknown. All this had given rise to a sort of superstition that people
here did not die, but simply dried up with age and blew away.
However, there was one funeral, simple yet so impressive that it will
always be remembered. A young man, visiting relatives at their homestead,
died of tuberculosis. The burial was to take place on the property in the eve-
ning, and neighbors from miles around had gathered at the spot. Word passed
that an uncle would be quite late in arriving. And then, as we waited under
a full moon, in silence except for little creatures in the pine trees, there fell
the solemn notes of a cornet with "Nearer, my God, to Thee."
AN EARLY DESPERADO
Here and there in that scattered community were a few "undesirables."
Even so and with doors seldom locked, petty thievery was rare and crime
practically unknown. A notable exception was the case of Sam Lewis, a man
of violent temper who had drifted in from a western state. Quarreling with
two men in a Lemon City drinking place, he had gone home for his gun, way-
laid and killed them both, then skipped to the Bahamas.
One morning when I was working back of the hammock and had brought
my gun on chance of quail, Deputy Sheriff Jim Hubell called at the house.
Telling my wife that Lewis had returned and was supposed to be in that
neighborhood, he casually asked for me. Instantly she divined his purpose.
More loyal to me, I am afraid, than to the community, she replied. "Well, he
went out to get something for dinner but he's such a poor shot"-Jim left to
pick up his posse elsewhere.
Lewis, was located and, refusing to surrender, was shot in the leg. He
fell, groaning, and a young fellow on the posse-the one who had wounded
him--stepped over to lift him to a less painful position. But, in that very
act, the injured man pulled a gun and shot him dead. The Sheriff's men
lodged the desperado in the little jail at Juno, then county seat, north of Palm
Beach. Fearful of his escape, however, another group quickly followed, took
him out, hanged him on a pole and riddled the body with bullets.
The summer passed, with but little of the monotony which might have
been expected. There were too many things to do, too many to find out. The
mosquitoes continued on and off. But in September, it was one blitz after
another and the rains more continuous. To make up for lost time, by grace
of breeze and moon-light I worked sometimes at night. Once, I remember,
F. PAGE WILSON
my hoe unearthed a strange bundle. Nothing historic, but simply some dis-
gracefully old work-clothes which my wife, tired of admonishing me, had
tried to put out of sight forever,
New settlers continued to straggle in. Some had children and began to
worry over lack of school facilities. Meetings were held, petitions signed and
sent. There may have been a little stretching of ages to include the right
number of pupils, but our district did get its school and the writer was
Among the newcomers was a good old Floridian family from Sumter
County named Peters. I remember their arrival in a covered wagon like a
prairie schooner of the old West, along with a barrel of flour, a bag or two of
fertilizer and miscellaneous farm and household goods. I remember too, how
Will Peters, in his kindly way, volunteered to teach me how to plow a "com-
paratively reckless" bit of pineland. I learned in a way, he doing most of the
work. But that kind of land was newer to him even than to me. I rather
think that, inwardly, he agreed with my own feeling that a good grub-hoe is
sometimes better than a bull-tongue.
The Peters boys were wonderful farmers. Moreover, they were quick to
overcome the difficulties peculiar to this section. From a small start the fol-
lowing winter, increasing their crops year by year, they soon became known
as the largest growers of mid-winter tomatoes the world had ever known.
THE TROPIC WINTER
Winter stole upon us so gradually we scarcely realized it had arrived.
The days were mostly bright and dry and my work made good progress. An
occasional dip of the thermometer into the 40's overnight would leave a
chilly feeling in the house next day. We learned how quickly it could be
warmed by wide opening of doors and windows to the outside air.
By this time we had settled down to our new mode of life. Hard in some
ways, it had compensating joys. My wife, lacking facilities for good house-
keeping, yet delighted in certain features of it. There was no dust, no soot,
no mud even after heavy rain; clothes and curtains remained clean so long.
We enjoyed the escape from furnaces and heavy clothing; the glorious sense
of freedom which this brought.
Sometimes we compared the people of this wilderness with those typical
of cities. We agreed on the high percentage of real "individuals" here, even
among the less educated. Naturally, we had had to make some mental
readjustments-but not all to the debit of the pioneers. There were some
One Sunday afternoon we had gone for a tramp through the woods.
Little Bee, as usual when she was not trying to climb a tree, was ahead and
now we saw her stop. A man, kneeling on the ground, was showing her a
flower he had just dug up. He looked rather rough, untidy with an embryo
beard, yet had a pleasant, highly intelligent, Irish sort of voice. I said, "You
must be the Harvard professor we've heard about."
He laughed, shook his head in modest disclaimer. "I did graduate there
but that was twenty years ago. My only professorship was at a small Ohio
college. Natural history. Come up to the house. I'd love to show you
what I've got."
The house was a log cabin thatched with palmetto and scrupulously
neat and clean. In a corner were several plants but his main record was
evidently through photographs; they covered the walls. On a shelf were some
fine specimens of the beautiful tree-snail. "Had no idea they existed this side
of the West Indies. That's enough in itself to prove what I've always said
about staying in a rut. There I was, in a dusty class-room, talking and teach-
ing what we've known for a hundred years. Here, with thousands of varieties,
hardly anyone knows a thing about them. What a chance to work in the open,
in a new fascinating field." He stopped, then finished quickly, "Well, that's
why I'm here."
We were about to leave when he said, "No, no, this is tea-time. Always
have it myself and I'd love to play host to the lady-to you people." Apart
from his beloved specimens, he seemed quite shy. In a minute, he had the
table laid with nice, white cover, cups and saucers from no local store. Sud-
denly he looked troubled but, after a little hesitation, slipped over to a trunk
in the corner. We heard a subdued sound of tearing cloth. Another moment
and he had added to the tea-table four snow-white, even if unhemmed
THE MYSTERIOUS GLADES
So far our only knowledge of the Everglades had been of the edge. Now
we joined a party to penetrate into its nearer vastness in Indian dug-outs.
Made of cypress and propelled by poling, one belonged to Soop who, living
at the edge of the Glades, near a water trail which led to Miami river, thus had
transportation to the Bay. The other was the prized possession of Tommy
Harp, reputed to be the one and only white man who knew the Everglades as
the Indians did. Besides him and the Soops, we had with us a Dr. Nichols, a
retired but very active-minded ship doctor from Connecticut. He was visiting
Coconut Grove in a friend's yacht, on a search for palms, his hobby.
F. PAGE WILSON
It was a world of sun and sky and infinite distance; of keen-teethed saw-
grass 2 to 4 or even 6 feet tall; of clear, sparkling, breeze-rippled water in
slow but constant motion toward the sea. Nothing more unlike the miasmic
swamp of popular fancy could be imagined.
I cannot tell where we went or even the direction. It was like trying to
follow the intricate paths of a spider's web. Often we would glide over open
water lined by giant bullrushes and full of fish and lilies. A dozen times,
poling our way through tortuous trails in the sawgrass, we would come to
what seemed to be the end. Then a sudden twist and the way would be clear
for another spell.
We stopped at a little hammock island in the sawgrass. Here, surrounded
by old cornstalks, pumpkin vines and bananas, was a temporarily abandoned
chickee, the palm-thatched, open-wall house of the Indians. Harp had in-
duced them to let us use it for the night. In an hour we caught fish enough
for twice the crowd, cooked and ate it, then sat around the lingering fire.
Dr. Nicols, who had been telling us of his travels in tropic waters, broke
off to say, "You'll be having me for a neighbor soon. I'm buying that little
Williams place near Little River. You know-that old fellow who's always
grouching against the country?" At our reminiscent smile, he went on,
"What's the good of raising palms inside when you can do it so much better
in the open? . Or humans either? Climate is something which goes far
deeper than mere warmth."
"Yes indeed," observed Mrs. Soop, "but I wish we could get our friends
up North to believe it." She laughed as at some recollection.
"Oh, they will," put in the Doctor. "More and more they'll get sick of
all the wasted effort involved in that long dead season. They'll come troop-
ing by the thousands to the tropics or, at least, the sunnier portions of their
own country. That idea of theirs about the health and vigor of zero weather
is a joke. Notice how they rush to light their fires at the slightest cold?"
Tommy Harp, a man of about 50, spare but strong and lissom as the
wild creatures he hunted, joined in with a quiet chuckle. "Always thought
those old actinic rays would get Doc to Florida for keeps some day. Joking
aside, what he says is all so. At least, it's what I acted on myself thirty years
ago. Couldn't stand that shut-in feeling." Then he told us of his grove at
Fulford, of wild adventures in the farthest Everglades in search of plume
birds. Until, as he reminded us, it was time to get some sleep in readiness
for a long, roundabout journey home tomorrow.
But, as we retired to the chicken and our mosquito bars, I was thinking
more of certain traits in the man himself. Something similar I had noted in
other old-timers in long close touch with nature in the raw. From a bubble
in the water, the color or the bendings of the blades of grass, from signs
unnoted except by him, he would draw the right conclusion. The soundness
of his judgment was apt to be equally striking in other matters. Like nature
herself, he refused to be side-tracked by the merely plausible but, reaching
for the crucial point, decided then and thus.
The above rough sketch of the Everglades applied to some two million
acres of it. Further North, toward Lake Okeechobee, the deep black soil
grew a thick bush of custard apples. Away South and toward the Gulf, the
picture merged into something more like those in the old geographies: the
great buttressed trees of the hammocks; giant birds; mangrove swamps, saw-
grass swamps, cypress swamps; all in a confusing maze of winding tidal
creeks; a chaos of land and water so involved that one knew not where each
began or ended. Like a world in veritable process of creation.
Christmas drew near. Some of the pioneers, those born amidst ice and
snow, were naive (or forgetful!) enough to imagine something lacking in any
celebration of the great day in a land of sun and palms. Two great-hearted
neighbors, Captain and Mrs. Felix C. Brossier did their best to make them
forget all that. They invited one and all to a real old-fashioned Xmas dinner
with wild turkey and all the fixings.
The guests, as a return surprise, arranged to turn out for once in
"civilized" garb. Many an old mothballed trunk was opened for the first
time in years. The ladies, instead of cotton blouses and wide-brim palmetto
hats, wore silks and bows and funny looking pieces on their heads. The men
threw aside their jeans and leggings and appeared in city suits. One even
sported a silk top hat. It was a great party!
Through Morse, I met Joe Higgins who grew pineapples on Elliott Key.
As I planned to set out a good-sized patch and would need plants, I arranged
a trip with him. It would have been worthwhile if only for the incredibly
beautfiul colors of the waters through which we passed. The Keys them-
selves were largely in dense tropical forest. I saw mahogany trees up to 3 ft.
through. Clearings were a revelation in rough and rocky agriculture. The
scanty soil, most of it in crevices between the rocks, must have been fertile,
for pineapples, tomatoes, even lime and sapadillo trees, all looked flour-
F. PAGE WILSON
Until now, the only Key I had seen was Biscayne, with its historic light-
house at Cape Florida, across the Bay from Coconut Grove. This visit and
others further South enlarged my outlook on the region as a whole. I had
seen something of all its main divisions: the piney woods, the ocean beach,
the Everglades, and now the Keys. It was like an immense empty scroll of
parchment, open for the writing sure to come.
We had to admit, despite some advantages in the country's flatness, that
we missed the scenic variety of hill and dale. True, there was the expansive
beauty of the Everglades, of the tropic ocean. There were also entrancing
spots: grouped cocopalms overlooking water under the full light of moon;
a hedge of pink oleanders against the blue of a sunlit Bay; a creek passing
through a fern-clad, rocky gorge under a canopy of leaning trees. Even in
the piney woods, longer observation brought a wealth of flowers and other
plants, interesting if not always showy. And often toward sundown, the
mellow, golden light permeating every stick and crevice made even the forest
mass look lovely.
Still, if we wanted a little Garden of Eden to live in we would have to
make it for ourselves. And nature was wonderfully responsive to man's
efforts. It was this quick response, I suppose, which lured the pioneers on,
despite a rough, poor soil. But, while nature was so helpful, the wise ones
discovered it was just as well to let her have the final say.
Our farming experience here, though short, had included many trials
and tribulations. Now, however, we began to see reward for our work in the
fine growth of vines and ornamentals around the house. Fruit trees in the
grove were also doing well. Thanks to a climate which allowed transplanting
at almost any size or time, we already had a mango and a guava at near fruit-
ing stage. Our papayas were loaded with swelling fruit. More and more I
sensed the soil potentials of this ultra-southern land. Plants and trees com-
mon in the tropics were doing well; a thousand more waited only to be
introduced and tested. No wonder James Nugent, like Dr. Perrine before him,
loved to explore with this in mind.
Of my little crop of eggplants between the tree rows, not much need be
said. Planted early on that light pineland soil to take advantage of fall rains,
it had done well for a time. Now, with dry weather, the yield was falling off
even with plenty of the fertilizer so necessary on most Florida soils.
Nobody, so far as known, had ever planted anything in Everglades muck.
The moist, dark brown soil-result of decomposition through the ages of saw-
grass and aquatic weeds-looked so invitingly rich that I had to try. Digging
two wide and shallow ditches 8 feet apart, I threw the dirt between them,
making a high bed for drainage. On this, without too much expectation, I
planted a dozen kinds of vegetables and grain. Most of them grew more or
less luxuriantly-for awhile, then turned yellow and stopped. Perhaps in
time somebody would hit on the right method as had happened on the
Meantime, I had no good moist land for a late crop. The hammock was
good soil, but my only use of it so far had been for seedbeds and as a source
of humus for pineland plantings. The truth is, it was one of those distinctive
spots we both hated to disturb; the very epitome of nature's intense vitality
in these latitudes. We could see this in the speed with which she covered up
a trail; produced new leaves or fruit when the first had been destroyed; in
the way a fallen tree refused to die but grew new roots and started over.
Maybe the same influence was at work on men and women. We vowed to cut
nothing in that hammock except for access to its beauties.
Despite South Florida's heavy vegetation, the warm tropic sun and
heavy showers do much to keep down its store of humus. However, could
its poor sandy pinelands be kept free from fires, many believe they would
in time become one immense hammock. Fire in the dry season was indeed a
deadly menace as I realized one memorable afternoon.
On the way back from a trip to town, I saw smoke, then a big blaze which
a strong breeze was blowing towards our clearing. Hurrying on, I met a
grim picture of frontier life; great clouds of suffocating smoke; the roar of
flames; the staccato notes of palmetto leaves just catching; and-off at the
far edge-my poor wife and a woman neighbor, dressed in men's overalls,
blackened from head to foot, and almost exhausted in desperate efforts to
stamp out, with wetted sacks and pine switches, the fire's stealthy, steady
Finally, by burning against the wind and making a fire-guard, we
managed to save our place. But the fire swept on through the night. Find-
ing tinder in the outer bark, it had crept into the tallest tree tops. These
overhead blazes and the showers of sparks; the burning stumps and logs in
all directions; the noise of crashing branches; the pall of ruddied smoke
lending to even well-known objects a weirdly foreign shape; all made a scene
of terrifying grandeur like some great Vulcanian city in a strange environment
F. PAGE WILSON
Growing wild in these woods and practically nowhere else was a pretty,
fern-like little plant called comptie or koonti. From it could be extracted a
starch, good either for food or laundry. The Indians had made use of this
"gift from Heaven" for ages and several pioneers followed their example.
Alone among tuber plants, it gathered nitrogen from the air, the by-products
thus being an excellent fertilizer. Because of this, plus the promise of a small
but regular income, we became part-time comptie makers.
The crux of our equipment (home-made, Indian pattern) consisted of a
smooth, cylindrical pine log some 18 in. long and 12 in. through, its cir-
cumference studded throughout with shoe-brads beveled to a cutting edge. This
was set in a hopper and rotated by an old-fashioned cog-and-gear machine
drawn by horse or mule. The tubers, chopped and water-soaked over-night,
were dropped in the hopper, cut up by the revolving cylinder and, now a pulp,
channeled into a sieve-bottom box. Here it was washed in several waters
which, now called "red water" from its color, fell into a tank below. After
an hour it was drawn off, leaving the starch to be taken out and dried on can-
vas trays. It realized about $5 per hundred pounds in Key West.
This starch made such a delicious blanc-mange that I was prompted to
seek a wider market. Food interests up North to whom I sent samples
acknowledged its similarity to arrow-root. However, they pointed also to its
inability to compete with other starches costing less to produce. This was no
doubt a sound opinion, especially as the tubers were by no means inexhaust-
ible and did not take kindly to cultivation. So the Biscayne Bay region had
to regard koonti starch as one of those things peculiar to itself.
BIG THINGS COMING
Spring is the season which many say Florida does not have. It does, of
course, even if the new-comer be apt to miss its subtler signs. Spring of 1896
was to show the region under a man-made change more drastic than that of
nature. It was the culmination of plans made by Henry M. Flagler in pre-
ceding months to extend his railroad from Palm Beach south to the Miami
river and there establish a town-site and a great hotel.
Mrs. Tuttle, the lady of Fort Dallas with an unquenchable vision of the
future, for years had been urging this idea on Flagler. As an inducement,
she had offered him one-half of her land holdings. Later, the Brickells
joined in a somewhat similar arrangement.
Not until after the Great Freeze and Mrs. Tuttle renewed her proposal
did Flagler consider the extension seriously. He visited the region and
agreed on the basis of her donating 100 acres of land on bay or river and
(except for a few acres in her home-site) one half of the rest of her holdings
in alternate lots. Thus the escape from disastrous cold, Freeman's phenom-
enal crop, focused a vivid light on this unique but little known land. Agri-
culture, new and rare products of the soil, loomed large in Flagler's eyes,
just as did his plans for winter guests. But, as he often said, these were
only two of the many activities for which his railroad would pave the way.
Transportation, the one thing needed through the years, at last assured!
It would mean the taming of our sub-tropic frontier, the building of a segment
of America quite different from the rest. Many a hard problem would these
differences bring-but also many a great new opening peculiar to itself.
For a time, the attitude of many an old-timer was one of wait and see.
Too often had their hopes for a railroad been raised only to be blasted.
Flagler's New York associates thought him crazy and were trying to dis-
suade him. The normal reasons for a railroad and a city were lacking and
they could imagine no other. A right-of-way survey showed only one habi-
tation in a stretch of fifty miles. Later, Flagler confessed that, though he had
expected "little or no return for a few years," he did foresee the time when
this railroad would be "one of the most profitable in the country."
Our own doubts, if any, were dispelled when Morse drove up with the
suggestion that I, with two or three others, should go with him to meet Flagler.
He explained that it had been almost decided to locate a flag-station at Bis-
cayne, a couple of miles away, and Flagler liked to talk with settlers along the
line. Aside from his outstanding position in the business world, he impressed
me as a pleasant, quietly observant man with a bent for shrewd questioning.
"Well, young man," he said to me with a smile. "I suppose you're
another in this new country in search of a fortune."
"Not so much that" I began . But before I could find words for some-
thing more adequate, another of the party was speaking.
Soon, near "town," everything began to hum. On a hastily cleared space
just north of the river, the many tents and frame structures gave the appear-
ance of a military encampment. Big, burly John Sewell, Flagler's right-hand
man in construction work, had arrived. He was now busy leveling the
Indian mound (built, not by the Seminoles, but by the Tequestas, the Indian
tribe which inhabited this section at the coming of the Spaniards) on the site
of the Royal Palm Hotel and gardens. The building itself was to be in
charge of J. A. Macdonald. Roads in the townsite were made by cutting
down the trees and slicing off the rock, leaving the sidewalks a few inches
F. PAGE WILSON
higher. It made a good solid roadway but the glaring white under the blazing
sun was quite trying.
This native rock ("Miami oolite" to the geologist) was to prove one of
the country's most useful resources as a road base and building material.
Meantime, building sites were placed on the market, prices ranging down
from $800 and $900 for choice corners on Twelfth Street. Frank T.
Budge built a hardware store, the first of brick in town. Isador Cohen
opened a clothing store, temporarily south of the river. The Sewells (John
and E. G.) were getting ready to start one on 12th Street. For a time it was
to be in charge of E. G., tall like his brother but lean and wiry. Our good
friend Morse established a real estate office specializing in railroad and
canal lands. The METROPOLIS newspaper was issued by Graham and
Featherly before there was a town. Holes were cut in the jungle to make room
for Flagler houses. Some lumber came in by boat. But most of the actual
building awaited the coming of the railroad.
On its completion late in April came crowds in search of work, adventure,
fortune in a new land. But so, in good time, did the mosquitoes and many
of the faint-hearted or the merely curious rushed to take the first train home.
But population was building up. By midsummer, the usual municipal
needs-jail, fireball and so forth-had been erected, and arrangements made
with the Flagler interests for light and water. It was felt the time had arrived
to establish local government. On news that the railroad favored certain men
for councilmen, the political-minded took exception and a warm campaign
ensued. This fight between the pro- and anti-railroad factions lasted many
years. The election, in which 380 voted, resulted in the incorporation of the
city; the choice of Miami as a name rather than "Flagler" or "Fort Dallas;"
and the seating of the pro-railroad slate for Council with John B. Reilly as
the first Mayor."
Thus, on July 28th, 1896, full fledged from the jungle, without preli-
minary step of town or village, was'born the
CITY OF MIAMI, FLORIDA
This Page Blank in Original
Starch Making: A Pioneer Florida Industry
By MRs. HENRY J. BURKHARDT
Today when Chambers of Commerce are looking about for industries to
attract to Florida it is interesting to recall that long before Miami and the
Palm Beaches became renowned as playgrounds the section was widely known
for its manufacturing. Arrowroot was the product made from a native plant
known as coontie.
In 1870 as many as eight persons were known to be engaged commer-
cially in the manufacture of starch from coontie. The industry was spread
over the southeastern part of the state wherever the coontie plant thrived, but
activity centered in the section now known as Greater Miami, where the coontie
flourished underneath the pines and in flat open fields.
Today coontie is a tradition and the eight manufacturers of 1870 are
but names in a record, interesting as proving the extent to which the product
An article in the 60th anniversary edition of the Palm Beach Sun of
March 1947 quotes from the United States census of 1870 in which eight men
listed their occupation as manufacturers of arrowroot. The Sun reports that
George Lewis and William A. Johnson were Floridians, but that Thomas
Brissett came from Connecticut, William Wagner from Baden and Nicholas
Akis from Darmstadt, Germany, Francis L. Hammon was from Ireland, and
Michael and Georges Chairs were from France.
The Hannas mention in Florida's Golden Sands that there was a George
Lewis and a William Johnson who engaged in blockade running for The Con-
federacy during the War Between the States, their headquarters being Miami.
Did they stay on to become the arrowroot manufacturers mentioned in the
1870 census? Or were they already engaged in that work, interrupting it to
aid The Confederacy and themselves by indulging in a little blockade running
on the side?
Did the other six from faraway places come because they had heard
of the arrowroot business? Perhaps we shall never know, but we do know
from other records that there was a thriving business in this section as early
as 1835. That is the date given in the Report of the Secretary of the Treasury,
on the State of Finances, Senate Document 2, 29th Congress, 1st session,
This document quotes a statement made by Senator Stephen R. Mallory
in 1845, who said: "The section of the country on the coast south of Jupiter
inlet, and east of Cape Sable, produces a native arrowroot, commonly called
'coontee,' which is manufactured by the settlers to some extent, not to exceed
20,000 lbs., per annum. This commanded in northern markets in 1835-40,
8 cents per lb.; and is now, 1845, in the same markets, worth 5 cents."
From questioning the settlers of the Lake Worth region it seems to be
definitely established that while there was sufficient quantity of the plant
to provide starch for home use, it was never manufactured commercially
in what is now Palm Beach County. Its growth was most prolific from Hal-
landale on the north through the Cutler section at the south.
From a Florida Supreme Court record we learn that George W. Ferguson
was engaged in manufacturing and shipping arrowroot to Key West from
Miami in 1845. His agent was Joseph Y. Porter, a merchant and broker, who
agreed to ship the product to New Orleans applying the sale against Mr.
Ferguson's purchases from him, and remitting any remaining cash to Mr.
Ferguson, provided that Ferguson would buy his goods from Porter.
This is brought out in a suit at law by Ferguson against Mary Ann
Porter, executrix of her husband's estate. The original judgement in the
lower court was found for the appellee, but the Supreme Court reversed the
decision of the lower court allowing Mr. Ferguson his claim of $140 for the
1,725 pounds of arrowroot lost at sea.
Florida Reports, Vol. 3, p. 27, shows the case as having come before the
Supreme Court in January 1850, and that it was based on an alleged "breach
of duty by the said Joseph Y. Porter as bailee and factor of the plaintiff in
Testimony reviewed by the higher court showed that the original agree-
ment had been entered into in January 1846 and that several times Mr. Fer-
guson had made such shipments from Miami (the name given in the court
record) and that Mr. Porter had carried out the agreement in full, until, con-
vinced that he could get higher prices in Charleston, in October 1846, he sent
a shipment of arrowroot, uninsured, in the mail boat to that city, and that the
shipment was lost at sea in the hurricane of that month.
One of the witnesses, unidentified in the Florida Reports examined, called
at Mr. Porter's store to inquire about the arrowroot and was told that it had
been shipped to Charleston. A few days later word having come of the loss
of the boat, the witness stated he had called again on Mr. Porter at which time
Mr. Porter said "it would be the plaintiff's loss, that he had shipped it at
MRS. HENRY I. BURKHARDT
the plaintiff's risk." Porter is said to have admitted that he had shipped it
contrary to orders but that there had been no opportunity to ship it to New
Reversal was based on the reasoning that "A bailee or factor is bound to
follow such instructions as are given him by his principal, unless such instruc-
tions are inconsistent with the special agreement between them; . and is
liable for any injury resulting from a departure from such instructions, and
this liability is incurred, although the services undertaken are gratuitous."
Just how many years before 1845 Mr. Ferguson had been in the arrow-
root business we do not yet know.
We do know from Senator Mallory's statement that the industry was in
existence in 1835. We know too that Dade county's representative to the
Constitutional Convention held at St. Joseph, December 3, 1838 may have had
some connection with the industry.
That representative was Richard Fitzpatrick, a Miamian since 1830. Fitz-
patrick had acquired the holdings of the Egan family, whose father had
received a grant in 1808 from the Spanish government. Egan's children had
added to their holdings in 1827 under grants approved by Congress in that
year. These holdings were cultivated for that was one of the conditions under
which they were obtained.
Old records mention the large holdings of Fitzpatrick along both sides
of the Miami river; his many slaves brought from Columbia, S. C.; state that
he raised cotton and planted the original lime groves in the Miami area. One
history states that the United States Court of Claims awarded him $12,000 in
1877 for his lime groves which had been destroyed by the army during the
Seminole wars. One can't help but wonder if Fitzpatrick was not one of those
shipping arrowroot to "northern markets at 8 cents per pound."
Miami was made the county seat of Dade County in 1844 and by a bill
approved December 21, 1846, the Miami river was declared "a navigable
stream in its whole extent." A postoffice existed at Miami as early as Octo-
ber 1850, according to a register of all officers and agents in the service of
the United States on 30th, September, 1851.
I am convinced that these acts were prompted at least in part by the
manufacturing going on. It seems certain to me that the Acts of Florida for
1850, ch. 334 prove the existence of the arrowroot business, for that year the
legislature appropriated $1,000 for "a proper wagon road" from Indian
River to Miami, because Miami was "reported to possess many advantages
resulting from an abundant and valuable spontaneous production." Coontie
is not mentioned. But what could that "abundant and valuable spontaneous
production" be but coontie?
Within our own times we know that to later settlers coontie served like the
Manna of old, which fed the Children of Israel in the Wilderness. It had
done the same for the Indians before them, from whom the white settler
learned the first steps of its purification.
What matter if it did not "lay like hoarfrost on the ground?" When the
root was processed the resulting starch was snowy white and it provided food
for the family, a fertilizer for crops, and a by-product which could be fed to
the pigs; it was considered a cure for burns, and most important of all, it was
a money crop. It also had a social value. School children of the 1900's and
probably many before them threaded the coral-red seeds into streamers for
Webster's dictionary states that the plant is "any one of several plants
of the genus Zamia, of Florida and tropical America, the roots and half-
buried stems of which yield a kind of arrowroot."
To natives of South Florida coontie will always mean the specific type,
Zamia integrifolia, which is found also in small quantities on the islands of
Andrus and Abaco, in the Bahama Islands, according to John B. Hurst of
6 N. E. 89th Street, Miami, who states that he believes some is also grown in
the southeastern part of Cuba.
Mr. Hurst used coontie for the subject of a college thesis but other than
that not enough has been said and written to preserve the history of an
industry now lost and a plant which has all but disappeared.
His father, Mr. A. B. Hurst, established one of the best known mills in
1910 at Biscayne, or what is now N. E. Second Avenue and 103rd Street. An
arrowroot wafer, manufactured by the National Biscuit Company, was made
with starch produced at this mill. Starch from this mill was shipped to Italy
for the use in the manufacture of spaghetti.
During the first World War Mr. Hurst operated his mill 18 hours a day
to supply the United States government. It had been found that the first
nourishment a gassed soldier could take was a thin arrowroot gruel made with
a beef broth base.
According to Mrs. A. C. Barrett, 515 N. E. 83rd Street, her father, Mr. W.
M. Mettair, who came to Dade County from Tallahassee in 1869 as a young
man of twenty, first worked in coontie at Cutler. Later in 1902 Mr. Mettair
operated his own starch mill on the shore of Biscayne Bay, near what was
then known as Knight's Dock. Here sailboats docking from Key West could
be loaded with the product for shipment to that city and the Bahamas.
MRS. HENRY I. BURKHARDT
This section, known as Lemon City, was growing into a thriving com-
munity. The Knight Brothers, D. R. and John, owned a large store at the
dock site. There was a sawmill, and a sawdust street led to the postoffice and
store. Homes faced a path along the Bay and here lived the Currys
(Henry Filer's uncle), Mrs. Keyes, where the library was later started, the
Harringtons, Russels, Bill Pent, and the Mettairs.
Mr. Mettair originally owned a full section of land upon which a great
deal of Lemon City grew up. Even today Mrs. Barrett says, she and her
brothers and sisters are called upon to give quitclaim deeds to private proper-
ties and even for roadways.
Mrs. Barrett remembers from her childhood a commonly used expression
among the settlers: "Guess I will have to dig coontie." This statement became
the measure of their discouragement when funds ran low, for digging coontie
root brought only 20c a barrel.
Mr. Mettair's mill was probably a replica of those 1870 mills where no
doubt, he had worked as a young man. His grinder was a log of pine, turned
to be exact, and spiked diagonally with nails for grinding. The coontie roots
were soaked over night and after grinding were fed into a hooper or deep
box and from there put through a strainer rubbed constantly with running
water. It was washed for two hours, the starch dropping to the bottom where
a hole at what was called "starch level" drained away the water. This "red
water" was found to make good fertilizer for home use and the discarded pulp,
also good fertilizer, was sold as a by-product.
The wet starch was packed into barrels to be washed again three times,
while stirring and settling. It was allowed to reach the bubbling stage in
fermentation for then all dirt and sugar came out. The residue from this
"yellow contie" was cooked and fed to the pigs, making another useful by-
William Mettair, the oldest son, and inventor of the family, in 1904
devised a revolving strainer which eased the manual labor, resulting as well
in a purer product.
The finished starch was spread out on canvas driers and kept broken up
until completely dry, before it was packed into barrels for shipment. It
required one ton of coontie root to make 200 pounds of starch through this
Asked for her recipe for pudding Mrs. Barrett stated that she never
measured, but wet the starch in cold water using "just enough" and then
poured on boiling water until the mixture took on a clear yet thick consis-
tency. The skin on top would have a bluish tinge. The pudding was sliced
when cold and served with a sauce made of yolk of egg creamed first with
sugar and then butter. No sugar was used in the pudding itself, the sauce
providing the sweetness.
Since this delicacy belongs to the past, coontie mills having disappeared
along with the local supply of the plant perhaps Mrs. Barrett can be forgiven
for her lack of exactness.
Sometimes this starch was used by the Mettair family for laundry pur-
poses but great care had to be exercised for it was "the stiffest starch" known
for such use.
In 1896 when the family home was located at what is now 71st Street
Mr. Mettair shod their spotted ponies for the Indians while working his farm
and carrying on other types of business typical of that day's need. It was
there that the older children in the family watched the Indians in their tem-
porary camps. The Indians washed the roots, grated them by hand and
strained them into a vessel, sometimes using a canoe for this purpose. The
precipitate was washed and strained through baskets after which it was ready
to use in the form of cakes roasted in the ashes, the poisonous cyanic acid
evaporating in the baking.
I failed to learn the capacity of the Mettair mill, but the Hurst mill,
operated on a large commercial scale, ground from 10 to 12 tons of roots
a day except during World War 1 when the capacity was increased to 15 and
18 tons The starch content being higher in the fall and winter grinding
usually stopped in May and was not resumed until August unless orders were
pressing. The starch content, to quote Mr. Hurst, is "as high as 20 percent
in the winter and as low as 8 percent in the summer."
At the Hurst mill, which was a steam plant, the roots went through a
grinder, next were passed over a brass seive, then a silk seive, with streams
of water spraying over them, and then settled into long trays. From these
the product was shovelled into drying racks and left to dry in the sun. Later
the starch was settled into large tanks and re-settled three times, the water
being extracted by a centrifugal machine. Next it went into an air drier
heated by steam coils, was then pulverized, and finally packed for shipping
into 100 pound bags.
Analysis proved the result to be a chemically free starch with very little
fiber, a strictly edible product. It was used for cookies, crackers, cocoa filler,
ice cream compounds, and chocolate candy, as well as in spaghetti and starch
MRS. HENRY I. BURKHARDT
It is recommended to those insatiable collectors of recipes that they
seek out a copy of the "Florida Tropical Cook Book" edited in 1912 by the
Aid Society of the First Presbyterian Church, Miami. This book carries many
recipes contributed by church members, including Mrs. A. B. Hurst, for use
of this starch in sauces, gravies, puddings, pies, etc.
Mouths will water in vain, for slow growth, an antipathy to cultivation,
together with the onslaught of bull-dozers in a spreading community, has
wiped out coontie as a commercial product. The plants are rarely seen
except in a few gardens whose owners love to preserve native materials, and
as impressions in native rock where they have left their fern-like tracery.
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS AND SOURCES
This research was undertaken by the wish of Everglades National Park library for
a history of the white man's manufacture of coontie starch. It is a compilation of
information from many friends and acquaintances, all of whom were eager to assist.
Besides those mentioned in the article itself, thanks are due first to my sister-in-law,
Mrs. Y. G. Pope, who suggested that I write it; to Helen van Hoy Smith, who called
my attention to the census list in the Palm Beach Sun; to Ruby Leach Carson, who told
me of the Ferguson-Porter case; to Dr. Dorothy Dodd, who not only checked a number
of references for me, but who sent me the Mallory statement; and to Miss Clarissa
Greene who called my attention to the "Florida Tropical Cook Book".
This Page Blank in Original
South Florida's First Industry
By ERNEST G. GEARHART, JR.
Manufacturing starch from the coontie root is probably the earliest
known industry in Dade County. The Indians are credited with the discovery
that starch could be extracted from these roots which once grew so abundantly
on South Florida's high pine land. However, it has been established that
white settlers engaged in this industry some time prior to 1840.
The coontie root, a species of Zamia, was also known as Florida Arrow-
root. The early settlers called the root and the starch obtained from it
"comptie." It is believed this name was derived from the Indian pronuncia-
tion. Northern biscuit makers, principal users of the product, called it
Florida Arrowroot Starch.
The roots of this cycadaceous plant are found one or two inches below
the surface of the ground and resemble a large sweet potato in appearance.
Each plant puts out several red stems bearing small fern-like leaves. There
is a male and a female plant, the latter being distinguished by a cone-shaped
seed pod which grows just above the ground. The coontie root itself is quite
poisonous. Therefore, it was necessary to crush the root and wash the starch
entirely free from the poisonous pulp. Historians have reported instances
where men, who were lost and starving, ate the roots in the mistaken idea
they were edible. The results were usually fatal.
Birds are the chief planters of coontie roots, plucking the seeds, eating
the meat therefrom, and then dropping the seeds while in flight. Because of
their slow growth, it was not practical to cultivate these plants commercially.
This, coupled with the gradual disappearance of the forests, was an important
factor in bringing about the industry's eventual demise.
The process employed by the Indians was crude and it remained for the
early white settlers to improve on these primitive methods. Long before
Miami came into existence, nearly every family living in this area had its
own little starch mill. Whenever any extra money was needed, the whole
family would get together and make starch. Some mills were operated
entirely by hand, while others employed mule and horse power. In later
years, there were a few motor driven mills, including at least one large steam
driven mill located in the vicinity of Little River. This mill was owned by
A. B. Hurst, and remained in operation until 1919, when it was moved to the
southern part of the county near Kendall. It continued in operation at this
new location until 1925.
In order to describe the type of starch mill being used in South Florida
just prior to and shortly after the turn of the Century, the writer personally
interviewed Mr. John B. Hurst, son of the aforementioned A. B. Hurst, and
Mr. Willie Mettair of North Miami, Florida. The latter was actively engaged
in the manufacture of starch before 1900.
These early mills consisted of a wooden cylinder, usually a section of
pine log, about 12 inches thick and 18 inches long. Diagonal lines approxi-
mately 1 inch apart were drawn lengthwise all around the cylinder. These
lines followed the general pattern of a lawn mower blade. Shoemaker's nails
were then driven into the cylinder along these lines. The nails were 3/4 inch
apart in the row and about 1/8 inch was left exposed. A shaft was driven
through the center of the cylinder which was then mounted on a wooden hop-
per. A container underneath the hopper caught the pulp as it came through.
A settling tank with a large sieve was placed nearby. The rest of the equip-
ment included drying racks which were usually 30 inches wide and 6 feet
long. These racks were made of horizontal poles raised several feet above
the ground and covered with muslin.
If the mill was to be powered by hand, a crank was attached to one end
of the cylinder shaft. Horse or mule power could be used by hitching the
animal to a 20-foot sweep. This sweep turned a gear resembling a universal
joint which was joined to a large vertical wheel by a rod approximately 25
feet long known as a tumble rod. A belt running from the wheel to a small
pulley on the cylinder shaft turned the cylinder at a rapid rate of speed
because of the high ratio achieved by this ingenious hook-up.
The process used by the white man in the manufacture of starch was
quite an improvement over the method employed by the Indians and resulted
in a more highly refined product. The starch manufactured by the Indians
was slightly yellow in color while the starch made by the settlers was pure
The roots were dug out of the ground with a tool similar to a mattock.
It was customary to soak them in water overnight. This not only washed the
roots clean, but made them considerably softer and, therefore, easier to work
with. They were usually cut in half before being thrown into the hopper
where they were crushed to a pulp by the whirling cylinder. The pulp was
placed in the sieve atop the settling tank and water was used to wash the
ERNEST G. GEARHART, IR.
starch out of the pulp and into the tank. In order to remove small bits of
pulp and other foreign particles which may have washed through the sieve,
there was a series of drain holes at one end of the tank. The starch being the
heaviest had a tendency to settle to the bottom of the tank. As it settled below
the level of one of the holes, a plug was removed and the water with the bits
of pulp and dirt was drained off. As the starch continued to settle, the next
plug was removed and so on until all of the water was drained off and nothing
remained in the bottom of the tank except starch. It was sometimes necessary
to repeat this washing and draining process several times to obtain the desired
results. The starch, while still damp, was then placed on the drying racks.
Although it was already white, the sun had a tendency to bleach it even more.
As soon as the starch was thoroughly dry, it was placed in barrels which
held approximately 250 lbs. It is estimated that it took 500 lbs. of roots to
make 100 lbs. of starch. A family of three or four could make about one
barrel or 250 lbs. in a week.
The starch was sold at prices ranging from three to eight cents per pound
to shippers who operated several schooners between here and Key West. From
there, it was shipped to the northern markets. As a general rule, these trans-
actions between the starch manufacturers and the schooner captains were not
on a cash basis, the starch being traded for groceries, clothing and other
necessities of life. These goods were delivered on the return trip from Key
In addition to being used in the manufacture of biscuits, this starch was
excellent as a staple food for use aboard ships. It was found that it would
keep indefinitely as long as it remained dry, whereas flour would spoil after
a certain length of time. A by-product of the industry was discovered in the
pulp. After the starch was extracted, the pulp was left to decay. This made
an excellent fertilizer which was widely used throughout the area.
An unpleasant feature of this early South Florida industry was a most
objectionable odor which was always present wherever starch was being made.
This, plus the fact that the price paid for the starch was small in proportion
to the amount of labor involved in its manufacture, may have helped to bring
about the eventual end of South Florida's first industry.
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This Page Blank in Original
William Adee WVhitehead's
Description of Key West
Edited by REMBER W. PATRICK
In the 1830's Key West was an Island and a town of mystery. Uninformed
men gossiped about the pirates who inhabited the Island, but enlightened men
knew that a squadron of the United States Navy, using Key West as a base
in the 1820's, had searched out and destroyed the Caribbean Corsairs. Even
the more informed citizens of St. Augustine, the nearest Atlantic settlement of
importance to Key West, were not certain as to the character of those Islanders
who salvaged the many ships, and their cargoes, that were wrecked on the
Florida keys. Most Floridians had heard of the shipwrecks, but few knew of
the exact size and location of Key West, or population of the town, or of
living conditions there.
The isolation of Key West from the rest of territorial Florida was largely
responsible for the misinformation about the Island. Hundreds of miles
separated it from other settled areas of Florida, and only infrequently did
ships from the keys sail into Atlantic ports. Even then the tales of sailors
and the conflicting statements of promoters and disillusioned settlers con-
tributed more confusion than information.
Speculation about the Island centered in St. Augustine. According to
some, Key West was an Island of sand, sterile, worthless, and inhabited by
"wreckers" who were closely related to, if not actual, pirates. Others pro-
claimed the Island the jewel of the Gulf, a land of opportunity, peopled by
enterprising and cultured citizens,
In 1835 one St. Augustinian, John Rodman, determined that he would
secure reliable facts about the Island. Rodman knew something of the back-
ground of Key West, for he had aided in defending the land claims of the
Americans who had bought the Island from Juan Pablo Salas. It is probable
that Rodman had become acquainted either in person or by letters with
William Adee Whitehead, one of the leading young men of Key West.
Whitehead, a native of New Jersey, joined his elder brother John in Key
West in 1828 and rose rapidly in the young community. In 1829 he made a
survey of the town, and a year later was appointed collector of customs. He
served in this capacity until he left the Island in 1838 and returned to his
Northern home. He lived a long and active life as a businessman of New
York City and Newark, New Jersey. Whitehead never returned to Key West,
for the last year of his stay there was not a happy one. As Mayor of the town
in 1838 he insisted on collecting a yearly occupational tax, but the merchants
refused to pay and the Council did not uphold the Mayor. Whitehead called
a special election and publicly announced that he would resign if the people
did not support his stand. The merchants won the election, and true to his
word Whitehead resigned.
In 1835, however, he was well qualified to answer John Rodman's ques-
tions. Whitehead gave his correspondents a summary history of Key West
and then proceeded to answer each inquiry. A copy of Whitehead's letter
was retained in Key West. It was deposited in the Monroe County Court
records and eventually came to the P. K. Yonge Memorial Library of Florida
History at the University of Florida.
Notices of Key West
John Rodman Esq. St. Augustine
Written December 1835
Before proceeding to answer your specific questions, relative to the
present condition of Key West, it may not be uninteresting to you to receive
some information as to the first settlement and improvement of the Island,
with which so far as my acquaintance extends, I willingly furnish you.
It is probable that from the time of the first visit of Ponce de Leon in
1512 (1513) until the cession of the Floridas to the United States, the Islands
(or Keys as they are termed, a corruption of the Spanish Cayo) which extend
in a South Westerly direction from Cape Florida, were only resorted to by the
aborigines of the country-the piratical crews with which the neighboring
seas were infested-and the fishermen (many of them of St. Augustine) who
were engaged in supplying the market of Havana from the finnyy tribes" that
abound in their vicinity. Of the occasional presence of the first, we have
evidence in the marks of ancient fortifications or mounds of stones found in
various situations, (in one of which, opened some years since, human bones of
a large size were discovered) and tradition has in addition, brought down to
us notices of them which deserve all the credit conferred upon the same
authority in other parts of the country. The oldest settler in this section of
the country, one whose residence for 50 years has been in the vicinity of
Charlotte's Harbor, has informed me that it was an account, current in his
MEMBER W. PATRICK
early years, that some eighty or ninety years previous (probably now 130
years ago) the Indians inhabiting the Islands along the coast and those on the
main land were of different tribes, and as the Island Indians frequently
visited the main for the purpose of hunting, a feud arose between the two
tribes, and those from the main having made an irruption into the Islands,
their inhabitants were driven from Island to Island until they reached Key
West. Here, as they could flee no farther, they stood their ground, and a
battle was fought resulting in the almost entire extermination of the Islanders;
only a few escaped, (and that by a miracle as they embarked in canoes upon
the ocean) whose descendants, it is said, were known to have been met in the
Island of Cuba.
This battle strewed the Island with bones, as it is probable the con-
querors tarried not to commit the bodies of the dead to the ground, and hence
the name of the Island Cayo Hueso (in Spanish "Bone Key") which the
English, with the same ease that they transformed the wine Xeres Seco into
"Sherry Sack," corrupted into "Key West."
That the harbor of Key West was the resort of Pirates, occasionally, has
been proved by the evidence of many who were connected with them in their
lawless depridations (sic), and by the discovery of hidden articles that could
only have been secreted by them.i That the Islands of the Florida coast
were known to the fishermen supplying the Havana market is certain, as
many persons are still to be found who visited them in that capacity, some
years before the Provinces were ceded to the United States.
On 26th August 1815 for some military services rendered to the Govern-
ment by Juan P. Salas,2 Don Juan de Estrada,- then Governor of Florida
granted to him the Island of Key West, but nothing was done by him in the
way of settlement or improvement, and the Island had the same wild aspect
it had worn for ages, when on 20th Dec. 1821, Salas sold his right, title and
interest to John W. Simonton Esq.* then of Mobile, who met with Salas in
Havana. Having heard of the advantageous situation of the Harbor & etc.,
Mr. Simonton was induced, from the certain prospect of improvement
throughout the country, by the cession of the United States, (which his mer-
cantile experience led him to foresee must advance the interests of a settle-
ment at this point,) to give Two thousand Dollars for the Island, and on the
19th January 1822, took possession. Soon after making the purchase Mr.
Simonton sold one half of his interest to the John Whitehead5 & John W.
Fleeming Esqs.A also of Mobile at that time, and another quarter to Messrs.
John Warner and John Mountain, whose interest is vested in Col. P. C.
Greene, who resides on the Island.
The Proprietors immediately did everything in their power to improve
the Island as rapidly as possible, and they all gave their personal attention
to the erection of buildings, clearing of land & etc. In February 1823
Commodore Pattersons & Lieut. Tuttle of the U. S. Navy arrived with orders
from the Government to survey the coast and harbor of Key West. They
were soon followed by Government vessels bringing stores ,materials & etc.,
and by the end of the year the Island was a regularly constituted Naval
Depot & Station under the command of Commodore Porter," by the name
of Thompson's Island, a title it has long ceased to bear, and which it is
probable will never be revived, as it was conferred merely out of compliment
to the then Secretary of the Navy.o1 A Collector and Inspector of the Cus-
toms arrived in April 1823-and since that time Key West has been a
regular Port of Entry.
During the occupancy of the United States the growth of the Town
was considerably checked from its being most of the time under martial law,
but the advantageous locality- of the Island, the fineness of its harbor, etc.,
were fully developed, and the effectual suppression of Piracy may be attri-
buted in a great measure to the conveniences it afforded to our Squadron
engaged on that arduous service. The Naval Depot was removed in 1826 to
Pensacola. The Superior Court for this portion of the Territory, being much
needed on account of its civil jurisdiction, but imperiously called for by the
fact that all the admiralty business, involving a vast amount of property,
devolved for want of it upon minor tribunals, was established by Act of
Congress in winter of 1827. The winter following, the Island, which had
previously been held in common, was surveyed and divided among the four
proprietary interests, and they retain undiminished, with the exception of a
few sales of town lots, the portions then allotted to each. Since that time
the Town has increased in size and population, and the character of its
inhabitants has risen considerably from the introduction of many families of
great worth and respectability, bringing with them and spreading among
their fellow citizens a desire for the privileges, protection and advantages of
social order and wholesome restraint. It is now the seat of Justice for the
County of Monroe, and the residence of the officers of Superior Court of the
Southern Judicial District of Florida having Maritime Jurisdiction. It is also
a Port of Entry enjoying all the privileges of the largest seaports of the
Country, and a Military Post. It has a Court House, Custom House, and
other public buildings of respectable size and appearance, although of course
not to be compared with those in the older sections of the Union, and the
private buildings erected are assuming annually greater marks of taste and
REMBER W. PATRICK
comfort in their construction. Having premised this much and I fear rather
at too great length for your patience, I proceed to the consideration of the
1st. "Are the dimensions of the Island of Key West, as laid down in
Morse's Gazetteer (to wit 7 miles in length, and 2 in breadth) correct?"
I do not recollect having seen an edition of Morse's Gazetteer in which
Key West is mentioned, but the dimensions as you give them from that work
are not correct. The survey made in the winter of 1828-9 (by myself) which
is a correct one, gives about 41/4 miles as the length of the Island from its two
extremes, and about 1 mile as its greatest breadth, but it is extremely irregular
in shape. As it contains 1975 acres the average of its breadth may be esti-
mated at about three fourths of a mile. Its greatest length lies from N.E. to
S.W. and its western end being that on which the City is located is in Latitude
240 33' 30" W.
2nd "Is the soil of the whole Island very sandy and sterile, or is any part
of it arable or productive of any grass or pasture for cattle?" "Is there any
clay in the soil?" 3rd "Are there any large trees, pine or others, growing on
Key West abroad is generally considered as nothing but a sand bank.
(I have recently seen it spoken of in a public print as a small coral reef)
but there is not, strictly speaking, a particle of sand upon the whole Island,
and so far from its being sterile there is not a thicker growth of woods or one
presenting a more pleasing variety of verdure than that on this and the
neighboring Islands. In truth, the soil is too prolific for the comfort of the
inhabitants, as it requires constant attention to keep an enclosure, and even
our streets, free from bushes and plants that spring up spontaneously the
moment the forest trees are cut away. The wild grass is not of a very nourish-
ing species, nor does it grow in any very great quantities, but a considerable
number of cattle, running loose upon the Islands manage to procure a living
from that, and the young twigs of the trees and bushes, although it is not
much calculated to improve their condition. The few milch cows that are
on the Island are kept up, a certain plant which they eat when allowed to
range injuring materially the quality of their milk.
In consequence of most of the population heretofore being in some
measure but temporarily located, and engrossed with mercantile affairs, no
attention has yet been paid to the cultivation of the soil, more than to rear a
few of the tropical plants, and a few vegetables, although the soil is admirably
adapted to all the tropical production that have not a tap root, or one requir-
ing a greater depth of earth than three or four feet, and that do not stand in
need of clay, as there is none whatever entering into the composition of our
soil, which consists entirely of mould formed by decayed vegetation of the
average depth I have mentioned.
I have alluded to the thick growth on the Island-it consists of a great
variety of trees of all sizes, the largest I have seen having trunks about the
size of a man's body. There are no Pines, nor Oaks that I know of, and I
believe there is no part of the Island I have not visited. The vulgar names
of some of the trees are as follows-Gun Mastic-Gum Elimi-Yellow Wood
-Iron Wood-Dog Wood-White Wood-Torch Wood-Wild Fig-Button
Wood-Sea Grape-Pigeon Plum-Satin Wood-Box Wood-Mangrove--
Stopper Wood-Wild Sappadillo, etc. I do not know that you will recognize
all their names, but they are those by which the trees are distinguished here,
and in the Bahamas where a similar growth prevails. The shrubs and vines
are also in great numbers and variety.
4th. "It the ground generally level or are there some hills?"
The highest point of the Island is considered to be about twenty five feet
above high water, and the slope is gradual thence to the shores, there being
but few inequalities of surface. There being no hills on the Island, or any
where in its vicinity, we have no very good wells of water, but there are some
which are used by persons residing near them for every purpose, and many
which answer for all culinary uses. Rain water however is preferred by
everyone, and is as you well know the best that they could have. A prejudice
against the Island was endeavored to be raised by an officer of the Army
stationed here some two years since, in a communication to the Army and
Navy Magazine, in which he stated that the inhabitants were obliged to send
to Havana (70 miles) for all their water, which he afterwards modified into
the complaint that water is sold here. The first assertion is utterly false, and
could only have been made from a desire to injure the place, or its author
must have been most eggregiously (sic) deceived-and the second is a charge
which applies equally to every Sea Port in the United States. Since my first
acquaintance with the Island (one of more than seven years) I have never
known the inhabitants to want water, although sometimes from the great
dependence placed upon the clouds for a supply, it has been less plenty than
5th. Are there any rocks on the Island of granite, serpentine, cobalt,
quartz, sandstone, calcarions (sic), argillaceous or others?
The foundation of the Island is what mineralogists term, I believe,
Secondary Lime Stone, and it is the only kind found upon the Island. It rises
to the surface in masses in some places, and lies in fragments and detached
REMBER W. PATRICK
portions everywhere. The western and southern shores of the Island consist
of this rock pulverized and intermingled with shells, and this mixture is the
nearest approach to sand that we have upon the Island.
6th. "Do the people raise any vegetables for the tables, any corn or
sweet-potatoes?" I have already observed that a few tropical plants and
vegetables are cultivated here. In favorable seasons, or in other words when
dry weather does not prevail to too great an extent, there is no kind of garden
vegetables that cannot be raised in the greatest perfection, but when the
season is unfavorable, constant attention, and the greatest care observed in
irrigating the ground, etc., cannot always attain the success desired. There
are few persons consequently who attempt the growth of vegetables to any
extent, unless they have negroes who are unemployed. I have eaten as fine
melons, sweet potatoes, beets etc., raised upon the Island as I have ever met
with elsewhere. Corn does not do as well, but it has been placed upon the
table in good full ears six weeks after being planted. We depend in a great
measure upon the North for the supply of all such necessaries.
It is my belief that it would be well worth the attention of some person
having a few hands, and accustomed to the care required by Orange, Lime and
other trees suited to the climate, to commence a plantation of them here.
There are some lime trees upon the Island that will compare in size and fruit-
fulness with any I have seen in Cuba, and Plantains and Bananas of full size
and fine flavor have been raised without difficulty.
The Cocoa nut also thrives remarkably well.
7th "What do you estimate to be the whole population of Key West
at the present time?"
8th. "Are there any Mechanics at Key West engaged in useful domestic
I estimate the population of Key West including transient persons,
sailors etc., in Port exclusive of U. S. troops, at an average of about 600
throughout the year. It cannot vary much from that number. There is one
company of troops stationed here at present. Our mechanics are not as
numerous as we could wish, but we have permanently established Masons,
Ship and House Carpenters, Bakers and a Blacksmith; we want in addition a
Shoe maker, a Tailor, and one or two others who though at first their patron-
age might be small, would, if good workmen and of steady habits, secure a
living and grow and prosper with the place.
9th. "What was the annual amount in the year 1834 of the Revenue from
Customs House duties, and has it during the present year been equally large?
-and have the duties for the last two years been as large as they were four,
five, or six years ago?"
During the first years of the settlement, a considerable trade was carried
on between the Island and Cuba, in consequence of Key West having been
made a depot for the supply of flour to the Havana market, and to such an
extent was it carried, that for a short time almost all the flour destined for that
Port went via Key West. Restrictions however were laid upon this commerce
by the Spanish authorities, at the request of those persons in Havana, who had
previously been benefitted (sic) by the consignment of flour from New
Orleans and other ports, and it was of course discontinued. Since then the
foreign business of the port, excepting the importation of such West India
produce as may be required for the consumption of the place, has been that
growing out of wrecked cargoes, and indeed the main commercial operations
of the place may be considered as depending upon the wrecks occurring upon
the Florida Reef. The time however is not far distant, I think, when Key
West from its peculiarly advantageous location will become the depot for the
supply of both the Cuban and Mexican Ports, and its advance in commercial
prosperity be rapid. It has also within itself a source of profit and improve-
ment in its Salt Pond which is now just beginning to be worked. A Company
commenced their operations here the last year, with covered works, on the
plan pursued by the Salt Makers of Massachusetts, and they have before them
every prospect of complete success. In Massachusetts with their short season,
the manufacturers expect to realize 25 per cent on their investment-what
then must be the result here where the water contains 1/3 more salt-the
evaporation is at least twice as rapid, and the season comprises nearly the
The coasting trade of the Island is of very considerable extent, and as the
main land becomes more cultivated, and the Salt works progress, we may
reasonably calculate upon its rapidly increasing.
The following schedule will show you the number of vessels entering and
clearing at the Custom House during the years mentioned-excluding of
course all vessels merely reported, not being obliged by law to enter, which
would probably have doubled the numbers in some years.
1826 1827 1828 1829 1830 1831 1832 1833 1834 1835
From Foreign Ports-.....154 177 218 184 176 172 162 103 178 173
Coastwise ------------- 43 86 109 99 114 118 141 106 135 158
TOTAL -------197 263 327 283 290 290 303 209 313 331
Foreign Vessels-----.....---. 30 16 23 19 30 22 20 10 16 10
American Vessels...... 167 247 304 264 260 268 283 199 297 321
REMBER W. PATRICK
1826 1827 1828 1829 1830 1831 1832 1833 1834 1835
For Foreign Ports....... 151 177 208 175 153 158 177 106 183 171
Coastwise ------------- 57 86 135 148 134 124 94 110 81 89
TOTAL ------------208 263 343 323 287 282 271 216 264 260
Foreign Vessels --------27 15 21 30 31 21 15 11 15 12
American Vessels .---- 181 248 322 293 256 261 256 205 249 248
The value of the Imports from, and Exports to, Foreign Ports previous
to 1831, cannot be ascertained from the Custom House Records, without con-
siderable trouble, the value since then is as follows.
1831 $ 67,863 $35,152
1832 108,778 63,943
1833 39,024 35,138*
1834 107,856 86,947
1835 71,099 27,657
AVERAGE 78,922 49,767
To the amount of exports should be added annually from $15,000 to
$20,000 the proceeds of live fish caught in the district for the Havana market,
which sums do not enter into the Custom House returns.
The Revenue of the Custom House for the years previous to 1828-
averaged about $45,000 per annum.
From 1828 to 1832 inclusive $36,500 per annum.
From 1833 to 1835 inclusive 10,000 per annum.
1835 alone $20,000.
The great diminution in the revenue of the last three years is owing to there
having been a less number of vessels with foreign merchandise wrecked-to
the abolition of Tonnage duties in almost all cases, and to the great additions
made to the list of free articles by the present tariff, including almost every
article of common importation at this port.
I have alluded to the large proportion of our commercial operations
arising from the adjudication and sale of wrecked cargoes: the following
schedule will give you some idea of the importance of the business for the
Schedule showing the amount of the wrecking business on the Coast of Florida
during the year 1835.
Amount of sales made by Marshal of Admiralty Court --------$182,685
Amount of sales by Auctioneers (estimate) --------------- 5,500
Amount of salvage received by wreckers from court -------------$ 88,225
Awarded by arbitration (estimate) ------------------------ 3,500
Total ------------$ 91,725
Estimated value of vessels and cargoes saved, on which the above salvage
was awarded $260,000.
The number of vessels engaged in wrecking is about twenty, the aggre-
gate amount of whose tonnage exceeds 1,000 tons.
I have thus endeavored to answer your inquiries at length, and if I have
succeeded in removing any prejudices, or given any information that will
lead you to estimate our Island more highly than you have hitherto done, I
shall be satisfied.
Key West has been much calumniated-not to as great an extent of late
years as formerly-but still from the constant repetition in the papers of what-
ever tends to its injury, and the suppression of whatever tells to its credit,
(intentionally or not I cannot tell) the disadvantages it has labored under
from previous attacks, continue to some extent to mar its advancement. Capital
and enterprise have been kept away, and it may be some time ere the regular
course of either towards the Island will be unobstructed by the remaining
prejudices against it.
The principal charges against the island are the unhealthfulness of the
climate and the character of its population. In relation to the last, you who
know personally, many, residing here, and others by reputation require noth-
ing to be said to prove the high character of a portion of our citizens, and I
feel no hesitation in saying, (although like all inhabited spots on the face of
the globe, we have our variety) that the remainder as a body deserve in no
way the aspersions cast upon them. The wreckers and those connected with
them, suffer most from these calumniations, but had I time I could produce
many instances of an exhibition of honesty, generosity, fortitude and a num-
ber of other of the best characteristics of our nature, which would have done
credit to far more exalted stations. Judge Webb" took occasion not long
since, from the Bench, in giving his decision in an admiralty case to speak
of these men in the following terms. "I am gratified with the opportunity of
expressing on this, as I have done on other occasions, my entire conviction
that the course pursued by the individuals, now engaged in this occupation
on the coast of Florida, is as exemplary in regard to the rights of others, as
that of any other class of this or other communities. They are the instruments
of saving an immense amount of property, which without their exertions
would be wholly lost, and so far as their conduct in rendering these services
has come to the knowledge of this Court (and it is often the subject of minute
and critical examination) it has, with but few exceptions, been found correct,
meritorious and praiseworthy." These are the men that Mr. Ornithologist
Audibon12 [sic] must go out of his way (in the volume of work not long
REMBER W. PATRICK
since published) to stigmatize as being "engaged in enterprises which they
are nowise anxious to publish either to the government or the world." Place
a man in a tempest-tossed vessel on the Florida reef, and I am much mistaken
if he would not think a Wrecker a being of more intrinsic value to him, than
all the bird catchers in Christendom.
In our ordinary Admiralty business there is but little legal skill required,
all the services rendered, consisting generally, of drawing a libel and answer,
and examining the witnesses on either side. Precedents are very little looked
after, and the matter is left with the Judge, whose experience in such cases,
from a practice here of six or seven years, is very considerable.
I agree with you fully as to the want of industry, energy, etc., among
Floridians generally. It is to be regretted, but we cannot expect that their
character in that respect will be improved until more of the sterling citizens
of the North are intermingled with them.
The character of Key West for health continues still to be estimated by
the standard erected when the Island was in the occupancy of the United
States Forces under the command of Commodore Porter, which is far from
being the proper way to consider the subject. It is true that great mortality
existed among the forces, but they were here without the possession of any of
the comforts of life, and the death of numbers may rightly be attributed to
their imprudence and dissipation. Commodore Porter himself has stated
publicly in the papers, "that malady with which the Naval forces, under my
command for the suppression of piracy, were afflicted had its origin in the
excessive severity of the duty performed, and the total absence of every des-
cription of comfort. The Disease was contracted among the haunts of the
pirates on the coast of Cuba, and not, as is generally supposed, at Key West."
Since the removal of the Naval depot, with the exception of the summer
of 1829, when fevers prevailed to some extent, I feel no hesitation in asserting
that Key West has been as healthy as any place South of the Potomac, if not
more so, and indeed far more healthy than many places at the North, where
healthfulness is so little doubted as never to be made the subject of inquiry.
During the last year (1835) there were, exclusive of Soldiers, 13 deaths,
among the population of the town, including transient persons, Seamen in
Port, etc., which at my estimate of 600 gives 1 death in 46-a result that will
compare with some of the healthiest places on the Globe. The diseases were
as follows: Consumption 3; Visceral derangements 2; Bilious fever 2;
Intemperance 1; Casualty 1; Chronic Dysentery 1; Lockjaw 1; Measles 1;
Cancer in Stomach (supposed) 1.-In conclusion, I would observe that a
residence in Key West is not subjecting oneself to all the evils that flesh is
heir to, as is generally imagined. The mosquitoes are to me the most annoying
of all the unpleasant circumstances attending it, and their attacks can be in a
great measure guarded against, so that we are not deprived of all comfort
even in the height of their season, and possessing as we do so many delights,
from the climate and other sources, we should not violently complain at their
molestation for a month or two.
The temperature of our atmosphere is exceedingly fine throughout the
year. I have never known it in the shade above 890 nor less than 45.
The expense of living is high, but it is counterbalanced in some measure,
as labor, mechanical productions, and professional services are much better
paid for than elsewhere; the costliness of everything is however a subject
I will now take leave of the subject, fearing much that I have already
exceeded your patience.
Attached to Whithead's letter is a comment by an individual
who signs himself Fredrington B. This author comments on the
number of individuals who's first names were John that were asso-
ciated with the Island of Key West in the 1820's. There was John
de Estrada, John Salas, John Strong, John Simonton, John White-
head, John Fleeming, John Warner, John Mountain, and John
Gerres. When John Simonton was forced to engage council to
defend his land claims, he employed John Rodman and John Drys-
dale, and a third lawyer who also had the first name of John. The
author of the attached note did not recall the name of the third
John, but he did point out that the lawyers were successful and
Simonton received a clear title to his land.
x This sentence and the two preceding paragraphs are quoted from Jefferson B. Browne,
Key West: The Old and the New, (St. Augustine, The Record Company, 1912), 8-9.
Browne eliminates some phrases, rewrites others, and changes capitalization and
punctuation. A part of the quotation used by Browne is reproduced in A Guide to
Key West, (New York, Hastings House, 1941), 30.
= Juan Pablo Salas was a Spanish officer who served faithfully in the Royal Artillery
Corps at St. Augustine and also acted at times as the Governor's secretary.
a Juan de Estrada was the Spanish governor of East Florida.
4 John Watson Simonton was a native of New Jersey who developed commercial interests
in the South and in Cuba. In the 1830's he was the sutler at the United States
Army Post in Key West and took an active part in the manufacturing of salt on
REMBER W. PATRICK 73
5 John Whitehead of Newark, New Jersey was the elder brother of W. A. Whitehead.
* John William Charles Fleeming came to Key West in 1822, but remained only a few
months and then returned to his home in New Bedford, Massachussetts. In 1832 he
returned to the Island to make arrangements for the manufacturing of salt but died
on December 19th of that year before the manufacturing plant had been established.
* Pardon C. Greene of Rhode Island was a sea captain who resided in Key West for
more than a decade prior to his death in 1838.
a Daniel Todd Patterson (1786-1839) was a native of New York. He entered the United
States Naval Service in 1800, served with distinction in the War of 1812, and had
considerable experience in dealing with the pirates of the Carribean area.
* David Porter (1780-1843) was a native of Boston, Massachusetts, He served in the
Navy during the War of 1812 and in 1823 became the Commander-In-Chief of the
West India Squadron. Within two years he almost cleared the Carribean of pirates.
ao Smith Thompson (1768-1843) was a native of New York and Secretary of the Navy
from January 1, 1819 to August 31, 1823.
n James Webb, a native of Georgia, was Judge of the Federal Court in Key West from
1828 to 1839.
12 James John Audubon came to Key West on May 4, 1832, and during his stay "his
hour of rising was 3:00 in the morning; from that time until noon and sometimes
even until night, he was engaged in hunting among the mangrove keys, despite of
heat, sand flies, and mosquitoes." Browne, Key West: The Old and the New, 15.
This Page Blank in Original
The Association's Historical Marker Program
By OLIVER GRIswoLD
The program of the Historical Association of Southern Florida to erect
markers at historical sites has resulted in the placing of three handsome
The Association has a list of 22 additional sites as the basis for contin-
ued activity. This may be considerably extended.
Undertaken as a testing or exploratory program, it has met with consid-
erable approbation by the public and the press. Local officials have
Funds for the markers have been raised through many private donations
in modest amounts.
All of the markers have been cast aluminum, enameled with gold letter-
ing against jet black background, with the addition of cobalt blue in the
Association's seal. So far, the materials have stood up under the sun and
weather, but the Association awaits further ageing to decide the degree of
The plan is to continue the standard size of 42" by 26", with the text
on both sides in lettering large enough to be read by a halted pedestrian or
motorist at about 25 feet. The markers are erected on aluminum-sheathed,
The first marker was erected in Bayfront Park, Miami, August 3, 1951.
Former State Senator F. M. Hudson made the dedication address. The
marker text reads:
Indians lived at the mouth of the Miami River (200 yards south
west of this spot) for more than 15 centuries before White man came.
The principal town of the Tequesta Indians, including six mounds
used for dwelling, burial, and religious rites, was discovered here
by the Spaniards. They built in it the earliest White settlement in
S. E. Florida, a fort and Jesuit mission, in 1567. When the British
obtained Florida in 1763, most of the Tequestas departed with the
Spaniards to Havana and thereafter vanished as a tribe.
HISTORICAL ASSOCIATION OF SOUTHERN FLORIDA, 1951
The second marker was dedicated October 28, 1951, at Meacham Field,
Key West, with an address by Roger Wolin, Director of Public Relations,
Latin American Division, Pan American World Airways. The marker text
The first regularly-scheduled international flight by a United
States airline was made from here to Havana Oct. 28, 1927. This
inaugurated Pan American World Airways which later spread
through the Caribbean, around South America, and across the Atlan-
tic and the Pacific.
The first Clipper was a wooden-winged Fokker F-7 capable
of carrying 10 passengers 85 m.p.h. On the maiden flight, it
carried a crew of two and a few bags of mail to the Cuban capital
in an hour and ten minutes. Passengers were carried beginning
Jan. 16, 1928.
HISTORICAL ASSOCIATION OF SOUTHERN FLORIDA, 1951
Former U. S. Senator Scott M. Loftin made the dedication address July
25, 1952, for the third marker in a small park renamed Tuttle Plaza at
S. E. First Avenue and Third Street, Miami. The marker text states:
Mrs. Julia D. Tuttle of Cleveland, 0., acquired 644 acres on
the north bank of the Miami River in 1891. She resided in the
remodelled officers' quarters of old Ft. Dallas 100 yards S. E. of
this spot until her death Sept. 14, 1898.
With rare foresight and energy, she persuaded Henry M. Flagler
to extend his railroad to Miami in 1896.
As inducement, Mrs. Tuttle gave him 100 acres for a railroad
terminal and hotel and 263 acres in alternate city blocks (more than
half her land), thus earning her fame as 'The Mother of Miami'.
HISTORICAL ASSOCIATION OF SOUTHERN FLORIDA, 1951
Other sites scheduled for marking in 1952 and 1953 are Miami Inter-
national Airport; the House of Refuge, Miami Beach; and Dinner Key.
HISTORICAL ASSOCIATION OF SOUTHERN FLORIDA
FISCAL YEAR ENDING AUGUST 31, 1952
On hand Sept. 1, 1951
Building Fund -------------$ 143.77
Marker Fund------------- 200.00
General Fund -----------------1,556.10 $1,899.87
Dues collected ---------------------3,243.00
Contributions to Building Fund ----- 22.49
Contributions to Marker Fund ----------191.65
Contributions-Program Meetings ----- 199.46
Miscellaneous Income ---------------- 40.64
Publishing Tequesta---------------........$ 868.58
Program Meetings ------------------ 334.57
Treasurer ------------------------- 135.97
Corresponding Secretary -------------- 102.35
Erection of Markers ---------------- 267.93
Archives --------------------------- 32.36
Miscellaneous Expense--------------- 258.41
On hand Aug. 31, 1952
Building Fund-----------................. $2,166.26
Marker Fund------------------- 123.72
General Fund ----------------- 1,306.96 3,596.94
Number of Members by Years (1952 to Sept. 1)
2$ $3 $5 $10 $25 $100 $250
1949 433 119 551 $1,459
1950 423 135 558 1,521
1951 408 2 168 19 2 1 600 2,150
1952 32 303 173 27 7 2 1 545 2,734
Withers Transfer & Storage Co. is providing fireproof storage for our collec-
tion without charge.
Of our cash on hand, $2,000 is drawing interest through the Industrial
Savings Bank of Miami.
EDWIN G. BISHOP, Treasurer.
JEANNE BELLAMY is a staff writer of the Miami Herald. She has written on a wide
range of South Florida Topics, most importantly perhaps on water control in the Ever.
glades. A preliminary draft of this paper was read at a program meeting of the
Historical Association on January 31, 1951.
MRS. HENRY J. BURKHARDT, perhaps better known to newspaper readers in Dade
County as Sue Pope Burkhardt, comes of a pioneer South Florida family. She is a
graduate of Miami High School and attended Florida State University. She filled
various positions on the old Miami Metropolis, and originally went to West Palm Beach
where she now resides to have charge of the Metropolis news bureau there. The article
on the history of coontie starch making was written for the Everglades Park Library, and
was read at a program meeting of the Historical Association of Southern Florida.
ERNEST G. GEARHARDT, JR., is an Assistant Vice President of the First National Bank
of Miami. He did the research on starch making machinery and the early methods of
processing coontie roots into starch for the purpose of designing a working model of a
coontie starch mill of the type being used in South Florida before the turn of the century.
This model was the central attraction of the bank's exhibit in the Greater Miami Manu-
facturers' Exposition at the Dinner Key Auditorium in March 1952. An historical
theme was selected for the exhibit to coincide with the bank's observance of its fiftieth
anniversary year. The article was originally written as explanatory and background
material for the benefit of the bank personnel manning the booth at the exhibit. The
starch mill model was later donated to the Historical Association of Southern Florida,
and has been on display for some months at the Miami Public Library in Bayfront Park.
OLIVER GRISWOLD is program coordinator for the University of Miami's Radio and
Television Department. He is chairman of the Historical Association's Committee on
Historical Sites and Markers.
REMBER W. PATRICK, who prepared the introduction and notes for William Adee
Whitehead's description of Key West is chairman of the History Department at the
University of Florida, Associate Editor of the Florida Historical Quarterly and author,
among other things, of Florida Under Five Flags.
JULIEN YONGE, Director of the P. K. Yonge Library of Florida History at the
University of Florida, and for more than a quarter of a century editor of the Florida
Historical Quarterly, called to our attention the Whitehead description of Key West
and supplied the photograph and notes on the early plan of Key West.
F. PAGE WILSON is a long time resident of Miami as his article indicates. He now
resides at 102 S. W. 19th Road. He is a member of the Historical Association Board
of Directors, and an active member of the Miami Pioneers. This article is part of a
larger study of the area's history on which he is working.
LIST OF MEMBERS*
EXPLANATORY NOTE: The Society provides several classes of membership.
Regular or "Annual" members at three dollars a year make up the great major-
ity of the list. For those who wish to contribute more for the promotion of the
Association's work, the other classes of membership provide the opportunity,
and the publication of their names in the proper category of membership is a
means of recognition. "Sustaining" members pay five dollars a year, "Patrons"
pay ten dollars a year, "Donors" pay twenty-five dollars a year, "Sponsors" pay
one hundred dollars a year, and "Benefactors" contribute two hundred and fifty
dollars or more a year.
This printed roster is made up of the names of those persons and institutions
that have paid dues in 1951 or in 1952 before September first, when this material
must go to press. Those joining after this date in 1952 will have their names
included in the 1953 roster. The symbol ** indicates founding member and the
symbol indicates charter member.
Adams. William H., Miami
Albertson Public Library, Orlando
Allardt, Mrs. Frederick, Los Angeles
Allen, Robert L., DeLand
American Museum of Natural History
Andrews, Melvin D., Miami
Ansbaugh, Mrs. Katheryn M., Miami
Anthony, Roscoe T., Palm Beach
Ayars, Erling E., So. Miami
Ayars, Mrs. Erling E., So. Miami
Ayer, Mrs. Malcolm Hall, Miami*
Bakers, Mrs. Therese C., Stuart
Barker, Virgil, Miami
Baum, Earl M., Naples
Baxter, John M., Miami*
Beal, K. Malcolm, Miami*
Beck, Mrs. Alfred John, Ft. Lauderdale*
Bell, Jack, Miami
Bellous, C. M., Sr., Miami
Bennett, Lucius L., Miami
Berst, Miss Catherine, Miami
Berst, Francolia, Miami
Bingham, Mrs. Millicent Todd, Washington,
Bird, Mary G., Coral Gables
Bishop, Edwin G., Coral Gables*
Black, Mrs. Charles E., Miami*
Black, Dr. Linnie, Miami
Black, W. L Jr., Miami
Bliss, H. Bond, Miami*
Blouvelt, Mrs. Arthur M., Coral Gables
Botts, G. W., Jacksonville*
Bowen, Crate D., Miami*
Boyd, Mark F., Tallahassee*
Bradfield, E. S., Miami Beach*
Brickell, James B., Oxford, Md.
Brickell, Mrs. James B., Oxford, Md.
Briggs, Harold E., Carbondale, 11.
Brinson, J. Hardee, Miami
Brook, John Jr., Coral Gables
Brown University, Providence, R. L
Brown, William Mark, Miami*
Brownell, Thomas C., So. Miami*
Brunstetter, Roscoe, Coral Gables
Budd, Garland M., Jr., Coral Gables
Budd, Mrs. Garland M., Jr., Coral Gables
Bullen, Ripley P., Gainesville
Burton, Mrs. Robert AK, Jr., Miami*
Bush, R. S., Miami
Byrd, Mrs. J. Wade, Miami
Campbell, Mrs. Park H., Miami*
Capron, Louis B., West Palm Beach
Carnine, Miss Helen M., Miami
Carson, Mrs. Ruby Leach, Miami Springs**
Cartee, Mrs. Horace L., Coral Gables
Cass, Mrs. Glen B., Miami
Castillo, Miss Angela del, Washington, D. C.
Catlow, Mrs. William R., Jr., Bloomfield,
Chamberlain, Robert S., Alexandria, Va.
Chase, H. R., Miami
Christian, Mrs. Mary Poole, Clewiston
Clarke, Jerry C., Miami
Clarke, Mary Helm, Coral Gables*
Close, Kenneth, Miami
Coconut Grove Library
Cole, R. B., Miami
Collins, Mrs. Eva 0., Bartow
Columbia University Library
Combs, Walter H., Jr., Miami*
Combs, Mrs. Walter H., Sr., Miami*
Comerford, Miss Nora A., Coral Gables
Coonor, Mrs. June, Tampa
Cook, John B., Miami
Cooney, Robert E., Miami
Cooney, Mrs. Robert E., Miami
Coppedge, Gene, Silver Springs
Coral Gables Public Library
Coslow, George R., Miami
Cox, Mrs. Jessamine S., Miami
Crow, Lon Worth, Miami*
Crow, Mrs. Lon Worth, Miami*
Cullen, Ralph 0., Coral Gables
Cunningham, J. L. Coral Gables
Cunningham, Mrs. J. L., Coral Gables
Curtiss, Kent, Grand Rapids, Mich.
Cushman School, Miami
Dade County Teachers' Professional Library
Davidson, E. J., Coral Gables
Davies, Edward G., Miami
DeBoe, Mrs. Mizpah Otto, Coral Gables
Davis, Katherine Fite, Coral Gables
Dismukes, William P., Coral Gables*
Dodd, Miss Dorothy, Tallahassee*
Dorn, J, K., Jr., Miami
Dorothy, Mrs. Caroline, Miami*
Dovell, J. E., Gainesville
Downes, Patricia, Coral Gables
Duff, Elizabeth B., Clewiston
Dupuis, J. G., Miami
DuVal, Mrs. Hugh F., Miami
Dykes, Robert J., Miami
Earle, Walter F., Ormond Beach
Earman, Joe S., Vero Beach*
Eason, Mrs. Helga H., Miami
Eckel, Mrs, Frederick L., Ft. Lauderdale
Edwards, Mrs. Howard K., Miami
Elder, S. F., Miami*
Elder, Mrs. Leola Adams, Miami*
Elliot, Mrs. Robert C., Ft. Lauderdale
England, Mrs. P. H., Coral Gables
English, Colin, Tallahassee
English, Mrs. Ruth, Tallahassee
Etzwiler, Mrs. Edith M., Miami
Fairchild, Mrs. David, Miami*
Fisher, Mrs. Jane, Miami
Fite, Robert H., Miami
Flagler Memorial Library, Miami
Florida Geological Survey
Florida State Library
Florida State University
Forman, Mrs. J. B., Ft. Lauderdale
Foster, Athens S., Miami*
Francois, Miss Florence M., Miami
Freeland, Mrs. William L., Coral Gables**
Freeling, Mrs. J. S., Miami
Freeling, J. S., Miami
Freeman, Mrs. Ethel C., Morristown, N. J.
French, Mrs. Marian M., Miami
Frisbee, Mrs. Allan, Miami
Fritz, Miss Florence, Fort Myers*
Frohock, Mrs. Jack, Miami
Frutkoff, Theodore, Coral Gables
Fuzzard, Miss Jessie M., Miami*
Gardner, R. C., Miami*
Gardner, Mrs. R. C., Miami*
Gates, Harley D., Boca Raton
Gellrich, Mrs. Ida W., Key West
Geberer, Murray, Kew Gardens, N. Y.
Gibson, Mrs. Walter C., Miami*
Gifford, Mrs. John C., Miami*
Gilbert, Bertha K., Miami Beach
Gilkey, Margaret J. Miami
Gillespie, Margaret M., Miami
Gillette, George, Wauchula
Givens, Robert H,, Jr., Miami
Goggin, John M., Gainesville
Goldweber, S., Miami
Graham, James S., Ft. Lauderdale
Graham, William A., Miami Springs
Greene, Miss Clarissa Miami
Gregor, Henry, Coral Gables
Griffin, John W., Gainesville
Griffith, Arthur, Miami
Griswold, Oliver, Miami
Grose, Mrs. Esther N., Miami
Hack, Ernest, Miami
Hack, Jacob, Jr., Miami
Hagan, Thomas W., Miami
Haggard, Mrs. W. A., Miami*
Hall, Willis E., Coral Gables
Hallstead, Fred, Ft, Lauderdale
Halstead, Wm. L., Miami
Hamel, Claude C., Amherst, Ohio
Hampton, Mrs. John, Sparks, Md.*
Hancock, Mrs. J. T. Okeechobee
Hancock, Susan, Decatur, Ga.
Hanna, A. J., Winter Park*
Harris, Miss Julia Fillmore, Miami*
Hart, Mrs. Reginald, Coral Gables
Hartnett, Mrs. Fred B., Coral Gables*
Hartnett, Fred B., Coral Gables*
Harvard College Library
Harvey, J. H., Miami
Havee, Mrs. Kathryn, Miami
Hayes, Mrs. Emmie S., Miami
Heinlein, Mrs. Mary Calkins, Homestead
Hendry, Judge Norman, Miami
Henry, Mrs. Erma P., Coral Gables
Herin, Thomas D., Miami
Hess, Alfred, Miami
Higgs, Charles D., Fontana, Wis.*
Hill, Mrs. A. Judson, Miami
Hilsabeck, W. D., Miami
Heldenberg, Miss Anne C., Miami
Holland, Judge John W., Miami*
Holland, Spessard L, Washington, D. C.*
Hollister, Mrs. Louise C., Miami
Holmdale, Mrs. A. G., Miami
Holmes, Jeanne, New York
Hooker, Roland M., Miami Beach
Houghton, Mrs. A. S., Miami
Hovsepian, Lawrence W., Miami
Hudson, Mrs .F. M., Miami*
Huggins, Mrs. Lula C., Miami
Humes, Mrs, Ralph H., Miami*
Jahn, LeRoy S., Miami
Jenkins, Leon R., Miami
Jones, Col. A. B., Miami
Jones, Mrs. L. A., Miami*
Jones, L. A., Miami*
Jones, Mrs. Macklin, Coral Gables
Jones, Mrs. Mary, Miami
Jones, Mrs. Mary Douglas, Coral Gables
Kaplan, Dr. Jacob H., Miami Beach*
Karpinski, Louis C, Winter Haven
Kenyon, Alfred, Ft. Lauderdale
Key West Art and Historical Society
Kiem, Stanly, Miami
Kilvert, Maxwell A., Winter Park*
King, C. Harold, Miami
Kistler, The C. W. Company, Miami
Kniffen ,Claude L, Coral Gables
Kofoed, Jack, Miami
Kohl, Mrs. Lavenia B., Palm Beach, Fla.
Kussrow, Van C., Miami Beach
Lake Worth Public Library
Lamorton Fred de, Tampa
Lawrence, Mrs. W. A., Miami*
Lee, David C., Jr,, Chicago
Lewis, Miss Carlotta, Coral Gables
Lewis, Mrs. L. G., Miami
Lewis, Miss Mary D., Tallahassee
Leydon, Mrs. Louise, Coral Gables
Lipp, Morris N., Miami Beach
Littlefield, Miss Helena, Coral Gables
Loftin, Scott M., Jacksonville
Longshore, Frank, Miami
Lyell, Mrs. Robert 0., Miami
Lyell, Robert 0., Miami
Lyman, Jack B., Miami
Lynch, Sylvester John, Homestead*
MacArthur, W. E., Miami
MacArthur, Mrs. W. E., Miami
MacDonald, Miss Barbara, Miami
MacDonald, Miss Betty, Miami
Malone, E. B., Miami
Manly, Charles W., Miami
Manning, Mrs. William S., Jacksonville
Marchman, Watt P., Fremont, Ohio*
Marsh, Fred Dana, Ormond Beach
Marsh, Mrs. Fred Dana, Ormond Beach
Martin, John K., Tampa
Martin, S. Walter, Athens, Ga.
Mason, Mrs. Joe S., Miami
Mason, Walter Scott, Jr., So. Miami
Massey, Miss Ethelyn, Miami
Matteson, Miss Eleanor E., Miami*
May, Philip S., Jasksonville
McCollum, John I., Jr., Miami
McCune, Adrian, Miami Beach
McGahey, Miss Lillian, Miami
McKay, D. B., Tampa
McKee, Arthur, Jr., Homestead
McKim, Mrs. L. H.. Montreal, Canada
McManeus, Charles M., Miami
McManus, Mrs. Merry R., Okahumpka
McSwain, Dr. Gordon H., Arcadia
Meissner, Charles R., Homestead
Memorial Library of the Palm Beaches
Meredith, Mrs, Evelyn T., Miami
Merrick, Miss Ethel F., Coral Gables
Merritt, Dr. Webster, Jacksonville
Mershon, M. L., Miami
Meyers, Miss Ethel H., Hialeah
Miami Public Library*
Miami Public Library, Lemon City Branch
Miami Public Library, Riverside Branch
Miami Public Library, Shenandoah Branch
Miami Senior High School Library
Miami Springs Memorial Library
Michel, Miss Hedwig, Estero
Milberg, Edmund J., Miami Beach
Miller, Benjamin, Miami
Miller, Raymond M., Miami*
Mitchell, Florence F., Coral Gables
Mitchell, Harry J., Key West
Moore, Mrs. T. V., Miami*
Morris, Miss Zula, Miami*
Mounts, Mrs. Marvin, West Palm Beach
Mudd, Dr. Richard D., Saginaw, Mich.
Muller, Leonard R., Miami*
Myers, Gen. John Twiggs, Miami
Nelson, Winifred H., Miami
Newberry Library, Chicago, Ill.
Newell, Miss Natalie, Miami*
Nugent, Patrick B., Swananoa, N. C.*
Nugent, Mrs. Patrick B., Swananoa, N. C.*
O'Bryant, Violet, Miami
Oglesby, W. Dickey, Coral Gables
O'Meara, Vincent K,, Hialeah
Otis, Robert R., Jacksonville
Ott, Mrs. Roy V., Miami
Owre, J. Rils, Coral Gables
Pace, Mrs. Johnson H., Miami*
Parker, Mrs. D. Larsen, Miami
Parsons, Mrs. Frances G., Miami*
Partak, Albert W., Miami
Patrick, Rembert W., Gainesville
Peabody Museum Library, Harvard
Peacock, Mrs. Coral, Miami
Pearce, Mrs. Dixon, Miami
Pemberton, P. G., Miami
Pemberton, Mrs. P. G., Miami
Pendergast, Mrs. Eleanor L., Miami*
Penfield, Thomas, Hollywood, Calif.
Pennekamp, John D., Miami
Pennington, Rev. Edgar L., Mobile, Ala.*
Perry, Burroughs F., Miami
Phelps, James A., Miami
Philhour, Charles, Jr., So. Miami
Pierce, Miss Ruby Edna, Palm Beach
Piggott, E, St. Clair, Miami
Pizie, Stuart G., Miami
Platt, Mrs. Ronald C., Miami
Platt, T. Beach, Miami
Plowden, Gene, Miami
Power, Mrs. Frances M., Miami
Prince, J. W. Naples
Railey, Lilburn R., Miami
Reynolds, Mrs. H. Jarvis, Coral Gables
Robbins, Leon A., Boynton Beach
Rollins College Library, Winter Park
Rollins, Mildred, Miami
Rome, Mrs. H. J., Worcester, Mass.
Rosner, George W., Coral Gables*
Ross, Malcolm, Coral Gables
Royce, Gardner, Coral Gables
Ruettger, Mrs. Ruby, Miami
Sadlier, Rt. Rev. Francis, St. Leo.
Saunders, Lewis M., Miami
Scheminger, John Jr., Providence, R. I.
Scott, Paul R., Miami
Senior High School Library, DeLand
Sessa, Frank B., Miami
Sessler, Robert G., Melbourne
Shappee, Nathan D., Miami
Shaw, Henry Oberstreet, Miami
Shaw, Martin L., Miami
Sheritt, Charles L., Miami
Shewmake, Mrs. C. E., Miami
Simmons, J. P., Miami Beach
Simons, Allan, Miami Beach
Singleton, Mrs. E. M., Miami
Singleton, Stephen C., Miami*
Singleton, W. L., Miami
Smith, Avery C., Jr, Miami
Smith, Mrs .Edna H., Miami
Snodgrass, Miss Dena, Jacksonville
Squibb, Alex, Miami
State Historical Society of Wisconsin
State University of Iowa
Stetson University, DeLand
Stevens, Mrs. T. T., Miami
Stilwell, Mrs. C. D., Miami
Strong, Clarence E., Miami
Sullivan, Mrs. Howard W., Haverhill, N. H.*
Sydow, William, Miami
Talley, Howard J., Miami
Taylor, Paul C., Miami
Taylor, Robert R., Miami*
Tebeau, Mrs. Violet H., Coral Gables
Technical High School Library, Miami
Ten Eick, Mrs. M. Nunez, Tampa*
Tharp, Charles Doren, Coral Gables*
Thompson, Carey R., Miami
Thrift, Charles T., Jr., Lakeland
Tompkins, H. Herbert, Miami
Tonkin, Mrs. Mary E., Coral Gables
Topping, D. G., Ponte Vedra Beach
Town, Miss Eleanor F., Coral Gables
Trader, R. V., Miami
Trammell, Wilson, Miami
Trice, Essie Hall, Coral Gables
Trice, H. H., Coral Gables
True, David 0., Miami*
Turnbull, Daniel F., Sarasota
Tussey, Mrs. Ethel Wayt, Miami
P. K. Yonge Library of Florida History,
University of Virginia, Charlottesville
Van Landingham, Mrs. Walter, Miami
Verdoorn, Dr. Frans, Walthan, Mass.
Vosburgh, John R., Miami
Waldin, Anton H., Jr., Homestead
Wall, A. Edward, Miami
Warner, Miss Elmina, Miami
Warner, William C-, Miami
Warner, Mrs. William C., Miami
Watson, Miss Nan, Miami
Watson, J. W., Jr., Miami
Wead, Frank J., Opalocka
Welsh, Agnew, Miami*
Wenner, Henry S., Jr., Miami
West, Miss Emily Louise, Miami Beach
West, Mrs. Roger H., Daytona Beach
Whitaker, Mrs. Trippe, Coral Gables
Wiesemann, William, Miami
Wight, William S., Miami
Williams, H. Franklin, Coral Gables*
Willing, R. B., Miami
Wilson, Miss Emily L, St. Augustine
Wilson, Gaines R., Miami**
Wilson, Mrs. Gaines R., Miami
Wilson, Miss Virginia, Miami
Wolfe, Miss Ronalie L, Miami
Wood, Mrs. Agnes Faris, Miami
Wright, Mrs. lone Steussey, Miami Shores
Wynn, John C., Miami
Young, John G., Coral Gables
Younkins, F. R., Miami
Zenker, Ramond, Miami
Adams, Elliot, Jacksonville
Aldrich, Richard, Coral Gables
Alligood, Mrs. Katherine P., North Miami
Anderson, Robert H., Miami
Arnold, Mrs. Roger Williams, Miami
Ashe, Bowman F., Miami
Baber, Adin, Kansas, Ill.
Bailey, Ernest H., Miami Beach
Bailey, Mrs. Ernest H., Miami Beach
Baker, Charles H., Jr., Miami*
Bakey, H. W., Miami
Balkin, Gilbert J., Miami
Bartnett, Mrs. Jessie, Miami
Bartz, Edward, Miami
Bassett, Rex, Jr., Ft. Lauderdale
Beardsley, Jim. E., Clewiston
Bickel, Karl A., Sarasota
Bills, Jeanne Bellamy, Miami
Blackburn, Elmer E., Miami
Bliss, Alonzo 0., Jr., Miami
Blocker, John C., St. Petersburg
Bolles, George E., Jr,, Miami
Bowers, Bland, Coral Gables
Brickell, Mrs. Charles, Miami*
Brookfield, Charles M., Miami*
Burdine, William M. Miami
Bush, Mrs. Franklin C., Miami*
Caldwell, Mrs. Thomas P., Coral Gables*
Caldwell, Thomas P., Coral Gables**
Campbell, Park H., S. Miami
Campbell, Mrs, Susie C., Miami
Carlson, J. E., Miami
Chandesh, Leslie, Long Island, N. Y.
Chase, Randall, II, Sanford
Cheetham, Joseph M., Miami
Collier, Miles, Everglades
Corley, Pauline, Marietta, Ga.**
Corson, Allen, Miami
Crandon, C. H., Miami
Crane ,Francis Y., Marathon
Crane, Mrs. Francis Y., Marathon
Cross, John, Miami Beach
Crowninshield, Mrs. Francis B., Boca
Davis, Mrs. Christine, Miami
Davison, Mrs, Chester M., Miami
Dee, William V., Miami
Deedmeyer, George J., Miami*
Dorn, H. Lewis, S. Miami
Dorn, Harold W., S. Miami
Dorn, Mrs. Harold W., S. Miami
Dorn, J. K., Miami
Douglas, Marjorie Stoneman, Miami**
Downer, Miss Lisa de F., Miami**
Duley, Almas Leroy, Miami
Dunn, Helen B., Miami
Dupree, Thomas O'Hagan, Coral Gables
Egger, Mrs. Henry J. Live Oak**
Elliston, Charles A., Hallandale
Emerson, Hugh P., Miami
Everglades Natural History Association,
Fee, W. I., Fort Pierce
Feibelman, Herbert U., Miami
Fernandez, Jose M., Miami Beach
Ferendino, Andrew J., Miami Beach
Florence, Robert S., Miami
Frederick, Bill, Miami
Free Public Library, Jacksonville
Freeman, Edison S., Miami
Fuller, Walter P., St. Petersburg
Fultz, Herman B., Coral Gables
Gaillard, Margaret C., Miami
Gannaway, Mrs. K. C., Miami
Gardner, Jack R., Benton Harbor, Mich.
Garrigan, Mrs. Jane, Miami
Gaunt, E. C., Miami
Gearhart, Ernest C., Jr., Miami
Gibson, Henry C., Jenkintown, Pa.
Giersch, Richard F., Jr., Miami
Graw, Lamonte, Orlando
Griffin, L. J., Miami
Grosvenor, Gilbert H., Washington, D. C.
Hamilton, Thomas B., Miami
Hanks, Bryan, Fort Worth, Tex.
Hardie, Richard M., Miami
Harllee, J. Win., Miami
Harris, Walter L., Miami
Harrison, Winston F., Coral Gables
Havee, Justin P., Miami
Herin, William A., Miami*
Hills, Lee, Miami
Holcomb, Lyle D., Miami
Hollowell, R. D. T., Fort Myers
Hollywood Public Library*
Hubbell, Willard S., Miami
Hudson, F- M., Miami
Hughes, Mrs. Fleda V., Miami
Hume, Mrs. Edward C., Miami*
Huntington Library, San Marino, Calif.
Jackson, Melvin H., Cambridge, Mass.
Johns, Frank C., Jr., Coral Gables
Johnson, Mrs. Alberta M., Gainesville
Kent, Arnold H., Miami
Kerr, James Benjamin, Hollywood*
Kinlaw, David Eugene, San Francisco, Calif.
Krome, Mrs. Win, J., Homestead*
Lauther, Clarence F., Miami
Lauther, Mrs. Olive Chapman, Miami
Lesley, T. L. Tampa
Lindgren, Mrs. M. E., Miami
Lindsley, A. R., Miami Btach
Lummus, J. N. Jr., Miami
Lunsford, E. C., Miami
MacVicar, I. D., Miami
Mansfield, Wm. H., Miami
Malir, Mrs. Elizabeth, Hialeah
Manley, Marion I., Miami
McCaskill, J. M., Miami
McCarthy, Don L., Miami
McDonald, Mrs. John M., Miami Beach
McKey, Robert M., Miami
McNair, Angus K., S, Miami
Meisel, Max, Miami Beach
Merrick, Mrs. Eunice P. Coral Gobles
Miami Beach Public Library
Miami Daily News
Mills, Charles A., Miami Beach
Mitchell, James B., Hobe Sound
Modisette, Col. Welton M., Coral Gables
Munroe, Wirth M., Miami
Oglesby, R. M., Bartow
Orlando Senior High School
Orr, Alexander, Jr., Miami
Pancoast, Jr. Arthur, Uleta*
Pancoast, Lester C., Ithaca, N. J,
Pardo, Mrs. Ramiro V., Miami
Parker, Alfred B., Miami
Parker, 0. B., Homestead
Pearse, Mrs. Langdon, Winnetka, Ill.
Peters, Mrs. Thelma, Miami*
Phillips, A. V., Homestead
Pitt, Gerard, Miami*
Pollard, Marshall S. P., Miami
Porter, William R., Miami Shores**
Pratt, Theodore, Boca Raton
Prevatt, Preston G., Miami
Price, Gaylord L., Miami
Rahn, William B., Miami
Railey, F. G., Miami*
Railey, Mrs. F. G., Miami*
Rainey, Mrs. J. S., Miami
Rainey, J. S., Miami
Rapp, Dr. Gerard, Miami
Rasmussen, Edwin L, Miami**
Reese, Mrs. J. H., Miami
Roberts, R. B., Miami
Robertson, Miss Edna H., Ormond Beach
Rose, Harvey K., Miami
Ross, Donald, Benton Harbor, Mich.
St. Augustine Historical Society
Schwartz, Mrs. Charles R., Miami
Sewell, John J., Miami Beach
Seybold, W. C. Miami
Shaffer, E. H., Miami
Shank, H. W., Coral Gables
Shaw, G. N., Miami
Shaw, Martha Luelle, Miami*
Shepard, L. C., Coral Gables
Sisters of St. Joseph, St. Augustine
Slaughter, Frank G., Jacksonville
Smith, Lorrain G., Miami
Smith, McGregor, Miami
Sokola, Anton, Miami
Spinks, Elizabeth J., Miami*
Stewart, Vernon B., Miami
Stiles, Wade, Ft, Lauderdale
Stitt, J. W., Miami Springs
Stranahan, Mrs. Frank, Ft. Lauderdale*
Tebeau, C. W., Coral Gables*
Thomas, Arden H., S. Miami
Thoomas, Wayne, Plant City
Tigert, John J., Coral Gables
University of Pennsylvania
Urmey, Mrs. William N., Miami
Vance, Mrs. Herbert 0., Coral Gables*
Walker, Marvin H., Lake Wales
Walters, Mrs, Mae L .M., Miami
Walters, Walters M., Miami
Washington, James G., Miami
Watson, W. Cecil, Miami
Wheeler, B. B., Miami Beach
Whitehurst, Mrs. Charles E., Ft. Lauderdale
Whitten, George E., Miami
Williams, C. J. Jacksonville
Williams, Mrs. Guy V., Miami*
Wilson, Ben E., Miami
Wilson, F. Page, Miami
Wirth, Miss Josephine, Miami*
Wittichen, Mrs. Murray Forbes, Coral Gables
Wood, Willis D., Miami
Woore, A. Meredith, Miami*
Yonge, Julien C., Gainesville
Younghans, S. W., Miami
Zabriskie, George A., Ormond Beach
Adams, Adam Gillispie, Coral Gables
Ballfe, Alex, Miami
Barge, Dr. Hubert A., Miami
Benson, Clifton D., Coral Gables
Cooper, George R., Princeton
Curry, Allison B. Jr., Coral Gables
Dolan, Francis M., Coral Gables
Daffy, E, V., Miami
Giffin, John S., Miami
Keyes, Kenneth S., Miami*
Knight, John S., Miami
LaGorce, John Oliver, Washington, D. C.
Leffler, Miss Cornelia, Miami***
Lloyd, J. Harlan, Miami
Lummus, J. N., Miami
Mallory, Phillip R., Miami Beach
Mallory, Mrs. Phillip R., Miami Beach
Matheson, Hugh M., Jr., Miami
Mead, Edwin, Miami Beach
Montgomery, Col. Robert H., Miami**
Montgomery, Mrs. Robert H., Miami**
Shipe, Paul E., Miami
Thompson, John G., Miami
Thompson, Leonard K., Miami
Thord-Gray, Gen. I., Greenwich, Conn.
Vanderpool, Fred W., Miami*
West, William N. Genesco, I1.
Clot, Oscar, Miami
Gardner, Dick B., Miami
Geiger, Mrs. August, Miami Beach*
Graham, Ernest R., Hialeah
Florida Power and Light Co., Miami
MacDonald, Duncan, Miami*
Pancoast. Russell T.
Wilson, D. Earl
Pan American World Airways, Miami
University of Miami
THE HISTORICAL ASSOCIATION OF SOUTHERN FLORIDA
FOUNDED 1940-INCORPORATED 1941
Adam G. Adams
Mrs. Frank Stranahan
Thomas W. Hagan
Justin P. Havee
Miss Virginia Wilson
Edwin G. Bishop
Mrs. W. E. Huggins
Dr. Charlton W. Tebeau
Dr. Bowman F. Ashe
Charles M. Brookfield
Mrs. Ruby Leach Carson
Joseph M. Cheetham
George H. Cooper
George J. Deedmeyer
J. K. Dorn
Mrs. William L. Freeland
Ernest G. Gearhart, Jr.
William J. Harllee
Frederick M. Hudson
Mrs. George E. Merrick
Wirth M. Munroe
Russell T. Pancoast
Dr. John J. Tigert
Mrs. Herbert 0. Vance
W. Cecil Watson
F. Page Wilson
Gaines R. Wilson