The coquina walls of the Bulow Plantation stand in ruins, and only the foundation of the Mala Compra Plantation remains. Both ruins are remnants from early nineteenth century Florida. The 150-acre Bulow Plantation Ruins State Park is located three miles west of Flagler Beach. Mala Compra is on North Oceanshore Boulevard in Palm Coast. In 1821, Charles W. Bulow purchased nearly 5,000 acres of land in what is now Flagler County. “The Bulow Plantation was one of the largest plantation enterprises in territorial Florida,” says Al Hadeed, local historian and Flagler County attorney. “It was very successful because its major crop was sugar. Sugar was very, very expensive and very prized. Sugar was also used to make rum, so it had a lot of different uses. He was very successful, but unfortunately, that success suffered the fate of the Seminole Indian Wars. His plantation, like many of the others in northeast Florida, was burned by the Seminoles.”
“This was the Jaguars stadium of the time,” says Lloyd Washington, president of the Durkeeville Historical Society. “Every team of the Negro League played here.” More importantly, the site witnessed the city’s slow but steady progress for civil rights. Owned by the city since 1932, it was renamed after legendary Stanton baseball coach James P. Small in 1980 and became part of the city’s parks system. Today it’s not only a city park containing a small museum, it serves as the home field for both Edward Waters College and Stanton College Prep. Now supporters of the park are hoping that its significant place in the city’s — and the state’s — history will be cemented with state funding to refurbish the facility.
In 1964, Cape Coral’s Gulf American Land Corporation, as a singularly brilliant publicity stunt, gave a committee of women the opportunity to design their ideal Florida house. The result was “the house of 40 dreams.”
The cannon and gunfire from the small boat could be heard through the trails at the DeSoto National Memorial on Saturday as reenactors gave spectators a blast from the past. The boat responsible for the cannon fire was the one carrying conquistador Hernando de Soto and his men, at least, reenactors portraying the group who claimed Florida for Spain more than 500 years ago. This marked the 78th year of the portrayal of the beginning of the four-year, 4,000-mile journey for the Europeans. Daniel Stephens, Park Ranger and interpreter for the National Park Service, portrayed a priest that blessed the land de Soto claimed.
“Florida’s Minority Trailblazers: The Men and Women Who Changed the Face of Florida Government” provides Floridians with an in-depth look at a half century of Florida’s racial/ethnic history through the personal stories of over 50 minority trailblazers in modern-day Florida politics, beginning with the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s (the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and Voting Rights Act of 1965) and the historic U.S. Supreme Court cases ordering legislative and congressional districts to be drawn utilizing the “one person, one vote” standard. The Civil Rights Movement coincided with Florida’s rapid population explosion that yielded the state more representatives in Congress with each successive Census and ultimately changed the faces of state government officeholders (legislative, executive, judicial) in Tallahassee as well — a process that is ongoing. Among the trailblazers included in the book, 41 percent were born outside the United States, 12 percent had one or more parent born abroad, and 16 percent had one or more grandparent born outside the U.S.
Surfing has been ingrained into American popular culture since the 1960s. Even people who have never touched a surfboard have been influenced by the music, movies, and philosophy of the surfing community. Since the mid-twentieth century, Cocoa Beach has been a prominent home for surfing in Florida.
Ponder that people of African descent came to Florida more than one-hundred years before the British landed at Jamestown. Today’s edition is with Dr. Marvin Dunn, the former Chairman of Florida International University’s Department of Psychology.
Over the past century, the Florida Museum of Natural History has worked to fulfill its mission statement of “Understanding, preserving and interpreting biological diversity and cultural heritage to ensure their survival for future generations.” For all those years of work documenting and researching the history and environment of the state of Florida and the broader Caribbean Basin, it could be excused for taking a few weeks to celebrate its own story.
Featured Image of Bulow Plantation Ruins Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.