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History of Early Jacksonville 



At the meeting of the Board of Governors of the 
Jacksonville Board of Trade held this date the 
generous offer of the compiler of this work, Mr. 
Thomas Frederick Davis, to turn over the publica- 
tion of and revenue from this work to this orga- 
nization was unanimously accepted and a vote of 
thanks was tendered to him for his patriotic labors 
in the interest of the City of Jacksonville in the 
gathering together of its most interesting history. 

Francis P. Conroy, 

Attest : 

H. H. Richardson, 

July 28th, 1911. 








Thomas Frederick Davis 



THE H. & W. B. drew COMPANY 


CopyrigMed 1911 by 


(All rights reserved) 









In the preparation of this work every effort 
has been made to use only reliable, authentic data. 
Eeferences are given whenever possible, and 
where 'the reference work is thoroughly indexed, 
only the title is named. A considerable portion of 
the matter has never been published before, being 
the recollections of old citizens, to whom the thanks 
of the author, and others finding pleasure or profit 
in these pages, are due; and especially to Mrs. 
William M. Bostwick, who has given much data 
and most valuable assistance in the preparation of 
this book. Some years ago, it was the custom of 
several of the oldest residents to meet and talk 
over '^ early days." Many of these old timers 
have since passed away, but Mrs. Bostwick 
possesses notes made at the meetings, and much of 
this matter appears in this book. 

The author is in no way connected with the sale 
of this book and receives no remuneration there- 
from, he being content with the privilege of thus 
placing in permanent form what is believed to be 
an authentic history of our city during a period 
for which data are now scarce and becoming more 
difficult to obtain with the passing of every year. 

Thomas Frederick Davis. 
Jacksonville, Fla., July, 1911. 


Discovery of the St. Johns by the French Hugue- 
nots — Erection of Fort Caroline — Capture of Fort 
Caroline by the Spanish and destruction of the 
French colony — Re-capture of Fort Caroline by 
the French and retribution of De Gourgues — 
Location of Fort Caroline — Fort San Nicholas — 
The St. Johns River. Pages 1 to 12 


Indian name — The King's Road — English land 
grants — John H. Mcintosh — Spanish land grants — 
First settlement on site of Jacksonville — The 
Patriot war in Florida. Pages 13 to 20 

Lewis Zachariah Hogans — The Taylor grant — Juan 
Maestre — East Jacksonville — Springfield — River- 
side — Talleyrand. Pages 21 to 28 

First hotel — John Brady — First store — Dawson & 
Buckles — Isaiah David Hart — Increasing travel — 
Jacksonville surveyed — Streets named — Lots 
sold — The founder of Jacksonville. Pages .... 29 to 38 


Courts established — First grand jury — First civil 
case — First lawyer — Public buildings erected — ■ 
First mills — Local conditions — Ferry across the 
St. Johns River — The early mail — Incorporation 
of Jacksonville and copy of charter — List of 
mayors — The Peninsular and Jacksonville Rail- 
road — Newspaper started — Organization of Bank 
of Jacksonville — Great freeze of 1835 and complete 
list of severe freezes subsequently. Pages .... 39 to 62 


Opening of the Seminole war and conditions at- 
tending — The old block house — Attacks by the 
Indians — Attack on the Johns family — Panic of 
1837 — Spectacular effort of Bank of Jacksonville 
to weather the panic — Osceola Nikkanoochee — 
Mulberry and silk worm culture — Dr. Abel Sey- 
mour Baldwin. Pages 63 to 78 


Founding and early history of the Methodist, 
Protestant Episcopal, Roman Catholic, Baptist, 
and Presbyterian churches at Jacksonville. Pages 79 to 91 


Population of Jacksonville and rate of increase — 
Early newspapers — Great storm of 1846 — Excite- 
ment in the quiet town — Local conditions during 
this period — First epidemic. Pages 92 to 96 

History and romance of steam navigation on the 
St. Johns River — Jacksonville-Savannah steamers 
— Jacksonville-Charleston steamers — Jacksonville- 
New York steamers. Pages 97 to 103 


Describing the location of practically every house 
in the town with the names of those who occupied 
them (Much local history and tradition is given 
in this chapter). Pages 104 to 116 

CHAPTER XI— 1850 to 1855: 

Rapid growth of the town — Business — Curfew and 
crime — Relation between master and slave — Trans- 
portation — The plank road — Small-pox epidemic of 
1853 — Local conditions of this period — Property 
valuation — Great fire of 1854 — Scarlet fever epi- 
demic of 1854 — Real shot-gun quarantine — Re- 
building the town — The Judson Hotel — Hotel 
history — Trade and commerce. Pages ..... .117 to 138 


CHAPTER XII— 1855 to 1860: 

Continued growth — Fire of 1856 — Jacksonville 
Light Infantry — Yellow fever epidemic of 1857 — 
General town improvement — Gas works — Tele- 
graph — Florida, Atlantic and Gulf Central Rail- 
road — Town bonded for $50,000 — Ceremonies at- 
tending completion of railroad — Aurora of 1859 — 
Conditions prevailing just prior to the civil war. 
Pages 139 to 149 

Character, pleasures, and pastimes of the people 
of Jacksonville ''in the happy days before the 
war.'' Pages 150 to 155 


Organization of local troops — Fort Steele erected 
at mouth of the St. Johns — Troops depart for the 
front — News of the contemplated Federal occu- 
pation of Jacksonville received — Mayor's procla- 
mation to the citizens — Flight of the residents — 
First Federal occupation — Proclamation of the 
' ' loyal ' ' citizens of the United States — Skirmishes 
and first blood of the war near Jacksonville — 
Orders and reports of the Federal and the Con- 
federate ofl&cers — The evacuation — Capture of the 
Confederate batteries on the St. Johns below 
Jacksonville — Second Federal occupation of Jack- 
sonville — Federal gunboats go in search of river 
steamers — The evacuation — Third Federal occu- 
pation of Jacksonville — Town fortified against 
attack — Reports of Confederate and Federal 
ofiieers — Skirmishes — Lieutenant Buckman's rail- 
road battery — Events during the occupation — The 
evacuation and burning of the town — Fourth Fed- 
eral occupation of Jacksonville — Reasons therefor 
— Return of the Federal army after defeat at 
Olustee — Arrival of reinforcements — Confederate 
fortifications at McGirt's Creek — Skirmishing — 
Torpedoes placed in the river near Mandarin by ' 


CHAPTER XIV— Continued 

the Confederates, and destruction of three Federal 
transports at that point — Draughts made on 
Federal and Confederate armies near Jacksonville — 
Only small detachment of Confederate cavalry 
left in front of Jacksonville — Wonderful achieve- 
ments of this remnant — Federal raiding parties- 
Evacuation of Camp Milton by the Confederates — 
Close of the war. Pages 156 to 192 


Return of the old residents and conditions that 
confronted them — Military and civil city govern- 
ments — Riot of the United States troops — Perma- 
nent withdrawal of the United States troops from 
Jacksonville. Pages 193 to 197 

History of Early Jacksonville 




Authentic history of the lower St. Johns River 
begins with May 1st, 1562, when Jean Ribault* 
and his French Huguenot colonists, sailing along 
the coast of Florida, came to the mouth of a large 
river, which they named the River May, in com- 
memoration of the day on which the discovery 
was made. Crossing the bar in one of his smaller 
boats, Ribault landed on the northern side of the 
river and exchanged friendly greetings with the 
natives that had assembled to meet the strange 
white men; but after giving the Indians a few 
presents, he crossed the river and on a knoll near 
the shore he erected a stone column bearing the 
arms of France. The French then returned to 
their vessels outside the bar and sailed away to 
the north, eventually establishing the unfortunate 
colony of Charles Fort, on the coast of what is 
now South Carolina. 


About two years later, in 1564, Rene de 

•^Some historians spell the name Bibaut. 


Laudonniere, who was with Ribault on the former 
expedition, and who, with Eibault, had in the 
mean time gone back to France, returned to the 
Eiver May. With him came another colony of 
Huguenots, these people preferring the unknown 
dangers of the new country to the religious perse- 
cutions of the old world. Laudonniere landed and 
was directed to the monument left by Eibault, 
around which the Indians had placed wreaths in 
token of friendship, and baskets of fruit and grain 
as a peace-offering to the new-comers. The 
Frenchmen went up the river a short distance to 
observe the country, then boarded their vessels 
and coasted as far as Amelia Island; but they 
decided to return to the Eiver May and establish 
their colony on the southern bank, near a high 
bluff that they had previously examined. This 
was in June, 1564. The French at once began to 
fortify the place, by building a fort of logs and 
staves. It was in the form of a triangle and was 
of good size, since the colonists all lived within its 
walls. Soon after their arrival, a party of these 
Frenchmen sailed up the river twenty leagues, 
and it is safe to assume that these were the first 
white men to behold the site upon which Jack- 
sonville now stands. There is a pleasing tradition 
that Ponce de Leon, in searching for the fabled 
^'Fountain of Youth", camped for a while on the 
ground now occupied by South Jacksonville, but 
history does not record the incident with sufficient 
clearness to warrant its acceptance as fact. 


The story of the colony at Fort Caroline is one 
filled with pathos and tragedy. In the beginning, 
the French enjoyed amicable relations with the 
Indians ; from the red men they drew largely for 
their subsistence, themselves neglecting to make 
provision for the emergencies that were bound to 
come. As a result of this inactivity, misfortunes 
began to multiply, and, naturally, discourage- 
ment then entered the ranks of the little band. A 
serious mutiny followed. Laudonniere, while he 
lay ill with fever, was seized and imprisoned on a 
vessel in the river, when the conspirators boarded 
two other vessels and set out upon a free-booting 
expedition along the coast. One of these vessels, 
after an eventful voyage, eventually returned to 
Fort Caroline, where four of the leaders met with 
summary punishment at the hands of Laudon- 
niere, being hanged upon gibbets at the mouth 
of the river. 

After a while, the Indians refused to share fur- 
ther of their stores, partly because their own stock 
of provisions was running low, and partly from 
the fact that nothing was given in exchange, the 
French by this time having exhausted their supply 
of exchangeable articles. The colonists were on 
the verge of famine. Laudonniere was persuaded 
to seize the great Indian Olata-Utina, chief of the 
country, and hold him as ransom for supplies. 
This scheme resulted disastrously to the French, 
inasmuch as little benefit was derived from it, 
while the enmity of their Indian allies and friends 


was incurred. Thoroughly disheartened, they 
decided at last to return to France. On August 4, 
1565, Sir John Hawkins, returning from an expedi- 
tion to the West Indies, unexpectedly appeared at 
the mouth of the River May. He visited Laudon- 
niere, and seeing the plight of the Frenchmen, he 
supplied their immediate needs and sold them a 
vessel in which to make the voyage to France, tak- 
ing in payment therefor a number of cannon from 
Fort Caroline. After the departure of the Eng- 
lish, Laudonniere hurried his preparations for 
leaving Florida. When all was ready for the de- 
parture, Ribault, with seven vessels and more 
than 500 men, dropped anchor at the mouth of the 
river. Laudonniere was not aware that this ex- 
pedition had been dispatched for his relief, and its 
arrival, near the end of August, 1565, caused him 
to change his plans. 


News of the French colony in Florida had 
already reached Spain. The Spanish king claimed 
the country by right of discovery, and this settle- 
ment at Fort Caroline incensed him to no small 
degree. Consequently, he fitted out an expedition 
and placed it in command of Pedro Menendez de 
Aviles, with instructions to drive the French from 
the shores of Florida. It was a peculiar coinci- 
dence that Menendez reached Florida in the 
vicinity of the present St. Augustine on the same 
day that Ribault 's relief expedition arrived at the 


mouth of the River May, each unaware of the 
presence of the other. Menendez was not long, 
however, in learning from the Indians that Fort 
Caroline was not far away, and immediately he 
sent his vessels to reconnoiter. Several of 
Ribault^s ships were at anchor outside the bar, but 
when the Frenchmen saw these strange vessels of 
war approaching, not knowing their intent, they 
slipped their cables and sailed away. And well 
for them that they did, as the Spaniards opened 
fire upon them and gave chase. After a pursuit 
lasting several hours, the chase was given up. A 
French ship followed the Spaniards at a distance, 
observed their landing, and then hastened to re- 
port the facts to Ribault. Ribault and Menendez 
made their plans simultaneously: the French 
sailed to attack the Spaniards, while the Spaniards 
marched to take Fort Caroline. Ribault 's fleet 
encountered a tropical hurricane and was wrecked 
on the coast between Matanzas and Mosquito 
Inlet; yet the same fateful storm contributed to 
the success of Menendez. On account of the tem- 
pest, the vigilance at Fort Caroline had been 
temporarily relaxed, and the Spanish forces ex- 
perienced little difficulty in entering the fort and 
surprising the garrison, most of which was yet 
asleep. The assault was made about dawn, and 
after a feeble resistance the fort was captured. 

Concerning the massacre at Fort Caroline many 
historians claim that there was an indiscriminate 
slaughter of the French, regardless of sex and age 


and only those persons who sought safety in flight, 
60 in number, escaped the butchery of the 
Spaniards. Also, that Menendez caused his cap- 
tives to be led out and hanged from the limbs of 
near-by trees. The garrison at Fort Caroline 
after the departure of Ribault consisted of 240 per- 
sons, mostly women and children. 

The Spanish historians say that Menendez was 
not present at the fort when the massacre began, 
that he was in the rear collecting the stragglers of 
his force as they came up ; but hearing the clamor, 
he came running to the fort. When he perceived 
that his soldiers gave no quarter, he shouted in a 
loud voice, ^^At the peril of your lives neither kill 
nor wound any woman, cripple, or child under fif- 
teen years of age ' \ by which it is claimed 70 per- 
sons were saved, the rest having already perished. 

Likewise, there are two versions as to the cor- 
rectness of the narrative regarding the hanging 
of the Huguenots. Some historians give it that 
Menendez erected on the spot a tablet bearing the 
inscription, "Not as Frenchmen, but as Luther- 
ans''. Others disclaim this altogether, and the 
question probably never will be settled to the satis- 
faction of all. 

Menendez took possession of Fort Caroline, 
changed its name to San Mateo, and garrisoned it 
with 300 soldiers. With his remaining force of 
about 50 men he returned to St. Augustine. 

Laudonniere and 25 of his followers that man- 
aged to escape from Fort Caroline, waded the saw- 


grass marshes and after terrible hardships 
boarded two small vessels left by Eibault at the 
mouth of the Eiver May. They hastily set sail for 
France. A perilous voyage carried one of these 
ships to the coast of France, while the other, with 
Laudonniere aboard, landed at a port in Wales. 
Laudonniere returned to France and made a full 
report of the massacre at Fort Caroline; but the 
news was received with stolid indifference at the 
French court, the anti-Huguenot party being then 
in power. Very little is known about the other 
survivors ; most of them probably spent their lives 
among the Indians. 


One Dominic de Gourgues, observing that this 
slaughter of his countrymen would likely go un- 
avenged and believing that the honor of his coun- 
try (France) demanded a retributive measure, 
took upon himself the responsibiltiy of equipping 
a private expedition against the Spaniards in 
Florida. In this enterprise he exhausted his own 
fortune and that of some of his friends; but at 
last he succeeded in procuring three vessels and 
250 picked men. He sailed from France in August, 
1567. After loitering and refitting in the West 
Indies, he sailed for Florida and arrived at Amelia 
Island in the spring of 1568. Menendez had 
erected two small forts at the mouth of the River 
May, now called the River San Mateo, after the 
capture of Fort Caroline, one on Batten Island and 



one on the opposite side of the river. As De 
Gourgues sailed by these forts, their garrisons 
saluted him with their guns, supposing his vessels 
to be Spanish ; the Frenchmen returned the salute 
to confirm the error. iVfter enlisting the services 
of a large number of Indians, who, it appears, had 
turned against the Spaniards, De Gourgues and 
his allies crossed to Fort George Island at low 
tide, waded the intervening marsh, and fell upon 
the fort at Batten Island at day-break. When 
within 200 yards of the post they were discovered 
by the sentinel, who fired his culverin twice before 
he was killed. The garrison rushed out pell-mell, 
endeavoring to escape, but all perished on the spot, 
except fifteen ; these were taken prisoners and re- 
served for another purpose. De Gourgues had 
ordered one of his vessels to come up the river at 
the proper time, to convey his men across. In this 
way he crossed over, his Indian allies swimming 
alongside in great numbers. 

The garrison in the fort on the south side of the 
river made no attempt at resistance and fled 
ingloriously toward Fort San Mateo. Few of them 
made their escape, nearly all being slain by the 
Indians. De Gourgues marched as rapidly as pos- 
sible toward Fort San Mateo, capturing on the way 
a reconnoitering party of 60 Spaniards. He de- 
ployed his force skillfully so that every avenue of 
escape was closed, and most of the garrison fell 
into the hands of the Indians and perished. The 
prisoners that had been captured were led out. 


De Gourgues lectured them, reciting the circum- 
stances under which his countrymen had been 
slain. They were then hanged as ''Traitors, 
thieves, and murderers''. 

Having now avenged what he believed to be the 
wanton slaughter of his countrymen, De Gourgues 
embarked for France early in May, 1568. Menen- 
dez had gone to Spain and was there while these 
events were taking place in Florida, but he set 
sail for St. Augustine about the time De Gourgues 
sailed for France ; somewhere on the broad Atlan- 
tic they passed each other, one sailing westward 
and the other sailing eastward. When Menendez 
arrived at St. Augustine and learned what had 
transpired during his absence his fury can be 
conjectured. De Gourgues landed on the coast of 
France in June. He immediately reported the 
success of his expedition, but he, too, was received 
coldly at the French court; in fact, it became 
necessary for him to seek safety in concealment. 
Later, however, he was appointed admiral in the 
French navy. 


All traces of old Fort Caroline have long since 
disappeared, but its location seems certainly to 
have been at St. Johns bluff, on the south side of 
the river a few miles below Jacksonville. Its 
location was described precisely by Laudonniere 
and others of his time; and Buckingham Smithy 
who did a great deal toward clearing up the misty 


early history of the Spaniards in Florida, after a 
careful study of the original archives in Spain, 
came to the conclusion that the fort was at St. 
Johns bluff. It was not on top of the bluff, but 
at its base, near the water 's edge — a curious selec- 
tion of a site for a fortification. In 1856, a hand- 
ful of old Spanish coins cast prior to the year 
1555, was found near the supposed site of Fort 


The Spaniards repaired and again garrisoned 
the forts on the St. Johns after the terrible retri- 
bution of De Gourgues, and although mutiny, 
desertion, pestilence, and famine followed one an- 
other at recurring intervals, these forts were 
maintained many years. Other posts were estab- 
lished also, among them one called San Nicholas 
(St. Nicholas), located near the present site of 
South Jacksonville. A long period elapsed, how- 
ever, before history again takes up the record of 
events having a direct bearing upon this vicinity ; 
yet during this period there were numerous forays 
toward or from St. Augustine and the Colonies, 
and there are good grounds for the belief that 
many war parties camped upon a high bluff that 
stood at the foot of the present Liberty, Wash- 
ington, and Catherine Streets, before crossing the 
river for a dash upon St. Augustine, or, returning 
tarried here for rest, preparatory for the long 
march northward. 


In 1763, this bluff was described as being very 
imposing, and timbered with live oak, palms, and 
wild orange ; back from the river a short distance 
stood a small Indian village. At the foot of 
Liberty street there was a bold spring of clear, 
good water'. 


The location of Fort St. Nicholas was about a 
mile east of the present South Jacksonville ferry, 
back from the river 250 or 300 yards. Around the 
fort was a moat, or excavation, 100 feet square, 
and surrounding this was a cantonment or settle- 
ment, together with offices, quarters, and barracks 
for the men. Mr. Hudnall acquired the land upon 
which the fort stood, even while a part of the old 
fort was still in existence, and he leveled the tim- 
bers for use on his farm. He built his house 
directly on the east side of the moat, and while 
excavating found many Spanish coins*. 

Toward the end of the Spanish rule, Fort St. 
Nicholas was maintained principally as a post to 
prevent smuggling. 


The Indian name for the St. Johns Eiver was 
^'Illaka", corrupted into "Welaka'' by the whites. 
Buckingham Smith asked an intelligent Indian 
what ''Illaka'' signified, and the reply was, ''Dis- 
tinct, unusual, different from any other", mean- 
ing, as nearly as could be interpreted, that the 


river ran north'. The French called it the Riviere 
de Mai, or the River May. By the Spaniards it 
was first named San Mateo, in honor of the patron 
Saint Matthew, near whose day the capture of 
Fort Caroline took place; but later they changed 
it to the River San Juan, and from this name we 
derive the English St. Johns. John Bartram in 
his ''Travels'' speaks of it as the River St. Juan. 


1 History and Antiquities of St. Augustine; and History of 

Florida, George E. Fairbanks. 

2 Historical Sketch by J. M. Hawks in Jacksonville City 

Directory, 1870. 

3 Florida and the South, Brinton. 

4 Columbus Drew, in Florida Times-Union, Trade Edition, 

January, 1890. 




The locality of Jacksonville was first known as 
the place where the Indians forded their cattle 
across the river, and was called by them ^^Wacca 
Pilatka^', signifying the place where cows crossed 
or could swim over'. An Indian trail ran from 
this place westward across the sand hills to the 
Suwanee Eiver, thence to Alapaha, Aucilla, 
Micasuki, and Tallahassee, towns of the Apala- 
chees. The Spaniards called the ford at the St. 
Johns the ^'Pass of San Nicholas '', but it was 
known to all English-speaking people as the 
^ ' Cow Ford. ''' 

THE king's road. 

The path made by the Indians' cattle and by 
the pack-ponies of the traders in the course of time 
grew into a trail, then into a beaten track as travel 
increased, and culminated finally in the King's 
Road, made during the English occupation of 
Florida, about 1765. The route of this road was 
from the St. Marys River, opposite Colerain, Ga., 
to the Cow Ford, thence to St. Augustine and New 
Smyrna'. It met the St. Johns River at the foot of 
what is now Liberty Street, and began again on 
the other side directly opposite. Nearly all travel 
between St. Augustine and the Colonies passed 


over this highway, and therefore through the site 
of Jacksonville. 


Soon after Spain ceded Florida to Great 
Britain, 1763, the Marquis of Hastings obtained a 
grant of 20,000 acres covering most of the land 
between Maxton's (now McGirt's) Creek and 
Trout Creek, embracing the present site of Jack- 
sonville. About the same time the Marquis of 
Waterford obtained a grant, also of 20,000 acres, 
on the opposite side of the St. Johns, beginning 
at Pottsburg Creek'. 

Upon the recession of Florida to Spain, all the 
British grants reverted to the Spanish crown, but 
the British subjects that left the country were re- 
munerated for their land'. To obtain grants from 
the Spanish government now the practice was 
for the applicant to set forth his desires in a 
memorial to the governor of the province, asking 
for lands corresponding to the number of his 
family and his slaves, the location desired being 
described in the memorial. To these applications 
the usual reply of the governor was, '^Let the 
lands asked for be granted, without injury to a 
third person ". The fine estates left by the Eng- 
lish on the St. Johns remained unoccupied for 
some time and became a prey to rapid decline', 
but the ease with which grants could now be ob- 
tained induced many new settlers to come to the 
St. Johns country. 


In the spring of 1774, John Bartram, the bota- 
nist, visited the Cow Ford', and he mentions the 
existence of a public ferry here even at that early 
date. He bought a sailboat at an indigo planta- 
tion near the ferry, but he does not say from whom, 
nor on which side of the river the plantation was 
situated. There was a severe frost (freeze) in 
northern Florida during that winter, with snow- 
fall, which the natives long afterward spoke of 
as ^^the extraordinary white rain''. 


About the year 1790, one John H. Mcintosh 
moved from Georgia into Florida and occupied 
lands on the north side of the St. Johns Eiver near 
the Cow Ford. Here he was appointed to some 
office by the Spanish governor. Mcintosh was a 
turbulent man, of a restless and reckless disposi- 
tion, and in some way he aroused the suspicion of 
the Spaniards, with the result that he was arrested 
for intrigue in 1794 and sent to Havana, where he 
was confined in Morro Castle for a year.' There, 
perhaps, he worked out the plans that afterward 
made him a conspicuous figure in the country about 
the lower St. Johns. 

After his release from prison, Mcintosh re- 
turned to Florida with a band of adventurers, and 
attacked and destroyed the Spanish post at the 
Cow Ford (St. Nicholas), together with the 
'^ Boats of the Eoyal Domain" on the river. How 
near an international affair this came is not 


recorded ; but he and the Spaniards seem to have 
made an amicable settlement, since some years 
later he was granted lands in the vicinity of the 
Cow Ford, where he became engaged in executing 
large contracts for the exportation of lumber, and 
incidentally lived like a lord. In the Jacksonville 
Sun and Press of August 11, 1877, there was a 
signed article written by Eev. J. N. Glenn, who was 
sent to St. Augustine in 1823, as a Methodist mis- 
sionary. He says: ''General Mcintosh told me 
once that he had two boat loads of sea-island cot- 
ton he had raised up the St. Johns River, which he 
wished to pass the Spanish post at the Cow Ford, 
without paying the Spanish duties. Accordingly, 
he approached the officer in command of the post 
on the subject. Just then the boats hove in sight, 
coming down the river. The commander put up 
his spy-glass and remarked, 'There is too much 
cotton to let it pass\ The General then handed 
him a doubloon. He put the coin to one eye and 
the spy- glass to the other, and said, 'Too much 
yet.' The General gave him another doubloon. 
He then put a doubloon to each eye and said, 'I 
see no cotton now' ". 

This is the same Mcintosh who afterward was 
one of the originators and the prime mover in the 
"Patriot" war in Florida. That his connection 
with this disturbance was the outgrowth of 
entanglements with Spanish laws in the execution 
of his lumber contracts, supplemented by a desire 
for further revenge for his imprisonment at 


Havana, is a plausible surmise never presented 


Under date of January 3, 1791, Eobert Pritch- 
ard obtained a grant from Governor Queseda, for 
450 acres of land on the north side of the St. Johns, 
opposite Fort St. Nicholas. A regular survey was 
made, and Pritchard took possession immediately, 
erected buidings, and planted crops. He died a 
few years later, but his heirs, through their autho- 
rized agents, continued to cultivate the tract, until 
driven away by the troubles about 1812 (Patriot 
revolution) . One of these agents was John Joseph 
Lain, who cultivated and lived on the land later 
granted to Mrs. Purnal Taylor, and afterward 
included in the plat of Jacksonville'. THIS WAS 

William Jones, on February 14, 1793, was 
granted 216 acres across the river near the present 
location of South Jacksonville, in fact, a part of 
that town stands on a portion of this tract. Jones 
was later accused of being a rebel against His 
Catholic Majesty, thereby forfeiting his rights to 
the premises. This tract was re-granted to Wil- 
liam Hendricks, May 18, 1797'. 

In February, 1804, Isaac Hendricks received a 
concession embracing a triangular tract of 350 
acres, described in 1823 as being bounded south 


by McCoy Creek, east by lands granted to Hogans 
(the Taylor grant), and northwest by public lands. 
Hendricks built houses and cultivated this tract, 
and on September 28, 1816, he received title of 
absolute property to the same from Governor 
Coppinger. It seems that one John Jones, per- 
haps a kinsman of William Jones, claimed title to 
this tract, but his claim was set aside by the com- 
mission appointed by the United States Congress 
to examine titles in connection with Spanish grants 
in Florida'. 

That there was quite a number of bona fide set- 
tlers near the Cow Ford prior to the year 1800 is 
certain, regardless of the fact that this locality 
was then the stamping ground of criminals from 
the Colonies, slave catchers, ruffians, and banditti 
of every description, resulting in a state of un- 
bounded rowdyism that continued more or less 
until the end of the "Patriot" rebellion, and in a 
modified form for many years afterward. 


At the outbreak of the war of 1812, between the 
United States and Great Britain, a band of per- 
sons calling themselves "Patriots" assembled at 
St. Marys, Ga., and marched into Florida, seeking 
to seize the country from Spain for the purpose of 
establishing a republican form of government. 
The country north of the St. Johns River was 
"annexed", and a paper government was orga- 
nized. John H. Mcintosh was chosen governor 


and director-generaL The "Patriots'' and the 
United States fleet acting in concert, frightened 
the Spanish commander of Fernandina into sur- 
rendering the town. The articles of capitulation 
were signed by Don Jose Lopez, for Spain, and 
John H. Mcintosh, in the name of the "Patriots''. 
The next day the "Patriot" flag was hauled down 
and the United States forces took possession of the 
place and raised the United States flag over the 
fort. The ' ' Patriots ' ', reinforced by a detachment 
of United States regulars, now marched to cap- 
ture St. Augustine. In this they were unsuccess- 
ful, as the Spanish governor put some guns on a 
schooner and shelled their camp, compelling them 
to fall back. Finding their force insufficient to 
take St. Augustine, the "Patriots" returned to the 
St. Johns River, and made the Cow Ford their 
rendezvous'. Here the "Patriot" and United 
States flags were unfurled side by side. The camp 
at the Cow Ford comprised 40 calvary, together 
with shifting bands of infantry and partisan rang- 
ers. These forces pillaged the surrounding 
plantations and destroyed an enormous amount of 
property, for much of which the United States 
government was later held responsible. This state 
of affairs continued until the United States forces 
were withdrawn in 1813'. , Then the "Patriot" 
organization disbanded, and its members returned 
whence they came. After their departure, the 
plantations along the lower St. Johns presented a 
desolate appearance — houses burned and fields 


overgrown with weeds. A few of the former set- 
tlers one by one returned, and in two or three 
years new settlers began to come. 


1 Memoirs of Florida, Pleming, 

2 Observations on the Floridas, Vignoles. 

3 Historical Sketch of Jacksonville, J. M. Hawks, City Direc- 

tory, 1870. 

4 Bartram 's ' * Travels ' '. 

5 American State Papers, Duff Green, Vol. IV. 

6 History of Florida, George R. Fairbanks. 





During the '^ Patriot'^ troubles, a Spanisli sub- 
ject by tbe name of Purnal Taylor was killed in a 
skirmish with a scouting party of the "Patriot'' 
army, in the inland passage to Fernandina. His 
widow, Mrs. Maria Taylor, petitioned the Spanish 
Government and was granted 200 acres of land on 
the north side of the St. Johns River, opposite 
Fort San Nicholas. Lewis Zachariah Hogans 
married Mrs. Taylor, and late in the year 1816, 
they moved across the river from the south side, 
where before then Mr. Hogans had been living, 
and settled upon the land that had been granted 
to Mrs. Taylor. Inasmuch as the houses that for- 
merly stood on this site were all destroyed by the 
''Patriots", Mr. Hogans may be said to have built 
the first house in the future metropolis of Florida. 
His building stood partly in what is now Forsyth 
Street and partly north of it, immediately to the 
southwest and west of the Duval Hotel, northwest 
corner of Forsyth and Hogan Streets. He 
cleared up land and fenced it, and in the following 

*The Hoganses signed their names with an ''s" (Hogans) in 
the early days; but later the ''s" was dropped, and now 
we have Hogan Street and Hogan 's Creek. 


spring, 1817, planted a crop from which he gath- 
ered in great abundance'. A copy of the Spanish 
grant made to Mrs. Taylor, in part, follows :' 


Don Jose Coppinger, lieutenant colonel of the 
royal armies, civil and military governor pro tern., 
and chief of the royal finance in the city of St. 
Augustine, Florida, and its province: 

Whereas by royal order of the 29th of March, 1815, 
his majesty has been pleased to approve the gifts 
and rewards proposed by my predecessor, the 
Brigadier Don Sebastian Kindelan, for the officers 
and soldiers both of the line as well as the militia 
of the said province, who contributed to the defense 
of the same at the time of the rebellion, being one 
of said rewards, the partition of lands in proportion 
to the number of family each individual may have, 
That Dona Maria Suarez, widow of Turnel* Taylor, 
having presented herself soliciting the quantity she, 
her deceased husband, children and slaves were en- 
titled to, on account of the said husband being killed 
in the attack made by the enemy upon the river St. 
Johns during the insurrection in this province, as she 
has proved by certificate, then was granted by my 
decree on the 12th of the present month two hun- 
dred acres of land on the opposite side of the military 
post of St. Nicholas, on the river St. Johns, at the 
mouth of the creek known as McCoy's Creek, 
bounded on the west by the plantation of John Jones 
and on the other sides by vacant lands ; all conf orm- 

*Should be Purnal. 


able to the regulation established by this govern- 
ment for the partition of lands and the number of 
persons and slaves her said family is composed of, 
as is set forth in the proceedings instituted by the 
above-mentioned Dona Maria Suarez, on file in the 
government notary's office.*** 

Given under my hand and seal and countersigned 
by the undersigned notary of the government and 
royal finance, in the city of St. Augustine, Florida, 
September 13, 1816. 

Jose Coppinger. 
By order of his Excellency, 

Juan de Entralgo, etc., etc., etc. 

In 1823, Zachariali Hogans, by his attorney, A. 
Bellamy, entered a claim for title to these 200 
acres of land, the tract being described at that 
time as being bounded north by public land, south 
by the river St. Johns, west by lands formerly 
granted to John Jones, and east by lands granted 
to Maestro. Hogans's claim for title was con- 
firmed April 26, 1824, by the commissioners ap- 
pointed by the United States Congress to investi- 
gate Spanish grant titles'. I. D. Hart eventually 
got hold of all of the Taylor grant, except ten 
acres. In 1821, he bought 18 acres in the south- 
east section ; on July 10, 1831, he acquired another 
portion; May 28, 1834, another; and April 15, 
1836, still another portion', altogether amounting 
to about 190 acres. 



Immediately following the grant to Mrs. Taylor, 
Juan Maestre, a "Skipper in the Boats of the 
Eoyal Domain'^, representing himself to be in 
straitened circumstances, petitioned on Novem- 
ber 18, 1816, for "100 acres of vacant hammock 
lands on the north side of the river St. Johns, op- 
posite the battery of St. Nicholas''. On Decem- 
ber 2, 1816, the governor of the province ordered 
that Maestre 's petition be granted, which was 
done on December 13, 1816. He was granted only 
50 acres, however, that being the amount he was 
able to locate under the Spanish law; but subse- 
quent surveys increased it to about 80 acres'. This 
land was bounded east and north by Hogan's 
Creek, west by L. Z. Hogans's lands, and south 
by the river St. Johns. It was surveyed by G. T. 
F. Clarke, February 21, 18ir. Maestre took 
possession of his property in 1817, and built his 
house upon what is now the center of the north- 
east quarter of the square bounded by Forsyth, 
Liberty, Bay, and Market Streets. Large spread- 
ing live oaks stood around his dwelling. He 
cleared up a field and planted it. In the spring of 
1818, the Carthagenians, or Venezuelan Patriots, 
as they are sometimes called, took possession of 
Fernandina. As soon as this became known in 
St. Augustine, the Spanish garrison at Fort 
St. Nicholas and the "Boats of the Royal Domain" 
on the St. Johns River were withdrawn to that 


city. Maestre therefore abandoned his new home, 
leaving and losing his crop'. He never returned, 
and on Jnne 21, 1820, he conveyed the tract to 
John Brady for $200. Brady conveyed it to John 
Bellamy January 27, 1823, after Jacksonville had 
been laid out and some lots had been sold. I. D. 
Hart gained jurisdiction over this tract July 26, 
1826, but he did not get a title to it by conveyance 
from Bellamy until May 4, 1836. On December 
18, 1836, for $1,100, Hart conveyed his right, title, 
and interest in the Maestre grant to William J. 
Mills, in trust for Mrs. Maria Doggett, wife of 
John L. Doggett'. 


Under date of March 18, 1817, Daniel Hogans 
obtained a concession from Governor Coppinger 
of 255 acres, situated on the north bank of the St. 
Johns River, nearly opposite the fort at St. 
Nicholas, and on the east of Hogan's Creek. 
Daniel Hogans conveyed this land to E. Hudnall 
November 11, 1818'. This tract comprised the 
present East Jacksonville. 


On February 11, 1801, Philip Dell obtained a 
concession from Governor White of 800 acres 
adjoining McCoy's Creek, and embracing what is 
now known as Brooklyn and the most of old River- 
side. For many years this property was known as 
Dell's Bluff. The Dell Bluff tract went into the 


possession of John H. Mcintosh January 11, 1805, 
and on October 4, 1823, Mcintosh deeded it to 
Francis J. Eoss. Ross gave Joseph B. Lancaster 
a quit claim deed to these 800 acres, December 6, 
1833, the consideration mentioned being $2,000. 
Lancaster held it a little more than ten years, sell- 
ing only six acres in the mean time, three of which 
were sold to Blanchard and Eider for a mill site 
at the mouth of McCoy's Creek. On May 1, 1844, 
he deeded the remainder back to Francis I. (J) 
Eoss, the consideration mentioned being $2,500. 
Francis J. Eoss then conveyed his interest to Wil- 
liam B. Eoss, under date of March 24, 1845. W. B. 
Eoss sold to James Winter February 6, 1847. Mr. 
Winter died in possession of the property and his 
estate descended to his heirs. April 23, 1866, 
Uriah Bowden purchased an unstated number of 
acres from the commissioners of the Winter 
estate. Miles Price finally acquired the bulk of the 
Winter estate, and on June 8, 1868, he conveyed 
500 acres to E. M. Cheney, in trust to be conveyed 
to John M. Forbes, for $10,000 in gold. The prop- 
erty was platted for Forbes into lots February 1, 
1869, provision being made for a park of 14 acres, 
now Eiverside park'. 

E. M. Cheney was editor of the Florida Union 
at Jacksonville when he negotiated the purchase 
for John M. Forbes, a Boston Millionaire. Mr. 
Cheney gave the name of "Riverside" to the sub- 
division, most of which was an old corn field at that 



During the latter part of the year 1820, John E. 
Hogans settled on lands north of Hogan's Creek, 
and under the Donation Act, received title to 640 
acres. Hogans conveyed these 640 acres to W. G. 
Dawson July 24, 1823^ I. D. Hart, ex officio Ad- 
ministrator of W. G. Dawson, deceased, to John 
Warren, February 3, 1829 ; John Warren to Isaiah 
D. Hart, October 25, 1829 ; I. D. Hart to Thomas G. 
Saunders in 1846 ; Thomas G. Saunders and wife, 
to Adeline Jones, September 9, 1847. On August 4, 
1849, Thomas W. Jones and wife, Adeline, sold 50 
acres to E. A. DeCottes', for $50, or $1 an acre ; this 
is now Hansontown. In 1867, 4 acres of the same 
tract, west of Hogan's Creek, were sold to Frank 
Franklin, a colored man, for $25 an acre; this is 
now called Franklmtown. With these exceptions, 
the tract descended to Eliza Jones, now Mrs. W. M. 
Bostwick, and it was not subdivided until 1882'. 

Hogans 's Donation comprised what is commonly 
called old Springfield. John Middleton bought it 
in 1847, for his daughter, Adeline Jones, for the 
insignificant sum of $450 in gold. About 1870, it 
was named Springfield, by C. L. Eobinson, the 
name being suggested by the existence of a spring 
in an old field through which West Fourth Street 

would now pass'. 



An impression seems to be prevalent that Duke 
de Talleyrand, the famous Frenchman, came to this 
vicinity after the wars in Europe and settled at 
what is now known as the Old Talleyrand Place, 
and that Talleyrand Avenue and other places in the 
locality are named for him. This is not correct. 
The Duval County records show that Lewis Curtis 
on June 9, 1869, deeded 30 acres of land three and 
a half miles northeast of Jacksonville, the tract be- 
ing then called Millwood, to Elizabeth Marquise de 
Talleyrand-Perigord, wife of Charles Maurice 
Camille Marquis de Talleyrand-Perigord. The 
consideration mentioned was $7,500. The Marquis 
was said to be a descendant of the Duke Talley- 
rand ; his wife was an American, a New York lady. 
They spent several winters here and apparently 
lived a life of ease and luxury. He was very fond 
of fine horses and always drove about in elegant 
style. The Talleyrands sold their property Janu- 
ary 28, 1873, to C. A. Lincoln, for $12,000. 


1 History of Florida, Webb. 

2 American State Papers, Duff Green, Vol. IV. 

3 Florida Reports, Vol. V, p. 216; Vol. VI, p. 483. 

4 Fla. Abstract and Title Security Co., June 8, 1892. 

5 W. W. Douglass, in Jacksonville Metropolis, Dec. 12, 1908. 

6 Florida Reports, Vol. XIV, p. 162. 

7 Mrs. W. M. Bostwick. 




Messrs. L. Z. Hogans and Juan Maestre (known 
in English as Masters) were the first settlers in the 
immediate vicinity of the Cow Ford, on the north 
side of the St. Johns, after the ^'Patriot" troubles. 
A year or so afterward, John Brady came and oc- 
cupied the house and land vacated by Maestre in 
1818, probably under some sort of rental contract, 
as Maestre did not formally convey his land to 
Brady until June 21, 1820. Brady was generally 
spoken of as the third settler. He planted crops 
and started to run a ferry from the northern side 
of the river, for the accommodation of travelers. 
About this time Florida was brought into promi- 
nence by the agitation concerning its cession to the 
United States, and the tide of immigration had set 
in over the King's road to the St. Johns country. 
Brady's house came to be the lodging place for 
many of these pioneers. Travel in those days was 
almost all by horseback, and the constantly increas- 
ing number of guests made it necesasry for Brady 
to erect other buildings, and stables for the con- 

*Some of these facts are taken from unsigned clippings from 
unidentified newspapers and magazines, therefore it is impos- 
sible to give references in every case, further than to say that 
these clippings are, or have been in the hands of the author, and 
that only such statements as bear the stamp of authenticity 
are used. 


venience of those who wished to stop with him. 
His place was a kind of inn, although it is not men- 
tioned that strong drink was kept there. This, 
then, was Jacksonville's first hotel. Mr. Hogans 
also entertained travelers, but his house was 
more an '^open house" than a hotel. 


Among these early travelers were two men from 
Georgia, William G. Dawson and Stephen E. 
Buckles, who foresaw that some day a town would 
be built at this point. They decided to remain and 
open a store. They built a large log house near 
the King's road (south side of Adams Street, 
between Market and Newnan) ; brought a stock of 
goods down by sailing vessel from New York, and 
opened a mercantile establishment. This was the 
first store. Dawson & Buckles did a fine business, 
supplying the territory for miles around. Peo- 
ple came long distances to trade here, and it was 
about as much as the proprietors could do to sup- 
ply the demand for goods. At the same time 
Brady's boarding house was gaining a reputation, 
and was also giving its owner a neat income. 
These two places did a great deal toward drawing 
settlers to the Cow Ford". 


Isaiah David Hart was one of these new-comers. 
He had been here before with the ^* Patriots", and 
was familiar with the surroundings ; but it was not 


until lie learned how fast Messrs. Brady and Daw- 
son & Buckles were making money that he decided 
to move from his plantation on the St. Marys 
Eiver and settle at the Cow Ford'. The National 
Encyclopedia of American Biography says this 
was in 1821, which date is doubtless correct; but 
the statement made therein, that Ossian B. Hart, 
son of I. D. Hart, was born at Jacksonville, Janu- 
ary 17, 1821, is without doubt incorrect. It does 
not seem probable that 0. B. Hart was born in 
Jacksonville then, since it is common knowledge 
among the oldest residents here that the distinc- 
tion of being the first white child born at Jack- 
sonville belonged to Sarah Ann Hogans, daughter 
of L. Z. and Maria Hogans, born July 28, 1825. 
Sarah Ann Hogans married Uriah Bowden. 

On the 12th day of May, 1821, 1. D. Hart bought 
18 acres of land from L. Z. Hogans, in the south- 
east corner of the Taylor grant, paying $72 for the 
18 acres, it is said in cattle. He built a double log 
house just west of where the Church Club stands, 
south side of Forsyth Street, between Market and 
Newnan. He brought his household goods down 
the St. Marys Eiver, through the inside passage, 
and up the St. Johns to the Cow Ford. His family 
and his live stock came across country. I. D. Hart 
was numbered all through the early years as the 
sixth settler on the site of Jacksonville, and his 
brother, Daniel C. Hart, who came with him as the 

All along the river at that time from the ferry, 


now the foot of Liberty Street, westward to Mr. 
Hogans 's eastern fence, where Laura Street now is, 
was dense hammock through which no one ever 
passed. Eastward of the ferry, down to Catherine 
Street, was open pine land and a good, high bluff ; 
and open pine land also extended from the ferry to 
Hogan's Creek, and westward north of Forsyth 
Street far beyond the present city limits. The 
King's road led up north from the river east of 
Mr. Brady's house, whence it turned northwest- 
ward leading by on the north of the store of Daw- 
son & Buckles'. 


Occasionally, Mr. Hogans and Mr. Brady had 
their houses so filled with guests that they could 
not accommodate all who came. When this was the 
case, Dawson & Buckles took into their store those 
who could not find lodging elsewhere. There was 
ample room above the store and when occasion 
required, they did not hesitate to cut open a bale of 
blankets for the use of these comers. This unsel- 
fish and generous conduct brought its reward; it 
was told everywhere and drew custom from far 
and near. They never failed, either, to sell the 
blankets; ^'They are not injured,'' said the pur- 
chasers, ' ' by the use you put them to. I would put 
them to the same use in my house, if necessary, 
and would not consider them injured by it'". It 
soon became apparent that something had to be 
done to provide more accommodations for travel- 


ers at the Cow Ford, so Messrs. Dawson & 
Buckles built a large frame house east of their 
store (southwest corner of Market and Adams 
Streets), for a boarding house. This was the first 
frame house built in Jacksonville. When it was 
completed, Mrs. Sarah Waterman, a widow then 
living at St. Johns bluff, came and kept it. She 
had three handsome grown daughters and one not 
grown and two younger sons. Joseph Andrews, 
brother-in-law of I. D. Hart, came not long after- 
ward and built a frame house on what is now the 
south side of Adams Street, midway between 
Newnan and Ocean'. 

The actual change of flags took place at St. 
Augustine July 16, 1821, whereby East Florida 
formally passed into the possession of the United 
States. Then the Cow Ford became a busy place 
for a forest settlement. Travel increased wonder- 
fully, and at times the houses here could not ac- 
commodate all those who wished to stop and view 
the country. 


I. D. Hart now conceived the idea of laying otf 
a town site at the Cow Ford. He seems to have 
had some difficulty in convincing Messrs. L. Z. 
Hogans and John Brady of the feasibility of the 
plan ; but, finally, they consented to donate a por- 
tion of their lands for streets. The town was laid 
off in June, 1822, under the supervision of three 
commissioners, residents of the neighborhood, 


namely, Francis J. Ross, Benjamin Chaires, and 
John Bellamy. The site was surveyed by D. S. H. 
Miller, who formerly was connected with the 
Spanish post at St. Nicholas with the title of 
^'Captain of the Rural Militia of the St. Johns 
River, District of St. Nicholas, and Deputy Sur- 
veyor." John W. Roberts acted as Clerk'. On 
the day the town was laid off a considerable dis- 
pute arose between Brady and Hart as to the 
dividing line between their lands. It was at last 
agreed between them that a tree, claimed by L. Z. 
Hogans to be a corner tree, standing on the river 
bank at the foot of the present Market Street, 
should be the starting point'. The survey began 
here and thence north a street was laid out eighty 
feet in width, the property owners on each side 
donating forty feet. This was Jacksonville's first 
street, and corresponded to the present Market 
Street, but it was not given that name. It is im- 
possible to determine what name the commission- 
ers gave to the first street. 

It was decided that there should be six lots, 
each 105 feet square, in each block, two lots ad- 
joining north and south, being 210 feet; and three 
lots east and west, 315 feet. The next street laid 
off was Bay Street, with a width of seventy feet. 
The first square designated and numbered was 
east of Market and north of Bay Street, and in 
compliment to Brady as the first settler present of 
the part now to be surveyed, it was designated 
Square No. 1. The next square surveyed was 





I— I 






across Market Street, west of No. 1, and it was 
designated No. 2. The square north of it was 
numbered 3, and east of that, 4. Brady's build- 
ings, it was found when the survey was being 
made, would be in the street on the east of Square 
No. 1, if but three lots from west to east were in 
it. To avoid this difficulty, another tier of lots 
was added on the east side of Square No. 1, mak- 
ing this square eight lots, instead of six, which 
saved Mr. Brady from living in the middle of the 
street. Thus the range of blocks between Liberty 
and Market Streets is composed of eight lots'. 

The commissioners now surveyed Square No. 
5, east of Square No. 1, the King's road leading 
north from the river being between. This they 
named Liberty Street, although it was often called 
Ferry Street, also. The square north of No. 5 was 
designated No. 6, north of that No. 8, west of that 
No. 7, and west of that No. 9. This was the sur- 
veyor's wrong marking and was never corrected 
on the original map\ 

From the survey of Square No. 9, the commis- 
sioners came back to Bay Street and ran off Square 
No. 10 west of No. 2 ; and north of No. 10, they ran 
11 and 12, respectively. Again they came back to 
Bay Street, this time east of Washington Street, 
and laid off No. 13, east of No. 5, and north of No. 
13, they surveyed Nos. 14, 15, and 16 in the order 
named. They then turned west and surveyed Nos. 
17, 18, 19, and 20. Here they stayed their work and 
never resumed it'. 



The original survey comprised the squares be- 
tween Catherine and Ocean Streets, and Duval 
Street and the River. The naming of Liberty and 
Washington Streets indicates the patriotism of 
the commissioners. Newnan Street received its 
name from Colonel Daniel Newnan, Inspector- 
General of Georgia, but who came here with the 
^* Patriots'' as a volunteer. Forsyth Street was 
named for General Forsyth, of Georgia; Adams 
Street, for John Quincy Adams, then Secretary of 
State in President Monroe's cabinet, and who was 
largely instrumental in bringing about the cession 
of Florida ; Monroe Street, for President Monroe ; 
and Duval Street, for Governor Duval, of Florida". 
Three of Jacksonville's streets bear the names of 
L D. Hart's children, namely, Laura, Julia, and 
Ocean — Ocean was formerly Ossian. 

By unanimous agreement, the newly laid out 
town was called Jacksonville, in honor of General 
Andrew Jackson, the name being suggested by 
John Warren, who had served as a volunteer in 
General Jackson's army during the Indian 
troubles'. Some accounts have stated that Gen- 
eral Jackson was present when the town was laid 
out ; but the author has failed to find any authentic 
record of the General's ever having visited the 
Cow Ford, and certainly not in 1822. 


On the day Jacksonville was surveyed, a good 


many lots were sold by botli Brady and Hart. 
John Bellamy bought the northwest corner of 
Bay and Liberty Streets, and D. S. H. Miller, the 
surveyor, bought all the lots in Square No. 5. 
Miller afterward sold these lots out to different 
parties. Stephen J. Eubanks bought one of the 
south lots in Square No. 2, on Bay Street, includ- 
ing the margin to the river, for $12.00. Soon after 
the town was surveyed, Brady conveyed to Benja- 
min Chaires and Francis J. Eoss, two of the com- 
missioners, the lot at the northeast corner of 
Forsyth and Market Streets, where the armory 
now stands. Messrs Chaires and Ross immedi- 
ately gave this lot to the county, for the purpose 
of erecting thereon the county court house. The 
deed from Brady was not recorded until October 
10, 1840. The record of a deed in that day was 
regarded as useless, as it was a matter of public 
notoriety that the property claimed was sold and 
bought, and the title was therefore perfect, 
whether the deed was recorded or not'. 

John Warren built a large building of the best 
materials in the best manner at the northwest cor- 
ner of Bay and Newnan Streets. The eastern end 
of the lower story was used as a store, and the 
western end for a time as a dwelling. The upper 
part was one large room, and was used as a court 
room until the court house was built, and also as a 
dance hall, and when occasion required for hold- 
ing religious services'. 

An air of business-like activity now took hold of 


the place. The sound of the axe and the crash of 
falling trees spoke plainly of the coming of other 
permanent residents. Prominent among these 
were William J. Mills, an Englishman from 
Amelia Island; William Bailey, of Georgia; and 
John L. Doggett, of Massachusetts. 


The distinction of being the founder of Jackson- 
ville unquestionably belongs to Isaiah D. Hart, 
and he lived to see the town develop into a place of 
more than 2,000 people. At one time or another, 
he owned nearly all the land now known as old 
Jacksonville, and also the most of Hogans's Dona- 
tion (Springfield). He outlived all the early set- 
tlers and died in 1861. He was buried in a vault 
on a plot of ground at the northeast corner of 
State and Laura Streets, and his resting place 
was marked with this queer inscription : 

When I am dead and in my grave, 
And these bones are all rotten; 
When this you see, remember me, 
That I may not be forgotten. 

After the fire of May 3, 1901, his remains were 
removed to Evergreen Cemetery and the old vault 
in the city was destroyed. 


1 History of Florida, Webb. 

2 Florida Times-Union and Citizen, January 1, 1900. 

3 Memoirs of Florida, Fleming. 

4 Florida Eeports, Vol. VI, p. 491. 




Duval County was created August 12, 1822. On 
December 16, 1822, the first county court convened 
at Jacksonville for the transaction of county busi- 
ness. The Justices were Thomas Reynolds, Wil- 
liam G. Dawson, Rigdon Brown, and Britton 
Knight. Thomas Reynolds was the presiding 
Justice, and George Gibbs was clerk of the court. 
It was a meeting similar to that of the present 
county commissioners, vested with like powers, 
and it met for a like purpose. They proceeded to 
lay off the county into road districts, apportion 
the work of building the roads, and did other busi- 
ness of importance. James Dell was the first 
sheriff of Duval County, but he moved to Alachua 
County after serving less than two years. Daniel 
C. Hart was appointed to fill the vacancy thus 
made. Hart was afterward appointed U. S. 
Deput}^ Marshal, and he held both positions to the 
time of his death in 1831. In 1824, county affairs 
were placed under the jurisdiction of three local 
Judges. The first incumbents under this law were 
John L. Doggett, F. Bethune, and John Houston, 
appointed December 30, 1824\ 



The first regular court ever held here convened 
Monday, December 1, 1823. Hon. Joseph L. Smith 
was the Judge. Judge Smith was the father of 
General E. Kirby Smith, Confederate General. 
The first grand jury was impanelled December 2, 
1823, and was composed of the following grand 
jurors: John Bellamy, Foreman; Stephen J. 
Eubanks, John Houston, Isaac Tucker, Charles 
Broward, Seymour Pickett, John Broward, John 
Price, James Dell, William Matthews, Cotton 
Rawls, A. G. Loper, Llewellyn Williams, Charles 
Seton, John D. Braddock, John C. Houston, 
Nathaniel Wilds, and Stephen Vanzanf. James 
Dell who served on this jury was probably a kins- 
man of the Sheriff, James Dell. 


The first civil case called for trial was that of 
Ephraim Harrison vs. John D. Vaughan, and was 
disposed of as follows' : 

(In Case) This day came the parties aforesaid, 
by their attorneys and thereupon came a jury, to 
wit : — P. D. McDonnell, Lewis Christopher, Britton 
Knight, James Rouse, William Sparkman, John 
Higginbotham, David Turner, Matthew H. Philips, 
John G. Brown, John G. Rushing, William G. Daw- 
son, and Lewis Thigpen, who were sworn well and 
truly to try the issue joined between the parties; 
and on motion of the plaintiff by his attorney, and 


for reasons appearing satisfactory to the court, it is 
ordered that the jury be discharged from rendering 
a verdict herein, and that this cause be continued 
until the next term, upon the plaintiff paying all 
costs of the defendant herein expended. 

The cause of this action is not stated. 


Abraham Bellamy was the first lawyer to settle 
in Jacksonville. He was the son of John Bellamy, 
one of the commissioners. He built an office near 
Mr. Brady's house, where he did business for all 
who came. Most of the early legal papers were 
drawn up by him'. 


In October, 1823, the County of Duval made an 
agreement with John L. Doggett for the erection 
of a court house on the lot donated to the county 
by Messrs. Chaires and Ross. When the timbers 
were laid out and ready for framing, the people of 
the county voluntarily gathered and, under the 
direction of Seymour Pickett, raised them in two 
days. This was in the summer of 1825. The struc- 
ture was 40 feet square, two stories high, with a 
basement 10 feet in height. It was first supported 
by large hewn timbers, built up in squares, but 
this arrangement was only a temporary one. 
Brick pillars of great size and strength were after- 
ward built, and the building was correctly leveled 
and the timbers under it removed. The front was 


to the south, facing Forsyth Street. A long, broad 
portico, supported also by brick pillars, was be- 
fore the building, and broad steps led up from the 
ground on the east and the west. A large double 
door, perhaps 10 feet high, led in, and broad steps 
inside led up on the east and the west to the upper 
story. The windows were numerous and of great 
size, about 7 feet high and 4 feet wide. To these 
double shutters, made of white pine, were pro- 
vided, and closed out the wind and rain, and also 
the light. They were afterward replaced by sash, 
when these could be obtained'. In 1834, the Legis- 
lative Council of the Territory of Florida ^ ^ autho- 
rized Joseph B. Lancaster, I. D. Hart, and Wil- 
liam J. Mills to raise $6,000 by means of lotteries, 
to complete the court house at Jacksonville'.^^ 
The building was sufficiently completed, however, 
in the winter of 1825-26 for use. This court house 
was known far and wide as the best constructed 
building in all this part of the country. It was 
burned by Federal troops, March 29, 1863. 

The next public building erected after the 
court house was a jail ; this was in 1827. Its loca- 
tion was on the southwest corner of Duval and 
Market Streets. Some years later the building 
was burned; then the county built a two-roomed 
brick jail in the court house yard'. This, too, was 
burned with the court house, in 1863. 



Seymour Pickett built a water mill for Charles 
F. Sibbald at Six-mile Creek, in 1819. Sibbald 
probably owned the first steam saw mill anywhere 
in this vicinity. It was at Panama, and was in 
operation as early as 1829. There was also a brick 
kiln at Panama at that time. 


Judge Bethune's diary covers the period 1829- 
1833, and contains daily entries, mostly in regard 
to the work on his ^^New Ross'' plantation on the 
river four miles above Jacksonville. The pages 
are seared and yellowed from age, but the hand- 
writing is nearly as clear as it was 80 years ago — a 
testimonial in favor of the oak-ball ink used then. 

The Judge makes frequent mention of going to 
the steam mill at Panama, for lumber and bricks. 
He was building a sugar mill at his plantation, and 
the difficulties he experienced show the vicissi- 
tudes attending building operations in those early 
days. He hauled the material from Panama in 
the brig "Venus,'' a vessel belonging to the port 
of Jacksonville. He sent to St. Augustine for a 
carpenter, and on September 7, 1829, put his slaves 
and hired men (he owned some slaves, but fre- 
quently hired outside help) to cutting and hewing 
timber. After many delays, the mill was com- 
pleted January 1, 1830, about three months after it 
was started. He hauled his cane to the mill and 


began grinding, but on the 28tb of January be 
noted, ' ' The mill broke ; sent Nero for Carlisle, the 
carpenter/' On the 19th of February following 
repairs to the mill were completed and he began to 
grind cane again. These works could not have 
been very extensive. 

The crops grown at Judge Bethune's plantation 
were, sugar cane, rice (he had a good deal of 
trouble with his rice crops on account of the birds, 
and he had to keep a man in the field all day to 
scare them away), guinea corn, arrow root, sweet 
and Irish potatoes, rye, and a varied assortment 
of vegetables, but no cotton. There was also a 
peach orchard and an orange grove. 

On August 11th and 12th, 1831, was the note, 
*^The sun had the appearance of the full moon for 
half an hour after sunrise; it had a bluish cast, 
and the light was that of the full moon''; and on 
the 14th, "Saw two large, black spots on the sun, 
which still looks like the full moon at sunrise and 
nearly an hour afterward." 

When his slaves were sick, the Judge sent to 
St. Augustine or Jacksonville for a physician. 
The Jacksonville physician was a Doctor Hall, 
perhaps the first physician here. The method fol- 
lowed then seems to have been mostly "bleeding" ; 
"Andrew sick; Dr. Hall came and bled him" is a 
characteristic note. The kind-heartedness of the 
master is indicated in the simple entry, "Dick and 
George making Peggy's coffin; buried the old and 
faithful servant in the evening. ' ' 



The public ferry across the St. Johns River at 
the Cow Ford in 1774, mentioned by Bartram, was 
no doubt operated from the south side. It has 
been persistently published by writers of news- 
paper articles, and there seems to be no reason to 
doubt it, that William Hendricks or Isaac Hend- 
ricks owned and operated a ferry from the south 
side as early as 1800. The ferryman could not 
have spent much time on the lookout for signals 
from the opposite shore and it would be interest- 
ing to know just how travelers on this side at- 
tracted the attention of the ferryman when they 
wished to cross the river. One writer has said 
that hours of gesticulating, riding up and 
down the bluif, and shooting off guns and pistols 
failed to attract his attention. When John Brady 
came in 1818, he was not long in coming to the 
conclusion that a ferry from the north side was 
absolutely necessary, and he therefore established 

Soon after Florida came into the possession of 
the United States, the matter of a public ferry at 
Jacksonville was brought before the Legislative 
Council of the Territory and resulted in an act 
establishing the ferry, approved December 29, 

Act 14, Legislative Council of the Territory of 
Florida, approved February 2, 1838, provided 


An act entitled "an act establishing a ferry over 
the St. Johns river at Jacksonville", approved De- 
cember 29, 1824, be, and the same is hereby revived 
and continued in force until the year one thousand, 
eight hundred and forty-five. 

Act 9, approved February 4, 1837, gave William 
Hendricks the monopoly of running a ferry from 
the south side of the river, as follows : 

1. Be it enacted by the Governor and the Legis- 
lative Council of the Territory of Florida, That 
William Hendrick be and he is hereby authorized and 
vested with the right, and charged with the duty of 
keeping a ferry for the term of seven years across 
the St. Johns River on the south side, at the Cow 
Ford, opposite Jacksonville, in the County of Duval. 

2. Be it further enacted. That it shall be the duty 
of the said William Hendrick to keep a sufficient 
number of boats and flats for the accommodation of 

3. Be it further enacted, That it shall be unlaw- 
ful for any other person or persons to establish or 
keep a ferry within two miles, except it be for his, 
her, or their own use, and not for the purpose of 
gathering or receiving toll. 

4. Be it further enacted. That the rates of 
ferriage at said ferry shall be established from time 
to time by the county court of said county. 

John L. Doggett owned the ferry from the north 
side of the river for a great many years. He was 
the first licensed ferryman, on this side of the 



The mail in the early days was carried on horse- 
back to St. Marys and back once a week, and to 
St. Angustine and back in the same length of time. 
It required ten days for the return trip to Talla- 
hassee. When steam navigation became more or 
less regular between Charleston and Savannah 
and Jacksonville, the mail from the North came 
here by vessel, and this method was continued 
until the railroads began to operate. The road to 
the St. Marys was often in very bad condition, and 
during wet weather it was impassable for long dis- 
tances. This caused great delays in the mails, so 
much so that the Territorial Legislature in 1839, 
sent a resolution to the delegate in Congress, ask- 
ing for an appropriation of $5,000, for the pur- 
pose of repairing the road from Jacksonville to 
the St. Marys.' 

Albert G. Philips was the first mail carrier be- 
tween Jacksonville and Tallahassee. He studied 
the language of the Indians and could talk with 
them. He slept in the woods while en route and 
would often awake in the night and find Indian 
braves around his campfire. They would ask for 
coffee and tobacco, which would be given them; 
then Mr. Philips would go back to sleep, and when 
he woke up again they would be gone. They never 
molested him, and never took one thing from him; 
but, instead, frequently brought him dried venison 
and wild honey'. Another of the early mail carri- 


ers was Green Bush, famous as a coon and squirrel 
hunter, and generally considered one of the best 
shots in the county'. 

The first post office was in a store. It was then 
moved to a room in the basement of the court 
house, where it remained for some time'. The post- 
master served practically without compensation, 
and it became necessary to move the post office to 
a store again, in order to get any one to serve as 
postmaster, the store keeper being willing to dis- 
tribute the mail in order to obtain the patronage 
of those that always collect at a town store when 
the keeper is also the postmaster. For years Wil- 
liam Grothe was postmaster, jeweler, and watch- 
maker in a little 12x12 building that stood at the 
northeast corner of Forsyth and Newnan Streets'. 


People continued to come to this vicinit}^ Some 
settled in Jacksonville and others in the surround- 
ing territory. The sons and relatives of wealthy 
men in the North and other people of many kinds 
came during the winter months. A few of these 
stayed and entered into business'. At last the 
town reached the stage when incorporation was 

Jacksonville was incorporated by Act 70, of the 
Legislative Council of the Territory of Florida, 
Session of 1832. In many respects the charter 
was a remarkable instrument, and is worthy of 
careful reading. It follows: 


Sec. 1. Be it enacted by the Governor and the 
Legislative Council of the Territory of Florida, 
That all the free white male inhabitants of the age 
of twenty one years and over, comprehended within 
a line commencing at a point on the South bank of 
the river St. Johns, opposite Hogan's creek, on the 
north side, running north half a mile up said creek, 
thence west one mile and a half to McCoy's creek, 
thence south to a point on the south side of the river 
St. Johns, opposite to McCoy's creek, thence east to 
the point of beginning ; and their successors be, and 
are hereby declared to be a body politic and cor- 
porate, by the name and style of the Town of Jack- 
sonville, with all the rights, liberties, privileges, pow- 
ers, and authorities incident to and appertaining to 
a corporation, body politic, or a natural person ; and 
by the said name and style may sue and be sued, 
plead and be impleaded, hold, possess, and enjoy real 
estate and personal property; and dispose of and 
transfer the same, and so dispose of and manage the 
funds of said city, as shall be most beneficial to the 
interests thereof. 

Sec. 2. Be it further enacted that the govern- 
ment of said town, shall be vested in a person to be 
called a mayor, and four aldermen to compose a coun- 
cil for the management of the affairs of the town. 
The Mayor and aldermen shall be elected annually, 
on the first Monday of April, from among such of 
the qualified voters of said town hereby incorporated, 
as shall have resided within the limits thereof at least 
one month, and shall be housekeepers therein. 

Sec. 3. Be it further enacted, That the said 
Council shall have the power and authority to pass 


all laws and ordinances, that may be necessary and 
expedient for the good government of said town, and 
the preservation of the public morals ; Provided, that 
they are not inconsistent with the constitution and 
laws of the United States, and the power hereby 
granted. Provided no law or ordinance in this 
respect, shall be inconsistent with any law of this 
Territory — They shall especially have power to 
regulate, improve, alter, and extend the streets, lanes, 
avenues, and public squares, and to open new streets, 
and to cause encroachments, obstructions, decayed 
buildings, and old ruins to be removed; making the 
parties injured by any improvement, a just compen- 
sation, and charging upon those benefited a reason- 
able assessment, to be ascertained in such manner, as 
shall be agreed upon by the parties, or by a jury of 
twelve men, to be organized in such manner, as, by 
ordinance, the said council may provide ; They shall 
have power to prevent and abate nuisances, to order 
and compel the owners or occupants of lots, upon 
which pools of water are, or are likely to accumulate, 
to fill them up, to regulate and compel persons by 
ordinances or otherwise, to erect and keep in repair 
partition fences ; and may pass all laws and ordinan- 
ces that may be necessary to preserve the public 
health — They shall have authority to guard against 
the introduction of infectious or malignant diseases, 
and for this purpose, may prohibit or regulate the 
ingress, or approach of vessels into the w^aters within 
the limits of said corporation, and w^ienever neces- 
sary, may compel them under fixed and certain penal- 
ties to perform quarantine, and observe such other 
rules and regulations, as to the said Council ma}^ seem 


proper by ordinance to establish. They may con- 
struct wharves, keys, and docks, and regulate wharf- 
age, dockage, and mooring and anchoring vessels, 
erect bridges and ferries and establish the rates of 
ferriage and tolls ; They may erect all necessary pub- 
lic buildings, and dispose of the same as the interests 
of the town may require ; and make and sink wells, 
erect pumps, dry drains, and do and perform all 
such other act or acts, as shall seem necessary, and 
be best adapted to the improvement and general inter- 
ests of the town, and pass all necessary laws to guard 
against fires, and to ensure the sweeping of chimneys ; 
they may establish and regulate markets, and require 
all persons bringing fresh provisions into the town, 
to exhibit them for sale at proper market hours, 
establish and regulate the weight and assize of bread, 
the inspection of provisions and other produce, being 
the growth or manufacture of the Territory, that may 
be brought in said town for sale, or which may be 
sent from it ; the gauging of liquors, the measuring or 
weighing of any articles of produce or merchandise, 
and the storing of gunpowder; and all naval and 
military stores, not the property of the United States. 
They shall have the power to tax auctioneers, and 
license and tax retailers of goods, and liquors, hawk- 
ers, pedlars, tavern and public boarding house keep- 
ers', hackney carriages, carts and drays ; restrain lot- 
teries, tippling houses, gaming houses, houses of ill 
fame, and theatrical or other public exhibitions, sup- 
press riots and disorderly assemblies, and may pro- 
vide for the punishment of all persons guilty of 
breaches of the peace, within the limits of said to^vn, 
by fine and imprisonment ; Provided the fine shall in 


no case exceed five dollars and the imprisonment five 

Sec. 4. Be it further enacted, That the said 
Town-council shall further have the power and au- 
thority to provide by tax, or otherwise, a fund for the 
support of the poor, the infirm, the diseased and in- 
sane ; to establish public schools and provide for their 
maintenance, and to organize patrols, and provide 
for the punishment of negroes and persons of color. 

Sec. 5. Be it further enacted, That the said 
Council shall have the power to assess, levy, and en- 
force the collection of all taxes, and other impositions, 
as may be necessary for the support of the govern- 
ment of said Town, and the improvements thereof — 
Provided, that no higher rate of tax shall be levied 
upon real estate than one half of one per cent on the 
assessed value thereof, to be determined by assessors 
chosen in such manner as said council may provide, 
and the said taxes to be collected by distress and sale, 
after default shall be made in the payment thereof, 
in the most convenient and least expensive way, as to 
the said mayor and aldermen shall be deemed expedi- 
ent — and the said council shall have power further 
to provide for the trial of all offenses that may arise 
under the ordinance of said town, and shall enforce 
the collection of all fines and penalties that may arise 
as aforesaid, in such manner as said council by ordi- 
nance may provide. 

Sec. 6. Be it further enacted. That it shall be the 
duty of the mayor to see that the ordinances of the 
town are faithfully executed, recommend for ap- 
pointment all necessary town officers and report and 
cause their removal, whenever by negligence or mis- 


conduct the interests of the town may require it— he 
shall preside at all meetings of the board, and propose 
such measures as he shall think important to the pub- 
lic interest, but shall only be entitled to a casting vote, 
and shall have power to convene the board whenever 
it may be deemed necessary— he shall have, possess, 
exercise and enjoy all the powers, duties and privi- 
leges and receive the same compensation as a justice 

of the peace. 

Sec. 7. Be it further enacted, That the mayor 
and two aldermen shall form a quorum for the trans- 
action of all business ; they may compel the attend- 
ance of their absent members, under such pains and 
penalties as by the rules may be prescribed; judge of 
the qualification of members, and of the sufficiency, 
correctness, or regularity of election returns; settle 
their own rules of proceeding, and upon the recom- 
mendation of the mayor, appoint and remove all offi- 
cers, and fix their compensation, and establish such 
fees' as may or ought to be allowed for such services, 
as may be required of them— their meetings shall be 
public, and they shall cause a journal of their pro- 
ceedings to be kept and regularly authenticated by 
the signatures of the mayor and clerk, which shall be 
kept open for the inspection of all who may be inter- 
ested in the proceedings of said council : The ayes 
and noes upon any question, shall be entered upon 
their journals upon a call of any two members— they 
shall make public all their ordinances and resolutions, 
before they shall have force and efficacy, by posting 
written copies thereof in two or more public places 

in said town. 

Sec. 8. Be it further enacted. That all white male 


inhabitants of the age of twenty one years and over, 
who shall have resided within the said town, at least 
one month immediately preceding the day of election, 
shall be entitled to vote for mayor and aldermen, they 
being citizens of the United States — All votes shall 
be given by ballot. 

Sec. 9. Be it further enacted, That the elections 
shall be conducted by three inspectors, to be appointed 
at least two weeks before the day of election, by the 
mayor; the said mayor shall also appoint the place 
of holding the said election, and give public notice 
thereof for the like period of time. 

Sec. 10. Be it further enacted. That the said in- 
spectors shall be judges of the qualifications of vot- 
ers ; and it shall be the duty of them, or any two of 
them, on the day appointed by law for holding the 
elections, to open the poll for the reception of votes, 
and to cause the names of voters to be recorded in a 
book to be kept for that purpose, which shall be de- 
posited at the close of election amongst the archives 
of the corporation ; the polls shall open at nine o 'clock 
in the morning, and close at five o'clock in the after- 
noon, after which the inspectors shall proceed to count 
the votes, and declare the persons elected, as mayor 
and aldermen, and make out a written certificate 
thereof, at the foot of the poll list, and deliver a copy 
to the mayor elect, who, upon receipt thereof, shall 
signify his acceptance or refusal. 

Sec. 11. Be it further enacted. That if the said 
mayor elect shall signify his acceptance of said office, 
the former mayor shall as soon as practicable, at any 
time within five days, assemble the board, and in 
their presence, administer to him the following oath : 


''I, A. B. do solemnly swear, or affirm, that I mil to 
the utmost of my power support, advance and defend 
the interests, peace and good order of the town of 
Jacksonville, and faithfully discharge the duties of 
mayor of said Town, during my continuance in office ; 
and I do further swear, that I will support the Con- 
stitution of the United States ' ' ; and the Mayor elect, 
upon being thus qualified, shall then administer the 
like oath to the aldermen elect, and thereupon the 
duties of the former board shall cease. 

Sec. 12. Be it further enacted, That if the Mayor 
elect, or any of the Aldermen, shall decline to accept 
the office to which he or they may have been elected, 
or if accepting any or either of them, shall not qualify, 
by taking the prescribed oaths, within five days, that 
then the Mayor in office, or any person exercising the 
duties thereof, shall by proclamation, direct an elec- 
tion to be held for supplying such seats in the board as 
may be vacant, giving at least one week 's notice there- 
of, designating at the same time, the persons ap- 
pointed to superintend and conduct said election. 

Sec. 13. Be it further enacted. That if the office 
of Mayor, or any Alderman, shall at any time become 
vacant, by death, resignation, removal, or otherwise, 
it shall be the duty of the Mayor, or the person exer- 
cising the duties of mayor, agreeably to this act, in 
like manner as is provided in the preceding sec- 
tion, to order a new election to fill such vacancy or 

Sec. 14. Be it further enacted, That Isaiah D. 
Hart, John L. Doggett, and Henry H. Burritt, be 
and they, or any two of them, are hereby appointed 
inspectors to superintend the election for Mayor and 


Councilmen, on the first Monday in April, 1832: 
Provided, that nothing hereby enacted shall be con- 
strued to exclude the legislature of this Territory 
from the right to repeal, alter, or modify this act 
as it may deem proper. 
Passed Feb. 9, 1832. 

Approved Feb. 11, 1832. 

An act of the legislature, approved February 
10, 1835, made some unimportant changes in the 
charter; and Act 3, approved January 27, 1837, 
changed the boundaries of the town as follows : 

The boundary line of the incorporation of the 
Town of Jacksonville shall be extended agreeably to 
the following lines : Beginning at the mouth of 
McCoy's Creek on the St. Johns River, running 
thence up said creek to a point where John W. 
Richard's fence joined said creek, thence in a north 
course to the first branch north of the King's road 
leading to St. Marys, thence down said branch to 
Hogan 's Creek, thence down said creek to the mouth 
where it empties into the St. Johns River, thence 
across said river to the south side, thence up the 
south side of the said river to Hendrick's Point, 
thence across St. Johns River to the mouth of Mc- 
Coy's Creek aforesaid. 

Act 44, approved March 2, 1840, repealed all 
acts and parts of acts then in force incorporating 
the town of Jacksonville, a new charter being 
granted subsequently. 

Eight towns in Florida were incorporated prior 


to the incorporation of Jacksonville, namely, St. 
Angustine, Pensacola, Fernandina, Key West, 
Quincy, Magnolia, Apalachicola, and Ochesee'. 


The first election of town officials was held in 
accordance with Section 14, of the charter. Wil- 
liam J. Mills was elected mayor, and he was, there- 
fore, the first mayor of Jacksonville. Unfortu- 
nately, no record has been found from which a list 
of the early mayors could be obtained. These 
gentlemen served in that capacity before the civil 
war, but for what period is unknown: F. C Bar- 
rett, Oliver Wood, Eodney Dorman, William 
Grothe. H. D. Holland was mayor 1852-53 ; Philip 
Fraser, 1855-56; F. L Wheaton, 1856-57; H. H. 
Hoeg, 1861-62. 

As a matter of interest, a complete list of the 
mayors of Jacksonville since the civil war is her^ 
given : 

1865-66 H. H. Hoeg 

1866-67 Holmes Steele 

1867-68 John Clark 

1868-69 Edward Hopkins 

1869-70 Edward Hopkins 

1870-71 Peter Jones 

1871-72 Peter Jones 

1872-73 Peter Jones 

1873-74 J. C. Greeley 

1874-75 Peter Jones 

1875-76 Peter Jones 



Luther McConihe 


W. Stokes Boyd 


Luther McConihe 


Peter Jones 


J. Eamsey Dey 


M. A. Dzialynski 


M. A. Dzialynski 


W. McL. Dancy 


W. McL. Dancy 

. 1885-86 

M. C. Rice 


P. McQuaid 


J. Q. Burbridge 


C. B. Smith 


P. McQuaid** 


H. Robinson** 


D. U. Fletcher 


Wm. M. Bostwick 


R. D. Knight 


J. E. T. Bowden 


D. U. Fletcher 


G. M. Nolan 


G. M. Nolan*** 


W. H. Sebring 


W. S. Jordan 


W. S. Jordan 

*Term changed to two years, 

^*Appointed by the City Council under the provisions of House 
Bill No. 4, which was designed to rid the city of negro 
office holders. 
**Died in office; unexpired term filled by W. H. Baker. 



During tlie period between the incorporation of 
Jacksonville and the outbreak of the Seminole war 
in December, 1835, plans were laid for the estab- 
lishment of some important enterprises, chief 
among which was the organization of a company 
to build a railroad from Jacksonville to Talla- 
hassee, and later to extend it to some point on the 
Gulf coast. This was in 1834. The name of the 
railroad was to be the Florida Peninsular and 
Jacksonville Eailroad, and the capital stock of the 
company was not to exceed $1,000,000. Among the 
directors were J. B. Lancaster, I. D. Hart, F. 
Bethune, W. Gr. Mills, and Stephen Eddy, of Jack- 
sonville. The Bank of Jacksonville was incor- 
porated Februar}^ 14, 1835, with a capital of $75,- 
000\ In 1835, the Jacksonville Courier sprang 
into existence. L. Currier & Co., of Boston were 
the publishers and the paper was ably edited by a 
Mr. Williams. Williams died that year and the 
office changed hands, being carried on by Thomas 
D. Dexter, and for a time by O. M. Dorman with a 
gentleman named Gregory as editor'. The largest 
of the mercantile houses was that of S. L. Burritt 
& Co. This firm brought to Jacksonville from 
Cuba the first cargo of sugar ever brought here 
and greatly overstocked the market in all this part 
of the country. This they obtained in exchange 
for lumber, barrelled fish, and other things. They 
continued to ship and bring back coffee, rum, 


molasses, salt, cigars, fruit, etc'. And so tlie 
foundation of the present splendid wholesale trade 
was laid way back in the 30 's, when the importa- 
tion of goods was by means of sailing vessels only, 
a transportation that was slow and uncertain. 

At that time Jacksonville was nothing more 
than a hamlet of 250 people, or less, far too small 
in itself to warrant the establishment of a bank 
and a newspaper or the building of a railroad ; but 
scattered all around, both up and down the river, 
were the plantations of wealthy men, who trans- 
acted their commercial and legal business here, 
and it was their moral and financial support, as 
well as the progressiveness of the citizens of the 
town, that inspired these important measures. 


February 8th, 1835, was the coldest day in the 
history of this section. A temperature of 8 de- 
grees Fahrenheit, was observed here, and the ex- 
treme temperature was without doubt some lower. 
At Fort King, now Ocala, a temperature of 11 de- 
grees was noted ; immediately after the freeze the 
observer obtained a new thermometer which 
averaged two degrees lower than his old one, and 
therefore it is a reasonable deduction that the low- 
est temperature there on February 8th was 9 in- 
stead of 11 degrees. The St. Johns Eiver at Jack- 
sonville was frozen several rods from the shore 
and afforded the inhabitants a spectacle as new as 
it was distressing. Fruit trees were destroyed^ 


most of them roots and all ; even some forest trees 
were killed by the extreme cold'. In the light of 
present knowledge concerning freezes in Florida, 
it may be safely stated that there were several 
days of extraordinarily cold weather, February 
8th being the coldest. 

For the purpose of comparison, there is here ap- 
pended a table showing the days on which the tem- 
perature at Jacksonville fell to 20 degrees, Faht., 
or below', record complete since 1835 : 

Date Degrees 

1835, February 8 8 

1845, December 21 20 

1852, January 13 20 

jggyf January 19 16 

I January 20 18 

1868, December 25 20 

1870, December 24 19 

1880, December 30 19 

-j^gggj January 11 19 

I January 12 15 

1894, December 29 14 

-j^ggg (February 8 14 

I February 9 19 

[February 13 10 

I February 14 16 

1900, February 18 18 

1901, December 21 20 

1905, January 26 17 

1909, December 30 19 


During tlie cold weather of January 13, 1852, 
snow fell all the forenoon, and when it ceased the 
ground was covered to the depth of half an inch. 
In 1899, on the night of February 12-13th, rain 
changed to sleet at 9:45 p. m. (12th), and this to 
snow at 10:15 p. m. Snow continued during the 
night, ceasing before sunrise of the 13th. That 
morning the ground was covered with snow to the 
depth of 2 inches, with a temperature of 10 de- 
grees, and in sheltered places it remained un- 
melted for several days'. 


1 Memoirs of Florida, Fleming. 

2 History of Florida, Webb. 

3 From Judge Bethune's original diary. 

4 Letter from Mrs. M. C. Powers, daughter of Albert G. 


5 From an old newspaper clipping. 

6 Acts of the Legislative Council of the Territory of Florida. 

7 Records in possession of Weather Bureau. 

8 Jacksonville Tri-Weekly Sun, February 19, 1876. 



During the summer of 1835, it was known that 
the Indians were on the verge of outbreak, but 
every one thought the war would be of short dura- 
tion and after a few skirmishes the Indians would 
be so badly punished they would be glad to emi- 
grate to the West. A prolonged war was simply 
out of the question from the view-point of the 
whites. Planters went about their farm opera- 
tions as usual and trade with the interior con- 
tinued unabated. In the fall there were ominous 
mutterings of coming trouble, still the popular be- 
lief was that it would not last long. Short-time 
volunteers were called for to frighten the Indians 
into agreeing to emigrate. Several companies 
were raised in Nassau and Duval Counties. The 
names of Colonel Warren and Major Mills are 
mentioned in connection with these commands — 
probably John Warren and William J. Mills of 
the Jacksonville neighborhood. 

The war opened December 29, 1835, when 
Osceola and twenty followers shot and killed Gen- 
eral Wiley Thompson and others at Fort King, 
now Ocala, and Major Dade's command was 
massacred in Sumter County, near the present 
town of Bushnell, two separate events on the same 
day. The news of these disasters spread through 


the country like wild-fire. People everywhere in 
the interior abandoned their homes and collected 
in the towns for protection. Many of them came 
to Black Creek and on to Jacksonville. Trade with 
the interior gradually ceased, and although it was 
expected that hostilities would be confined to the 
middle portion of the peninsula, the stoppage of 
trade with the interior, a large portion of which 
was handled through Jacksonville, was perceptibly 
felt in business circles here. 


The Governor of Florida issued a proclamation 
to the people advising them to build block houses 
in every community, as a means of protection 
against the Indians. One was built in Jackson- 
ville, probably in 1836, at the northeast corner of 
Ocean and Monroe Streets. This structure was 
one of the famous buildings here and is mentioned 
in nearly every account of the early town. It was 
a structure of logs — a large square room raised 
high above the ground on a pedestal-like base. It 
was entered through a door in the floor, by means 
of a ladder. In the event of attack, the ladder 
would be drawn up and the opening closed. Port- 
holes were provided on all sides, and also in the 
floor, through which to shoot. The object of the 
overhanging construction was to prevent its being 
set on fire, since in trying to fire the house an 
Indian could be shot from overhead. The block- 
house stood at what was then the frontier of the 


town. All north and west of it was barren waste. 
Every rumor of Indians in this section caused the 
timid residents to seek its protection at dark. 
Sentries did guard duty at night and ''many an 
amusing scene could they relate, caused by the 
electric imagination of the weak-nerved when it 
came their turn to go on post'\' The Coy House 
was built on this site in the winter of 1851-52. 
During its fifteen years of existence the old block 
house served the community well, first as a fort 
and then as a place for holding religious services. 
Jacksonville was a supply depot during the war, 
sub-commissary to the chief post at Middleburg. 
The government built a long one- story wooden 
building on the south side of Bay Street, between 
Main and Laura, near Laura, as a storage for sup- 
plies. This was popularly called the ' 'government 
building". It was built high above the marsh — for 
that region was then nothing more than marsh 
land over which the tide frequently came — and 
along the Bay Street side a raised sidewalk fur- 
nished an entrance. This building stood for many 


In the summer of 1836, the Indians attacked 
and destroyed several plantations along the lower 
St. Johns, among them those of Colonel tiallowes 
and Mr. Travers. They also appeared here and 
there in Western Florida, between the Suwanee 
Eiver and Tallahassee. The settlements in the 


Black Creek country and on the east side of the 
St. Johns above Jacksonville had, many of them, 
been broken up, although a few planters who had 
been kind to the Seminoles, remained on their 
farms and were never molested. 

On September 15, 1836, a band of Indians at- 
tacked the house of a Mr. Higginbotham seven 
miles west of Jacksonville, but they were driven 
off by members of the household, who barricaded 
themselves in the house and fired at the Indians 
with shot and ball. After the Indians left, Mr. 
Higginbotham rode post-haste to Jacksonville to 
give the alarm, and Major Hart and twelve men 
immediately went in pursuit. Major Hart's party 
found all well at the Higginbotham home and 
pushed on down the trail toward the Tallahassee 
road. When they reached the Johns farm they 
found the house a heap of smoking ruins in which 
were the charred remains of Mr. Johns. Several 
miles farther on, at Mr. Sparkman's, they found 
Mrs. Johns, severely wounded, but still alive. Mr. 
and Mrs. Johns were attacked at 10 o 'clock in the 
forenoon, while they were in the yard of their 
home, and although Mr. Johns was shot through 
the chest, both he and his wife managed to reach 
the house and close the door. The Indians soon 
broke open the door and shot Mr. Johns dead. 
They dragged his wife to the door and told her to 
go, but at that moment an Indian shot her through 
the arm and neck. She fell through the doorway, 
but they dragged her back into the house and with 


a large butcher knife fiendishly skinned all the 
hair off of her head. They then plundered the 
house and set fire to it. Mrs. Johns, though 
greatly weakened from loss of blood, managed to 
crawl out of the burning house after the Indians 
left. Fainting from weakness at frequent inter- 
vals, she at last reached a nearby swamp, got some 
water, and laid down to die. Here searchers 
found her at 2 p. m. They took her on a horse and 
conveyed her to a neighbor's, Mr. Sparkman's, 
several miles away. She was later removed to 
Jacksonville and placed in a comfortable board- 
ing house, where medical attendance and humane 
attentions soon relieved her of much of her physi- 
cal suffering and she finally recovered'. 

The year 1836 closed with the Indians holding 
their own everywhere. They overran the country, 
killing express riders, attacking wagon trains, and 
burning farm houses, and as a result no operations, 
except those of a military nature, were carried on 
in the country districts. The comparatively ex- 
tensive trade that Jacksonville had enjoyed with 
the interior was entirely destroyed; the Courier 
ceased publication, and on account of the public 
unrest such enterprises as were contemplated 
were abandoned. Instead of being a small affair 
that would terminate with a display of force and a 
few volleys from the troops, the war wore on for 
seven years, furnishing the most wonderful ex- 
ample of Indian warfare in the history of the 
United States. As time went by, however, the 


field of operations receded from this section and 
went farther and farther southward. 


In 1830, there began an era of extravagant 
speculation and reckless enterprise in the United 
States. Population was increasing and produc- 
tion was increasing even faster than population. 
As the means of communication between producer 
and consumer were decidedly inadequate, a uni- 
versal need was felt for transportation facilities 
that would insure quick delivery at moderate 
prices. The popular demand for railroad and 
canal construction became so great that conserva- 
tism and good judgment were swept aside. States, 
cities, and towns all over the country were drawn 
into the whirl of enthusiasm, and many of them 
made large bond issues to carry on the work of 
construction. Naturally business in all lines be- 
came inflated, and when such is the case a crisis is 
inevitable. An over production in the cotton crop 
of 1836 caused a drop in prices and hastened the 
panic that had its beginning in 1837. During the 
hard times that followed many of the States had 
to resort to extraordinary measures to pay the in- 
terest on their debts, and some, including Florida, 
actually repudiated their debts and refused to pay. 
The States had issued bonds in the aid of the con- 
struction of railroads and canals, and in the South 
especially subscribed to bank stock for the pur- 
chase of which they also issued bonds. Therefore, 


many bank failures occurred when the crash came, 
culminating with the failure of the Bank of Penn- 
sylvania in 1840, when every bank south of Phila- 
delphia suspended payment'. Florida had a better 
excuse for repudiating her debts than the other 
states, because she was not only caught in the 
money panic, but at the same time had been and 
was even then undergoing a disastrous war with 
the Seminole Indians. 

The Bank of Jacksonville made a spectacular 
effort to weather the storm, by increasing its capi- 
tal from $75,000 to $100,000. It sent a petition to 
the Legislative Council asking for permission to 
open its books for the subscription of stock, and 
this permission was granted by Act 19, approved 
February 12, 1837, as follows : 

^^That the books for receiving subscription of 
stock in said bank (Bank of Jacksonville) on giv- 
ing thirty days previous notice thereof, shall be 
opened on or before the first of October next, in 
the town of Jacksonville, under the superinten- 
dence of William G. ( J) Mills, James Dell, Joseph 
B. Lancaster, William Rider, John L. Doggett, and 
Hardy H. Philips; and said books shall be kept 
open for one year, unless said stock shall sooner be 
subscribed for.'' Assuming that the books were 
opened on October 1, 1837, it required but four 
months to raise the necessary $25,000, regardless 
of the hard times. An act. No. 10, approved on the 
30th of January, 1838, provided : 


Sec. 1. Be it enacted by the Governor and the 
Legislative Council of the Territory of Florida, That 
the Directors of the Bank of Jacksonville be, and 
they are hereby authorized, whenever they shall 
deem it expedient, to increase the capital stock of 
said bank to one hundred thousand dollars : And the 
directors of said bank be, and they are hereby autho- 
rized to receive subscriptions for the increase of 
stock at the banking house of said corporation, or 
at such places, and at such times, and in such man- 
ner, as they, or a majority of them may direct. 

Sec. 2, Be it further enacted, That no person 
but a stockholder, citizen of the United States, or of 
this Territory and a resident of this Territory, shall 
be a director of said bank. 

Sec. 3. Be it further enacted, That the Presi- 
dent and directors shall not be authorized at any 
time, to issue a greater amount of bills than twice 
the amount of capital stock actually paid in. 

Sec. 4. Be it further enacted. That the notes of 
the bank shall be redeemable at the banking house, 
during banking hours on demand, in gold or silver, 
and that the said corporation shall never refuse, or 
suspend such payment on lawful demand being 
made ; the bearer of any such bill, note, or obligation 
shall be entitled to recover interest at the rate of 
ten per centum per annum until they shall make 
payment, or tender payment thereof with interest as 

It will be noted that Section 1 not only provided 
for the increase of capital to $100,000, the amount 
of which was then in hand, but at the same time 


authorized the Bank of Jacksonville ' ' at such times 
and in such manner" as the directors may elect, to 
further increase its capital stock. No subsequent 
record has been found, and a logical inference is, 
that it struggled along until 1840, and went out of 
existence together with the other banks with the 
failure of the Bank of Pennsylvania. 


During the progress of the war our troops cap- 
tured a little Indian boy on one of their trips to 
the interior. An Englishman by the name of Dr. 
Welsh, residing at Jacksonville, took a fancy to 
the boy and was allowed to care for him in his own 
family. It developed that this young Indian was 
a nephew of the great Osceola, his mother being a 
sister of the chief. Dr. Welsh later purchased an 
estate near the mouth of the St. Johns Eiver, 
where he retired with his protege. He took great 
pains and pleasure in bringing up his charge in 
civilized ways, teaching him to read and write 
among other accomplishments. In 1840, the Doc- 
tor returned to England, taking young Osceola 
with him. In the following year he published a 
book relating to his adopted son, the preface of 
which stated the object, ''To record all events 
relating to the life and capture of my protege with 
which I am acquainted in order that in the event of 
my death the manuscript might inform him of his 
origin and history and at the same time remind 
him of one who loved him with the fondness of a 


father.'' An effort was made to trace little 
Osceola's history in London after 1842, but with- 
out successful results*. This Indian boy played 
with the white children in Jacksonville, joining 
with them in their childish games. Sometimes he 
would become very angry, because they teased him, 
and on one occasion he tried to stab a little girl in 
the foot, whereupon he was given a sound thrash- 
ing by her brother*. 

It has been said that Jacksonville's growth be- 
gan with the Indian war, because people from the 
country districts moved here for protection. This 
is true to a limited extent and a few permanent 
residents no doubt did come in that way, but the 
real cause was directly traceable to the effects of 
the panic, together with the favorable representa- 
tions of the country and climate made by the army 
officers that had been here in connection with the 
Indian war. The letters of J. P. Belknap', written 
from Mandarin, Florida, throw some light upon 
the conditions prevailing in this section about 
that time; the following are excerpts from these 
letters :* 

Mandarin, March 13, 1839. 
*'**But I must broach the all absorbing, all exciting 
theme — the mulberry. I thought when at New York 
I had made a good contract, but it has proved far 
otherwise, for I found much to my surprise that the 

*Silk-worm propagation caused the mulberry rage referred to 
• in these letters. 


fever was raging higher here than at Hartford or 
New York, for not only had some of the mulberry- 
planters returned from travelling at the North, but 
several Northern men had come here to buy mul- 
berry and plant here to avail themselves of our 
climate ; so instead of finding plenty of opportunities 
for buying cheap, as I had every reason to expect, I 
found only buyers riding through the country in 
search of it. This was a double disappointment, for 
in the first place I had formed a plan * * * to pur- 
chase up all the mulberry in my neighborhood as 
soon as I arrived and with my own take it to New 
York and make quite a speculation with it * * *. I 
have barely time to say that I have sold what I could 
spare and reserved enough to make a great number 
this season, but such was my fear that something 
might occur to reduce the price * =^ * that I sold 
them too soon and did not get more than half as much 
as I might soon after, for such is the rage for plant- 
ing that they have risen to the enormous price of 
3 cents an eye for cuttings. The Davenports have 
shipped a great quantity. One lot of trees at St. 
Augustine sold for $50,000. 

Mandarin, July 10, 1840. 
***The unaccountable or rather abominable cir- 
cumstance of the war, keeping me out of the posses- 
sion of my place and the total failure of the mul- 
berry market, deprives me of all resources for the 
present. * * * Neither can I do anything at improv- 
ing my orange grove without exposing myself to 
danger, for Indians are bolder than ever. They have 
dispersed themselves into small parties and prowl 


about like wild beasts. They have committed mur- 
ders near us upon the public roads that have been 
travelled in safety until this season and the prospect 
never has been darker than the present for its termi- 
nation. There is no way to account for this state of 
things, but by the political condition of our country, 
being on the eve of a presidential election. * * * 

(Near) Mandarin, Jan'y. 1, 1842. 
**#You will doubtless think I had some cause for 
melancholly reflections when I tell you that I was but 
little better than a guard for protection — the Indians 
came into the very neighborhood of Mandarin, 
murdered one family and plundered and burnt out 
three, and that I had just gotten settled at my place 
again after spending 2 or 3 months' time and some 
money. This is the third time I have been obliged 
to abandon my place and sacrifice time, money, and 
everything but my life. * * * In all former wars 
with the Indians they never were known to come into 
Mandarin settlement before. And during this war 
of more than six years they never have come nearer 
than Julington Creek (to my neighbor, Mott, adjoin- 
ing me) ; therefore at this late period when this part 
of the country had been so long quiet the inhabitants 
of Mandarin thought no more of Indians than if 
there were none in the Territory, but now their 
fears are as great or greater than at any time since 
the war broke out. It had been long reported and 
was generally believed that the troops had gotten 
almost all the Indians out of the Territory and that 
the war would soon be terminated. But alas! we 
have just experienced another cruel disappointment 


and there is no more security or prospect for its 
termination than at its commencement.*** I have 
barely room to say that the creeping, skulking 
Indians never would have ventured into Mandarin 
settlement but that there are no troops within 100 
miles (20 or 30 except) ; they were all taken south in 
pursuit of Sam Jones and his warriors. I hear that 
troops are on their way to be stationed near us for 
our protection. If so I may return to my place, for 
all that return to reoccupy their places are now fur- 
nished with provisions till the next crop season.*** 

Florida was open to great possibilities and de- 
velopment, and as there is something about bor- 
der life that always lures, many people, desirable 
citizens and adventurers alike, wearied of the 
hard times in the North, sought this Territory for 
relief. The adventurers did not settle and left 
when peace was at last restored, but many good 
people stayed and a number settled in Jackson- 
ville. Business increased with their coming and 
the town began a slow but permanent growth. 
Church membership increased, the period 1839- 
1840 being marked by the organization and incor- 
poration of religious bodies here. During the last 
stages of the war, the zone of hostilities had moved 
so far from Jacksonville that the town returned 
to almost normal conditions, and despite the fact 
that attacks were occasionally made by roving 
bands of Indians near here, trade with nearby 
points was resumed and gradually extended into 
the interior. 


Among those who came to Jacksonville from 
the North during the Indian war was a man who 
unselfishly gave his best efforts to the advance- 
ment of this town, and whose influence was a pow- 
erful factor in the progress of the place. This 
man was : 


Dr. A. S. Baldwin was born near Fulton, Oswego 
County, New York, March 19, 1811. He was 
adopted by an uncle living* near Perryville, New 
York; had private tutors, and went to Cazanovia 
Seminary and later to Hobart College, Geneva, 
New York. Soon after completing his education, 
he went with a surveying party to Michigan as 
botanist. On his return from this trip, he decided 
to go South, in a government ship. He stopped 
at Charleston for a time, and then came on to 
Jacksonville. This was in 1839. 

Dr. Baldwin was a very accomplished man, in 
whom were combined two qualities seldom met 
with together, namely, science and practicality. 
He was a botanist, and thoroughly understood 
plant growth and plant life. As a meteorologist, 
he stood high in the estimation of the officials of 
the Smithsonian Institution. In his prime, he was 
considered the best medical practitioner in East 
Florida. He played on several musical instru- 
ments, and his carving on wood and ivory was 

*This biography was written by the author from reliable 
data; it is absolutely unbiased and without favoritism. 


said to have been very fine. He was Senior War- 
den of St. John's Episcopal church for a great 
number of years. He was profoundly attached to 
Jacksonville, and his long and useful life was de- 
voted to the advancement of the interests of this 
place. So far as known, his first public act was 
the setting out of the beautiful shade trees that 
lined our streets before the fire of 1901. He fore- 
saw the necessity of obtaining deeper water at the 
bar, before Jacksonville could make any claim 
upon marine interests. A citizen committee sent 
him to Washington in 1852, to present his ideas to 
Congress, the result of which was an appropria- 
tion for improving the bar. Thus the first steps in 
harbor improvement were taken as a result of his 
efforts; and it was largely through his influence 
that the question of deeper water to the sea was 
kept alive after the war. He took the most promi- 
nent part in the Legislature fighting for the rail- 
road for Jacksonville, as against the road from 
Fernandina to Cedar Keys projected by Senator 
Yulee. And finally, when a railroad for this place 
was assured, he was elected its first President. He 
entered the Confederate service and was ap- 
pointed chief surgeon of the hospitals at Lake City. 
Dr. Baldwin was an active man, but he never 
sought public office. With an unselfish interest in 
this town, there was no contemplated improve- 
ment that he was not prominently identified with. 
It has been repeatedly said that he did more for 
Jacksonville when the place needed a guiding and 


helping hand, than any other man, and some day, 
when this becomes a ^'City of Retrospect,'' we 
may see a monument in one of onr parks erected 
to the memory of Abel Seymour Baldwin, died 
December 10, 1898, in his 88th year. 


1 See the histories of Fairbanks, Williams, Sprague, and Coe 

in relation to the Seminole war. 

2 History of Florida, Webb. 

3 Florida, Williams. 

4 Red Patriots, Coe. 

5 Mrs. M. C. Powers. 

6 C. Drew, in Times-Union, Trade Edition, January, 1890. 

7 New International Encyclopaedia, see REPUDIATION, 


8 Letters and papers of J. P. Belknap in possession of M. A. 





So far as known, religious services were first 
held in Jacksonville over the store built by John 
Warren at the northwest corner of Bay and New- 
nan Streets; this was prior to 1825, and the ser- 
vices were general rather than denominational. 
Services were held irregularly at one place and 
another, and occasionally at the court house, until 
the block house was built, when that seems to have 
become the place for general worship, except by 
the Episcopalians, who continued to use the court 
house. Early in the 40 's the several denomina- 
tions took steps to provide for themselves sepa- 
rate houses of worship. The first church building 
erected in the town was built by the Baptists, on 
the east side of the lot at the northeast corner of 
Duval and Newnan Streets, in 1840. The exact 
location of the building is occupied now by the 
Methodist parsonage. 


The Methodists seem to have been the pioneers 
in organized church work in Jacksonville. In 
1823 or 1824, several missionaries were sent to 
East Florida with headquarters at St. Augustine, 
among them Rev. John Jerry. Jacksonville was 
on Mr. Jerry's circuit. "From St. Augustine to 


the Cow Ford lie traveled on horseback, carrjdng 
his change of clothing, hooks, lunch, and sack of 
corn to feed his horse' ^'. 

The following extracts taken from the diary of 
Eev. Isaac Boring' indicate that there was a 
regularly organized Methodist society in Jack- 
sonville in 1829 : 

"Sunday, March 8, 1829. Preached at Jackson- 
ville and dined with Mrs. Hart, and heard that 
some members of our church had been dancing. ' ' 

^ ' Sunday, April 19, 1829. Preached at Jackson- 
ville, filling all the appointments of the week.'^ 

*' Sunday, May 17, 1829. Preached at Jackson- 
ville. For the first time I was allowed to preach 
in the court house. During divine services, a 
drunken man made so much noise that Mr. Hart 
very politely led him out of the house. After 
preaching I met the Society, filling all the appoint- 
ments of the week." 

Very little data are obtainable regarding the 
Methodist congregation from this time till 1840; 
but without doubt it held together, worshipping 
in different buildings until the block house was 
built. When the Baptists built their chapel at the 
northeast corner of Duval and Newnan Streets in 
1840, the Methodists worshipped with them, but 
the two congregations holding services in the 
same building was not a satisfactory arrange- 
ment. The Methodists bought the property from 
the Baptists' in 1846 for the sum of $600\ 

The custom in that day was to separate the con- 


gregation, the right hand side of the building be- 
ing reserved for the women and the left for the 
men. The pulpit was raised and was several feet in 
length, with candle sticks on each end. The pastor 
sat behind the pulpit and was screened from the 
congregation. Old English pews having doors that 
could be locked were used ; these doors were later 
removed. There were cross seats on each side of 
the pulpit, called ^'amen pews'', because they were 
usually occupied by the faithful, prayerful mem- 
bers. Instrumental music was not permitted, as it 
was considered a sinful practice. Congregational 
singing was fervent and emotional, someone act- 
ing as leader pitching the tunes*. 

The congregation grew and became too large for 
the little chapel. There being space enough on the 
corner a larger building was erected about 1858, 
and was called St. Paul's. It was a wooden build- 
ing and went safely through the war, being used 
until 1889, when it was sold to the Roman Catholics 
for $500, including pews, pulpit, and bell. It was 
moved away and used by the Catholics as a parish 


Rev. Raymond A. Henderson, missionary at St. 
Augustine held the first service of the Episcopal 
church in Jacksonville April 12, 1829 ; in 1834, the 
Parish was organized, under the general act of the 
Legislative Council of the Territory of Florida for 
the incorporation of religious bodies'. The Epis- 


copal congregation was incorporated by Act 28, of 
tlie Legislative Council, approved February 23, 
1839, which provided as follows : 

Be it enacted by the Governor and the Legislative 
Council of the territory of Florida, That William J. 
Mills, Samuel L. Burritt, and Robert Biglow, War- 
dens, and Harrison R. Blanchard and such others as 
were elected Vestrymen of the Episcopal Congrega- 
tion at Jacksonville, and their successors in office, 
shall be, and they are hereby declared to be a body 
corporate, by the name and style of the Church 
Wardens and Vestrymen of St. John's Church at 

The congregation now began to raise funds for 
the erection of a church edifice. The ladies of the 
church added materially to the building fund by 
means of a sewing society, over which Mrs. 
Thomas Douglas presided for a long time. Two 
lots on Duval Street were deeded to the Church by 
Mrs. Maria Doggett, September 17, 1842, as a do- 
nation from herself and her husband. Judge John 
L. Doggett, and these are the same lots on which 
St. John's Church stands today.' The other two 
lots, on Church Street, were purchased at a later 

The corner stone of the church was laid Sunday, 
April 24th, 1842, by Et. Eev. Christopher Edwards 
Gadsden, Bishop of South Carolina. The struc- 
ture was soon up and services were held in it ; but 
it was not entirely completed until 1851, when it 


was consecrated by Et. Rev. Stephen Elliott, 
Bishop of Georgia'. The building was burned by 
Federal troops March 29th, 1863. 

In building the first church, every person who 
contributed a certain sum of money was given a 
deed to a pew in his own right, and the same was 
entailed to his heirs. The early choir was com- 
posed as follows : Dr. A. S. Baldwin, leader, base 
viol ; J. W. Bryant, first flute ; William Lancaster, 
second flute. The singers were, Mrs. A. M. Reed, 
who also played on a melodeon which a servant 
carried on his shoulders to the church for each 
service; Miss Eliza Lancaster, and Mrs. William 
Douglas. The communion service consisted of 
two small waiters and two silver cups — family 
silver loaned by Mrs. Susan L'Engle. A burial 
plot was provided in the church yard for members 
of the congregation, and the ashes of some of 
Jacksonville's early residents still occupy their 
original graves, although most of the bodies were 
removed many years ago to the old city cemetery 
on East Union Street*. 

Mr. Henderson continued to hold occasional ser- 
vices in Jacksonville until the summer of 1834; 
in the fall of that year he was succeeded by a 
regular rector. Rev. David Brown. Mr. Brown 
remained for more than ten years, he being suc- 
ceeded in May, 1845, by Rev. John Freeman 
Young. Mr. Young was followed by Rev. Isaac 
Swart, in 1848, and Mr. Swart by Rev. W. D. 
Harlow in 1854. Rev. W. W. Bours became the 


rector in 1855. Mr. Bours died of yellow fever in 
1857. In the following year, Eev. S. L. Kerr 
(pronounced Carr) came. Mr. Kerr was followed 
in 1861, by Rev. H. H. Hewett. Mr. Hewett was a 
Northern man and he went away with the Federal 
squadron in 1862, and the parish remained vacant 
nntil after the war'. 


The Roman Catholic Parish of JacksonviUe was 
not established until 1857. Previously, the Roman 
Catholic residents of the town, few in number, re- 
ceived the ministrations of visiting priests from 
St. Augustine and Savannah. The names of some 
of these priests are preserved in the parish rec- 
ords of those cities. Worthy of note among them, 
for their zealous and arduous work, were Fathers 
Claude Rampon and Patrick Hackett, who resided 
at St. Augustine and visited Jacksonville at 
regular intervals from 1836 to 1843 ; and Fathers 
Benedict Madeore and Edmund Aubriel, who like- 
wise resided at St. Augustine and visited Jack- 
sonville from 1843 to 1858. 

During the pioneer years, religious services 
were conducted at the home of some one of the 
church members. The first purchase by the 
church was the northwest corner of Duval and 
Newnan Streets from I. D. Hart (probably in 
1848), the deed being made to Bishop G-artland, of 
Savannah, and the consideration mentioned be- 
ing ''one penny." The precise date of erection of 


the first cliurcli, which was built through the 
efforts of Father Aubriel, is not known with cer- 
tainty*. According to the testimony of living wit- 
nesses (Henry Clark and Mrs. William M. Bost- 
wick) there was a church building at the northwest 
corner of Newnan and Duval Streets as early as 
1851; here religious ceremonies were carried out 
with regularity and according to the established 
rules of the Church. It is an interesting fact to 
note that if the church was originally dedicated to 
the Immaculate Conception of Our Lady, as seems 
to have been the case, the time was several years 
before that dogma was defined as an article of 
Faith by Pope Pius IX, in 1854. 

A beautiful painting of the Immaculate Concep- 
tion, said to have been a gift from the French 
government, was placed behind the altar. This 
painting was saved from destruction, when the 
church was burned by Federal troops March 28, 
1863 ; but its history is not traced further." 

In 1857, the former territory of East Florida, 
which had been included hitherto within the 
diocese of Savannah was constituted a separate 
ecclesiastical jurisdiction as Vicariate-Apostolic, 
with Bishop Verot in charge. The first resident 
pastor at Jacksonville was Rev. William Hamil- 
ton, who came from Savannah. He was a man of 
remarkable organizing and executive ability, at 

*Well-founded tradition says the first Eoman Catholic 
church in Jacksonville was built about 1848, at the northwest 
corner of Newnan and Duval Streets. 


the same time possessing amiable and social quali- 
ties that endeared him to all, irrespective of creed. 
After establishing the Church at Jacksonville on 
a solid basis, he was transferred, in 1861, to a more 
important field of work in the diocese of Mobile, 
where he died in a few years. His successor in 
Jacksonville was Rev. M. Penough, who remained 
until 1864. After the civil war. Father Chambon 
and the Very Rev. Father Clavreal, the present 
vicar-general of the diocese, had charge of all the 
missions in Florida for several years, Jacksonville 
being their headquarters. 

A description of the burning of the church 
March 28, 1863, will be found on page 182 of this 


The Baptist denomination was established in 
Jacksonville in July, 1838, by Rev. James Mc- 
Donald and Rev. Ryan Frier. Mr. Frier was the 
State Missionary at that time. There were six 
charter members, namely, Rev. James McDonald 
and wife, Elias G. Jaudon and wife, and two 
colored persons — Peggy, a slave of Elias G. 
Jaudon, and Bacchus, a slave of William Edwards. 
Rev. James McDonald was the first pastor, and 
Elias G. Jaudon the first deacon'. 

The congregation increased, and in 1840, pur- 
chased the northeast corner at Duval and Newnan 
Streets, where a small chapel was erected^ This 
was the first church building erected in Jackson- 


ville. It was a small wooden structure, with a 
seating capacity for about 100 persons. It bad a 
square tower-like steeple in wbicb was a bell. In 
front was a small piazza; there was but one 
entrance door. The Baptists sold this property to 
the Methodists in 1846', and then bought a plot of 
ground two miles west of the court house (Myrtle 
Avenue, between Adams and Duval Streets), on 
which they erected a small brick church'. This 
building was partially wrecked during the civil 
war, as it was the scene of nearly all the fighting 
that occurred near Jacksonville. The little brick 
church had a war history. Pickets and out-posts 
were stationed there whenever Jacksonville was 
occupied by the Federal troops and near it the 
first blood of the war in this vicinity was shed. 
Sentinel-like, it witnessed scenes that have never 
found a place in print. 

A few years after the little brick church was 
built, Elias G. Jaudon bought a piece of ground 
adjoining the church property and donated it to 
the church for a burial ground. Finding them- 
selves too far from the center of the city, it was 
decided to make yet another change in location, 
and again Deacon Jaudon came to the assistance 
of the church, by buying and donating a lot on 
Church Street, between Julia and Hogan. Here 
a house of worship was erected, and dedicated 
February 23, 1861. Soon after this the civil war 
came on and disrupted the congregation. After 
the battle of Olustee, the building was taken pos- 


session of by the Federal army and used as a 
hospital for wounded soldiers, and from this time 
until the close of the war it was used as a military 
hospital. The building was left in a deplorable 
condition, scarcely a pane of glass remaining in 
the windows and very little plastering on the 

The cemetery that was attached to the "little 
brick church" still remains, and is the property of 
the First Baptist Church. After the war, there 
was a division in the membership of the Baptist 
Church, the whites bming out the interest of the 
colored members in the property, renaming their 
church Tabernacle, while the colored branch re- 
tained the original name, Bethel Baptist. Taber- 
nacle was later changed to First Baptist. 

Eev. James McDonald was pastor from 1838 to 
1846. From 1846 to 1850, there were several un- 
important short pastorates, in which the church 
seems to have been unfortunate in obtaining un- 
worthy or incompetent men. In 1850, Eev. Joseph 
S. Baker became pastor and served four years, dur- 
ing which time the church and Sunday-School pros- 
pered. In 1859, Eev. E. W. Dennison was called. 
At this time the membership was 40 white and 
250 colored'. 


The first record of the Presbyterian congrega- 
tion at Jacksonville was an act by the Legislative 


Council of the Territory (No. 51, approved March 
2d, 1840), which, in part, was as follows: 

Section 1. Be it enacted by the Governor and 
Legislative Council of the Territory of Florida, That 
from and after the approval of this act, the Presby- 
terian congregation at Jacksonville, in East Florida, 
shall be incorporated and be a body politic, by the 
name and style of the Presbyterian Church of Jack- 
sonville, and by that name shall be capable and liable 
in law to sue and be sued, plead and be impleaded, 
defend and be defended, and to have, hold, possess, 
and enjoy real and personal estate ;*** 

Section 2. Be it further enacted, That for the 
better government of said incorporation, 0. Congar, 
0. M. Dorman, Harrison R. Blanchard, Stephen 
Eddy, and L. D. ]\Iiller, be, and they are hereby ap- 
pointed Trustees of ''The Presbj^terian Church of 
Jacksonville", *** 

Sec 3. Be it further enacted, That all the white 
members of said church shall be deemed qualified 
electors at any and every election for trustees of 
said church.*** 

It will be noted that Harrison E. Blanchard 
named here as a Trustee, was mentioned as a 
Vestryman of St. John's when the Episcopal 
Church was incorporated in 1839. 

The following data were furnished by Eev. W. 
H. Dodge, who was pastor of the Newnan Street 
Presbyterian Church in this city for 26 years : 

The Presbyterian Church in Jacksonville was 
organized by a committee from the Presbytery of 


Florida, which belonged to the synod of South 
Carolina and Georgia. The first place of meeting 
for the Church was a small school house erected 
probably on the southeast corner of Ocean and 
Monroe Streets, and it is stated that Mr. Congar 
often conducted the services. The first church 
building was erected about 1857 or 1859, the money 
being obtained first through the earnest efforts of 
Miss Phoebe Swart, who gave the first $100 to- 
ward the fund and afterward purchased and gave 
to the church a lot on Duval Street near Laura, for 
a Manse. Eev. A. W. Sproull served the Church 
during 1857-8, and visited the Churches in South- 
ern cities from which places he obtained much of 
the money collected. Eev. J. H. Myers, who 
preached at St. Augustine from 1835 to 1859, oc- 
casionally preached for the Jacksonville Church 
also. The Pastor at Jacksonville when the civil 
war began was Eev. James Little. He enlisted in 
the service of the Confederate army, and did not 
resume his pastorate after the war. After the war 
the Church had a checkered career for a few years. 
A number of ministerial brethren from the North- 
occupied the pulpit and then arose a desire among 
the members of the Church who were originally 
Northern people to change the ecclesiastical rela- 
tions of the Church and transfer it from the Pres- 
bytery of Florida of the Southern Assembly to 
that of Philadelphia of the Northern Assembly. 
The Southern element of the Church was opposed 
to this movement and when it prevailed nine 


Southern members withdrew on March 16, 1867, 
elected new officers, and continued to exist as the 
original Church of Jacksonville. The church 
building and other property was held by the 
Northern members, but the little band of nine 
members soon increased to sixteen and on June 30, 
1867, Eev. W. B. Telford preached to them in the 
building of the Methodist Episcopal Church South, 
then called St. Paul's. After worshipping for a 
few years in a hired hall, a lot was purchased at 
the southeast corner of Newnan and Monroe 
Streets, where a small frame building was erected. 
The two Churches remained separated until May, 
1900 when there was a consolidation under the 
name of the Presbyterian Church of Jacksonville. 


1 Fifty-two Years in Florida, Ley. 

2 History of Florida, Webb. , 

3 Annual of the First Baptist Church of Jacksonville, 1909. 

4 Data collected by Mrs. W. M. Bostwick. 

5 Historical Sketches of the Church in Florida, J. J. Daniel. 

6 Father J. Veale. 




With the ending of the Seminole war, and the 
recovery of the country from the hard times that 
had prevailed for ^ye years, since 1837, Jackson- 
ville began a steady growth in population. Colum- 
bus Drew, Sr., states that in 1842, the population 
was 450, and in 1847, it was 750, an increase in five 
years of 67 per cent. The United States Census 
Bureau made returns separately for Jackson- 
ville beginning with 1850 ; the census of 1850 gave 
1,045 inhabitants within the corporate limits. If 
the estimate of 450 in 1842 was accurate, then in 
eight years the town had increased 132 per cent in 
population. The following table shows the growth 
of Jacksonville, as told by figures: 





250 per cent gain. 






















**Corporate limits extended in the mean time. 



The failure of the Courier left Jacksonville with- 
out a newspaper until about 1842, when Gr. M. 
Grovard, of Washington, D. C, came here and es- 
tablished the Tropical Plant. Soon afterward the 
Courier (no connection with the former paper of 
that name) was established, and about the time 
that Florida was admitted as a State (1845), the 
Florida News was removed from St. Augustine to 
Jacksonville. The News was Democratic in poli- 
tics and held the political field until 1848, when a 
Whig paper, called the Eepublican was estab- 
lished, with Columbus Drew as editor for many 
years. The News and the Eepublican did the 
newspaper fighting of the State for their respec- 
tive parties', and judging from the few copies that 
the Author has seen, the fighting was certainly of 
a sensational character. 

The plants of both the News and the Eepublican 
were destroyed by fire in April, 1854, but in time 
the papers were re-established. Owners changed, 
however, and so did the names of the papers. The 
Eepublican became the St. Johns Mirror. Just 
before the war, the Southern Eights entered the 
journalistic field in Jacksonville, being for a time 
conducted by Messrs. Steele and Doggett\ 


Several years ago there were still living in Jack- 
sonville persons who remembered the great 


gale of October 12, 1846, during wliich the brig 
^'Virginia,'' owned by Captain Willey, dragged 
her anchors and was driven from Market Street 
into the foot of Ocean Street, her bow-sprit extend- 
ing almost across Bay. The water from the river 
backed np nearly across Forsyth Street and was 
two feet deep in the stores on the north side of 
Bay. This disaster led to the bulkheading of the 
river front from Ocean to Pine (now Main). 
Hewn logs were placed one above the other and 
were fastened together by chains and an occasional 
staple. This was called a "buttmenf and it 
proved effectual until wharves were built at that 


With an exception here and there, the dwellings 
were cheaply built one-story wooden structures. 
The stores were rough buildings with rude fittings. 
A slab wharf, small and rickety, answered for ves- 
sels. A small steamer made weekly trips to 
Savannah and a still smaller one ran once a week 
to and from Enterprise. There was not a 
wheeled vehicle in the town. Row boats took the 
place of carriages; otherwise, the people rode 
horse-back or walked'. 

Primitive as the appearance of the town was, 
there was yet a good trade and the merchants did 
comparatively a large business. A great deal of 
cotton was grown in those days on the plantations 
hereabout*, and while Jacksonville could not then 


boast of being an export point, nevertheless the 
money derived from the sale of this staple was 
brought here and spent at home. 

Denied the advantages of rapid locomotion, with 
but one steamer arrival a week and only a weekly 
mail from the North, the residents of the town 
must have had little to excite their every-day lives. 
Therefore, we may safely assume that the com- 
munity was shaken from center to circumference 
when one day a volley of shots resounded through 
the streets and when the smoke of the fusillade 
had cleared away, it was found that a citizen had 
been killed in one of the stores on Bay Street. 
Two prominent men were arrested for doing the 
shooting, and were taken to Tallahassee and con- 
fined in the jail there. There are residents living 
here now that remember hearing their fathers talk 
about this affair; how a lady visited one of the 
prisoners in jail at Tallahassee; but instead of 
leaving, she remained and out to liberty walked the 
prisoner, dressed in women's clothes. He escaped 
to Georgia, and neither of the men was ever 
brought to trial, and both in time came back to 


In 1849, there was an epidemic of disease in 
Jacksonville, called the broken-bone fever. It was 
so general that in many families every grown per- 
son would be in bed with it at the same time, leav- 
ing the administration of affairs to the children of 


the household. Fortunately, the period of the dis- 
ease was of short duration and no deaths occurred 
as a result of the visitation'. The exact nature of 
the sickness cannot be determined now ; while the 
symptoms were those of the modern LaGrippe, the 
period of duration was too short for it to have been 
this disease. 

Less has been published concerning the period 
1840-1850 than of any other decade in Jackson- 
ville's history, and it is, accordingly, the most diffi- 
cult for which to obtain data. There were no set- 
backs of serious consequence, however, and the 
town's growth continued, while the way was paved 
for the establishment of the enormous lumber in- 
dustry that followed in the early 50 's, when the 
really rapid growth commenced. 


1 Florida Times-Union, February 8, 1883. 

2 Mrs. W. M. Bostwick. (See Author's Preface). 

3 Florida Union (Jacksonville), March, 1881. 

4 History of Florida, Webb. 



The first steamer to ply the waters of the St. 
Johns River was the Greorge Washington, in 
1830\ The Essayon carried troops and supplies 
up and down the river during the Seminole War', 
and steamers were running irregularly between 
the St. Johns and Savannah as early as 1839'. 
Along in the 40 's, the Sarah Spaulding plied be- 
tween Jacksonville and Lake Monroe. This was 
a high-pressure boat and she made a fearful noise 
while in operation. She was often used for near- 
by excursions on the river, and occasionally went 
to Fernandina by the inside route. Her ac- 
commodations comprised eight berths, four on 
each side, opening into the saloon, but provided 
with curtains that could be drawn as a means of 
separation*. Then the Thorn made her appear- 
ance on the river, running to Palatka. 

The Darlington came in 1852 or 1853, and up to 
the time of the civil war was the regular boat be- 
tween Jacksonville and Enterprise. The Darling- 
ton was perhaps the best known of the early river 
boats. She was built in South Carolina in 1849, 
and for a time ran up the Pedee River into 
Darlington District, hence her name'. During the 
war she was captured by the United States forces 
at the draw-bridge in Fernandina, in 1862, and 


remained in their possession until the close of 
the war, being used most of the time as a trans- 
port vessel'. She began running on the river 
again after the war and continued in this service 
until she became the pioneer boat on the St. Johns. 
In 1857, the steamers Hattie Brock and William 
Barnett began running as up-river boats. The 
William Barnett met with disaster in about a 
year, when her boiler exploded, killing her cap- 
tain and a number of other persons'. The Hattie 
Brock was captured far up the river by a Federal 
gunboat in 1864; she was confiscated, and sold in 
1866, but after the war she ran on the river as one 
of the Brock Line. 


The steamer General Clinch made trips to 
Savannah as early as 1842, and about 1845, a 
regular line between the St. Johns and Savannah 
was inaugurated. The pioneer vessels of this 
service were the Ocmulgee, St. Matthews, and 
William Gaston'. The William Gaston was taken 
ofP this run in 1854, and was then used as a river 
boat. She towed many rafts up and down the 
river, and it was a peculiarity of her captain, 
Charles Willey, as soon as he rounded Commo- 
dore's Point or Grassy Point, which was usually 
late in the night, to begin to sound his steam whis- 
tle and keep it blowing until he had reached his 
landing, to the great annoyance of midnight 
sleepers in Jacksonville'. 


In 1851, two new steamers were put on the 
Savannah run — the Welaka and the Magnolia. 
The Magnolia ran only a short time, when her 
boiler exploded while she was off St. Simon's 
Island, Ga., killing her captain, William T. Mc- 
Nelty. A few years later, the Welaka was 
wrecked on the St. Johns bar. These vessels were 
replaced by the Seminole and the St. Johns, both 
of which likewise met with disaster, each in turn 
being burned at her dock in Jacksonville. The 
hull of the St. Johns was raised and rebuilt, and 
she ran on the same route until 1862; after the 
war she ran under the name of Helen Getty'. 

The last of the early boats built for this line was 
the St. Marys, in 1857.' In February, 1864, the St. 
Marys, while loading with cotton, was blockaded 
in McGirt's Creek by the Federal gunboat Nor- 
wich, and to prevent capture, was sunk there by 
her crew'. She had escaped capture on a previous 
occasion by dodging into Trout Creek just as the 
United States gunboat that was looking for her 
came up the river. The St. Marys then came out, 
went down the river, and out to sea, bound for 
Nassau, N. P.' The St. Marys lay buried in Mc- 
Girt's Creek until March, 1865, when she was 
raised, rebuilt', and eventually placed on her old 
run under the name of Nick King. 


In 1851, the Florida began running regularly 
between Palatka, Jacksonville, and Charleston. 


Two years later the Carolina was put on, and in 
1857, the Everglade, then the Cecile, and a short 
time before the war, the Gordon and the Calhoun. 
The Gordon became famous as the vessel on which 
the Confederate commissioners ran the blockade 
at Charleston and proceeded to Havana'. After 
the war, the steamer service to Charleston was re- 
sumed and continued until the New York-Charles- 
ton-Jacksonville Clyde service began, in 1886. 
The first steamer of the Clyde Line to arrive in 
Jacksonville was the Cherokee, on Thanksgiving 
Day, November 25, 1886, and the event was cele- 
brated in an elaborate manner here. 


In 1860, a party of Jacksonville people bought a 
steamer with the intention of starting a line be- 
tween Jacksonville and New York. This vessel, 
the Flambeau, was bought in the North. She was 
put on the ways for repairs, but the war came on 
and the enterprise was abandoned, the stock- 
holders losing what they had put into if. A 
Federal gunboat by this name operated in South- 
ern waters during the war' and it is not improb- 
able that she was the same vessel that the Jack- 
sonville people had bought in 1860. 

In the fall of 1865, the D. H. Mount started run- 
ning between Jacksonville and New York, but on 
her second voyage from New Y^ork she was lost, 
presumably off Hatteras on October 23, 1865. 
There were twenty-three persons on board bound 


for Florida, among them some prominent Jack- 
sonville people, including S. L. Burritt, Mrs. J. C. 
Greeley and son, and others. Nothing was ever 
heard of the Mount and ail of her passengers 

In the early days, the steamers burned light- 
wood knots for fuel, and great volumes of dense 
black smoke were emitted from their stacks. 
Some idle person was generally on the lookout, 
and when the smoke of a steamer was seen, he 
would start the cry, ' ' Steamboat, steamboat, com- 
ing round the point,'' when the inhabitants would 
collect at the wharf, to hear the latest news. The 
arrival of a steamer in those days was an event of 
much importance'. And later, we read, ''Hun- 
dreds of people go to the wharves to see the steam- 
boats off. High up from their stacks pile huge 
banks of dense black smoke. Strains of music fill 
the air, and all is hurry and bustle. Just as the 
minute hand of the clock reaches the hour of de- 
parture, they are off ; the music grows fainter and 
fainter as it recedes, and the crowds return to the 
fashionable promenade on Bay Street, to assem- 
ble at the wharf again the next day." Captain 
H. D. DeGrove, for many years connected with 
the river traffic here, says : 

i i rj\^Q j.g^| beginning of modern and active com- 
merce upon the St. Johns dates from about 1876, 
when the steamer Hampton began the daily ser- 
vice between Jacksonville and Palatka. At that 
time there were no railroads south of Jackson- 


ville, except a little piece of railroad running from 
Tocoi to St. Augustine. The tourist hotels were 
in the towns scattered along the banks of the St. 
Johns — Green Cove Springs, Palatka, Sanford, 
and Enterprise — and up-river boats stopped at 
those places to land tourists; during the winter 
months the passenger traffic was very heavy. 
About this period the orange groves set out after 
the war came into full bearing, affording a lucra- 
tive freight business for the various lines. The 
river fairly swarmed with steamers of every de- 
scription, from the antiquated vessels to the then 
modern side-wheeler. But strangest of all were 
the Oklawaha Eiver steamboats, built especially 
for navigation on that erratic stream. They had 
a small recess wheel built in the stern to protect it 
from snags, and it is probable that such craft were 
never used anywhere else in the world. 

i i There was great rivalry among the lines own- 
ing the fastest boats. Some of them had the same 
schedule, and several of the boats were so evenly 
matched that they would often make the final 
round-up from Palatka not more than fifteen 
minutes apart. These races were thoroughly 
enjoyed by the tourists, who would always enter 
into the spirit of the fun with a vim. The crews, 
too, sometimes became very much excited, and 
upon landing they would occasionally doff their 
coats and ^ fight it out' right on the wharf, so 
great was their enthusiasm. The steamboats 
were met by the busmen from the various hotels. 


calling 'St. James', 'Carleton', 'Nationar, etc., 
familiar names to the old-timers of thirty years 

''Mile by mile the railroads were built and one 
by one the steamboats were taken off. Some were 
sold and went to other waters. Those of light 
draft were taken to the Indian Eiver, then an 
almost unknown stream; but navigation on that 
river was never satisfactory, owing to its shallow 
depth and the large number of oyster banks. The 
railroad soon followed, to sound the death-knell of 
the steamers there. Not a few of the old steamers 
went to the 'marine graveyard,' i. e., laid up 
to rot.'' 


1 Historical sketch, J. M, Hawks, City Directory, 1870. 

2 Memoirs of Florida, Flemiiig. 

3 A Winter in Florida, By An Invalid. 

4 Mrs. W. M. Bostwick. (See Author's Preface). 

5 War of the Eebellion, Official Eecords, etc. 

6 O. L. Keene. 

7 Dr. John C. L'Engle. 

8 J. C. Greeley. 




Tlie built-up portion of the town was bounded 
by Washington Street on the east, Laura on the 
west, Duval on the north, and the river on the 


There were no wharves or stores on the south 
side of Bay Street between Ocean and Laura, ex- 
cept a long one-story, wooden building near 
Laura, called the ''government building," built 
by the United States government during the 
Seminole Indian war as a commissary for sup- 
plies. Just west of Pine (Main), on the river 
front stood a saw mill operated by Mr. J. B. 
Barbee. Fire destroyed it at an early date, con- 
suming with it a human being, one of the sorrow- 
ful events of those early times. 

Across Ocean Street on the south side of Bay, 
east. General Thomas Ledwith had a store and a 
wharf; he was succeeded by Alsop & Bours. 
Several other stores occupied this block, among 
them Gunby & Fernandez, later Fernandez & 
Bisbee, and later still Bisbee & Canova. East of 
this store was that of S. N. Williams, and near the 

*Eeminiseenees of Mrs. W. M. Bostwick. (See Author's 













corner of Newnan was McRory^s book store. The 
first brick building built in Jacksonville adjoined 
the Ledwith store and was occupied by C. D. Oak, 
jeweler and watchmaker; this was about 1850. 

A building stood on the southeast corner of 
Newnan and Bay and was occupied from the earli- 
est times, by different parties. Finegan & Bel- 
chasse are among the first recalled; later Dr. T. 
Hartridge. Next to this store was that of Bel- 
lows; then Santo. The United States mail was 
first delivered from this locality. Next to Santo 
was Morris Keil, a small store, tailoring done by 
husband and the store kept by the wife. Captain 
Charles Willey had a dwelling on the corner of 
Market, and a wharf from which he ran a line of 
sailing vessels to Charleston and another to Key 
West. These names are remembered in connec- 
tion with this dwelling: Mrs. Libby, mother of 
Mrs. Willey; Frances Yale, daughter of Captain 
Willey. Afterward Columbus Drew, Sr., occupied 
this house and issued from here a Whig paper 
called the ' ^ Republican ' \ At the foot of Market 
Street a fish market stood over the water. This 
was the first market in the town, and Market 
Street derives its name from this fact. Later a 
beef market was built over the water at the foot 
of Ocean Street ; but the two were finally consoli- 
dated, the old market being then used as a town, 
jail, popularly called ^^The Jug." 

East of Market Street the entire block was 
vacant. At the foot of Liberty Street there was a 


ferry, owned by Judge J. L. Doggett, and operated 
to connect with the road to St. Augustine. A 
garrison was kept at Fort San Marco at that time 
and cattle were forded at this ferry and driven to 
St. Augustine to furnish beef for the soldiers. 
Lighters conveyed passengers, vehicles, and 
freight across the river. 

The block east of Liberty Street contained a 
fine grove of trees. Public, out-of-door functions, 
such as barbecues, Fourth of July celebrations, 
etc., were generally held here. There was only one 
small building on the block — a carpenter's shop 
near the water's edge. 

East of Washington Street, the river bank was 
very much higher, affording a steep sand hill that 
the children of the neighborhood used as an amuse- 
ment place, rolling and jumping in the soft, white 
sand. Beyond this hill E. A. DeCottes had a 
dwelling, and on the corner of Bay and Catherine, 
Stephen Vandergrift and family lived. 

The next block was vacant, except a small 
machine shop near the middle of the block, where 
the Merrill-Stevens plant is now. There was noth- 
ing east of this to Hogan's Creek. Finegan's 
saw mill was on the river front on the east side of 
the creek, and his family resided there, including 
Constantia, Dora, and Martha Travis, daughters 
of Mrs. Finegan by a former marriage. 


On the north side of Bay Street, westward from 


Hogan's Creek to Catherine Street was a corn field 
until the early 50 's, when a grist mill was built 
near the creek. From Catherine to Washington 
was unoccupied until Tony Canova built a resi- 
dence at the northeast corner of Washington. 

At the northwest corner of Washington Street 
stood the Merrick House, famous as the ' ' haunted 
house '\ Peculiar noises were often heard within, 
yet no ghosts appeared. Some of the less super- 
stitious said there was an underground river at 
that point that caused the noises. All was vacant 
thence to Liberty Street until 1851 or 1852, when 
J. C. Hemming built a residence on the northeast 
corner of Liberty. 

A store house stood on the northwest corner of 
Bay and Liberty Streets, used for storing freight 
awaiting ferriage across the river, and later as a 
school house. The Burritt homestead stood near 
the northeast corner of Bay and Market, and it 
was the most pretentious house in the town. 
There were large grounds, with stables, servants' 
quarters, and Mr. Burritt 's law offices. The 
vacant lots on the river front, also Burritt prop- 
erty, abounding in shrubbery and shade trees, gave 
beautiful surroundings. 

At the northwest corner of Bay and Market 
Streets, I. D. Hart owned a boarding house, which 
was kept successively by Mr. Hart, Mrs. Hatch, 
Mrs. Flotard, Mrs. Maxey, and Mrs. Taylor, the 
ownership passing to Mrs. Taylor's daughter, 
Mrs. Hedrick, in 1853. West of this building was 


iuelosed, but imoccupied — owned by Mrs. Philip 
Frazer, inherited from her first husband, Captain 
Zeb Willey. Dr. Byrne built two stores between 
this inclosure and the corner, probably in 1852. 

Across Newnan Street, the entire block to Ocean 
was occupied by business houses. On the north- 
west corner of Newnan and Bay, names not re- 
membered until occupied by Paul Canova. Next 
to the corner was the firm of Miller & Blackwood, 
wines and liquors ; thence west in order were : Dr. 
Foreman, general merchandise, afterward Gunby ; 
Barnard «S: Farrer, general store, later Moss & 
Ambler, later still. Ambler & Hoeg; Rosenthal, 
the first Hebrew merchant in town; Goff, tailor; 
and on the corner of Ocean, Mr. Cutter, afterward 
Morris Keil. The three last stores were owned by 
Thomas W. Jones. 

On the northwest corner of Ocean and Bay 
Streets, A. M. Reed had a store — groceries and drj^ 
goods. West of this was Calvin Oak, gunsmith. 
From here to Pine Street was unoccupied, in fact 
Bay Street was almost impassable at this point. A 
pond of water north of Duval Street drained 
downward through Pine Street, making a quag- 
mire at its lower end, over which bridges were 
built across Pine at Bay and at Forsyth Streets. 
An attempt was made to improve the approaches 
to the bridges by laying logs lengthways -across 
the street; this "corduroy" construction was very 

Across Pine Street Dr. Baldwin owned two lots, 


the corner being a garden very much in need of 
drainage. Dr. Baldwin 's dwelling was on the next 
lot; also his office. West of that was a dwelling 
occupied successively by A. M. Reed, Walter Kipp, 
Mrs. Herbert, Captain L'Engle, George Powers, 
and finally by Judge Rodney Dorman. Cyrus Bis- 
bee owned a dwelling on the northeast corner of 
Bay and Laura, where he lived many years. This 
was the western boundary of the town for a long 
time. Later Mr. Kipp built a residence on the 
northwest corner of Bay and Laura. Captain 
L'Engle then lived close to the river across from 
the Kipps. 

Beyond Laura Street there was nothing more 
until a small creek was crossed where Julia Street 
is now. Mr. Boulter owned a mill and a dwelling 
on the west side of this creek ; the mill was burned, 
and the dwelling was afterward occupied by Hal 
Sadler. Thence to McCoy's Creek everything was 
woods. A rude bridge crossed McCoy's Creek 
near the foot of the present Bridge Street, and to 
the west of this bridge, on the creek was a small 
house occupied by the Curry family. Across the 
creek was P. Moody's saw mill and dwelling, and 
beyond was the Lancaster place, called ^^Lancas- 
ter's Point". Then the plantation of Elias 
Jaudon, reaching to McGirt's Creek, and across 
the creek, now Ortega, was the Sadler plantation. 


At the southeast corner of Laura and Forsyth, 


I. D. Hart lived in a large two-story house. Thence 
to Pine Street was vacant, until Dr. Foreman built 
on the corner of Pine. 

The southeast corner of Pine and Forsyth was 
owned by the Douglas and Reed families. Stables 
occupied the corner, with a garden beyond, and a 
dwelling on the corner of Forsyth and Ocean, 
where A. M. Reed lived, then Thomas Douglas. 

On the southeast corner of Forsyth and Ocean 
was a very old dwelling, known as the Mills house ; 
it was occupied by different families, among 
others, Mrs. Bowman, and then J. W. Bryant. Be- 
tween Forsyth and Bay, on Ocean Street, Thomas 
W. Jones and family lived on the east side of the 
street. Next to the Mills house, east on Forsyth, 
William Douglas lived as early as 1847, and after- 
ward a Ross family. This yard was large and here, 
under a tent, a traveling daguerreotj^ist took 
some fine pictures, a few of which are still in exis- 
tence, in perfect condition after sixty years or 
more. This was probably the first artist to come 
to Jacksonville. Captain Armstrong lived on the 
southwest corner of Forsyth and Newnan ; he had 
no family. Between Forsyth and Bay on Newnan 
there were a few small shops. On the west side 
were: Captain John Middleton, small store; Dr. 
Rex, an office; and Henry Houston, colored 
barber shop. On the opposite side of the street 
was a large building used for offices. 

On the southeast corner of Forsyth and Newnan, 
Judge J. C. Cooper lived. East of this was the 


Zeb Willey property, known afterward as the 
Philip Frazer house. Dr. J. D. Mitchell bought 
here later. Then Mr. Harrison built on the south- 
west corner of Forsyth and Market, where the law 
exchange now stands. 

Across Market Street were S. L. Burritt's office 
and grounds, occupying half the block. Judge J. 
L. Doggett owned the other, or east half of this 
block, on which were two houses. The Doggett 
residence was near the southwest corner of For- 
syth and Liberty. 

In the middle of the block between Liberty and 
Washington, the Watermans lived, afterward the 
Hickmans, and later Dr. Murdock. This was one 
of the oldest houses in the town. On the southeast 
corner of Forsyth and Washington was another 
old house in which Mr. Adams lived, afterward 
Mr. Gillett, and later the Mooneys. For a long 
time nothing but a corn field was east of here to 
Hogan's Creek. 


On the north side of Forsyth Street, west from 
Hogan's Creek, there was nothing to Washington 
Street, until Felix Livingston built on the north- 
east corner of Washington about 1850. 

At the northeast corner of Forsyth and Liberty 
Streets was a very old house of peculiar construc- 
tion. The foundation was of stone, perhaps six 
feet high, and on top of this wall was a one-story 
wooden structure with a piazza on three sides. 


Tradition said it was the abode of a sea captain, a 
buccaneer, who, being too old to follow the sea, 
amused himself with a spy-glass watching the river 
above and below. Dr. Theodore Hartridge built 
on this corner in 1853, at the same time building a 
smaller house on the northwest corner of Forsyth 
and Washington for his mother, Mrs. Hobb}^ 

Across Liberty Street Mr. Barbee owned and 
lived many years. The next lot was owned by Jolm. 
Pons, where also lived his son-in-law, Jack Butler, 
a lively jovial Irishman so pleasantly remembered 
by many. A small house west of this was occupied 
by different ones, the first remembered being Mrs. 
Herbert, a school teacher. On the northeast cor- 
ner of Forsyth and Market stood the court house, 
and in the court house yard, back from the Street, 
was the jail. The jail was inclosed by a high brick 
wall, on top of which was a barbette of broken 

Across Market Street, on the northwest corner, 
was, as now, the Clerk 's Office. Next was the dwell- 
ing of Mrs. Maxey. On the northeast corner of 
Forsyth and Newnan was a small building used by 
William Grothe as a jewelry shop. The post office 
was in this building for a long time also. 

Dr. H. D. Holland's residence was on the op- 
posite corner, stables on the Forsyth Street side 
and his office on Newnan. A small house stood on 
the lot west of Dr. Holland's residence, where Wil- 
liam Grothe lived, and next to this was a large 
two-story house occupied at different times by the 


Barnards, Crabtrees, Gregorys, Allisons, Hearns, 
Suttons, and Crespos. On the corner was a dwell- 
ing house occupied successively by the Kipps, 
Flotards, Traceys, Hallidays, and Sandersons. 

On the northwest corner of Forsyth and Ocean 
Mrs. Dewees lived in a large two-story house, and 
back of her, between Forsyth and Adams, her 
daughter, Mrs. Poinsett lived, afterward the 
Kipps, and later the Keils. There were no other 
houses on Forsyth to Pine Street. 

On the northwest corner of Forsyth and Pine 
was a house occupied by the Donaldsons, later the 
Thebauts. A small house stood in the middle of 
the block back from the street, where Jane and 
Dick, servants of Mrs. Douglas lived. West of 
here was a fine grove of trees, where barbecues and 
celebrations of different kinds were sometimes 
held. Near the northwest corner of Forsyth and 
the present Hogan Streets was the site of the old 
Hogans house. 


Thomas W. Jones built a two-story dwelling on 
the southeast corner of Adams and Laura in 1850. 
In 1851, Judge F. Bethune moved from his planta- 
tion a few miles up the river and bought this house 
for a residence. East of this, in the middle of the 
block, was a smaller house occupied by the Myers 
family. The southwest corner of Adams and Pine 
was vacant many years. 

The Turknetts lived on the southeast corner of 


Adams and Pine. A small house, used principally 
as a servants' house, stood on the next lot. There 
was nothing on the southwest corner until after the 
fire of 1854. 

The southeast corner of Adams and Ocean was 
vacant a long time, the Crespos later building a 
boarding house at that point. Two houses owned 
by Mr. Crespo stood here ; the first was burned. In 
the middle of the block were out-buildings used by 
the Buffington House, which occupied the south- 
west corner facing Newnan. 

Across Newnan, Stephen Fernandez and family 
lived ; afterward Dr. R. P. Daniel. Next was the 
dwelling of S. N. Williams. There was nothing on 
the southwest corner of Market for many years. 

The Odd Fellows owned the southeast corner of 
Adams and Market, but the lodge building was on 
the inside of the lot facing Market. The lower 
story of this building was used as a school room, 
the upper story for the lodge. A favorite amuse- 
ment of the children was listening for the foot- 
steps and bleat of the goat said to live up-stairs, 
and used by the Odd Fellows for initiation pur- 
poses; also, inventing marvelous stories concern- 
ing the actions of this goat, the child telling the 
biggest story being considered the heroine of the 
day. The corner was inclosed and was used by the 
children as a play ground. Thence to the south- 
west corner of Adams and Washington was 
vacant; here Mr. Pons built at an early date. 
There was nothing east of this to Hogan's Creek. 



Eeturning west on Adams Street there was 
nothing between Hogan's Creek and the north- 
east corner of Market, where Mr. Fennimore lived. 
Mrs. Fennimore was the dressmaker for all the 
belles of that day. 

Across Market were the Flemings; next Cap- 
tain William Ross, and on the corner of Newnan 
was a boarding house. 

On the northwest corner of Adams and New- 
nan were the Buffington Honse stables, afterward 
converted into a boarding honse, called the Cali- 
fornia House. The weather-boarding on this 
building was placed up and down — an innovation 
at that day. Next, the Gibsons, man and wife, 
lived. An unfortunate mistake disrupted this 
family. A large boarding house in the town 
burned and Mr. Gibson was accused of setting it 
on fire. He was threatened with a coat of tar and 
feathers unless he left the town. He left and 
never returned. In later years it developed that 
a careless servant had placed hot ashes too near 
the building, causing it to catch on fire. Mr. 
Cougar lived on the northeast corner of Ocean 
and Adams. 

The Ledwiths lived across from the Cougars, 
on the northwest corner, not quite on the corner, 
as that was a fine plum orchard. Next to the 
Ledwiths was a Spanish family by the name of 
Ximanes, whose income was derived from fishing, 


and the sale of mocking birds to tlie northern 
tourists that came here during the winter. The 
corner of Pine was not occupied, as the land was 
low and damp. 


Columbus Drew, Sr., was really a pioneer when 
he built his house at the corner of Monroe and 
Laura in 1851. East of this there were no build- 
ings to the northeast corner of Ocean, the site of 
the old block house. Here stood a large building 
used as a hotel, and conducted successively by 
Mrs. Coy, Creighton, and Mattair. In the oppo- 
site block, south side of Monroe Street, inside 
from the corner, the Presbyterians had a small 
meeting house, where weekly prayer meetings 
were held. Judge Lancaster resided on the south- 
west corner of Monroe and Market, afterwards 
the Hearns, Buttons, and Garnies. 


The Episcopal church occupied its present site 
at the head of Market Street. One of the early 
residences was built at the southeast corner of 
Duval and Market, and was occupied at different 
times by J. W. Bryant, Judge Daniel, and others. 
There were two other churches on Duval Street, 
one near the northeast corner of Newnan, and 
the other across the street on the northwest cor- 
ner. Back of this, north, were the homes of the 
free negroes, mostly west of Ocean Street. These 
negroes occupied land belonging to I. D. Hart; 
this quarter was called ^' Negro HilP\ 




The first event of importance transpiring after 
the beginning of the half-century had in view the 
ultimate beautifying of the city, as it was early in 
1850 that the fine oak trees which lined the streets 
of Jacksonville before the fire of May 3, 1901, 
were planted. An old negro, April Suarez, set 
them out under the direction of Dr. A. S. Baldwin 
and General Thomas Ledwith". In later years 
these trees were the pride of the city and added 
wonderfully to its attractiveness. 

In 1850, the first circular saw mill ever built in 
East Florida was erected at the mouth of Potts- 
burg Creek, and in the following year John Clark 
built the second circular saw mill, on East Bay 
Street, near Hogan's Creek. Mr. Clark then 
added a planing mill, the first in East Florida, and 
his first large order for planed lumber was for 
building the Judson House. About 1853-54, there 
were ^ve or six saw mills at Jacksonville, and as 
many more in the immediate vicinity. The lum- 
ber industry was the principal one here then. A 
great quantity of live oak timber was exported 
annually, for use in the construction of vessels'. 
Considerable cotton was brought here for ship- 
ment, also, Jacksonville being the shipping point 
for quite a large territory tributary to the St. 


Johns Eiver. These industries put into circula- 
tion much money that naturally found its way into 
all lines of business. Nearly all the merchants 
were well-to-do, gauged by the standard of that 
early time. Business was conducted without 
rancor and with the utmost integrity. Salaries 
were not what would now be called large, but the 
cost of living comfortably was within the reach of 
all — a condition having an important bearing 
upon the community. Abject poverty was a state 
unknown, and seldom was a door locked or a win- 
dow closed out of fear of petty thieving.' 


A marshal constituted the police force during 
the day, and at night two citizens were selected 
to serve as town watchmen, called the Patrol, cor- 
rupted ^' Pat-role '\ The duties of the Patrol 
were principally to arrest negroes found without 
passes on the streets after 9 p. m. The fire bell 
was rung promptly at 9 o^clock every night, to 
notify the negroes to go to their quarters, and if 
found out after that hour without a written pass, 
signed by their owners, granting them permission 
to stay out until a later hour, the hour being 
always designated, they were locked up for the 
night and the next morning were taken before 
the mayor for trial. The negroes corrupted patrol 
into ^'patteroller" and in mocking they would 
sing :' 


Eiin, nigger, run, the patteroller^ll ketch yer, 
Run, nigger, run, 'tis ahnost day; 
I run, an' I run, till I los' my way. 
Then I run, an' I run, an' I run my bes', 
Till I run my head in a hornet's nes'. 

A citizen could be excused from patrol duty 
upon the payment of $2, but not twice in succes- 
sion. Every citizen of age, except those specially 
exempt, such as clergymen, doctors, etc., was sub- 
ject to this duty. Midnight usually found the 
patrol slumbering serenely in his home'. 

As punishment for those negroes who were con- 
victed of serious offenses, the whipping post was 
now and then resorted to with good effect. At 
rare intervals, the Pillory and Stocks was success- 
fully used for white thieves, and no offender thus 
punished was ever known to stay in this com- 
munity afterward'. 


The question of master and slave was seldom 
referred to. The master considered it his duty 
to protect those who served him, and the servant 
felt that he was accountable for his master's social 
position and other responsibilities. The slaves 
were treated with a consideration and trust with- 
out a parallel at this day. The children loved 
their colored ^^ mammies," and the mammies felt 
that they were responsible for the obedience of 
the children, "manners" being held at a premium 
and duty the first consideration. 


The relation between master and slave differed 
little from that prevailing in other portions of the 
South before the war — a sincere and confiding 
affection on one side, and on the other a kind and 
considerate regulation of the simple lives reposed 
in the white owner's care. When an entertain- 
ment was given by the colored people, it was not 
at all unusual for the mistress to lend her jewelry 
to her maid for the occasion, showing plainly the 
interest taken in the pleasure of the slaves; and 
in sickness they were provided for and given the 
best attention. There were, of course, exceptions 
in both cases'. 

This advertisement, appearing in the Florida 
News, a local newspaper, is interesting, indicating 
as it does one method of recovering runaway 
slaves : 


RUNAWAY in November last my negro woman 
HANNAH. She is about 5 ft., 7 or 8 inches high, 
black, no front teeth and about 40 years of age. 
Hannah has a mother in Newnansville or Tallahassee 
known by the name of Mary Ann Sanchez, formerly 
the property of Roman Sanchez of Newnansville. 
The above reward will be given upon her being lodged 
in any jail where I can get her or upon being de- 
livered to me at Palatka or Jacksonville. 

Louis M.Coxetter. 

Jacksonville, June 5, 1852. 

The Tallahassee papers will please copy and send 
their bills to this office. 


This same paper contained another item of in- 
terest, one that would indicate that the Town 
Council was composed of citizens serving for the 
best interest of the community: 


Regular Meeting 
Council Chamber, August 6, 1852. 
Council Met: — Present, His Honor, Henry D. 
Holland, Intendant* ; Messrs. Buffington, Cooper, 
and Canova, Councilmen. 

Mr. Townsend, elected a Councilman to fill the 
vacancy created by the resignation of Wm. Alsop, ap- 
peared for the purpose of taking the oath of office, 
which was objected to by Councilman Buffington, on 
the ground of his not possessing the requisite qualifi- 
cations for the performance of the duties of the 

Attest, F. C. Barrett, Clerk. 


Eailroads and the telegraph had not yet come to 
Jacksonville. Steam packets ran to Savannah 
and Charleston, and sailing vessels communicated 
with the more distant cities and the West Indies. 
It was almost as customary to talk about Hayti 
and Martinique then as it is about New York 

Communication with the interior of the State 
was by means of a stage line to Tallahassee and 



intermediate points. It was a three days' trip, 
avoided as much as possible, except at court ses- 
sions and when the Legislature met. The Central 
Stage Line ran this advertisement in the Jackson- 
ville paper during the summer of 1852 : 


From Jacksonville to Tallahassee Semi-Weekly. 

The proprietor takes pleasure in announcing to 
the public that he has just placed upon the route a 
new and splendid FOUR HORSE COACH and that 
he is prepared to convey passengers through in the 
shortest possible time. He has relays of the best 
horses at different points, so that no more time is lost 
than is necessary for their change. The stage leaves 
Jacksonville every Sunday and Wednesday after- 
noon, immediately after the arrival of the steamers 
from Savannah and returns in time to connect with 
them on their return trips. These steamers connect 
with others at Savannah for Charleston and New 
York, thus affording the travelers from the North and 
others visiting Tallahassee or interior to^Tis of 
Florida a speedy transit. A coach connects with this 
line to and from the White Sulphur Springs in 
Hamilton County. 

Fernandez, Bisbee & Co., Agents. 

Gr. E. Fairbanks describes the stage trip as one 
of ^'ups and downs, jolts and bumps; roots lying 
on the surface, the impact with which would send 
the unprepared passenger up against the top, or 
with a painful jerk against the standards. The 


weary drag during the long, dark nights, for the 
hacks kept on night and day, was an experience 
to be long remembered". To modify these dis- 
comforts, a plank road was projected to Alligator 
(Lake City), eight miles of which was completed. 
The plank road began at the intersection of Bay 
and Newnan Streets, ran north to Monroe, thence 
to Laura, to Ashley, then west in the direction of 
^'Cracker Swamp," L D. Hart's plantation. The 
road was hailed with delight by the citizens, as it 
furnished the only good drive anywhere near 
Jacksonville'. The people, always suiting some 
set expression to every innovation, started the 
slogan, ''Two-forty on a plank"'. When the rail- 
road was assured, the plank road construction was 
abandoned, leaving the stockholders of the enter- 
prise responsible for debts that brought forth 
many law suits'. 


Jacksonville experienced an epidemic of small- 
pox during the summer of 1853. J. W. Bryant, 
one of the foremost lawyers in the town, con- 
tracted the disease at some place in Georgia, where 
he had gone on legal business. Upon his return, 
he was taken sick at the Buffington House, then 
the fashionable hotel of Jacksonville. Numerous 
friends visited him before the case was diagnosed 
as one of small-pox, and therefore the epidemic 
started among the best people. Those at the 
Buffington House were the first to take the disease, 


and soon afterward sporadic cases began to 
develop until, finally, the epidemic became general 
among both white and colored. It was severe and 
a good many deaths resulted, while those who re- 
covered were in many cases badly pitted^ 


It is said that some of the merchants were very 
fond of playing cards, and even during business 
hours would gather at some retreat for a quiet 
game. Should a customer appear, a sentinel 
placed on watch would report, "Mr. So-and-so, 
some body is going in your store ' \ whereupon the 
game would be temporarily '^called''. Whenever 
children or servants were the purchasers, the 
store keeper usually gave them a small present, 
such as a sweet cracker or a piece of candy; this 
was called "coontra". It has been impossible to 
trace the derivation of this word, but the custom 
doubtless originated from the fact that the money 
divisions in those days were in fractions of a cent, 
and the small present was given, rather than to 
consider the fractions in carrying accounts. The 
silver dollar was the standard, but it was reck- 
oned eight bits, instead of one hundred cents. 
There were half bits, 6% ; bits, 12% ; two bits, 
25 cents, and so on. If ' ' coontra ' ^ was not given to 
the negroes it was always asked for by them, but 
the white children were forbidden by their parents 
to do so, as it was not considered "good 


There were no soda fountains in those days, and 
it was seldom that ice could be obtained. Ice was 
brought here from the North in sailing vessels. 
Lemonade and tamarind water were the most 
popular ^^soff drinks. The tamarind is a species 
of bean that grows in the West Indies, and from 
it a sticky substance exudes. The beans were put 
into a pitcher and hot water poured over them; 
this concoction was allowed to cool, when the drink 
was ready for use. It had a semi-acid taste, and 
was considered very healthful. Drinking water 
came from wells and cisterns. Rain water, when 
filtered through an earthern vessel called a 
*^ monkey", was considered a great luxury^ 

A whole lot on Bay Street, 105 feet frontage, 
could be bought for little more than what a front 
foot of the same property would sell for now. In 
the spring of 1846, Captain John L'Engle bought 
for $300 the square bounded on the north by Bay 
Street, east by Laura, west by Hogan, and south 
by the river. In August, 1877, William Astor 
bought the west 52% feet of this block, running 
from Bay Street to the river, for $10,000, and the 
entire block, exclusive of the buildings, is now 
(1911) worth more than $600,000, the least valu- 
able half lot of the block of three lots having 
recently sold for $100,000. In 1853, the north- 
west corner lot at Bay and Market Streets, includ- 
ing a two-story boarding house, was purchased for 
$2,500 ; and A. Judson Day, of Maine, bought half 
the block, west half, between Julia and Hogan 


Streets from Fors^^tli through to the river for 
$3,000. A year or so later, the northeast corner 
of Bay and Ocean, where the Guaranty Trust and 
Savings Bank and other buildings now stand, was 
sold to Ambler & Hoeg for $3,000. Residence lots 
a few blocks back from Bay Street that would now 
bring way up in the thousands sold then for less 
than $100. Springfield was a wilderness and 
Riverside a corn field. Between Duval and 
Beaver Streets, west of Main, was a large pond 
where flocks of wild ducks congregated in the win- 
ter time and furnished good shooting for the 
sportsmen of Jacksonville. Northwest of Hem- 
ming Park, between Forsyth and Church, Clay and 
Jefferson Streets was a dense swamp, where in 
places the water stood several feet deep. LaVilla 
was an island, owing to the course of several small 
streams that have since been filled in'. 

For the purpose of furnishing water to fight 
fires with, public wells were dug at the intersection 
of certain streets. One was located at the inter- 
section of Washington and Forsyth; another at 
the intersection of Forsyth and Newnan, and a 
third at Newnan and Adams Streets. Bay Street 
received its supply from the river. At the ringing 
of the fire bell, which hung from a tripod over the 
well at Newnan and Adams Streets, the citizens 
rushed out and formed into line to pass buckets 
of water from the nearest well to the burning 
building. Ladders were kept in rude sheds built 
on the side of the street near the wells. Usually 


one man gave orders. Later, the town bought a 
sort of fire pump, a crude affair worked by handles 
on each side, negroes furnishing the motive power. 
The building material used in Jacksonville at that 
time was mostly pitch pine', very inflammable, and 
as there was no adequate way of controlling large 
fires, it was but a question of time when the town 
would suffer a general conflagration. It came on 
April 5, 1854. 


A description of this destructive fire was pub- 
lished on the following day in an ^' Extra" gotten 
out by the Florida Republican, a copy of which 
follows, except that in one or two instances proper 
names have been corrected' : 


Jacksonville, Florida, April 6, 1854. 


Jacksonville in Ruins. 

Seventy Houses Consumed. 

Loss over $300,000. 

Two printing offices destroyed. 

Yesterday at 1 o'clock p. m., the alarm of fire was 
given in this town and in four hours afterwards all 
the business portion of the town was in ruins. The 


fire originated in S. N. Williams' hay shed, on the 
wharf, communicated, as is supposed, by a spark 
from the Charleston steamer "Florida". It ex- 
tended with astonishing rapidity in every direction, 
spreading first along the block of stores on the south 
side of Bay street, between Newnan and Ocean 
streets; thence communicating with the square op- 
posite on the north which was all consumed; thence 
with the store of A. M. Reed and the Bank agency 
adjoining on the west side of Ocean street, which 
were both destroyed; thence with the square east of 
Newnan street and fronting on Bay, w^hich contained 
the large and handsome block known as Byrne's 
building; nearly the whole square being consumed; 
at the same time with the buildings on Bay street east 
of the point at which the fire originated, and of 
Newnan street, which was at once swept away. 

This was principally the course of and the area 
which has been devastated by the devouring element. 
The wind was blowing strongly at the time, and 
caused the course of the fire, at first, to be to the 
westward by which several private dwellings at the 
extreme west end of the town, and several stores, 
Moody's, Holmes's, and Fairbank's mills, and the 
new hotel of Messrs. Day, were set on fire, but extin- 
guished before any material damage was sustained. 
Still, the intense heat from the first block was so great 
that that of itself ignited the squares on the opposite 
side, and on the east, and the immense amount of 
goods thrown from the stores along the whole of 
Bay street, formed from the same cause an immense 
conflagration of spirits, oil, paints, etc. 

By this fire seventy buildings were entirely de- 


stroyed. Of these, twenty-three were stores, of the 
following persons, viz: F. Waver & Co., provisions; 
C. D. Oak, and Wm. Grothe, jewelers ; S. N. Williams, 
grocer; J. P. Sanderson, dry goods and provisions; 
Bloodgood & Bouse, do; H. Timanus, do; T. Hart- 
ridge, do; J. Mode, dry goods; James Hanham, 
grocer; Mr. Hernandez, tobacconist; C. DeWaal, 
auctioneer; L. Capella, fruit store; J. Santo, do; A. 
M. Reed, dry goods and provisions; M. Keil, do; A. 
B. Hussey, grocer; Mr. Moore, fruit store; J. L. 
Hogarth, tinner ; Ambler & Hoeg, dry goods and pro- 
visions; J. L. Ripley, clothing; J. C. Brown, fruit 
store; L. B. Amerman, dry goods; T. McMillan, 
druggist; T. G. Myers, grocer; A. C. Acosta, fruit 
store; J. B. Howell, grocer; Joseph Hernandez, 
tailor; C. DeWaal, bakery; Geo. Flagg, jeweler; R. 
H. Darby, tailor; C. Poetting, boot and shoe maker. 

The law offices of Geo. W. Call and G. W. Hawkins 
and the office of F. C. Barrett, Notary Public, etc., in 
the Byrne block, were also destroyed, a portion only 
of their legal and official documents being saved. 

The office and warehouse of Mr. Joseph Finegan 
and the furniture store of L. M. Fulsom, destroyed. 
McRory's Insurance Agency, office in the Sammis 
Block, also went by the board, together with a por- 
tion of his papers. The Custom-house, Mr. Mc- 
intosh's Law office, Capt. Willey's residence, J. 
Hanham 's store and residence, J. Mode's store and 
elegant residence, as also the law office of P. Frazer, 
Esq., we note among other buildings destroyed. 

The two and only printing offices of the place — the 
Republican and the News, were consumed, the latter 
entirely, and but enough of the Republican material 


has been gleaned from the harvest of the terrible 
Reaper to furnish this Extra! We shall order new 
type and a press however, by the mail for the north 
tomorrow morning, and hope to be ''fully on our 
feet ' ' again in the course of a month ; and in the mean 
time shall endeavor to issue copies enough of our 
paper for our exchanges on a foolscap sheet, on an 
improvised press — our two iron hand presses being 
utterly wrecked. We therefore throw ourselves upon 
the indulgence of our advertising and reading 
patrons "for a little while," being determined not 
to desert the ''burning ship" — being utterly op- 
posed to any species of "ratting". As we are doing 
advertising for merchants in Charleston and Savan- 
nah, we request our contemporaries in those cities to 
note our situation. 

The steamer "Florida" was lying at her wharf at 
the time of the fire, and drew off into the stream as 
it progressed; the "Seminole" from Savannah 
bringing the mail (the Gaston being taken off the 
line) had passed up the river. Every exertion was 
made by the citizens, firemen, and even the ladies, 
who were found here and there lending assistance, 
to arrest the fire, the negroes also laboring faithfully 
to do their utmost. But the fire became unman- 
ageable, and as the intense heat extended itself, con- 
fusion and exhaustion rendered human exertion less 
efficient. A portion of the fire apparatus unfortu- 
nately fell into a situation which brought it in con- 
tact with the flames, and it was lost. 

Upon the amount of property lost, it is estimated 
that one-half is insured, some in New York and New 
England offices, and some in Georgia. The two 


printing offices were insured, our own for a little 
more than half its value. "We lost all the printing 
paper, and a large quantity of letter, which we had 
on hand for jobbing. Our ''set up" forms have run 
into a molten mass. 

Mr. Andres Canova was severely burnt and is dis- 
abled, and Mr. J. C. Hemming was severely stunned 
and for some time hurt, but he is now better. We 
regret also that the family of Mr. Philip Frazer, who 
were ill, were forced to remove. 


This was a period of misfortune for Jackson- 
ville, as a severe epidemic of scarlet fever raged 
in the town when the fire occurred. There were 
two versions as to how the fever started here. One 
is that the infection was introduced by means of a 
letter written by a lady while holding a baby sick 
with scarlet fever in her lap'. The other is that 
the nurse one day took little Ally Dell, daughter 
of Philip Dell, down to the boat yard and it is sup- 
posed that the child played with sailors from a 
vessel lying at the wharf and on which there was 
a case of scarlet fever. In a few days she was 
taken desperately ill. Mrs. Mary Turknett nursed 
this child and it died in her lap. This was in 
February, 1854. The attending physician diag- 
nosed the case simply as one of fever, but when 
the little corpse was prepared for burial, scarlet 
fever symptoms were noticed in the peeling skin. 
Mrs. Turknett shrouded the body, at the time 


wearing a black woolen skirt. When she returned 
to her home she hung the skirt up in a closet and 
did not wear it again for nearly a month. Then 
she wore it, and in a few days scarlet fever broke 
out in the family. 

The disease spread through the town and the 
type was most malignant. Numbers of persons 
died, the Turknett family in particular being 
afiflicted, five grown sons dying within a space of 
eight days, April 2 to 10, two of them on the same 
day and were buried from the same bier. 


Thus twice had Jacksonville suffered from dis- 
eases introduced from outside sources, so when 
the yellow fever broke out in Savannah in the 
summer of 1854, the citizens determined to keep it 
from coming to this place at all hazards. The 
authorities prohibited the Savannah steamers 
stopping or even passing by on their way up the 
river, as it was thought that the yellow fever 
might be introduced in that way. Captain Nick 
King, of the Savannah steamer, carried the mail, 
and he laughed at the proclamation of the citizens 
prohibiting the passage of steamers by Jackson- 
ville, and passed by heedless of the warning. A 
party of citizens then got an old condemned can- 
non, took it to the river bank at the foot of Cath- 
erine Street, and loaded it with a 32-pound shot. 
About dark the steamer hove in sight coming up 
the river, close in on the opposite side. When in 


line with the pointed cannon, the gun was fired, 
the ball passing through the forward gang-way 
of the vessel. The gun was rapidly loaded again, 
this time with a 6-pound shot, and fired ; the ball 
passed through the cabin, just grazing the neck of 
a negro who was in the act of lighting a lamp. 
When it is considered that the muzzle of the gun 
was kept in place and moved by a hand spike, this 
was marvelous shooting. The steamer made no 
more trips until the epidemic at Savannah was de- 
clared at an end*, and the determination thus dis- 
played by the citizens of Jacksonville in all 
probability prevented the introduction of the fever 
in that year. 


The country at large went through a money 
panic in 1854. Its effects were felt quite per- 
ceptibly in the lumber industry here; but trade 
was maintained and there was not a failure in 
business. Amid all the recent set-backs, the peo- 
ple with wonderful energy and a profound faith in 
the future of Jacksonville set about rebuilding 
their stores, destroyed in the fire of April 5th. 
Better buildings were erected, and in many in- 
stances substantial brick structures occupied the 
sites of former wooden shanties. The Judson 
House was completed in the fall and opened for 
the accommodation of guests. This was the first 
really large hotel in Jacksonville. 



A Judson Day, of Maine, came here and in 1853, 
decided to erect a first-class hotel. He bought the 
west half of the block between Hogan and Julia 
Streets, from Forsyth to the river from J. P. 
Sanderson for $3,000. He brought mechanics and 
builders down from Maine, gave the contract for 
lumber to a local mill, and set to work building the 
hotel. It was opened in November, 1854, and oc- 
cupied the site of the present Everett Hotel. It 
was a wooden building, four stories high, and 
fronted 136 feet on Bay and 136 feet on Julia; 
there were 110 guest rooms, spacious parlors, 
and a dining room 80 feet in length. Broad 
piazzas ran along the sides. The hotel complete 
and ready for business cost $125,000. It was 
burned March 11, 1862, by a mob of men whose 
identity was never made known. The destruction 
of the Judson House left Jacksonville without a 
regular hotel until the St. James was opened on 
January 1, 1869. 

From the earliest time, Jacksonville was what is 
called '^a hotel town.'^ Its fame as a health re- 
sort was not long in reaching all parts of the coun- 
try; people came to spend the winter and ac- 
commodations had to be provided for them. John 
Brady, as we have seen, was the pioneer in the 
hotel business here. Then Dawson & Buckles 
entered the field, followed by Joseph Andrews, 
brother-in-law of I. D. Hart. I. D. Hart built a 


large boarding liouse at the northwest corner of 
Bay and Market, and this remained a hotel site 
until the fire of May 3, 1901, the United States 
Hotel, formerly the Carleton, occupying that cor- 
ner. Others, too, built houses for the purpose of 
keeping boarders, but it was not until some time 
in the 40 's, that Jacksonville could boast of a 
regular hotel. It was erected at the southwest 
corner of Adams and Newnan Streets, facing 
Newnan, and was called "Wood^s Hotel, taking the 
name of its owner, Oliver Wood. The hotel 
changed hands in the early 50 's, being bought by 
Samuel Buffington, when its name was changed to 
the Buffington House. The new owner improved 
the property and made additions, so that finally it 
was a house of nearly a hundred rooms. The 
Buffington House burned in 1859, and was never 
rebuilt. There were two other hotels here as early 
as 1852, much smaller than the Buffington, but 
they were classed as hotels then. They were the 
Crespo House, southeast corner of Adams and 
Ocean, and the Coy House, occupying the site of 
the old block house, northeast corner of Monroe 
and Ocean. The Crespo burned, but was rebuilt 
upon the same site. These hotels and the numer- 
ous boarding houses furnished accommodations 
for the tourists until the Judson House was built. 


Local trade was maintained largely by furnish- 
ing supplies to the mills and loggers; but there 


was also an extensive river and back country trade. 
The river trade was by means of cypress boats 
and dug-outs. The country trade came in the well- 
known country cart, sometimes from distances of 
60, and occasionally 100 miles, bringing cotton, 
sugar, syrup, and exchanging for goods*. Trains 
of six-mule teams were maintained regularly be- 
tween Alligator (Lake City) and Jasper and 

In 1855, the property valuation in Jacksonville 
was $450,000. The annual exportation of lumber 
was 25 million feet, but with the exception of the 
saw mills and stores, and Biggs 's blacksmith shop 
and foundry, there were no very important indus- 
tries here. There were few sidewalks and the 
streets were deep sand. Many of the dwellings 
were unplastered and some had no glass windows. 
There were a few pianos in the town, but no stoves, 
and of course none of the modern conveniences. 
In the winter time when it was cold, fires were 
kindled in front of the stores; here the men col- 
lected and cracked jokes and discussed the ques- 
tions of the day. Milk was scarce and ice was 
scarcer. There was a small market house with 
one stall, open in the early morning. Fish were 
brought in boats to the shore near the market. The 
fishermen gave due notice of their arrival by ring- 
ing the market bell, when the people would rush 
down to purchase. Beef sold at 4 to 8 cents a 
pound and pork at 8 to 10 cents a pound. Vege- 
tables were scarcely ever seen, except collards and 
sweet potatoes*. 


The only banking house in the town was an 
agency of the Bank of Charleston, A. M. Eeed, 
agent. Afterward, the Bank of St. Johns was 
organized at Jacksonville, and at the close of 1860 
was one of the two banks in the state doing busi- 
ness under the general banking law". 

Not much attention was given to flower gardens 
and grass lawns; most of the residents cut the 
grass down to the sand to keep snakes from getting 
into the yards. One of the few places that had a 
grass lawn in the early days was that of General 
Thomas Ledwith, corner of Ocean and Adams 
Streets. It was Bermuda, and certainly looked 
refreshing in its sandy surroundings. There were 
very few orange trees in and around the yards, in 
fact the people gave little attention to them, as 
they were so thoroughly frozen out in 1835, that 
every one was disgusted'. 

The schooners that came here then were very 
small in comparison with those that come now. A 
cargo of 100,000 feet was considered tremendous. 
Vessels could not pass over St. Johns bar, even at 
high tide, drawing more than 10 feet. There were 
only two mails a week from the North, both by 
boat, one from Charleston and the other from 



1 Jacksonville Metropolis, December 12, 1908. 

2 History of Florida, Webb. 

3 Mrs. W. M. Bostwick. (See Author's Preface). 

4 Reminiscences of an old citizen, Jacksonville Tri-Weekly 
Sun, January 22-February 1, 1876. 

5 O. L. Keene in Jacksonville Metropolis, December 12, 1908. 

6 See Florida Reports, 

7 This data comes from various sources, all reliable. 

8 The author possesses a copy of this ''Extra". 

9 Mrs. George S. Wilson. 

10 Memoirs of Florida, Fleming. 



Two years after the eventful year 1854, found 
Jacksonville undergoing a steady improvement. 
Small steamers for the upper St. Johns, and tug 
boats for towing had been placed on the river. 
The railroad to western Florida was now assured. 
Most of the capital invested in these enterprises 
was subscribed by the citizens. The people were 
united, and everything that promised to advance 
the interests of the town was liberally advocated 
and pushed forward. Building, business, and 
valuation increased, and a general prosperity was 
evident everywhere. Travel came both from the 
State and abroad and school and church member- 
ship increased'. In the book entitled ^ ' History and 
Antiquities of St. Augustine '', published in 1856, 
was an advertisement by the Jacksonville Board 
of Trade, of which Dr. Theodore Hartridge was 
President, setting forth the advantages of Jack- 
sonville and inviting people to come here to live. 
That we had a Board of Trade prior to the civil 
war is not generally known ; the organization was 
probably kept up until the beginning of the war. 

On November 15, 1856, at 4 :30 a. m., fire broke 
out in a block of wooden buildings on the south side 
of Bay Street between Pine (Main) and Laura, 
and was quite destructive. The volunteer firemen 


had a difficult time confining the flames to the south 
side of Bay Street'. 

January 19 and 20, 1857, were the coldest days 
since the great freeze of 1835. Temperatures of 
16 and 18 degrees, respectively, were noted from 
ordinary thermometers, and if self-registering in- 
struments could have been used, a much lower tem- 
perature in all probability would have been re- 
corded. Ice two inches in thickness formed on 
pools and along the margin of the St. Johns River. 
People could be seen sliding and trying to skate on 
the ice^ 


The Jacksonville Light Infantry was organized 
April 30, 1857, with the following members :' 

Captain — Holmes Steele. 

Lieutenants — F. C. Sollee, George Flagg, J. C. 

Sergeants — William Grothe, S. B. Flinn, Wil- 
liam Houston, H. W. Fitch, A. W. DaCosta. 

Corporals — T. R. Webb, S. Buffington, Jr., C. 
H. Collins, L. Warrock. 

Privates — P. Brennan, W. E. Livingston, Wat- 
son Ashurst, Byron E. Oak, J. C. Houston, R. R. 
Rushing, William Caulk, S. Forbes Doggett, Frank 
Smith, D. P. Smith, L. I. Fleming, J. G. Butler, E. 
Aubert, W. Haddock, P. H. Talle, C. C. Aberle, 
W. A. DuPont, F. Depue, J. I. Winter, 0. L. 
Keene, E. A. Oak, J. D. M. Shad, F. B. Papy, H. 
M. Moody, Aristides Doggett, J. Y. Wilson, A. A. 


Oclms, F. G. Hirtler, W. W. Moore, J. Burkheim. 

Soon after the organization, J. J. Daniel, T. E. 
Buckman, and others joined the company. The 
first street parade was held July 4, 1859, when the 
company marched to East Jacksonville about 
where Florida Avenue is now, and had target prac- 
tice for two hours. The armory was then in a 
hall in a frame building that stood on the north 
side of Bay Street, between Hogan and Julia. O. 
L. Keene, one of the charter members, said: ^^We 
had handsome uniforms — coats of blue cloth with 
three rows of brass buttons down the front, high 
caps with pon-pons, pants of blue cloth, and white 
pants for warm weather. In May, 1860, the ladies 
of the town presented us with a silk flag, made by 
themselves, and we paraded the streets, as we felt 
very proud of our beautiful new flag. ' ' 

The company served through the war as Com- 
pany A., Third Florida Infantry, mostly with 
the Army of the Tennessee; it surrendered with 
General Johnston's army. At the surrender the 
company was disbanded. Afterwards, July 30, 
1875, there was an attempt to reorganize it, but 
not a great deal of enthusiasm was manifested, 
and it was not until 1880, when a strikers' riot 
broke out at Clark's mill and the men were called 
out to put it down, that a thorough re-organization 
took place. The Jacksonville Light Infantry was 
re-organized September 20, 1880, with W. B. 
Young as captain*. 



In the early part of the summer of 1857, an epi- 
demic of yellow fever raged at St. Marys, Ga., and 
from that place it was brought to Jacksonville in 
Angust, it was said later by Nathan Vaught. Mr. 
Vanght's house stood on a bluff just east of the 
intersection of Bay and Bridge Streets, and it 
was there that the epidemic started'. That locality 
was never considered very healthful; McCoy's 
Creek near-by was a dirty, stagnant stream, and 
much of the land in the vicinity was low, marsh 
land. The summer was described as hot and 
murky, with frequent rains and much decaying 
vegetable matter. It is a noted fact that three 
crops of weeds grew during the season, and some 
people tried to connect this unusual circumstance 
with the spread of the fever'. In these surround- 
ings the disease gained a foot-hold. The McFalls 
lived near the Vaughts and soon took the fever; 
then it spread to the Currys living close by on the 
bank of McCoy's Creek. In the mean time some 
of the other residents, both men and ladies, hear- 
ing of the distress out there (that section was con- 
sidered out of town then) went to nurse the sicF. 
In this way the contagion spread through the town. 
Most of the people left, and there was an entire 
suspension of business. But one store remained 
open — a drug store conducted by Dr. E. P. Web- 
ster. Dr. Webster kept his store open all during 
the epidemic and dispensed medicines gratuitously 
to those who did not have the means to pay\ 


During the period of the disease the streets 
were deserted and grew up in grass. The steam- 
ers did not stop here and the town was isolated 
from the rest of the world. Doctors and clergy- 
men courageously remained and those of the resi- 
dents that stayed ministered to and nursed the 
sick night and day and buried the dead. Clothing 
and food were freely dispensed to those in need. 
Never were a people more sympathetic and gen- 
erous. Fortunately there came an early frost (on 
October 26th, and on November 20th the tempera- 
ture fell to freezing). There were 127 deaths, a 
fearful death rate, when it is considered that not 
more than 600 people had the fever'. An idea of 
the malignity of the disease may be gained from 
the mortality in the Mott family, composed of 
twelve members, eleven of whom died, only the old 
grandmother surviving. The Turknett family, 
that had suffered so severely in the scarlet fever 
epidemic of 1854, lost two more members by yel- 
low fever. Numbers of our best citizens met death 
upon the altar of brotherly love. The grave stones 
in the old city cemetery bear mute witness to the 
terrible visitation. 

Some of the ignorant persons looked upon the 
spread of the disease with reverential fear and 
considered it a visitation of The Almighty'. 
Others thought it was due to the excavation being 
made for the railroad through wet and marshy 
land, thus exposing the freshly dug soil to the 
hot and sultry weather, thereby causing a malari- 


ous atmosphere. Still others advanced the idea 
that it might have originated at the old market, 
and cautioned the authorities to permit nothing 
that might be detrimental to the public health to 
exist there, especially in hot weather. But there 
was a pathetic feeling of dread and doubt common 
to all in regard to the proper treatment of the 
fever and the best method by which to combat its 


With the cold weather, the residents began to 
return, and in the course of time the conditions 
that had existed before the epidemic were re- 
sumed. During the three following years, trade 
and commerce increased. The lumber industry 
had thoroughly recovered from the depression of 
1857, and a succession of good crop years placed 
every thing upon the high-road of prosperity'. 

In 1858, there were built here a large barque, 
called the American Eagle, and a schooner, the 
Martha. The Martha was lost at sea in May, 1876. 
"What became of the American Eagle is not known . 

New wharves and business houses were built, as 
were residences of a better class than had previ- 
ously existed. Streets were opened and extended, 
and there was a general improvement in walks and 
roads. The city was governed without paid offi- 
cials, only the marshal receiving fees for his ser- 
vices, and taxation was not burdensome'. 











In 1859, the first gas works were built on East 
Bay Street, near Hogan's Creek. A Mr. Water- 
house, of New Jersey, was the originator and 
prime mover of the enterprise. The gas was made 
of resin, and fulfilled all the requirements of that 
day'. After the civil war, H. H. Hoeg conducted 
the gas works, the price of gas at that time being 
$8 a thousand. Out of this organization grew the 
present Jacksonville Gas Company. 


The first telegraph line from Jacksonville was 
built in 1859, to Baldwin, where it connected with 
the Cuban line and with the North'. 


A book could be written on the subject of the 
early railroad projects in Florida ; how a few pro- 
gressive and far-seeing men labored with the 
Legislature, both Territorial and State, for the 
passage of railroad legislation; how laws were 
made, repealed, and made again; about the land 
grant inducements for railroad construction ; how 
seemingly insurmountable obstacles were met with 
and overcome; and finally, when construction 
actually commenced, how slowly it progressed, 
inches on the map representing years of difficulty. 
All this collated and published would make 
fascinating reading. 


In the 40 's, a survey was made for a railroad 
from Jacksonville to Cedar Keys, and another 
from Jacksonville to the Snwanee River. With 
this matters were allowed to rest, and in the mean 
time powerful opposition developed with the orga- 
nization of a company, of which David Levy Yulee 
was the acknowledged head, to build a railroad 
from Fernandina to Cedar Keys. Yulee success- 
fully carried out his plans, and the road proposed 
from Jacksonville to Cedar Keys was abandoned'. 
The citizens of Jacksonville were not the kind to 
become discouraged, however, and in 1852, largely 
through the efforts of Dr. A. S. Baldwin, a com- 
pany was organized to build a railroad from Jack- 
sonville to Lake City, then called Alligator.' 

Jacksonville's fikst bonds. 

To carry on the work of building the railroad, 
the town was bonded in 1857, for $50,000. These 
were the first bonds issued by the town of Jack- 
sonville. After the war many cities and towns in 
the South, finding it impossible to meet their 
obligations, sought to evade them by repudiation. 
This question came up in Jacksonville in connec- 
tion with the railroad bonds of 1857, but the 
citizens, impoverished as they were, elected to 
carry the issue. 

The name of the railroad was the Florida, At- 
lantic and Gulf Central. Grading began at this 
end of the line during the summer of 1857, and the 
road was completed to Alligator March 13, 1860. 


On the 15tli of that month, the railroad gave the 
people of Jacksonville an excursion to Alligator. 
The locomotive that pulled the train was called 
'' Jacksonville ''. Many people took advantage of 
the opportunity, and some of them for the first 
time in their lives rode on a railroad train. The 
Lake City people gave them a barbecue and a good 
time in general. On the 21st of March, an excur- 
sion came here from Lake City. The visitors were 
hospitably welcomed with speeches, and a barbecue 
prepared in what was then a fine oak grove where 
the Barnett National Bank now stands, corner 
Forsyth and Laura Streets. A pleasing ceremony 
also took place at the Judson House, when Miss 
Louisa Holland, of Jacksonville, and Miss Ives, of 
Lake City, with pitchers mingled the waters of the 
St. Johns Kiver with those of Lake DeSoto', near 
Lake City. 

A railroad engine was a new thing to most of 
the people here, and when it first came to Jack- 
sonville a large crowd assembled to examine its 
mechanism and to discuss its merits pro and con. 
The engineer, having a keen sense of humor, sud- 
denly released the escape valve and pulled the 
whistle cord. Instantly there was a wild scramble, 
many believing that the engine was about to blow 
up. The incident caused much merriment and was 
discussed for quite a while afterward'. 

The civil war played havoc with the railroad. 
Sections of the track between Jacksonville and 
Baldwin were torn up and replaced, alternately, 


by the Confederates and the Federals. Some of 
that old railroad iron found its way to the ship- 
yards and was used in the construction of iron- 

AUKORA OF 1859. 

On September 2, 1859, from midnight to 4 a. m., 
a fine auroral display was observed by the citizens 
of Jacksonville. At times it was very bright and 
red, occupying the northern heavens from north- 
west around to northeast and east. Streamers 
would be sent up from different points almost to 
the zenith, then fade away and flicker up again. 
At 3 a. m, the whole heavens shone with a brilliant 
red light, even the south was quite red. The more 
ignorant people were very much frightened, and 
many amusing incidents were told of how the 
negroes began to pray, thinking that the end of 
the world was at hand'. 

There appears to have been a period of special 
auroral frequency from 1870 to 1882. More or less 
pronounced auroral displays were observed in 
Jacksonville on September 24 and October 14 and 
25, 1870 ; February 4, 1872 ; June 4, 1877 ; and on 
November 17, 1882, there was a well-marked dis- 
play that attracted general attention. 


In the years 1850 to 1860, the town doubled its 
population; the census of 1860 gave more than 
2,000 inhabitants. During 1860, there was no 


cessation of business. Travel and the mails in- 
creased ; likewise the telegraph business. Steam- 
ers and other vessels came and departed regularly. 
But with the mutterings of the coming trouble a 
nervous tension found its way into every occupa- 
tion. The public mind drifted into political, rather 
than into commercial channels. Groups of men 
would collect on the streets and discuss the grave 
questions of the day. News of the attack on Fort 
Sumter at once suspended all business with the 
North and the mills, with one exception, closed 
down. Then the mails ceased coming, and the 
town began gradually to subside into inactivity , 
only soon to be drawn into the whirlpool of war. 


1 Eeminiscences of an old citizen, Tri-Weekly Sun, Feb 1, 1876 

2 Records of Dr. A. S. Baldwin. 

3 Newspaper clipping. 

4 History of Florida, Webb. 

5 Mrs. George S. Wilson. 

6 Dr. W. M. Bostwiek. 

7 These remarks are based upon reliable data. 

8 Memoirs of Florida, Fleming. 

9 O. L. Keene. 





A large percentage of the citizens were men of 
ability and fine education, some of them being 
specialists in their professional lines. Given to 
entertaining among themselves, and the ^Sstrang- 
ers within their gates ' \ they formed a distinct set 
where culture and refinement were the dominant 
characteristics, thus creating a social condition 
that was morally healthful and uplifting. Cook- 
ing and serving were done entirely at home, by 
servants trained in the art for generations. Do- 
mestic service was then free from nomadic annoy- 
ance; therefore the ease and pleasures of enter- 
taining were far greater than at the present day. 

The chief amusements were dinner parties, 
cards, and dancing. Besides the old-fashioned 
square dances, reels, etc., graceful Spanish dances 
and gliding waltzes were indulged in. All danced, 
the matron as well as the maid; grandmothers 
could be seen dancing with their grandsons. No 
dance was ever given without the patronage of 
married people — this was a strict social require- 
ment. Marcellini, an old Spanish negro, was the 
chief functionary at all the dances, as it was his 

*A composite description, as given by prominent old 


^'fiddle and bow^' that furnished the music, the 
mention of which caused one lady to exclaim, 
^ ' Sweet memories of happy days are revived with 
the thought of Marcellini and his dancing fiddle ' ', 
while another says in verse : 

I see him yet, his rolling eyes, his scanty woolen hair, 
His swaying form, his conscious pride, his almost 

lordly air, 
"When all the white folks waiting stood, till he would 

draw his bow; 

* * * * 

And when he touched the familiar notes, the sober 

and the staid. 
Just felt the music in their heels, when Marcellini 


Picnics in the summer-time and oyster roasts in 
the winter were pleasures that all could partake 
of. Camping for several days on the river bank, 
called '^marooning'', was a popular pastime. A 
period of moonlight nights was generally selected 
for marooning, so that moonlight water parties 
might be an attendant feature. Music was on 
hand to be sure, and the soft, mellow notes of the 
guitar were certain to be heard out on the river as 
some youth sang the popular ballad of that day: 

Lightly row, lightly row, as o'er the dancing waves 

we go; 
Smoothly glide, smoothly glide, out on the silent 



Let the winds and waters be, mingled with our 

Lightly row, lightly row, for music's voice is low. 
Gently with the sea-bird's note, let our dying music 

Lightly row, 1-i-g-h-t-l-y r-o-w. 

There was serenading by groups of young men, 
who would visit the home of some popular person 
and with music and songs entertain the house- 
hold for half an hour or so, those within in the 
mean time preparing refreshments for the 
serenaders. Frequently the presence of some 
^'love-sick'' person would be evinced by the 
notes of his guitar, as he stood singing softly out- 
side the home of his '^ lady-love". More boister- 
ous was the custom of charivari, or ' ' shiveree, ' ' a 
hideous clamor of tin pans, horns, whistles, and 
other disagreeable noises, indulged in outside the 
home of a newly married widow or widower. The 
hilarious amusement always provoked anger on 
the part of the groom, but it would not cease until 
the participants were refreshed with cake and 

This lightness, vivacity, love of pleasure, marks 
clearly the impress of the Spanish character upon 
the community. 

The English occupation also left some of its 
staunch, staid customs, such as strict attendance 
upon the church services; financial provision for 
the future; propriety the requirement of society's 


inner circle ; and a rigid obedience to set customs, a 
disregard of them being considered an evidence of 

All forms of affliction met with the profoundest 
sympathy. Notice of funerals was written on a 
sheet of letter paper through which a wide black 
ribbon was inserted, and taken from house to house 
by a servant, attendance being considered a mark 
of respect for the living, as well as for the dead. 
There were no trained nurses and it devolved upon 
some member of the family, usually the mother or 
oldest daughter, to perform such duties in case of 
sickness. When members of a household were un- 
able to provide the necessary attention for its sick, 
neighbors volunteered. It was nothing out of the 
ordinary for those occupying the highest social 
position to nurse the lowly and humble night and 
day, or to shroud the dead. Sorrow and sickness 
obliterated the social boundary line and affliction 
became public property. No hearse and under- 
taker were in the town then, but Sam Eeed, a vener- 
able colored man, and his mule, John, performed 
the duties of burying the dead, in addition to do- 
ing all the draying for Jacksonville. 

Public out-of-door functions, barbecues, patri- 
otic celebrations, and the like were of frequent oc- 
currence. Every town improvement, or the 
inauguration of anything that had as its object the 
public weal, met with immediate popular favor, 
and the occasion was usually made one of public 
celebration, with speech-making and a grand, good 


time for all. Such a thing as a circus coming to 
town was sufficient to cause unbounded enthu- 
siasm, and the songs and jokes could be heard on 
the streets long after its departure. ^^I bet my 
money on the bob-tail nag, somebody bet on the 
bay", was a circus echo that lingered a long time. 

Another phase of life in Jacksonville before the 
war was a modified form of its border-day exis- 
tence, for in connection with the liking for fun and 
frolic was also a liking for strong drink. The grog- 
shop center was at the northwest corner of Bay 
and Newnan Streets, then the business center of 
the town. Could the history of that localit}^ in 
those days be written, the record would not be 
free from bar-room brawls, with now and then an 
altercation of a more serious character. These 
troubles were not confined to the turbulent element 
of the community, for often young men of the 
very best families would be implicated. Whether 
the wave of religious enthusiasm that swept over 
Jacksonville in the 50 's was brought about by this 
state of wildness is not recorded, but it is a fact 
that protracted religious meetings were held day 
and night for weeks, when fervent prayers were 
offered for the salvation of the '^sinful wine 

The reckless, romantic sort of life led by the 
young men was but a natural condition of those 
times ; but they were gentlemen with it all. That 
species of ruffian that stands on the street corners 
and with impudent familiarity seeks to attract the 


attention of girls and ladies was unknown before 
the war, for these tactics would then have brought 
a coat of tar and feathers. Men seldom spoke dis- 
paragingly of ladies, as to do so meant serious 
consequences. Personal bravery was a dominant 
characteristic, and an insult was sure to result in 
trouble. Cursing had not become so popular, and 
profanity was seldom heard. When the old peo- 
ple talk about those times forever gone, they make 
it plain that many of the corroding influences of 
modern life had no counterpart in the '^ happy 
days before the war'\ 

In general, the people were kind-hearted, gen- 
erous, and hospitable. They were happy and con- 
tented, with a profound fondness for recreation 
and pleasure; yet they were sympathetic and 
patient under affliction, and at all times were 
united in the interest of the town's improvement. 
The community was prosperous, and the citizens 
were possessed of a business judgment and 
sagacity that enabled them to overcome seemingly 
insurmountable obstacles, and to provide bounti- 
fully for the present, as well as to accumulate for 
the future. 



Florida seceded from the Union January 10, 
1861, whereupon the Jacksonville Light Infantry, 
Captain Holmes Steele, offered its services to the 
Governor of Florida, and was the first company 
accepted by the State'. It was ordered to the 
mouth of the St. Johns River, to erect fortifica- 
tions at that point. A detachment was sent to St. 
Augustine for four 32-pound guns at old Fort San 
Marco. These cannon were put on log carts and 
hauled to the beach below Mayport, to a high sand 
dune at the mouth of the "run", where they were 
placed in a fortification constructed by the com- 
pany under the direction of Captain John L 'Engle, 
a retired United States army officer. This fort 
was named Fort Steele, in honor of Captain Steele. 
The Jacksonville Light Infantry was ordered to 
Fort Steele in detachments until April, when all 
were ordered there'. 

The "long roll" was sounded but once at Fort 
Steele. One night the sentinel observed an object 
coming in that he thought was a launch from a 
Federal gunboat. He gave the alarm, and the com- 
pany was hastily drawn up on the beach to repel 
the invader, but it proved to be a pile of brush 
floating in with the tide'. 

When the Jacksonville Light Infantry was mus- 


tered into the Confederate service the following 
August, the post at the mouth of the river was 

The Second Florida Infantry was mustered into 
the Confederate service at Jacksonville, July 13, 
1861. Among the companies comprising this regi- 
ment was the St. Johns Grays, of Duval County, 
commanded by Captain J. J. Daniel. This regi- 
ment with the First Florida Infantry filled the 
first call of the Confederate government from 
Florida. It left Jacksonville for Virginia by rail, 
July 15, 1861, and was accorded ovations at many 
places along the route, especially at Savannah and 
Petersburg. An authority says: ^^They were 
watched, as they departed, with a strange exalta- 
tion of soul, and the tears of affection were min- 
gled with the proud anticipation of martial honors. 
Flowers were showered upon them by fair hands 
at many places on the way; banners waved, and 
the cheers of ardent patriotism helped assuage 
the pain of the recent farewell to home and kin- 
dred"'. The Second Florida participated in most 
of the battles of the Army of Northern Virginia, 
fought bravely, and was frequently complimented 
by the generals of the army. 

In response to a call for two additional regi- 
ments, the Third and the Fourth Florida Infantry 
were mustered in, the Third Florida, including the 
Jacksonville Light Infantry, Captain Holmes 
Steele, on August 10, 1861; ten companies com- 
prised the regiment'. The Third Florida served 


through the war, and fought with distinction, 
mostly with the Army of the Tennessee; it sur- 
rendered with General Joseph E. Johnston's army 
at the close of the war. 


Early in March, 1862, rumors reached Jackson- 
ville that a Federal expedition, with a large num- 
ber of troops, was about to embark for the occupa- 
tion of this town. The mayor then published this 
proclamation, for the information of the citizens' : 


Fellow Citizens: 

In the present trying crisis, much thought and 
anxious inquiry have been devoted by the City 
Council, the citizens, and several of our friends from 
the country, including Gen. S. R. Pyles and Staff, to 
ascertain and determine what, under all the circum- 
stances, is best to be done, and will best promote the 
safety, comfort, and happiness of the people. 

On yesterday evening, a portion of the City 
Council held an interview with Gen. Pyles and his 
Staff, and after full discussion and patient delibera- 
tion, it was unanimously determined that in- 
asmuch as all the Confederate troops, arms, and 
munitions of war upon the St. Johns river and in 
East and South Florida generally are to be aban- 
doned, it is useless to attempt a defense of the City 
of Jacksonville, and therefore upon the approach of 
the enemy it should be surrendered. This having 
been decided upon as the sound and proper course 


to be pursued, Col. M. Whit Smith suggested that 
the Mayor should make it known to the citizens by 
proclamation and this suggestion being fully con- 
curred in by all present, 

I therefore, in conformity thereto, make known 
to you that all defenses will be immediately with- 
drawn from the city and the St. Johns river and no 
military force will be kept on duty, except for Police 
purposes, and such force will be supplied by details 
drawn from our citizens. 

I advise and earnestly admonish our citizens to 
remain at their homes and pursue their usual avoca- 
tions, and I call upon all good citizens to give their 
aid and counsel for the preservation of good order 
throughout the entire community. It is the opinion 
of our most experienced and intelligent citizens 
(and I think a correct one) that if the enemy meet 
with no resistance, private property will be re- 
spected, and unarmed citizens will be allowed to 
pursue their usual occupations. I trust, therefore, 
that our whole population will act with becoming 
prudence, and that no unnecessary provocation may 
be given that may furnish a reason for violence from 
any quarter; and if after we have offered no resis- 
tance and given no just provocation, violence should 
be committed, the whole blame will rest on the 
aggressors. Every citizen able to perform police 
duty is hereby required to hold himself in readiness 
to go on duty, upon receiving notice from the Chief 
of Police. 

H. H. HoEG, 

March 7, 1862. 


This proclamation not only did not produce the 
desired effect, but on the other hand greatly in- 
tensified the alarm. The residents were panic- 
stricken, and two or three days later, when news 
was received that Fernandina had been occupied 
by Federal troops, all the Southern sympathizers 
who could go away left Jacksonville. Business 
along all lines was entirely suspended. The one 
railroad out of the town was taxed to its utmost 
capacity, carrying refuges to Lake City and other 
points in the interior of Florida. Others left with 
their belongings in wagons, some of them, women 
and children, having no destination and guided 
and protected only by faithful servants. A recital 
of the hardships that many of these women and 
children suffered during the next few years would 
soften the most callous heart. Numbers of them 
found refuge with relatives or friends in the in- 
terior, but there were some who suffered terrible 
hardships and were subjected to all the horrors 
incident to war*. 

When the city offices were closed the city and 
county records were secretly buried for safe-keep- 
ing. After the war, when these records were ex- 
humed, it was found that they were practically 
worthless because of illegibility due to decay'. 


Four Federal gunboats, Seneca, Pembina, 
Ottawa, and Isaac Smith, and two transports of 
Commodore DuPont's squadron, crossed St. Johns 


bar March 11, 1862, and anchored in the river. On 
the same day the Confederates came to Jackson- 
ville, and nnder orders from the commander of the 
district. General Trapier, burned all the mills, ex- 
cept one (Scott's), and 4,000,000 feet of lumber. 
Mr. Scott saved his mill by raising tliQ British flag 
over it. They also burned the foundry, and a gun- 
boat on the ways. But this was not all. That night 
a mob of men composed of refugees from Fernan- 
dina and Jacksonville came in and from pure 
malignity fired the Judson House and two or three 
other buildings in the town'. 

The next day, March 12th, the Federal squadron 
came up the river and anchored off Jacksonville. 
The capitulation of the town is described by a resi- 
dent, Frederick Lueders, in the Immigration 
Edition of the Industrial Record (Jacksonville) of 
July, 1907, as follows : 

^'One day (March 12th), as I was standing on 
the river bank at the foot of Laura Street, I saw 
four gunboats come steaming up the river and 
drop anchor off the foot of Pine (Main) Street. 
I was getting pretty well scared, when the thought 
flashed through my head, ^If they bombard Jack- 
sonville, it will be nothing short of murder \ At 
that time I happened to have a stick in my hand, 
and noting the guns were turned toward Jack- 
sonville, I took out my handkerchief, tied it to 
the stick, and waved it vigorously over my head. 
The commander of the fleet saw the peace signal 
and with his aides came ashore. Upon landing. 


I told him the existing circumstances and begged 
him not to open tire upon the town. He said he 
would not, and for me to go on board. After I 
had explained that I was the only officer in the 
town (he was sheriff) he requested me to sign the 
surrender papers, which I did. He said his mis- 
sion here was one of peace and that he hoped 
Florida would not suffer the havoc of war. Upon 
my return I found to my surprise that troops had 
been landed and pickets were out'\ 

It was six companies of the Fourth New Hamp- 
shire Regiment, under the command of Colonel T. 
J. Whipple, that Mr. Lueders found in possession 
of Jacksonville. The occupation was quietly per- 
formed on March 12th. The Confederate troops 
were encamped in the vicinity of Baldwin, but they 
were more or less disorganized and poorly 
equipped, and they made no attempt at contesting 
the landing of the Federal forces here. 

The original plan of the Federal expedition was 
to occupy Jacksonville for only a few hours, for 
the purpose of reconnaissance ; but the representa- 
tions of the ''loyaP' residents of the town caused 
Colonel Whipple to abandon the idea of immediate 
evacuation. Pickets were stationed and the troops 
went into camp or were quartered in the vacant 
buildings. On March 19th, General T. W. Sher- 
man* (U. S. A.), commander of the department, 
arrived. He came for the purpose of personally 

*Do not confound witli W. T. Sherman. 


acquainting himself with the situation here, and in 
his report he stated that the act of Colonel 
Whipple in regularly occupying Jacksonville was 
a wise one. 

In the mean time, the Confederate troops in the 
vicinity of Baldwin, under the command of Colonel 
W. S. Dilworth, were recruiting and otherwise 
preparing to resist any attempt of the Federals 
to march into the interior of the State. 


As soon as Jacksonville was thoroughly in the 
hands of the Union army, a meeting of the ' ' Loyal 
Citizens of the United States '^ was held, at 10:30 
a. m., March 20, 1862, C. L. Robinson, chairman; 
0. L. Keene, secretary; John S. Sammis, S. F. 
Halliday, John W. Price, Philip Frazer, and 
Paran Moody, being the committee appointed to 
draft resolutions to lay before said meeting. 
The following is a true copy of these resolutions* : 

We, the people of the city of Jacksonville and its 
vicinity, in the county of Duval, and the State of 
Florida, embraced within the territory and jurisdic- 
tion of the United States of America, do hereby set 
forth our declaration of rights and our solemn pro- 
test against the abrogation of the same by any pre- 
tended State or other authority. 

First. We hold that government is a contract, in 
which protection is the price of allegiance ; that when 

*War of the Eebellion — Official Eecords of the Union and 
Confederate Armies, Series 1, Vol. VI, Page 251-252. 


protection is denied, through weakness or design, 
allegiance is no longer due. 

Second. We hold that an established form of gov- 
ernment cannot be changed or abrogated except by 
the will of the people, intelligently and willingly 
expressed and fairly ratified. 

Third. We hold that no State of the United 
States has any legal or constitutional right to sepa- 
rate itself from the government and jurisdiction of 
the United States. 

Fourth. We hold that the act of the Convention 
of the State of Florida commonly known as the ordi- 
nance of secession, is void, being in direct conflict 
with the Constitution of the United States, in never 
having been submitted to the people for ratification. 

Fifth. We hold that the State of Florida is an 
integral part of the United States, subject to the 
constitutional jurisdiction of the same, and we 
have reason to believe that thousands of her citizens 
would hail with joy the restoration of the Govern- 
ment, bringing deliverance from the terrors of un- 
restrained popular and military despotism. We 
solemnly protest against all the acts and ordinances 
of the Convention of the State of Florida, which 
were designed to deprive us of our rights as citizens 
of the United States. We protest against the 
despotism fostered by the State and other authori- 
ties claiming jurisdiction over us, which has denied 
us the rights most dear to freemen — freedom of 
speech and a free press. We protest against the 
exactions which have been imposed upon us — forced 
contributions of money, property, and labor; enlist- 
ments for military service procured by threats and 


misrepresentations. We protest against the tyranny 
which demands of us as a measure of revolutionary 
policy abandonment of our homes and property and 
exposure of our wives and children to sickness, 
destitution, gaunt famine, innumerable and untold 
miseries and sorrows. We protest against that mad 
and barbarous policy which has punished us for re- 
maining in our own homes by sending a brutal and 
unrestrained soldiery to pillage and burn our prop- 
erty, threaten and destroy our lives. We protest 
against the denunciation of the governor, who 
threatens to hang us because we do not tamely sub- 
mit to such indignities and "lick the hand just raised 
to shed our blood." From such a despotism and 
from such dangers and indignities we have been re- 
leased by the restoration of the Government of the 
United States, with the benign principles of the 
Constitution. The reign of terror is past. Law and 
order prevail in our midst. 

It belongs now to the citizens of the State who 
hold to their allegiance to the United States to raise 
up a State government according to those provisions 
of the State which are not in conflict with or repug- 
nant to the provisions of the United States : 

Be it therefore resolved, That we adopt the fore- 
going protest and declaration of rights, and recom- 
mend that a convention of all loyal citizens be called 
forthwith, for the purpose of organizing a State 
government of the State of Florida. 

Be it further resolved, That the chief of the 
military department of the United States be re- 
quested to retain at this place a sufficient force to 


maintain order and protect the people in their per- 
sons and property. 

Philip Frazer, Chairman. 
A true copy of the resohitions as passed at said 
meeting and adopted as their o\\ti act. 

C. L. Robinson, 

0. L. Keene, 


On the same day, General Sherman issued a 
proclamation to the ^^ Loyal People of East 
Florida", confirming and commending the fore- 
going resolutions and stating that the troops of 
the United States ''had come amongst you to 
protect loyal citizens and their property from 
further molestation by the creatures of a rebel 
and usurped authority, and to enable you to 
resuscitate a Government which they have ruth- 
lessly endeavored to destroy", etc. Another meet- 
ing of the loyal citizens was held on the 24th of 
March and a committee of five was appointed to 
take steps toward obtaining the co-operation of 
other counties in the State in the effort to orga- 
nize a state government under the jurisdiction of 
the United States. To this end a convention was 
called to meet at Jacksonville on April 10, 1862. 

In the afternoon of March 24th, General H. G. 
Wright and the 97th Pennsylvania regiment ar- 
rived. General Wright assuming command of the 
troops in Jacksonville. The Confederates had 
by this time moved nearer the town and occupied 


a position at McGirt's Creek, about 10 miles west 
in the direction of Baldwin. On the night of 
March 24th, a Federal picket of two men that had 
gone beyond the lines was captured, and at 3 a. 
m. March 25th, the Confederates attacked a 
picket at the old brick yard in West LaVilla, kill- 
ing four and capturing three of them. Lieutenant 
Strange (C. S. A.) was mortally wounded here. 
This evidently was the first blood of the war 
spilled in this vicinity. 

On the night of March 27th, a Federal picket 
fired upon a party approaching them in what they 
conceived a suspicious manner, and of the two in 
advance, one was killed and the other wounded. 
They proved to be a party of negroes that had 
escaped from their masters at Lake City. The 
next day. General Wright, hearing that the Con- 
federates were contemplating an attack upon 
Jacksonville, sent to Fernandina for two sections 
of Hamilton's battery. Its arrival brought the 
Federal force in Jacksonville up to 1,400 men. 
No attack was made, however, and a few days later 
the evacuation of the town was ordered. 


General Wright, in his official report, describes 
the evacuation as follows: 

On the 7th (April, 1862) preparations for with- 
drawing were begun by embarking the public stores, 
and on the 8th, at 12 noon, the troops were marched 


on board and the embarkation was completed by 2 
p. m. the same day. Owing to the heavy wind which 
had sprung up during the morning, it was impos- 
sible to get all the transports clear of the wharf until 
near sunset — too late to move safely very far down 
the intricate channel of the river that night — and 
it was therefore determined to lay off the town until 
morning. This I was more willing to do, as it took 
from our movement all appearance of a hasty re- 
treat. At 6 a. m. of the 9th, the transports, con- 
voyed by the gunboats, proceeded down the river. 

It is said that General Wright notified the Con- 
federates of the intended evacuation and re- 
quested them to resume their occupation of the 
town, whereupon a detachment of the First Florida 
calvary rode in and stood on the wharf watching 
the gunboats sail away. 

The evacuation of Jacksonville by the Federal 
forces was unfortunate for *4oyaP' citizens, the 
bona-fide ones as well as for those who, supposing 
the occupation would be permanent, sought to 
further their personal interests by disclaiming all 
connection with the Southern cause and remained 
within the Union lines. When it became known 
that the town was to be evacuated, the greatest 
excitement prevailed among the people; their 
principal desire now was to get out of Jackson- 
ville, for fear of vengeance. The morning of 
April 8th was very hot. There was the greatest 
confusion, as the people hurriedly tried to get 
their goods, furniture, and valuables on board of 


the transports'. They embarked with the Federal 
fleet and were carried to Fernandina and quar- 
tered in the vacant buildings there. Most of them 
had to rely on rations issued from the United 
States stores. 

Just before the evacuation, General Wright was 
directed by the general commanding the depart- 
ment, T. W. Sherman, to issue the following 
notice : 


Jacksonville, Fla., April 7, 1862. 
(NOTICE). In accordance with an order issued by 
the general commanding the Department of the 
South the troops will be withdrawn from this place, 
and I am directed by him to notify the people of 
Jacksonville that it is his intention to have all the 
aid and protection afforded the loyal inhabitants 
of the interior of Florida that is practicable for the 
security of their persons and property, and for the 
punishment of outrages, and that he holds all per- 
sons in that vicinity responsible for the preservation 
of order and quiet, being fully determined that any 
outrages upon persons or property contrary to the 
laws and usages of war shall be visited fourfold upon 
the inhabitants of disloyal or doubtful character 
nearest the scenes of any such wrongs, when the 
actual or known perpetrators cannot be discovered. 

The undersigned trusts that inasmuch as the un- 
offending citizens of this place have been treated 
with the utmost forbearance by our forces, it will 


not be necessary to carry out the intention in the 
last clause of the above notice. 

H. G. Wright, 
Brigadier-General Commanding. 

General Wright himself was a gentleman as well 
as a soldier. His correspondence with Colonel 
W. G. M. Davis (C. S. A.) indicates this, when he 


The policy of removal from Jacksonville of such 
persons as may desire to leave our lines to join their 
families or to reside in the interior of the State will 
be continued and on application to these headquar- 
ters such permission will be granted as will carry 
them safely beyond our lines. We do not propose 
to wage Avar upon women and children, nor upon 
quiet unoffending citizens, but on the contrary have 
done all in our power for the protection of their 
persons and property. In announcing this policy I 
have to express the hope that it will be reciprocated 
by yourself in permitting the free return to Jack- 
sonville of such persons as may desire to come back 
to their homes. I desire further to say that the 
forces under my command are instructed to carry 
on all operations according to the rules of civilized 
warfare, and that any outrages upon unarmed or 
unoffending citizens will be punished to the full ex- 
tent of the law. From the representations made to 
me of your character as an officer and a gentleman, I 
am sure you will be governed by a similar spirit. 


General Wriglit had been in Jacksonville be- 
fore. It was he that made the survey of St. Johns 
bar in 1853, and advanced the idea of overcoming 
the difficulties by means of a single pier or jetty 
across the bar. We may assume that he knew 
many of our citizens personally, and when, as a 
war measure, he was in military control of the 
town, that property here did not suffer during his 

The following is the report of Colonel W. S. Dil- 
worth (C. S. A.) commanding the district of East 
and Middle Florida, dated April 15, 1862, regard- 
ing the operations of the Confederate troops in 
front of Jacksonville during the occupation of 
the town by the Federal forces: 

When the enemy first occupied Jacksonville and 
while all the Florida troops were retreating in con- 
fusion and disorder, I, as colonel of the Third Regi- 
ment Florida Volunteers, ordered a part of my regi- 
ment to advance in the direction of Jacksonville and 
take a position within ten miles of the city, with 
only 250 effective men. Soon I had eight companies 
of my regiment with me. After making a thorough 
reconnaissance of the city, I became convinced that 
I could not attack the city without heavy loss and 
could be driven out by the enemy 's gunboats. I then 
determined to commence a system of annoyances, 
by attacking their pickets, foraging parties, etc. I 
made a successful attack on the picket near the 
city of Jacksonville, killing four and taking three 
prisoners, when I was ordered to take command of 


the district. Colonel Davis was then ordered to the 
command of the forces near Jacksonville, and has 
most successfully carried on the system which I com- 
menced and which has resulted in their evacuation 
of the place. I have further to report that after the 
evacuation the enemy returned under a flag of truce 
and were permitted to land 52 negroes, which were 
taken in charge by the commander of the post. 

Jacksonville was not regularly occupied after- 
ward by Confederate troops, such an attempt be- 
ing useless as long as the river remained open to 
the Federal gunboats. Confederate detachments 
occasionally came into town, however, just to see 
how things were getting along, but after a short 
time withdrew. 


In the summer of 1862, batteries were erected by 
the Confederates on the St. Johns river below 
Jacksonville, at Yellow Bluff and St. Johns BlufP, 
on opposite sides of the river. For some time 
these batteries kept the Federal squadron, com- 
prising the gunboats Paul Jones, Cimarron, 
Water Witch, Hale, Uncas, and Patroon, from 
coming up the river. The ineffectual effort of the 
gunboats to reduce these batteries, resulted in an 
expedition of four transports, carrying 1,573 men, 
which left Hilton Head, S. C, on September 30th, 
for the purpose of co-operating with the fleet. 
This expedition landed near Mayport Mills dur- 
ing the afternoon and evening of October 1st. 


Colonel C. F. Hopkins, commanding the battery 
at St. Johns Bluff immediately requested rein- 
forcements, and the garrison at Yellow Bluff 
crossed over to reinforce him, bringing his avail- 
able force up to about 500 men. The next day 
the Federal forces, increased by men from the gun- 
boats, began a movement by land against St. 
Johns Bluff, the fleet co-operating with the land 
forces. Late that afternoon. Colonel Hopkins had 
a conference with his officers, at which it was de- 
cided that his force was insufficient to hold the 
position. It was therefore quietly abandoned at 
9 p. m., October 2d. All the guns and a consider- 
able amount of ammunition fell into the hands of 
the Union forces. Colonel Hopkins was severely 
criticised by General Finegan for abandoning the 
post, but a court of inquiry later found that he 
acted with good judgment in giving up the posi- 
tion under the circumstances. 

On October 3d, the Paul Jones steamed up to 
Jacksonville, for the purpose of destroying all 
boats and otherwise intercepting the passage of 
the Confederate troops across the river. In this 
it was unsuccessful and returned the next morn- 
ing to join the fleet anchored off St. Johns Bluff. 

On October 5th, Jacksonville was occupied the 
second time by the Federal army. A small Con- 
federate force was stationed in the outskirts of 
the town, for the purpose of observation, but re- 
tired when the gunboat Cimarron opened a fire of 


shell upon them. The landing of the troops was 
completed in the afternoon of the 5th, and the next 
morning the gunboats went in search of Con- 
federate steamers which rumor said were secreted 
in the creeks up the river. The fleet returned on 
the 9th, with the steamer Governor Milton, cap- 
tured in a creek near Enterprise in a disabled con- 
dition, her boilers being entirely worn out. Jack- 
sonville was evacuated on the afternoon of the 
9th, after an occupation of just four days. 

General J. M. Brannan, commander of the 
Federal expedition, said in his report of October 
13, 1862 : 

On the 5th (October) I proceeded up the river as 
far as Jacksonville in the transport Ben DeFord, 
with 785 infantry. I observed a large quantity of 
corn and other crops on the banks of the river which 
it was at first my intention either to remove or de- 
stroy. This purpose I afterward abandoned as im- 
practicable. Jacksonville I found to be nearly 
deserted, there being but a small portion of its in- 
habitants left — chiefly old men, women and children. 
From this town and neighborhood I bring with me 
several refugees and about 276 contrabands, includ- 
ing men, women and children. 

The purpose of this expedition was not men- 
tioned in the reports, but, evidently, it was to keep 
the St. Johns river open up to Jacksonville. 



Jacksonville was occupied by Federal troops the 
third time March 10th, 1863, this time by negro 
troops commanded by white officers, namely. First 
Eegiment of South Carolina Volunteers (negro). 
Colonel T. W. Higginson, and a portion of the 
Second Regiment of South Carolina Volunteers 
(negro). Colonel Montgomery. These troops were 
later reinforced by two white regiments. Eighth 
Maine and Sixth Connecticut. 

On March 13th, General Finegan (C. S. A.), 
commanding near Jacksonville, issued the follow- 
ing proclamation : 


Camp near Jacksonville, March 13, 1863. 
I feel it my duty as brigadier-general commanding 
this district to inform the people of the district and 
of the State that our unscrupulous enemy has 
landed a large force of negroes, under command of 
white officers, at Jacksonville, under cover of gun- 
boats. He is attempting to fortify the place so as to 
make it secure against attacks. The purpose of this 
movement is obvious and need not be mentioned in 
direct terms. It is sufficient to inspire the whole 
body of the people with a renewed and sterner pur- 
pose of resistance. I therefore call on such of the 
citizens as can possibly leave their homes to arm and 
organize themselves into companies without delay 
and report to me.*** 

Jos. Finegan, 
Brigadier-General Commanding. 


Whether General Finegan was correct in his 
supposition, hinted at in his proclamation, is an- 
swered in the report of General R. Saxton (U. S. 
A.), dated March 14, 1863, as follows: 

The object of this expedition was to occupy Jack- 
sonville and make it the base of operations for the 
arming of negroes and securing in this way posses- 
sion of the entire state of Florida. It gives me 
pleasure to report that so far the objects of the ex- 
pedition have been fully accomplished. The town is 
completely in our possession and many prisoners. ^'** 
It is my belief that scarcely an incident in this war 
has caused a greater panic throughout the whole 
southern coast than this raid of the colored troops in 
Florida. The negroes are collecting at Jacksonville 
from all quarters. 

Immediately upon landing the Federals began 
to erect fortifications as though for permanent oc- 
cupation. To guard the terminus of the railroad 
where it entered the town. Colonel Higginson 
caused two forts to be erected, one on the right of 
the railroad, named Fort Montgomery, and one on 
the left. Fort Higginson. The gunboats, being 
provided with heavy guns of long range, com- 
manded the country for several miles around. The 
Confederate troops, under General Finegan, were 
stationed a few miles west of Jacksonville. They 
consisted principally of cavalry, or mounted in- 
fantry, and were poorly provided with artillery. 

Skirmishing began on the day following the 


landing of the Federal troops, and continued 
more or less until Jacksonville was evacuated. 
General Finegan made no general attack upon the 
town, but confined his operations to a system some- 
what similar to that followed during the first oc- 
cupation — attacking outposts, pickets, foraging 
parties, etc. There was some loss of life on both 
sides. Surgeon Meredith (C. S. A.) was killed on 
March 11th. 

On March 17th, Colonel McCormick (C. S. A.), 
by direction of General Finegan, notified Colonel 
Higginson to remove the women and children 
from Jacksonville within 24 hours, or that after 
that time they would remain in the town on his 
( Higginson 's) responsibility. Colonel Higgin- 
son immediately ordered his wagons to convey all 
those who wished to leave to the brick yard church, 
where they were met under a flag of truce by a 
Confederate escort. Thus all the women and 
children, except a few families, were removed 
from Jacksonville and sent to Lake City. 

March 22d and 23d two white regiments arrived. 
Eighth Maine, Colonel John D. Rust, and the 
Sixth Connecticut, Colonel John L. Chatfield. 
Colonel Rust being the ranking officer took com- 
mand of the troops here. 

Henceforth, skirmishing became more frequent 
and heavier. About this time. Lieutenant Thomas 
E. Buckman (C. S. A.) devised a plan that made 
him very celebrated. He mounted a rifled 64- 
pound cannon on a flat car, coupled on a locomo- 


tive, and backed the gun down the track toward 
Jacksonville. A well directed fire from this gun 
caused consternation in the Federal camp. Up 
and down the track it went, driving back skirmish- 
ing parties of the enemy, at the same time drawing 
the concentrated fire of the gunboats and batteries. 
On one of these occasions a shell from this gun 
passed through a platoon of the Eighth Maine, 
killing two men instantly and wounding four 
others. Finally Colonel Rust sent out a strong 
force to destroy the railroad bridge about 3 miles 
from town, and tear up the track to prevent fur- 
ther damage from this railroad battery. Lieuten- 
ant Buckman and Private Francis Soule (Sollee) 
were commended in the highest terms for bravery 
and skill in serving this gun. 


The Federal troops were withdrawn from Jack- 
sonville for the purpose of taking part in the 
operations against Charleston and Savannah. 
The evacuation was described by a correspondent 
of the New York Tribune, writing from Jackson- 
ville, March 29, 1863. As much of what he says is 
verified by the official reports of both the Confed- 
erate and Union officers prepared afterward, it is 
believed that the conditions mentioned and which 
are not included in the reports, are likewise ac- 
curate. He said: 


Before entering upon the details of this lamentable 
destruction of property, allow me to return to Hilton 
Head, which place I left last Thursday morning. At 
that time at an early hour, it was whispered around 
headquarters, although the utmost secrecy had been 
enjoined, that Jacksonville was to be evacuated by 
the soldiers of the National army, w^ho had promised 
the loyal inhabitants protection and had assured 
them that the city would be held by our troops dur- 
ing the war. Desiring to visit this portion of the 
Department of the South before the grand expedition 
set sail, and also to witness the evacuation, I took 
passage on the steamer Boston and arrived here with 
the accompanying transports, the Convoy, the Dela- 
ware, the Cossack, and the Tillie, on Friday evening. 

At Hilton Head much surprise, indeed much indig- 
nation had been expressed the moment it was made 
known that we were to abandon this important point ; 
not perhaps so much because it was important, but 
because so many loyal people would be utterly 
ruined by the movement. Arriving at Jacksonville, 
I called upon the leading officers and found that 
they, too, could scarcely restrain their indignation. 
It is an outrage, it is villainous, it will injure our 
cause terribly, were the most frequent expressions. 
It was in vain that one tried to demonstrate that it 
w^as of the greatest importance at this moment that 
all the troops in this department should be concen- 
trated for the grand conflict in Charleston or Savan- 
nah harbors. Either of these important cities taken, 
the whole state of Florida would be, as it were, 
flanked and the enemy compelled to abandon it in- 


Jacksonville was occupied on the lOtli of March 
by a negro brigade, under the command of Colonel 
Higginson. What they achieved, and how admirably, 
I have already written you, up to as late a date as 
the 25th instant. Before alluding to the events of 
today, it remains for me to fill up the interval from 
the 25th to the 29th. Ten days ago General Hunter, 
upon representations made to him, not by Colonel 
Higginson, but by several loyal men of much influ- 
ence, long residents of Florida, decided to reinforce 
Colonel Higginson with two regiments of white in- 
fantry — the Eighth Maine, Colonel Rust, and the 
Sixth Connecticut, Colonel Chatfield. Colonel Rust, 
outranking Colonel Higginson, took command of all 
the forces in Jacksonville. Colonel Higginson had, 
by the severest labor his black troops could endure, 
so strengthened his position that he deemed himself 
sufficiently strong to hold Jacksonville against all 
the forces the rebel General Finegan could bring to 
bear against it. 

The natural defenses of Jacksonville are very con- 
siderable. The only weak point was on the south- 
west, or in that portion of the city where the rail- 
road enters it. To guard this point. Colonel Higgin- 
son erected two forts. To give range to the guns 
from these forts, a large forest of pine and oak trees 
had to be cut down and about fifty dwellings, mostly 
of an inferior class, destroyed. Fort Higginson not 
only commands the left of the railroad, but the ap- 
proach on the South to Jacksonville, by the St. 
Johns River. All the work upon these forts was done 
by the black troops. I have seen about all the earth- 
works in Virginia, and do not hesitate to say that 


these hastily constructed works compare very favor- 
ably with the best ever thrown up by the Army of the 

After Colonel Rust had taken command of the 
forces here he projected a reconnaissance of the 
enemy's stronghold, about ten miles distant in the 
direction of Tallahassee. In this little affair black 
and white troops marched together. Four companies 
of the Sixth Connecticut formed the right, six com- 
panies of the First South Carolina the center, and 
four companies of the Eighth Maine the left. About 
four miles out the enemy's pickets were reached, 
driven in, and the ground near where the rebel 
General Finegan's brigade was encamped was 
closely observed. At this distance a railroad bridge 
was destroyed, much track torn up, and other ob- 
structions placed in the way of a rebel advance. 

Having accomplished all he desired, Colonel Rust 
ordered a return, but just at that moment a platform 
car was seen coming down the road, with three pieces 
of artillery on board. At the instant it was observed 
a brisk fire from a 64-pound rifle gun and two 12- 
pound Howitzers was opened. One shot passed 
directly through a platoon of the Eighth Maine, 
killing two and wounding four. No other casualties 
occurred, although the long gun kept up a brisk fire 
on the return.*** 

I am now writing on the deck of the fine transport 
ship, Boston. From this upper deck the scene pre- 
sented to the spectator is one of most fearful magni- 
ficence. On every side dense clouds of black smoke are 
seen. A fine south wind is blowing immense blazing 
cinders right into the heart of the city. The beauti- 


ful Spanish moss, drooping so gracefully from the 
long avenues of splendid oaks has caught fire, and as 
far as the eye can reach, through these once pleasant 
streets, nothing but sheets of flame can be seen, run- 
ning up with the rapidity of lightning to the tops 
of the trees and then darting off to the smallest 
branches. The whole city is being lapped up and de- 
voured by this fiery blast*. One solitary woman, a 
horse tied to a fence between two fires, and a lean, 
half-starved dog are the only living inhabitants to be 
seen on the streets. Is this not war, vindictive, un- 
relenting war? Have we gotten up to the European 
standard ? 

Yesterday (March 28th) the beautiful little cot- 
tage used as the Catholic parsonage, together with 
the church, was fired by some of the soldiers, and in 
a short time burned to the ground. Before the flames 
had fairly reached the church, the soldiers had burst 
open the doors and commenced sacking it of every- 
thing of value. The organ was in a moment torn to 
strips, and almost every soldier who came out 
seemed to be celebrating the occasion by blowing 
through an organ pipe. 

Today the same spectacle has been repeated upon 
a much grander scale. There must have been some 
understanding among the incendiaries with regard 
to the conflagration. At 8 o'clock the flames burst 
from several buildings in different parts of the city, 
and at a later hour still more were fired. The wind 

*From his position on the river, this correspondent quite 
naturally obtained an exaggerated view of the fire. Fortunately, 
it was not as extensive as it appeared to him. 


then rose to a stiff gale and the torch of the incendiary 
became unnecessary to increase the fire. 

It gives me pleasure to report that the negro troops 
took no part whatever in the perpetration of this 
vandalism. They had nothing whatever to do with 
it, and were simply silent spectators of the silent but 
sad spectacle. The Sixth Connecticut charge it upon 
the Eighth Maine and the Eighth Maine hurl it back 
upon the Sixth Connecticut. 

Six o'clock p. m. Mouth of the St. Johns — A 
fierce northeast storm is raging upon the ocean. 
Gunboats and transports are lying here in safety 
waiting until it abates. Again we are witnessing a 
conflagration. Some of the soldiers have gone ashore 
and found a fine steam saw mill at Mayport Mills, 
said to belong to a Union man in Maine. Much in- 
dignation is expressed on board. The white soldiers 
are again the criminals. The blacks have not been 
off the transports. 

The official reports of the Federal officers do not 
deal extensively with the burning of Jacksonville. 
The author has talked with Union officers who 
came to Jacksonville soon after the war, and they 
said that there was a persistent rumor that the 
burning of the town came about in this way : 

One of the white regiments was a Roman 
Catholic regiment, while the other was strongly 
Protestant. For reasons unknown, dislike and 
hatred existed between them to such an extent that 
vandals in the Protestant regiment set the 
Catholic church on fire, and in retaliation, the Epis- 


copal clmrcli was burned by members of the 
Catholic regiment. From this other buildings 
caught, and the fire spread. The mania for burn- 
ing was rampant in the town, and new centers were 
started by persons unknown. 

From the best accounts, the fire does not seem 
to have been as extensive as one would suppose. 
About six blocks was the area burned over, de- 
stroying in the neighborhood of 25 buildings, in- 
cluding the Episcopal Church and the Court 
House. While reconnoitering from a position on 
the river, General Finegan saw that Jacksonville 
was on fire in several places and that the trans- 
ports were being loaded with troops. He pushed 
on into the town, arriving just after the departure 
of the last gunboat, but in time to extinguish the 
fire in some valuable buildings. 


On January 13, 1864, President Lincoln wrote 
General Q. A. Gillmore (U. S. A.), commanding 
the Department of the South as follows: *'I 
understand an effort is being made by some 
worthy gentlemen to reconstruct a loyal State gov- 
ernment in Florida. I have given Mr. Hay a com- 
mission of major and sent him to you with some 
blank books and other blanks to aid in the recon- 
struction. " 

Elaborate plans were made, and an expedition 
of more than 20 vessels, gunboats and transports, 
carrying in the neighborhood of 7,000 troops, 


under the command of General T. Seymour, left 
Hilton Head, S. C, for Jacksonville before day- 
break, February 6, 1864. TMs expedition arrived 
at the mouth of the St. Johns River early on the 
morning of the next day, crossed the bar and pro- 
ceeded up the river to Jacksonville. The trans- 
port Maple Leaf was the first vessel to reach the 
dock, and at 3 :40 p. m. (7th) began landing troops. 
In a short time the other transports came up. 
There was a small Confederate picket, 20 men, in 
the town and they fired into the Hunter, one of the 
transports, and killed one man, but were im- 
mediately forced to retire by a cavalry company 
that had been hastily landed from the Maple Leaf. 
Later in the afternoon, the U. S. gunboat Norwich 
went up to McGirt's Creek to capture the St. 
Marys, a river steamer being loaded with cotton 
consigned to Nassau, N. P. Finding himself hem- 
med in, the commander of the St. Marys sank his 
vessel in McGirt's Creek, and two days later it 
fell into the hands of the Federals. There was 
considerable friction between the United States 
army and navy officials as to who should claim 
the prize, the army or the navy ; the official reports 
do not indicate how the question was settled. 

In his official report. General Gillmore states 
that the object of this expedition to Florida was : 

1. To procure an outlet for cotton, lumber, tim- 
ber, turpentine and other products of the state of 


2. To cut off one of the sources of supplies for 
the Confederates. 

3. To obtain recruits for his colored regiments. 

4. To inaugurate measures for the speedy 
restoration of the state to her allegiance. 

For the purpose of carrying out these plans, the 
bulk of the Union army set out on the afternoon 
and evening of February 8th, on the march west- 
ward to Baldwin and finally on to Lake City. This 
movement culminated on February 20th, in the 
famous battle of Olustee, or Ocean Pond, where 
General Seymour was defeated by the Con- 
federates under Generals Colquitt and Finegan. 
Thus it seems that two clauses of General Gill- 
more 's plans, namely 2d and 4th, were practically 
annulled in the very beginning, General Seymour 
having reported a day or so before that '*I am 
convinced that what has been said of the desire of 
Florida to come back now is a delusion." 

After its defeat at Olustee, the Union army re- 
turned to Jacksonville. The churches and some 
of the largest houses were used as temporary 
hospitals. The floors were strewn with hay and 
on this the wounded soldiers were placed in rows, 
white and black side by side, as they were brought 
in from the front". 

Fortifications were erected to strengthen the 
town against attack, and soon the arrival of rein- 
forcements brought General Se^nnour's army up 
to 12,000 men, splendidly equipped in every depart- 
ment. Among these troops were at least six negro 


The Confederate forces on February 26tli oc- 
cupied a position on McGirt's Creek at a point 
where the wagon road and the railroad crossed the 
Creek, ten or twelve miles west of Jacksonville. 
They were now under the command of General 
W. M. Gardner, who, outranking General Finegan, 
took command after the battle of Olustee. Breast- 
works and stockades were erected at McGirt's 
Creek, the post being named Camp Milton. After- 
ward, when the Confederates abandoned these 
works, the Union officers spoke of them as mag- 
nificently constructed fortifications, beautiful in 
detail. March 6th, General J. Patton Anderson 
assumed command of the Confederate army near 
Jacksonville. At that time it numbered about 
8,000 men, some of them poorly equipped. 

On March 1, 1864, General Henry (U. S. A.), 
with 500 cavalry and 2 pieces of artillery, left Jack- 
sonville for the purpose of making a reconnais- 
sance in the direction of Camp Milton. The move- 
ment developed into quite a skirmish at Cedar 
Creek,* six miles west of Jacksonville, lasting from 
10 a. m. until 3 p. m. The Union loss was 1 killed, 
4 wounded, and 5 prisoners. The Confederates 
lost Captain Winston Stevens, killed ; other casual- 
ties not reported. 

During March, Palatka was occupied by a strong 
force sent from Jacksonville, estimated by General 
Anderson at 1,500 men. St. Augustine and the 

*There are several creeks near Jacksonville called Cedar 
Creek. The one here mentiond is a branch of McGirt's Creek. 


eastern side of the St. Johns were also in posses- 
sion of the Union army, together with the north 
side of the river below Jacksonville, with a battery 
at Yellow Blutf . There was constant and uninter- 
rupted communication between these posts and the 
base at Jacksonville until the navigation of the St. 
Johns Eiver was made extremely hazardous by the 
Confederates, who, on the night of March 30, 
1864, placed 12 torpedoes, each containing 70 
pounds of small-grain powder, in the river channel 
near Mandarin Point. 

At 4 a. m., April 1st, the U. S. transport Maple 
Leaf, returning to Jacksonville from Palatka with 
the camp equipment of three regiments, struck 
one of these torpedoes and sank in seven minutes. 
The Confederates then boarded her and burned 
her to the water's edge. On April 16th, the 
Hunter, another U. S. transport, returning 
from Picolata with quartermaster stores, struck 
a torpedo and sank immediately, near the wreck 
of the Maple Leaf. One man was drowned. 
Again, on May 9th, the U. S. armed transport 
Harriet A. Weed, was destroyed at the same place 
by one of these torpedoes, with the loss of five men. 
Thus within 40 days three vessels were destroyed 
at this point, with 9 torpedoes still in the river. 
Not far from Mandarin Point, at a place called 
Horse Landing, Lieutenant Letford, of Captain 
Dickison's command, captured and burned the 
TJ. S. steamer Columbine, killing 25 and capturing 
7 commissioned officers, 9 seamen, and 47 enlisted 


negroes, liimself sustaining no loss whatever. 

On April 2, 1864, General Henry made another 
reconnaissance in the direction of Cedar Creek, 
and in the skirmishing that followed had 8 men 
wounded. The Confederate casualties were not 
given in the reports. 

These forces, the greatest number mobilized in 
Florida during the war, remained facing each 
other until the middle of April, when heavy drafts 
were made on both the Federal and Confederate 
armies in this vicinity, for service in the armies 
of Sherman and Grant, Lee and Johnston. Be- 
ginning with the 8th of April and continuing there- 
after until the middle of May, transports loaded 
with Federal troops left Jacksonville almost daily. 
The Union forces in this vicinity were finally re- 
duced to about 2,500 or 3,000 men, largely negroes, 
the bulk of which occupied Jacksonville. After- 
ward, reinforcements came, but did not remain 
long. The Confederate troops began leaving April 
14th, for assignment elsewhere, until only one 
regiment and two battalions of cavalry and three 
companies of artillery remained in East Florida. 
General Anderson then changed his headquarters 
to Lake City, leaving in front of Jacksonville the 
Second Florida Cavalry and four companies of 
the Fifth Battalion Florida Cavalry, to oppose the 
overwhelming force in the strongly fortified posi- 
tion at Jacksonville. 

On the night of May 31-June 1, a force of 2,459 
Federal troops left Jacksonville in two columns, 


to attack Camp Milton. The small Confederate 
detachment occupying the post at that time was 
surprised and driven from Cedar Creek and Camp 
Milton back upon Baldwin. A portion of the 
works at Camp Milton was burned or otherwise de- 
stroyed, but the next day the Confederates ad- 
vanced, skirmishing with the advance guard of 
the enemy, and reoccupied Camp Milton. 

Overwhelmingly outnumbered, this remnant of 
Florida cavalry performed miracles. It met and 
defeated raiding parties, one of which was almost 
annihilated in the streets of Gainesville by 
Dickison and his men, aided by citizens of the 
town ; attacked and captured outposts and pickets ; 
threatened the Federal communications on the St. 
Johns Eiver, and was nearly successful in the 
attempt to obstruct the navigation of the river be- 
low Jacksonville, in the vicinity of Yellow Bluff, by 
placing torpedoes and mines in the channel. That 
these harassing tactics came near causing the 
evacuation of Jacksonville by the Federal army is 
indicated in the following communication from 
Federal headquarters at Hilton Head to General 
William Birney, commanding at Jacksonville, 
dated July 16, 1864, to-wit : 

I am instructed by the major-general command- 
ing to inform you that the number of troops now in 
your command is considerably greater than that sec- 
tion of the department demands in a military point 
of view. If you cannot properly guard the St. 


Johns River you must prepare to make St. Augustine 
your base, keeping Jacksonville and Picolata as ad- 
vanced posts, if practicable. In case of immediate 
danger of the St. Johns River being rendered im- 
practicable for navigation by reason of the enemy 
gaining possession of points along the banks or by 
reason of their planting a great number of torpedoes 
in the river, the communication from Jacksonville to 
St. Augustine must be by ferry across the river, 
which you must provide in season, and by land across 
the country. 

All of this was in face of the fact that Jackson- 
ville at that time was protected by inclosed works, 
redoubts and lunettes, connected by rifle pits and 
manned with eight batteries of the most improved 

There was considerable skirmishing during the 
latter half of July in the neighborhood of Trout 
Creek, and near Baldwin and Camp Milton, which 
the Confederates again evacuated and reoccupied. 
By this time they had dwindled to 216 cavalry, 40 
mounted infantry, and a battery of 4 guns. When 
a force comprising 3 negro regiments and 1 white 
regiment of infantry, 1 cavalry regiment, and 4 
pieces of artillery was sent out from Jacksonville 
against Camp Milton, the remnant of Florida 
troops permanently evacuated that post ; this was 
on July 26th, 1864. Insofar as armed opposition 
was concerned, this ended the war in the vicinity 
of Jacksonville, but occasional Federal raiding 


parties continued to be sent down the State until 
the surrender in the spring of 1865. 

In the mean time, the question of Florida ^s re- 
turn to the Union was revived, although nothing 
ever came of it further than the calling of a con- 
vention by Unionists within the Union lines, to be 
held in Jacksonville in May, 1864, for the purpose 
of selecting delegates to the national convention 
soon to be held in Baltimore. Two delegates were 
appointed from St. Augustine, one from Fernan- 
dina, and three from Jacksonville. The Jackson- 
ville delegation was : John W. Price, Paran Moody, 
and John S. Sammis'. It will be remembered that 
a convention somewhat similar to this one was 
called during the first Federal occupation, and that 
these men were of the committee that issued the 
drastic ^^declaration of rights'' at that time. 


1 Memoirs of Florida, Fleming, 

2 O. L. Keene, in Florida Times-Union, September 26, 1908. 

3 Records of the Florida Historical Society. 

4 So stated by old residents. 

5 Book of Jacksonville, Brown. 

6 War of the Rebellion — Ofi&cial Records of the Union and 
Confederate Armies, Series 1, Vol. VI. 

7 Reminiscences of an old citizen, Jacksonville Tri-Weekly 
Sun, January 27, 1876. 

8 Unidentified newspaper clipping. 

9 War of the Rebellion, etc., Series 1, Vol. XIV. 

10 War of the Rebellion, etc., Series 1, Vol. XXXV. 

11 Florida Gazetteer, 1871, J. M. Hawks. 



The news of General Lee's surrender quickly 
spread throughout the State. The different orga- 
nizations of Confederates were disbanded and the 
members that had enlisted from Jackson- 
ville and their families began to return. The rail- 
road from Baldwin to this city had been torn up 
and from that point most of the returning citizens 
had to walk, ladies as well as men. 

To those returning directly after the restoration 
of peace, Jacksonville presented a melancholy 
sight, as the desolating effects of the war were ap- 
parent on every side. The old ruins of burned 
buildings; neglected yards in which the weeds 
grew waist high; broken-down fences; the dingy 
appearance of once neatly painted dwellings, all 
were depressing to those who sought their former 
homes. But worst of all, many of the people found 
their property confiscated and sold, and in some 
cases purchased by their former neighbors and 
false friends. A few of those who had thus lost 
their homes soon bought them back, but the most 
of them did not have the means to do so. Many of 
the best and largest houses were occupied by 
United States officers or troops, and when the 

*A composite description from published accounts by old 


rightful owners applied for possession it was 
"usually refused. So these people, who had enjoyed 
luxuries before the war, now set to work building 
rude cheap shelters for themselves and their fami- 
lies. Patiently they bore the taunts and sneers of 
their former slaves and servants. Strange as it 
may seem, it is nevertheless a fact that the negro 
women were the most insulting. Galling as the 
situation was, the people bore the burden patiently 
and bravely; to a people less brave the changed 
conditions would have produced a state of crush- 
ing lassitude. 

Most of the stores and warehouses on Bay 
Street were occupied for army purposes by United 
States troops. There was but one store in the 
town besides the suttlers' stores occupying a few 
rude shanties on the north side of Bay Street. One 
small saw mill furnished all the lumber, at very 
high prices. For the first few months not much 
was done to revive former conditions, but in the 
fall improvements and repairing commenced and 
gradually a few of the old merchants brought in 
goods and opened stores. 

The city was under military government. A 
provost marshal and guard in command handled 
all cases, civil and criminal. This system did not 
last long, however, and was replaced by a munici- 
pal government, with a new charter, and a mayor 
and council elected. In 1867, the military govern- 
ment was resumed, and General John T. Sprague 
was put in command with headquarters at Jack- 


sonville. General Sprague was a gentleman with 
pleasant manners and of conservative views. 
Though invested with military power, he sought no 
opportunity to exercise it in a harsh or oppres- 
sive manner. He courteously received all callers 
and heard them patiently. General Sprague had 
been in Florida for several years thirty years be- 
fore, during the Seminole war; he knew our peo- 
ple and did all in his power to aid them. 

Most of the old residents by this time had re- 
turned and resumed business. New mills and 
wharves were erected and the river began to look 
like former times, with vessels coming and going. 
A continuous row of low wooden buildings was put 
up on the north side of Bay Street running west 
from Julia, and was occupied as stores and shops. 
When better stores were built, ''Rotten Eow,'' as 
it came to be called, was vacated by these mer- 
chants, and it then degenerated into a place where 
vice and crime originated and was for many years 
a menace to the community. 

In 1868, under the new reconstruction law, elec- 
tions were held, military rule ceased, and the city 
became civilian in all departments. Nearly every 
week prior to the election political meetings were 
held at the northwest corner of Laura and Forsyth, 
where a crowd, almost wholly negroes, assembled 
at the sound of fife and drum, and white and col- 
ored speakers spoke loudly and long. At the elec- 
tion the political managers made but one precinct 
and the voting continued until 10 o 'clock at night. 


Election day was one of confusion and riot. Under 
the new charter, the city officials received salaries 
and then began an increase in the city's expenses 
and taxes. 

The military occupation of Jacksonville was con- 
tinuous for four years after the close of the war. 
At first the troops were principally colored, hav- 
ing their posts and squads surrounding the town. 
Out near the old brick yard in West LaVilla was 
an earth fort garrisoned by a negro guard. These 
negroes were very zealous and pompous in chal- 
lenging all comers that had to have passes, but 
their education was limited and an old Confederate 
pass or paper would after a wise scrutiny pass 
muster. There was a large garrison at the south- 
western edge of Brooklyn, and companies of sol- 
diers were also stationed in the city. Grradually, 
company after company of the colored troops was 
withdrawn, leaving principally white troops to 
patrol the city. The white soldiers were not only 
not disposed to annoy or irritate the Southern peo- 
ple, but in time seemed to have engendered a 
hatred for the '^colored citizens'' of the town. 
On the night of February 26, 1869,* the white 
troops divided into squads, under sergeants and 
corporals. They came into the town and made a 
determined war upon all negro men seen on the 
streets, and whenever one was seen, the com- 
mand, ' ' Halt, ready, aim, fire ' ' was given. Within 

*Date furnished by the IT. S. War Department. 


an hour the volleys could be heard all over the 
then small city. The frightened and fleeing 
negroes took refuge wherever possible. 

The patrolling and shooting caused intense ex- 
citement. The troops seemed to enjoy it and said 
their cartridges were blanks and would not hurt 
the negroes. The streets during the remainder of 
the night and the next day were bare of ' ' colored 
citizens '\ A negro was found dead on the side 
walk on West Bay Street, near the corner of 
Hogan, but the soldiers denied killing him. Sen- 
sational accounts were sent North and a great ado 
was made about the affair. Soon afterward, the 
military occupation of Jacksonville ceased for all 
time, the last of the United States troops being 
withdrawn April 6, 1869.* 


^Date furnished by the U. S. War Department. 



The following authorities have been consulted 
in the preparation of this work : 

Abstracts of the Florida Abstract and Title Security 

Acts of the Legislative Council of the Territory of Florida, 
1822 to 1840, except 1828 to 1831. 

American State Papers, Duff Green, 1823. 

Ancient, Colonial and Modern Florida, J. H. Welsh, 1895. 

Annual of First Baptist Church of Jacksonville, 1909. 

A Winter in Florida, By An Invalid, 1839. 

Bartram's ^'Travels", 1792. 

Biography of Ossian B. Hart, 1901. 

Book of Jacksonville, Paul Brown, 1895. 

Diary of Judge F. Bethune, 1829-1833. 

Fifty-two Years in Florida, John C. Ley, 1899. 

Florida and the South, Brinton, 1869. 

Florida Eeports, Vols. V, VI, and XIV. 

Florida Gazetteer, J. M. Hawks, 1871. 

Florida Magazine, G. D. Ackerly, 1900-1903. 

Florida News, published at Jacksonville, August 7, 1852. 

Florida, Its Scenery, Climate and History, Sidney Lanier, 

Historical Contributions to Local Press by C. Drew, Sr. 

Historical Sketch, Jacksonville City Directory, J. M. Hawks, 

History and Antiquities of St. Augustine, G. E. Fairbanks, 

History of Florida, G. E. Fairbanks, 1871. 

History of Florida, W. S. Webb, 1885. 

Letters and Papers of J. P. Belknap, 1839-1842. 

Memoirs of Florida, F. P. Fleming, 1902. 

National Encyclopaedia of American Biography. 

New International Encyclopaedia. 

Newspaper Files, Local: 

Tri- Weekly Union, January to December, 1874; Tri- 
Weekly Sun, January to July, 1876; Sun and Press, 
June, 1877, to May, 1878; Daily Times, November, 
1881, to February, 1888; Florida Times-Union; 
Ilorida Times-Union and Citizen; Evening Metro- 

Observations on the Floridas, Vignoles, 1823. 

Origin, Progress, and Conclusion of the Seminole War, 
John T. Sprague, 1847. 

Eecords of Dr. A. S. Baldwin. 

Eecords in possession of Florida Historical Society. 


Eecords of the U. S. Weather Bureau. 

Reminiscences of an old citizen, published in Jacksonville 

Tri- Weekly Sun, January 22 to February 1, 1876. 
Red Patriots, Charles H. Coe, 1898. 
Territory of Florida, Williams, 1837. 
War of the Rebellion — OflEicial Records of the Union and 

Confederate Armies, Series 1, Vols. VI, XIV, XXXV. 

Grateful acknowledgment is made to those who 
assisted the author in one way or another, namely : 

Ambler, D. G., Litchfield, Conn. 

Ball, Willis M., Jacksonville, Fla. 

Bostwick, W. M., Jacksonville, ila. 

Bostwick, Mrs. W. M., Jacksonville, Fla. 

Brown, M. A., JacksonAdlle, Fla. 

Carter, W. R., Jacksonville, Fla. 

Davis, Horatio, Gainesville, Fla. 

DeGrove, H. D., Jacksonville, Fla. 

Dodge, Rev. W. H., Ocala, Fla. 

Greeley, J. C, Jacksonville, Fla. 

Haile, Evans, Gainesville, Fla. 

*Hartridge, Mrs. Susan A., Jacksonville, Fla. 

Hartridge, John E., Jacksonville, Jb'la. 

Hobson, Rev. W. A., Jacksonville, Fla. 

*Keene, O. L., Jacksonville, Fla. 

L'Engle, John C, Jacksonville, Fla. 

Long, Miss Elizabeth V., Jacksonville, Fla. 

Parramore, Ray W., Jacksonville, Fla. 

Philips, Mrs. Ellen, South Jacksonville, Fla. 

Powers, Mrs. M. C, Baltimore, Md. 

Rinehart, C, D,, Jacksonville, Fla. 

Scarlett, Mrs. Elizabeth A., Jacksonville, Fla. 

Shields, Rev. V. W., Jacksonville, Fla. 

Utley, G. B., Chicago, 111. 

Veale, Father J., Jacksonville, Fla. 

Weed, Rt. Rev. Edwin G., Jacksonville, Fla. 

*Wells, Mrs. Jennie, Jacksonville, Fla. 

Wilson, Mrs. George C, Jacksonville, Fla. 

*Now deceased. 


One copy del. to Cat. Div. 

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