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1903 F.E.C. Railway Co. Land Map
This map, dated December, 1903, shows the land holdings of the F.E.C. Railway Co., the Model Land Co., and the Perrine Land Grant Co., along with the Longview Trail/Homestead Road that allowed the early pioneers of this area to purchase their supplies in Cutler. It also names the finger glades and shows the route of the railroad to extend straight southwesterly from Homestead because William J. Krome had not yet completed his survey to Cape Sable, ruling out that route for the railroad.
The Cutler Extension
The histories of South Dade always give an account of the arrival of Flagler’s railroad in Miami in 1896 and devote a considerable number of pages about the construction of the Key West Extension, but no mention is made of the “missing link”: the portion of the railroad from Miami to Homestead. This article fills in some of those blanks.
Early Days in the Homestead Country
This article was written by Flora Hill Connelly, a sister of William Anderson, who established Anderson’s Corner in 1912. In it, she tells how she came to South Dade and gives her thoughts on the settlement of the area.
Flippers in Paradise
Land speculation in South Dade County is as old as the first homestead claim filed, by Peter S. S. Kling, on October 20, 1896. This article is an introduction to the subject and focuses on William Wirt Culbertson, a wealthy man from Ashland, Kentucky who filed in 1897 in Silver Palm.
Google Earth map of homesteads
David Torcise created an overlay on Google Earth which shows the location of the parcels of land that were homesteaded by the early settlers of this area. It is an invaluable resource for researchers who are interested in settlement patterns and real estate speculation.
Krome’s Cape Sable survey
William J. Krome conducted a survey in 1902-1903 to investigate the possibility of constructing the planned extension of the F.E.C. Railway to Key West using a route that left the mainland at Cape Sable. This short essay overlays the Krome Survey on Google Earth to show how accurate a survey it was.
The Palms Cemetery
The story of how the Palm Cemetery came to be established in 1912 has never been told before. This article corrects the record, which has been distorted by stories repeated over the years. The article is in three parts and this link is to the first part. Parts I and II have links at the end to the next part in the series.
The Florida East Coast Railway
The development of the entire east coast of Florida is largely due to the existence of Flagler’s Florida East Coast Railway, which arrived in Miami in 1895 and in Homestead in 1904. A number of books have been written about the endeavor and I mention three in this article. The history of the FEC is an enormous subject so this is just an introduction.
The Founding of Royal Palm State Park
The founding of Royal Palm State Park is shrouded in myth. This is a very introductory article about how to write an accurate history of its founding. Such an endeavor could easily be book-length.
Waltonhurst – The first home of William K. Walton
If you’ve ever driven west on Biscayne Drive to Redland Road and wondered about the history of the interesting house on the northeast corner of that intersection, this article will answer your questions about that house.
Women in the Wilderness – Ethel C. Booe’s Homestead, Naranja
The contributions of women in the settlement of South Dade County have been vastly under-reported in the histories written thus far. Until I uncovered the data included in this article, there were only about 5 women who submitted homestead claims. The truth is that there were 46. Read this for an introduction to a very important and ignored subject.