HomeHomesteadJohn Ulric Free – Part I


John Ulric Free – Part I — 14 Comments

  1. The local high schools need to teach some of this in their history classes. It is a great source of civic pride and American history. I applaud your diligence with the painstaking research it takes to produce these fascinating biographies. Many thanks for your time and dedication …South Dade Seniors of 63′

    • Ah, yes, but the problem is that this history has not been written until now. History teachers who would like to teach some of the history of this area have not had any books, articles or other sources of information to use. I’m working on that, little by little.

  2. Great job on keeping the history of South Dade alive! Always enjoy reading your articles about the history of Old South Dade. Is Miss Jean Taylor’s book still in print? If it is do you know where it is available? I believe Miss Taylor taught art classes at Redland Jr. High when I attended school there, if that is the same person.

    • Jean Taylor’s book has been out of print for many years. You can sometimes find it on eBay, but it sells for $150 or more. The book is full of errors. While it is a good starting point, the reader should not accept it as a reliable source, because it is not. No bibliography, no sources, no footnotes, two (or more) topic sentences in one paragraph – the book is a mess. Yes, Jean Taylor taught art at Redland – she had a degree in art but not in English. She was not a writer and, to make matters worse, she had no editor to read her manuscript and offer constructive criticism.

  3. I love following all the episodes you have so thoroughly researched about the Homestead area I grew up in, especially when you mention my Redd/Anderson family. I have fond memories of growing up in Homestead and it being a small, warm and friendly town where everyone knew and cared about each other. I wish there were more places like that now!

  4. I deeply admire your diligent research and the intelligent evaluation of the information you’re uncovering. Looking forward to reading more about Mr. Free.

  5. Another interesting article, Jeff. Taking into account what people coming to South Florida had to put up with and yet cast their fate and fortune to this frontier amazes me. Often they came from very civilized developed cities. Thanks for all your effort in tracking down these courageous men and women.

  6. My father bought the family home from a man I remember as Mr. Free. I went one time with my Dad when he paid Mr. Free the monthly mortgage payment. Mr. Free’s house was in the neighborhood at 6th Ave and Avocado. This would have been 1970-ish. Mr. Free raised miniature ponies. He was an older man when I saw him. Would this be one of the Free family members?

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