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In Search of Eartha White

Born in Jacksonville in 1876, Eartha Mary Magdalene White is among the city’s most notable citizens. Highly talented, entrepreneurial and industrious, she delivered crucial social services to North Florida’s black community. Her projects, to name a few, included an old folk’s home, an orphanage, a home for unwed mothers, a WWII USO, and the Clara […]

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Liberty Ships

The circumstances were grim. The year was 1941. War raged only an ocean away. The country and the citizens rallied in an unparalleled effort. In a four-year span, at eighteen U.S. cities, 2,710 identical Liberty Ships were constructed in record setting time; Jacksonville, Florida, and the St. Johns River Shipbuilding Company were an essential part […]

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The Patriot War of 1812

The first permanent settlement in what is now Jacksonville was founded at “The Cowford” in 1791, at a narrow point in the St. Johns River where cattlemen could ford their livestock across. This was some 3000 feet west of the Spanish Fort San Nicolas. Spain controlled Florida peninsula. This was a major concern for leaders […]

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The Forgotten Village of Silvertown

Silvertown was a curious real estate development, appearing on the 1887 LeBaron Map of Jacksonville as a small rectangular subdivision immediately to the west of Riverside, which at that time ended at Barrs Street. The most unusual aspect of Silvertown was that it was bisected by a swamp, which separated the east and west portions […]

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Red Bank Plantation, an enduring symbol of the Old South

On February 4th, 1939, Rose Shepherd, a writer with the Federal Writer’s Project (an economic recovery program that paid writers to record oral histories during the Great Depression), sat down with Mrs. Thomas Ellington, a kindergarten teacher whose “considerable personal inheritance” had enabled her to purchase one of Jacksonville’s oldest residences, the Red Bank Plantation. […]

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