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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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Martha Reed Mitchell: Putting the D in Doyenne

A doyenne is a woman considered to be the senior, or most prominent, member of a group. In the highest social echelons of late nineteenth-century Jacksonville, that woman was Martha Reed Mitchell, a tall, well-built woman with brilliant blue eyes who lived largely, built largely, and left one of Jacksonville’s most lasting legacies. According to […]

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Jacksonville’s own Blue Angels

At the end of World War II, Adm. Chester W. Nimitz, the Chief of Naval Operations, ordered the formation of a flight demonstration team to keep the public interested in Naval Aviation and boost Navy morale. Lt. Cmdr. Roy “Butch” Voris, a veteran flying ace with eight air victories to his credit, was chosen as […]

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Riverside Baptist Church

In the 1920s, Addison Mizner was the best known and most-discussed architect in America. Perhaps more than any other architect of his day, Addison Cairns Mizner shaped the architectural flavor of South Florida. Although he lacked formal training as an architect, Mizner’s eclectic reinterpretations of Spanish architecture, as showcased in such famous buildings as the […]

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