Florida Historical Markers Programs - Marker: Escambia





You are currently viewing Escambia

Escambia

OLD ESCAMBIA COUNTY COURT OF RECORD BUILDING (1912-1978)/ PENSACOLA CULTURAL CENTER
Location:400 South Jefferson Street
County: Escambia
City: Pensacola
Description: Side One: During the early 1900s, the Florida Legislature established a new court of record to serve the rapidly-growing Escambia County. Completed in 1912, this Neo-Classical style building was designed by Alabama architect Rudolph Benz and served as an all-inclusive law enforcement complex. The building housed the Escambia County Court of Record and the Escambia County Sheriff’s Office. In addition, the building had its own jail, the largest one between Mobile and Tallahassee. Prisoners were held, tried, sentenced, and executed on site. The building originally had its own built-in gallows on the third floor with rope held by an iron ring in the ceiling of the judge's chambers and a trapdoor in the floor of the execution room. The final execution was carried out on July 31, 1920, when Hosea Poole was hanged for murdering his brother with an axe. The building's cells were vacated and removed after the construction of a new jail building in 1955. Following the completion of a new judicial building in 1978, the Court of Record relocated. The building was used for storage and other events until 1988, when Escambia Board of County Commissioners deeded the building to Pensacola Little Theatre. Side Two: In 1936, a loosely-organized group of drama enthusiasts came together, and with the help of the Works Progress Administration’s Federal Theatre Project, formed the Civic Drama Players. A year later, the group renamed themselves Pensacola Little Theatre (PLT). In 1952, PLT moved into its first permanent show space, a World War II-era Quonset hut on E Street. The group operated at that building for two decades until 1977, when it relocated because upkeep of the building became cost prohibitive. PLT joined with other Pensacola arts organizations to lobby the Escambia County Board of County Commissioners for a dedicated arts and performance space. After the board deeded PLT the abandoned Escambia County Court of Record’s building, it was transformed into the Pensacola Cultural Center. In January 1996, PLT put on The Wizard of Oz, its first production at the new arts center. Acclaimed as one of the oldest continually-producing community theatre groups in the southeastern United States, Pensacola Little Theatre is a leader of arts and entertainment in northwest Florida.
PENSACOLA LUNCH COUNTER SIT-INS
Location:5 S. Palafox St.
County: Escambia
City: Pensacola
Description: This building, once occupied by a Woolworth’s five and dime store, played a role in the struggle for civil rights in Florida. In the 1950s and 1960s, African Americans in segregated communities began sit-ins to protest against “whites only” lunch counters in stores. Members of Pensacola’s NAACP Youth Council, some as young as 12 years old, took their stand against segregation by peacefully occupying lunch counter seats here and elsewhere in the city. Led by Rev. William C. Dobbins and the Pensacola Council of Ministers, the youth were trained in Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s philosophy of non-violence. Confronted by hecklers, they were physically and verbally harassed, and even arrested on falsified charges. The African American community raised bail money and support for the youth through rallies at churches all over Pensacola. The battle to integrate the city’s lunch counters lasted 707 days and involved non-violent tactics such as sit-ins, pickets, marches, and a selective buying campaign or boycott. Downtown stores lost 80% of their business because of the boycott, and lunch counters in the City of Pensacola integrated on March 12, 1962.
Sponsors: National Association for the Advancement of Colored People
USCGC SEBAGO (WPG-WHEC-42)
Location:Plaza DeLuna
County: Escambia
City: Pensacola
Description: Side 1: This berth was once the home of the 255 foot Owasco class patrol gunboat, Sebago (WPG 42), which was commissioned in September 1945 as the United States’ most heavily armed war vessel per foot. The ship carried an initial complement of 273 sailors, which was reduced in 1952 to 143 sailors when she was refitted for peacetime missions. Sebago’s first postwar assignment was in San Francisco patrolling the northern Pacific waters. The ship was quickly reassigned to the Atlantic waters and in 1954 became the largest cutter operating in the Gulf of Mexico. She performed duties related to law enforcement, fisheries support, cadet and reserve training, and search and rescue missions. In 1964, Sebago moved from her home port in Mobile, Alabama to Pensacola, Florida, where she would remain assigned until she was decommissioned. While stationed in Pensacola, Sebago patrolled Ocean Stations Bravo, Charlie, Delta, and Echo, as she provided communications and navigation support for aircraft crossing the Atlantic and gathered weather and oceanographic data. A civilian meteorologist was often on board during station patrols. Side 2: In December 1966, Sebago helped fight the fire that destroyed Pensacola’s Frisco Docks. Sebago was reclassified as a high endurance cutter (WHEC 42) and in 1968, was refurbished at the Alabama Dry Dock and Shipbuilding Company in preparation for a combat tour in Vietnam. As part of the Coast Guard Squadron Three, Vietnam, she provided naval gunfire support (NGS) and small craft interdictions during Operation Market Time in 1969. In addition to combat actions, the ship conducted humanitarian missions that provided medical aid to the Vietnamese before she returned to Pensacola. Automated weather and oceanographic buoy systems replaced ocean station patrols in the early 1970s and all Owasco class cutters were retired. Sebago was decommissioned at this pier on February 29, 1972, and scrapped at Panama City in 1974. Throughout her service, the cutter was on patrol about 220 days each year and usually in-port 21 days between patrols. This marker is dedicated in memory of the ship, to all of the men who sailed aboard her, and to their families who waited weeks on end in the shelter of her home port. “Semper Paratus is our guide, our fame, our glory too!”
Sponsors: The Surviving Shipmates of the USCGC Sebago
EMANUEL POINT SHIPWRECK
Location:Pensacola Bay near Bayou Texar
County: Escambia
City: Pensacola
Description: Side One: In August 1559, eleven ships under command of Don Tristán de Luna y Arellano sailed into Pensacola Bay, then called Ochuse, to establish a new colony for Spain. Intended to stake a claim on the northern Gulf coast, the settlement was planned to become a city on the edge of the empire. A thousand colonists brought livestock, personal possessions, tools, and materials to build their new town. A month after they arrived, a powerful hurricane struck the fledgling colony and sank most of the ships, which were being used as floating warehouses for supplies and food. Survivors eventually were evacuated and the Spanish did not return to Pensacola Bay until 1698. In 1992, archaeologists with the State of Florida discovered one of Luna’s ships off Emanuel Point near the entrance to Bayou Texar. A second ship was found by University of West Florida archaeologists nearby in 2006. Investigations revealed remnants of the doomed colony, including ceramic and metal storage containers and cooking pots, bones from cows and pigs, stone cannonballs and the wheel of a gun carriage, pieces of a suit of armor, wooden tool handles and eating utensils, and even remains of a ship’s cat. The rest of Luna’s fleet waits to be discovered. Side Two: En agosto de 1559, once navíos bajo el mando de Don Tristán de Luna y Arrellano entraron en la bahía de Pensacola, conocida entonces como Ochuse, para establecer una nueva colonia para España en el borde del imperio. Un millar de colonos trajeron consigo ganado, objetos personales, herramientas, y materiales para construir su nuevo pueblo. Un mes después de su llegada, un poderoso huracán azotó la naciente colonia y hundió la mayor parte de las embarcaciones. Eventualmente, los sobrevivientes fueron evacuados y los españoles no regresaron a la bahía de Pensacola hasta 1698. En 1992, arqueólogos del estado de Florida descubrieron uno de los barcos de Luna cerca de Emanuel Point próximo a la entrada de Bayou Texar. Arqueólogos de la Universidad de West Florida encontraron una segunda embarcación en las cercanías en 2006. Las investigaciones revelaron restos de la trágica colonia, entre ellos recipientes de cerámica y metal para almacenaje, ollas de cocina, huesos de vacas y cerdos, balas de cañón de piedra, la rueda de una cureña, piezas de una armadura, mangos de herramientas de madera, utensilios para comer, e aún los restos del gato de uno de los barcos. El resto de la flota de Luna espera ser descubierta.
Sponsors: Florida Public Archaeology Network, University of West Florida Division of Anthropology and Archaeology, City of Pensacola, Visit Pensacola
JOHN WESLEY HARDIN
Location:Tarragona Street between Church and Zaragoza Street
County: Escambia
City: Pensacola
Description: Side One: Texas fugitive John Wesley Hardin (1853-1895) was captured here on August 23, 1877. Hardin was wanted and dangerous, and his capture became national news that brought notoriety to Pensacola. Hardin had reportedly killed 27 men. He bragged he had killed 40 men “all in self-defense,” including one for snoring too loud. Texas Rangers Lt. John B. Armstrong and Jack R. Duncan along with the Sheriff of Escambia County, William H. Hutchinson, and nine deputies apprehended Hardin and his associates at the L&N Freight Depot as they boarded a train bound for Pollard, Alabama. When approached by Sheriff Hutchinson, Hardin tried to draw a revolver but was overpowered. Deputy Martin Sullivan shot and killed one of Hardin’s accomplices as he tried to escape. Hardin was returned to Texas and found guilty of killing Comanche County Deputy Charles Webb. He was sentenced to 25 years in the Texas State Penitentiary, but was pardoned after serving 17 years by Governor James Stephen Hogg and thereafter practiced law in El Paso, Texas. On August 9, 1895, Hardin was shot and killed while playing dice in El Paso. Side Two: Those Who Participated in the Capture of John Wesley Hardin August 23, 1877 TEXAS RANGERS Lieutenant John Barclay Armstrong John Riley Duncan ESCAMBIA COUNTY SHERIFF'S OFFICE Sheriff William H. Hutchinson Deputy Martin Sullivan Deputy A.J. "Ace" Perdue Deputy E.R. Payne Deputy John Bard Deputy William McKinney Deputy M.L. Davis Deputy Richard L. Campbell Deputy Joseph Commyns Deputy John E. Callaghan The Superintendent of the Pensacola & Atlantic Railroad, William D. Chipley, provided special rail transport to the Rangers and valuable intelligence on the location of Hardin. Chipley later became a Pensacola mayor and state senator.
Sponsors: Escambia County Sheriff's Office, Sheriff David Morgan, UWF Historic Trust, Mr. Joe Ulery
HYER-KNOWLES PLANING MILL
Location:Scenic Highway Between Langley and Bohemia Dr.
County: Escambia
City: Pensacola
Description: The Chimney is the only trace of what once was the first major industrial belt on the Gulf Coast, a string of antebellum wood mills and brick factories. The chimney represents the lumber industry of the Florida Panhandle. As the lumber industry prospered in the 1850s, local mills employed 600 people and produced almost 55 million feet of lumber. The bricks in the base of the chimney bear the mark of J. Gonzalez", showing that they were produced at the local brick plant of James Gonzalez. The chimney was part of the steam power plant for the Hyers-Knowles Mill. In March 1862, General Braxton Bragg was evacuating the Confederate forces holding Pensacola when Confederate Secretary of War Judah P. Benjamin gave the order to "Destroy all machinery private and public, which could be useful to the enemy; especially disable the sawmills in and around the Bay." The machinery from the mills was loaded onto barges which were moved into Escambia Bay. On March 10th a thunderstorm and large waves sank the barges. That same night the Hyer-Knowles Mill was burned, and all that is left is the chimney
Sponsors: City of Pensacola and the Florida Department of State
HISTORIC JOHN THE BAPTIST CHURCH
Location:101 N. 10th Avenue
County: Escambia
City: Pensacola
Description: This is the site of John the Baptist Church, one of the oldest Baptist Churches in Pensacola. In 1846 the First Baptist Colored Church of Pensacola, known today as Historic John the Baptist Church, was organized in the Seville Square community. The church served black and white Baptists until the Civil War (1861-1865). Retreating and invading armies threatened to burn Pensacola, causing all residents except 72 white and 10 black people to relocate to Alabama. During the war, African-American Baptists kept this, the only Protestant church in Pensacola open. After the war, a dispute arose between black and white Baptists regarding the church property. In 1866, black Baptists wrote a letter to the Freedmen’s Bureau explaining that the black Baptists purchased the property and “upon it erected a place of worship.” The letter also explained that the property had always been in use of the congregation and that since the war others claimed control of it. In 1870, the black congregations relocated, under the leadership of Rev. Robert Ahrens (c. 1833-1925), to this site in the Hawkshaw community. The Seville Square church housed a Freedmen’s Bureau school and the church at Hawkshaw housed a school for children and adults
Sponsors: The Congregation of John The Baptist Church and the Florida Department of State
ST. JOSEPH CATHOLIC CHURCH
Location:140 West Government Street
County: Escambia
City: Pensacola
Description: The Sisters of Mercy began the Catholic Church's work for blacks in Pensacola when they opened St. Joseph Colored and Creole School on September 8, 1879. St. Joseph Catholic Church, built in 1891, was the 1st African-American parish in the Diocese of Mobile. The first Church was a two-story frame building. The present Gothic revival style church, built in 1894, cared for the needs of African-Americans, Creoles, Germans, Italians, and Irish immigrants. In the 1920's, Fr. Charles Hartkoff, the church's second pastor, built and opened St. Joseph orphanage which took in homeless African-American boys. In 1939, Fr. Joseph J. Raleigh closed and reopened one school operated by the Sisters of Charity of Convent Station, New Jersey. Two years later, St. Joseph High School opened, the only Catholic African-American high school in the state of Florida at the time. At its height, St. Joseph's operated "Maryall Negro Missions" which included four chapels: Mary Immaculate, Our Lady of Victory, Our Lady of Fatima and Our Lady of Africa. Other ministries included Our Lady of Fatima Mission School and Our Lady of Angels Maternity Hospital for African-American women located beside the Church's grammar and high school
Sponsors: sponsored by the Knights of Peter Claver, Council 223, and the Florida Dept. of State.
ORIGINAL SITE OF PENSACOLA JUNIOR COLLEGE
Location:Lee Square on North Palafox Street
County: Escambia
City: Pensacola
Description: On this site, Pensacola Junior College (PJC) opened its doors on September 13, 1948. It was the first public junior college created by the Florida Legislature under the Minimum Foundation Program Act of 1947, signed into law by Governor Millard F. Caldwell. The Escambia County School Board received authority to establish the college. District staff Jesse Barfield and Margaret Andrus helped James L. McCord, principal of Pensacola High School, prepare the initial proposal and continued as faculty. McCord became the first director of PJC. The Aiken Boarding House provided classrooms for the first 136 students. James H. Allen, president of Florida Pulp and Paper Company, contributed the first two year’s rent for the facility. In June 1953, the College moved one block south to the old Pensacola High School. On May 13, 1955, Governor LeRoy Collins signed a bill appropriating $1,243,000 to the college, which resulted in the 1956 purchase of property on 9th Avenue, now the college’s main campus. Pensacola’s Booker T. Washington Junior College was established as Florida’s first black junior college in 1949, and at the height of the Civil Rights Movement, merged with PJC in 1965.
Sponsors: BY THE PENSACOLA STATE COLLEGE BOARD OF TRUSTEES and the Florida Department of State
KUPFRIAN'S PARK
Location:Avery Street Just East of N Pace Blvd
County: Escambia
City: Pensacola
Description: Established by German immigrant Conrad Kupfrian (1833-1892), the 100-acre Kupfrian’s Park opened in the early 1880s and provided a distinctive entertainment and recreational venue for Pensacola residents for over thirty years. Kupfrian constructed amenities such as a German-style beer garden, a racetrack surrounding an infield lake, and numerous picnic pavilions nestled among his park’s large live oak trees. One of the park’s greatest contributions to the growth of Pensacola was its connection with the creation of the city’s first public transportation system. An astute businessman, Kupfrian was one of the founding owners of the Pensacola Street Car Company, and he made certain that the company’s service extended two miles northwest of the city center to terminate at his park’s main gate. As the city grew during the 1920s, the popularity of Kupfrian’s Park waned, eventually being replaced by coastal venues accessible by the newly constructed Pensacola Bay Bridge. Today, the park’s original structures are gone, but many of its oak trees and infield lake remain. Kupfrian’s Park is an important reminder of the many contributions made by immigrant entrepreneurs to the multi-cultural growth of modern Pensacola.
Sponsors: The Kupfrian Park Homeowners Association, The Escambia County Board of County Commissioners, West Florida Historic Preservation, Inc., and the Florida Department of State
FIREFIGHTER VISTA S. LOWE
Location:Seville Square
County: Escambia
City: Pensacola
Description: At this site on September 30, 1962, Firefighter Vista Spencer Lowe, age 23, died in the line of duty while responding to a house fire at 409 East Zarragossa Street. Upon arrival at the scene, Firefighter Lowe stepped from the rear tailboard of the pumper he was riding (Engine 5, a 1957, 1,000-gallon Seagrave Pumper Truck), tripped and fell to the ground. Unaware of Lowe’s location, the pumper’s driver began backing his truck, trapping Lowe under the truck and crushing him. Lowe was the third firefighter with the Pensacola Fire Department (PFD) and the 33rd Florida firefighter to lose his life in the line of duty. Lowe’s death caused the PFD to change its rules and regulations governing standard operating procedures and training methods, requiring that no fire apparatus be backed up at any time without a department member directing traffic. As a result of these changes, no firefighter with the PFD has since died in the manner in which Firefighter Lowe lost his life in 1962.
Sponsors: Sons Matthew D. and Mark D. Lowe and the Florida Department of State
CHURCH OF THE SACRED HEART
Location:716 North 9th Avenue
County: Escambia
City: Pensacola
Description: The Church of the Sacred Heart was constructed in 1905. The Right Reverend Edward Allen, Bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Mobile, which at the time encompassed Pensacola, appointed the pastor of Pensacola’s St. Michael’s Church, Father Robert Fullerton, to supervise the building of the Gothic Revival style church. The building was barely completed when the “great Pensacola hurricane of 1906” demolished the church’s roof. The damaged building was rebuilt and dedicated by Bishop Allen in April 1907 with a parish of 25 families. The church housed its Catholic parishioners for 50 years until the congregation moved to a larger facility in 1956. The church was sold to the City of Pensacola in 1956 with a deed restriction that the building could never be resold for use as a Protestant church. After serving as a concert hall for the Greater Pensacola Symphony Orchestra, and then as a youth recreation center, the building was sold in 1965 to the Central Church of Christ for use as a Protestant church after Pope Paul VI lifted the deed restriction. Unity of Pensacola purchased the church in 1982 and restored its 18 original Belgian-made stained glass windows.
Sponsors: Unity of Pensacola and the Florida Department of State
ST. JOHNS HISTORIC CEMETERY
Location:301 North Street
County: Escambia
City: Pensacola
Description: After the Civil War, Pensacola’s population grew rapidly. As new residents flocked to the city, its burial capacity became inadequate. Other pre-existing cemeteries were affiliated with specific religious denominations, making it difficult for those of different faiths to find burial plots. Originally located outside the city, members of Escambia Lodge, No. 15, Free & Accepted Masons established this 26-acre cemetery in 1876 with the goal of creating a public burial space without restrictions based on religion, race, or social class. The lodge’s members made up the original board of trustees. They sold grave plots to individuals, families, and organizations, not for financial gain, but to pay off the land’s mortgage and for its maintenance. In 1876, Martha Eleanor Screven Frierson was interred here, the first recorded burial. Since then, thousands have been interred, including mayors, soldiers, sailors, and teachers. In 1908, a Spanish Mission style gate house was constructed, consisting of a chapel, storage area, and restroom. St. Johns remains one of Pensacola’s oldest and most diverse cemeteries. It features an eclectic mixture of funerary architecture, and is regarded as an “outdoor museum.”
MORRISON FAMILY HOMESTEAD
Location:107 Gregory Street
County: Escambia
City: Pensacola
Description: Constructed in 1906 by Mabel Lewis, this frame vernacular structure was the home of generations of the Morrison family, including the parents of James Douglas (Jim) Morrison, the lead singer for The Doors. Before Robert Bruce (R.B.) and Frances Morrison purchased the building in 1932, it had been used as a tea house and as a speakeasy during Prohibition. In 1942, R.B. offered the basement apartment to his cousin George Stephen (Steve) Morrison and his wife Clara Clark Morrison. While in Pensacola, Steve, a U.S. Naval Academy graduate, completed his flight training at the Naval Air Station. Steve and Clara moved to Melbourne, Florida, a few months before Jim was born on December 8, 1943. Steve Morrison was a highly-decorated naval officer who became a Rear Admiral in 1966. After attending Florida State University and graduating from the University of California at Los Angeles, Jim Morrison, a gifted singer and lyricist, became a legendary and mysterious rock star. He died in Paris in 1972. The Morrison home was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1970 as part of the Downtown Pensacola Historic District and was occupied by members of the Morrison family until 2014.
Sponsors: Swan Capital LLC, CEO and Owner- Andrew Scott McNair
ALGER RAILROAD / CENTURY, FLORIDA
Location:on U.S. 29 at Hecker Rd. in wayside park.
County: Escambia
City: Century
Description: Side 1: This site is 300 yards west of former location of tracks of The Alger-Sullivan Lumber Company logging railroad which ran from Century to Alger-owned timber lands in Alabama. Ninety miles in length, the railroad hauled prime virgin longleaf logs for manufacture of lumber and export timbers at the Century mill, the largest in Florida. Logging crews lived in railroad camp cars on sidings. Oxen were used in the woods to skid logs to the railroad for loading. Railroad discontinued operation in 1942. Side 2: Founded in 1900 to house mill employees of the Alger-Sullivan Lumber Company founded in 1900 by General Russell A. Alger- Governor of Michigan, U.S. Senator, and President McKinley's Secretary of War - and by Martin H. Sullivan of Pensacola. Edward A. Hauss led the company from 1901 to 1957 and pioneered in reforestation to perpetuate timber resources. Century and Alger recall the names Colonel Frank Hecker, Henry Glover, W.D. Mann, David Miller, Houston Jones, Larry Nelson, and Marion Leach.
Sponsors: Florida Board of Parks and Historic Memorials
BROWNSVILLE COMMUNITY
Location:Pensacola
County: Escambia
City: Brownsville
Description: In 1908, shortly after the extension of the trolley line west from Pensacola, Lucius Screven Brown (1874-1963) developed housing on seven blocks bounded by what is now Pace Boulevard, Strong Street, “W” Street and Gadsden Street. Brown’s builder, Haakon Paulsen, began calling the community Brownsville as it evolved into one of Pensacola’s first “suburbs.” Brown (1874-1963) had a long career in real estate, banking and insurance. He served the city on the City Council and as assistant postmaster. A bond issue held in Escambia County in 1912 resulted in the paving of Cervantes Street and Mobile Highway, and the extension of public water lines. This in turn intensified the residential building boom in Brownsville. The biggest concentration of houses from this period is to be found on Gadsden Street. Some commercial buildings in this nationally recognized area date back to the early 20th century because this was the road from Pensacola to Mobile. However, most of the commercial construction occurred just after World War II when automobile usage increased.
Sponsors: BROWNSVILLE REVITALIZATION COMMITTEE
CANNONS OF FT. PICKENS
Location:Storage
County: Escambia
City: Pensacola
Description: Brought to Pensacola during the period from 1765-1781 by the British, these cannons were used in defense of the town by the British, Spanish, United States and Confederate States. After the close of Ft. Pickens, the Navy scrapped the guns and sold them as salvage. Interested citizens of Pensacola purchased the cannons and returned them to Ft. Pickens State Park in 1955, where, in accordance with the deed, they can never be removed.
CHRIST CHURCH
Location:South Adams Street
County: Escambia
City: Pensacola
Description: Erected in 1832, this is the oldest church building in Florida still standing on its original site. Tradition ascribes the design of this Episcopal Church to Sir Christopher Wren. Constructed of locally made brick, it was used by Federal forces during the Civil War as a barracks and hospital. The Parish Moved in 1903. Deeded to Pensacola in 1936, it was used as a public library until 1957. Pensacola Historical Museum established here in August, 1960.
CHRIST EPISCOPAL CHURCH
Location:18 West Wright Street
County: Escambia
City: Pensacola
Description: Christ Church, founded in 1827, was incorporated by the Legislative Council of the Territory of Florida in 1829. The first church, constructed in 1832, still stands on Seville Square. Later, Chicago architect John Sutcliffe and Pensacola contractor A.D. Alfred built a new church on this site at Wright and Palafox. The first services were held here by the Reverend Percival Whaley, rector, on Easter Sunday, 1903. The exterior of the building is unchanged since then, and its Spanish Baroque architecture reflects the city’s heritage. The building’s brick walls are covered with pebble-concrete stucco. A tiled narthex leads to the nave where wooden pews seat 600. The gable roofs have barrel tile surfaces and a copper-covered dome over the transepts. From the days of the Reverend Joseph Saunders (1836-1839), Christ Church has been involved in community outreach. Since then, members have been leaders in the city’s growth and development. Historic Christ Church was the mother congregation of Episcopalians in Northwest Florida and one of seven churches in the state when the Diocese of Florida was founded in 1839. The present Christ Church was the site of the Primary Convention of the new Diocese of the Central Gulf Coast in 1970
Sponsors: CHURCH WARDENS AND VESTRYMEN OF CHRIST CHURCH AND THE RECTOR OF CHRIST CHURCH
FIRST JEWISH HOUSE OF WORSHIP IN FLORIDA
Location:800 N Palafox St
County: Escambia
City: Pensacola
Description: Jewish families in Pensacola began organized worship following the Civil War. On this site in 1876 a Reform Jewish Synagogue was constructed. The State of Florida granted a charter in 1878 for Congregation Beth El. Temple Beth El joined the Union of American Hebrew Congregations in 1889 and engaged its first Rabbi in 1892. The original temple was destroyed by fire in 1895. It was rebuilt in 1898 at this site, but that building was also destroyed by fire in 1929. The current synagogue at 800 North Palafox Street dates from 1931. Temple Beth El is Florida's first formally recognized Jewish Congregation.
Sponsors: TEMPLE BETH EL AND THE FLORIDA DEPARTMENT OF STATE
HAWKSHAW
Location:on South 10th Ave., grounds of Gulf Power
County: Escambia
City: Pensacola
Description: The Hawkshaw site has supported prehistoric and historic occupations which span a period of nearly 2,000 years. It was inhabited around A.D. 150 by groups of Native Americans whom archaeologists call the Deptford Culture. Scientific excavation of the site revealed hundreds of trash pits containing food remains and household debris which provided detailed information about the daily life of these prehistoric people. They sustained themselves with the abundant marine resources available in the area. Hawkshaw is important to archaeologists because the remains of the Deptford Culture are not mixed with those of other Native American cultures. For this reason the site gives a very good indication of what life was like during Deptford times. The next time the site was used was the middle of the 18th Century when the Spanish built a brick kiln here before 1761. A little later, during the British occupation of Pensacola (1763-1783), a complex known as the Governor's Villa was built nearby for Peter Chester, Governor of the Province of West Florida. The Villa was burned in 1781 by the troops of General Bernardo de Galvez during his recapture of Pensacola for the Spanish. After Florida was acquired by the United States in 1821, Hawkshaw became part of a plan to create a "New City" to serve the railroad industry. The New City Hotel was built in 1836 with over 100 rooms. It remained in operation into the 1840's. After the failure of the "New City", Hawkshaw evolved into a working class neighborhood whose residents were largely employed by the industrial and commercial establishments associated with lumbering and the railroad. It became the first of Pensacola's outlying black neighborhoods. Hawkshaw's waterfront once contained Wright's Lumber Mill, which could cut 30,000 board feet of lumber a day in 1882, and the Muscogee Wharf, which served as a coaling station for the Louisville and Nashville Railroad. After the destruction of Wright's Mill during the 1906 hurricane and the decline of the lumber and railroad industries, many of the residents of Hawkshaw became "baymen" who earned their living by loading ships, fishing and gathering shellfish.
Sponsors: sponsored by gulf power company in cooperation with the department of state
INDIAN VILLAGE SITE (ES-2)
Location:Archaeological site 8ES2 (storage)
County: Escambia
City: Pensacola Beach
Description: North of this point on the shore of Santa Rosa Sound, a large Indian village existed for centuries before the coming of the Spanish explorers. Refuse piles of shells (Kitchen Middens) with an occasional flint chip or potsherd indicates a village area of several acres. Both the Weeden Island and Fort Walton Cultures used it. PLEASE DO NOT DISTURB.
INDIAN VILLAGE SITE (ES-5)
Location:No data
County: Escambia
City: Pensacola
Description: The low ground just north of the highway at this point was the site of an Indian village about 1,000 years ago. The artifacts found have been identified as belonging to the Weeden Island Culture which lived along the Gulf Coast. Clams and Oysters made up a large part of their local diet. The village was about one acre in size. PLEASE DO NOT DISTURB.
NORTH HILL PRESERVATION DISTRICT
Location:401 West Gonzalez St., Alabama Square
County: Escambia
City: Pensacola
Description: The North Hill Preservation District occupies a 50-block area bound by Blount, Wright, Palafox, DeVilliers and Reus Streets, and represents one of the best preserved residential historic districts in Florida. After the Civil War, wealthy families left areas near the waterfront to build grand houses on Pensacola’s North Hill. From 1890 to the outbreak of World War I--between 1914 and 1918--as Northwest Florida entered the lumber boom era, local forests of yellow pine provided prosperity and building materials for many of the stately houses now treasured in the North Hill Preservation District. Another surge of growth occurred during the 1920s as a new generation of wealthy Pensacola citizens moved to the area and extended North Hill to its current northern border of Blount Street. From 1930 onward, homes typical of their periods were built on remaining available properties. As a result of its gradual development, architectural styles in North Hill are unusually varied including Queen Anne, Neoclassical, Tudor Revival, and Art Moderne. Through the dedicated efforts of community leaders, North Hill was designated as a preservation district in 1973 and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Sponsors: NORTH HILL PRESERVATION ASSOCIATION AND THE FLORIDA DEPARTMENT OF STATE
PENSACOLA NAVY YARD - ESTABLISHED IN 1825
Location:U.S. 98 West, Pensacola Navy Yard
County: Escambia
City: Pensacola
Description: In 1825 Congress passed a law authorizing a navy yard on Florida's Gulf Coast. A three-man commission came to Pensacola to examine the area as a possible site. Their report favored Pensacola, and in December, 1825, the Secretary of the Navy reported Pensacola's selection. In 1826 plans for the yard were laid out, but not until 1830 was the yard established. Captain Lewis Warrington, a member of the 1825 commission, was the first commander.
SITE OF THE FIRST METHODIST CHURCH OF PENSACOLA/SITE OF THE SAN CARLOS HOTEL
Location:1 North Palafox St.
County: Escambia
City: Pensacola
Description: Side 1: Pensacola's first Methodist congregation was established in 1821 by Alexander Talley, M.D. It met in a series of small, wood frame churches until 1881, when construction of a three-story, Romanesque Revival sanctuary was begun on this site. Services began here in 1884, but the building was not completed until 1890. The handsome red brick bell tower and gabled entrance portico of the church marked this corner of Palafox Street until 1909, when the property was sold and the congregation moved to larger facilities on East Wright Street. Side 2: The imposing, seven-story structure opened on this site in 1910 as the city's largest and most elegant hotel. Designed by the well known New York architect W. L. Stoddard, it was built by the local firm of C. H. Turner Construction Co. at a cost of $500,000. Its simple masonry design was embellished with Renaissance Revival exterior details. It was extensively "modernized" and expanded from 157 to 403 rooms in the 1920s, and continued to dominate the Palafox streetscape for the next 50 years. Increasing competition and gradual deterioration led to its closing in 1982. It was demolished in 1993.
Sponsors: The City of Pensacola, the First United Methodist Church of Pensacola and the Florida Department of State
TRADER JON'S
Location:South Palafox and Main Street
County: Escambia
City: Pensacola
Description: This building was erected in 1896 and rented to numerous businesses until the 1950s. One of the most significant tenants in the early 1900s was Samuel Charles, one of Pensacola's most prominent black businessmen, whose shoe repair shop became Pensacola's largest shoe repair and sales store at that time. In the 1920s the building was occupied by Birgar Testman's ship chandlery. Since the early 1950s the building has been owned and occupied by Trader Jon's, a favorite haunt of U.S. Navy and other military personnel. The tavern has gained international fame for its unusual and extensive display of military memorabilia which surrounds the clientele.
Sponsors: The Historic Pensacola Preservation Board in Cooperation with the Florida Department of State
ALGER-SULLIVAN LUMBER COMPANY RESIDENTIAL HISTORIC DISTRICT
Location:Corner of Front Street and Jefferson Avenue
County: Escambia
City: Century
Description: In 1901, one of the largest and most advanced southern pine sawmills east of the Mississippi River was built here. In the tradition of the era, the Alger-Sullivan Lumber Company built its own town to house and supply the families of mill workers. By 1915, the mill town of Century included a hotel, hospital, commissary, post office, executive club, business district, schools, churches, and segregated housing districts for black and white families. Housing ranged from small shotgun houses to large two-story, executive homes. Standing along Church Street is one of the lumber company’s last built town structures - a large theater and recreation hall completed in 1922. After a remodeling in 1946, it became lumber company offices. The deteriorated black residential district along Pond Street was largely demolished and the homes replaced in 1986 through a state block grant. The remaining residential district along Front, Church, Fourth, and Mayo streets, and Jefferson and Pinewood avenues represents a rare intact example of an early-twentieth century planned company town in Florida. The district, consisting of 45 historic buildings and a formal garden site, was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1989.
Sponsors: The Alger-Sullivan Historical Society, The Town of Century