Florida Historical Markers Programs - Marker: Holmes

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Location:Virginia and Oklahoma Streets, on courthouse groun
County: Holmes
City: Bonifay
Description: Holmes County, noted for agriculture and timber, was created in 1848. The first county seat was at Hewett's Bluff, later known as Bear Pen. Cerro Gordo and Westville also served as county seat. Bonifay, the present site, was selected in 1905. Controversy surrounds the county's name. One claim credits a North Carolinian name Holmes who settled in the area around 1830. Another contends it was named for an Indian chief who had been given the English name of Holmes.
Location:1320 C.R. 179
County: Holmes
City: Pittman
Description: In 1880, William Thomas Keith homesteaded ten acres upon which this house stands. In 1886 he filed a homestead entry with the U. S. Public Land Office and in the fall of that year, built this cabin that became home for himself, his wife, mother, and eight children. It became the focus of a cotton and tobacco farm that eventually grew to more than 190 acres. By 1893, improvements included a plaza, smokehouse, corn crib, enclosed shed rooms, and a well. The Keith Cabin was originally built as a one room, Louisiana Roof style split log structure with a wraparound porch, a fireplace, and a separate kitchen. This style of architecture is a rare form of 19th century construction found only in the Gulf States from east Texas to South Georgia. It is characterized by a front and rear porch formed by long logs that extend beyond the main block of the house at each gable end to support the broad roof overhangs. Keith served with the Confederate Army and was an accomplished farmer, lumberjack, mail carrier, store merchant, and medical practitioner. His life and home are excellent examples of the rural lifestyle of early Holmes County and Northwest Florida. The Keith Cabin is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.