Sunday, December 14, 2008
While I have no knowledge one way or the other about the abuse claims, I do know that most if not all of the graves in the little cemetery at the school can be explained.
Ten of them date from a tragic fire that broke out in the main dormitory of the school (then the Florida Reform School) in November of 1914. An oil lamp exploded starting an accidental fire from which eight students and two employees were unable to escape. A number of other individuals, including the superintendent of the school, were injured trying to rescue them.
Twelve more graves date from the great influenza epidemic of 1918. The flu epidemic that year is believed to have been the worst outbreak in American history. An estimated 500,000 people lost their lives, including at least eleven students and one staff member at the school.
These two events, then, account for more than two-thirds of the graves in the school's little cemetery. The others are thought to be those of several boys that died between 1918 and 1949. Among these was a youth who died from illness, a 13-year-old student who was murdered by another student and a 14-year-old who died from exposure in the woods after escaping.
The cemetery is also said to contain the remains of two pet dogs and a pet peacock named Sue. They were buried there by students from the school.
The real history of the little burial ground is undeniably tragic, but at least 28 of the 31 or so graves long predate the recent allegations made by former students of the school.
Thursday, December 4, 2008
Thursday, November 27, 2008
If you would like to purchase any of my books as Christmas gifts this year, you might consider a special online sale taking place for the next three days (Nov. 28th, 29th and 30th).
The prices on all books are reduced and this will be the only sale of this holiday season. Delivery is guaranteed in time for Christmas.
The sale is now over, but please click here for current prices on my books.
Here is a list of the books included in the sale:
- Two Egg, Florida
- The History of Jackson County, Florida: Volume One
- The Battle of Marianna, Florida
- The Battle of Natural Bridge, Florida
- The Early History of Gadsden County
- The Battle of Massard Prairie, Arkansas
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
Monday, November 24, 2008
Three Rivers State Park has been identified by officials in Tallahassee for closure. This park, located near Sneads, brought nearly 23,000 people to our county last year and has been part of our landscape for decades.
Sunday, November 23, 2008
Thursday, November 6, 2008
Monday, November 3, 2008
Polls in Jackson County will be open from 7 a.m. until 7 p.m. Regardless of your candidate of choice, please make sure to take a few minutes to vote and participate in this treasured American right.
Sometimes in the heat of the campaigns we all forget how precious our American freedoms really are and how so many people before us gave the supreme sacrifice to preserve them for us.
Please honor all of those that gave their lives for our freedoms by taking a few minutes to vote!
Friday, October 31, 2008
Monday, October 13, 2008
Friday, October 10, 2008
I am pleased to announce the release of my latest book, The Early History of Gadsden County.
The book is now available for online order and delivery directly from the printer. Just click here for more information.
The official release of the book will take place on Sunday, October 19th, at an event hosted by the West Gadsden Historical Society, Inc., at the Gadsden Art Center across from the courthouse in Quincy. The event will begin at 3 p.m. (Eastern) and the book will only be available for online purchase and delivery before that date.
Proceeds from this book will help the West Gadsden Historical Society in its efforts to preserve and interpret the rich history of Gadsden County.
The book covers a number of episodes from the county's early history and hopefully will be of interest to anyone curious about the history of Gadsden County, the upper Apalachicola River valley and the area in general.
- Hernando de Soto
- Santa Cruz de Sabacola
- Chislacasliche and the Apalachicola Fort
- Ellicott's Observatory
- Nicolls' Outpost and the War of 1812
- Scott's Massacre
- Andrew Jackson in Gadsden County
- First Settlers and Neamathla's Reserve
- King Cotton and Prince Tobacco
- Early Scientists of Gadsden County
- The Comte de Castelnau
- The U.S. Arsenal at Chattahoochee
- The Second Seminole War
- The McLane Massacre
- Seizure of the U.S. Arsenal
- The C.S.S. Chattahoochee
- Gadsden County and the Battle of Natural Bridge
Saturday, September 20, 2008
Thursday, September 11, 2008
If you pre-ordered a copy, your book should arrive no later than the end of next week. If you are expecting a copy and it hasn't arrived by then, please let me know so I can check on it for you.
Monday, September 1, 2008
Saturday, August 23, 2008
It is one of the most potent tropical storms I can recall and has dumped more than 30 inches of rain on some areas of Florida.
If you want to keep up with the storm, the Jackson County Times newspaper is offering good information on its website, including video reports on the storm's path and access by link to a variety of weather information. You can visit them by clicking here.
Monday, August 4, 2008
The hardcover editions are now available for $25 (plus shipping and handling) directly from the printer.
You can obtain more information or place an order by clicking here.
Wednesday, July 2, 2008
If you would like to go ahead and place an order, you can do so by visiting: www.exploresouthernhistory.com/jacksonbook.
Sunday, May 25, 2008
Thursday, May 22, 2008
Memorial Day is a time when hopefully all of us pause to remember the sacrifices of those who have served our country through the years.
This photograph shows the very nice Veterans Monument at Circle Hill Baptist Church Cemetery a few miles northeast of Two Egg.
Erected in 2002, the monument is inscribed to "To the memory of those who served to keep our country free." A beautiful United States flag waves from the monument. Illuminated at night, it is a moving sight among the quite pines surrounding the site.
The church, cemetery and monument are located on Circle Hill Road, just east of the Lovedale community.
Tuesday, May 13, 2008
I grew up with Mr. Hall's sons and remember him with great fondness. He will be missed.
Sunday, May 11, 2008
I have started a new series on our sister Jackson County History site that you might find of interest.
For the next week or two, I'll be spending time looking at some of the significant historic and archaeological sites around Lake Seminole.
This 37,500 acre reservoir forms much of the eastern border of Jackson County and is important to the entire Two Egg area because of its availability for fishing, boating and other forms of recreation and especially for its impact on the environment and water table of the area.
To check out the series, just click here.
Friday, May 9, 2008
Sunday, May 4, 2008
The sale was originally scheduled to end on the 30th, but I received a number of requests that I continue it through the weekend, so the special pricing is still available.
The book features the true history behind a number of Northwest Florida's most interesting legends. In addition to the story of how Two Egg got its name, it includes the true story of the ghost of Bellamy Bridge, Bristol's Garden of Eden story, the legend of Two-Toed Tom (alligator monster), a bigfoot story, another ghost story and a wide variety of other interesting historical footnotes.
It is available by visiting www.exploresouthernhistory.com/dalecox.
Wednesday, April 30, 2008
I will be speaking on Sunday afternoon at 3 p.m. (2 p.m. central) to the West Gadsden Historical Society. The topic will be the Native American history of the Gadsden County and the Apalachicola River Valley.Due to illness, I severely limit my public appearances these days, but I am doing this one because I wanted to show my support for this outstanding organization and its wonderful members. They have an active, vibrant organization developing at a time when so many historical societies have all but faded away.
I am donating my time for the presentation, so all proceeds will go directly to the society. Admission is $10 for the general public and $8 for current WGHS members. Lifetime members of the society and children under 12 will be admitted for free.The presentation will take place at Old Mt. Pleasant United Methodist Church on U.S. 90, five miles east of Chattahoochee. The time will be 3 p.m. (2 p.m. central) and there will be a question and answer time after the presentation.
Saturday, April 26, 2008
To celebrate the upcoming release of my new The History of Jackson County, Florida: Volume One, my publisher is having a special online sale on the three books published last year.
The sale includes Two Egg, Florida, The Battle of Marianna, Florida and The Battle of Natural Bridge, Florida and all are available at the lowest prices you will find this year.
Thursday, April 24, 2008
While this book does not deal with Two Egg or Florida, I'm just passing along the news.
I became interested in the Battle of Massard Prairie when I accepted a position in Fort Smith, Arkansas, a little over four years ago. It was a fascinating cavalry encounter fought on the open prairie not far from my house. If you are interested in learning more, you can visit www.exploresouthernhistory.com/massardprairie.
I will have news on the release of Volume One of my new The History of Jackson County, Florida tomorrow.
Thursday, April 10, 2008
Tuesday, April 8, 2008
Included in the sale are:
- The Battle of Marianna, Florida - Regularly $19.95; On Sale for $15.
- The Battle of Natural Bridge, Florida: The Confederate Defense of Tallahassee - Regularly $19.95; On Sale for $15.
- Two Egg, Florida: A Collection of Ghost Stories, Legends and Unusual Facts - Regularly $16.95; On Sale for $12.
This sale is for a limited time only and will end with the release of the new book on April 30th.
It is available only through www.exploresouthernhistory.com/booksale. Prices through stores and other outlets remain as normal.
If you would like a copy of any or all of these books, this likely the best price you will find this year.
Tuesday, April 1, 2008
Monday, March 31, 2008
Saturday, March 29, 2008
Thursday, March 27, 2008
Wednesday, March 26, 2008
Friday, March 21, 2008
Monday, March 17, 2008
Sunday, March 16, 2008
Friday, March 14, 2008
If you wish to help, donations in situations like this can always be made through the American Red Cross at http://www.redcross.org/.
Wednesday, March 12, 2008
Boone himself passed through Jackson County while visiting Spanish Florida to decide if he should settle there. He crossed overland from St. Augustine to Pensacola and actually acquired land in the latter city. He ultimately decided against moving to Florida, though, and resettled in Missouri (also then a Spanish territory) instead.
Some of his family members, however, later followed his footsteps to Jackson County and descendents of the pioneer Boones still live here to this day.
The tombstone at right marks the grave of Gilley Crawford Neel at Cowpen Pond Cemetery near Dellwood. Born in 1823, she was the great granddaughter of Daniel Boone's brother, Squire Boone. She came to Jackson County with her husband, Benjamin Harrison Neel, during the early 1800s and settled first at present-day Neal's Landing. The couple lost a child there to fever in their first year in Florida. They later moved south to a farm near the Port Jackson community (now under Lake Seminole) and finally settled in the Paront area just south of Dellwood. She was the first member of the Boone family to settle in Jackson County and named her son, Daniel Boone Neel, after her famous great-great uncle.
Many Jackson County families have connections to the Boones of Kentucky fame. Among them are the Neel, Hamilton, Jackson, Mears, Nobles and Cox families, among many others. Some of these families still preserve traditions about the famed pioneer. One favorite story, told to me by my grandmother when I was a young boy, was that he never wore a coonskin cap (as he is often portrayed as wearing by Hollywood). According to her, he wore a black flat-brimmed hat similar to the ones worn by the Amish of today. Since the Boones were Quakers, this makes perfect sense even if it doesn't match well with Hollywood's depictions of the man!
Tuesday, March 11, 2008
Many of Jackson County's earliest settlers are buried here and marked graves date back to the mid-1800s.
Cowpen Pond was a major gathering place for the early settlers of eastern Jackson County. Residents came here for gatherings, political meetings and even militia musters. In the early days of Florida, all male citizens were required to participate in the state militia (today's National Guard) and they gathered regularly to drill and enjoy each other's company.
In 1864, the meeting grounds at Cowpen Pond were selected as the muster point for Captain George Robinson's Company of the Florida Home Guard. This company (sometimes confused with Captain Henry Robinson's Greenwood Club Cavalry) began meeting at Cowpen Pond during the late summer of 1864 and included men from all over eastern Jackson County. A few men from the unit participated in the Battle of Marianna on September 27, 1864, and one was wounded, but most did not reach town in time to take part in the fight.
The cemetery contains the graves of many members of Robinson's company, as well as numerous other soldiers from many different wars.
To reach the historic cemetery, take State Highway 69 south from Two Egg through Dellwood and turn left onto Butler Road south of Dellwood. Watch for the Cowpen Pond Cemetery Road on your right.
I'll post more about Cowpen Pond and some of the important early citizens buried there over coming days.
Monday, March 10, 2008
Friday, March 7, 2008
The game will take place at 5 p.m. at the Milton Johnson Health Center on the Chipola Campus in Marianna.
Chipola (30-1) is the defending state champion.
If you would like to attend, the game starts at 6 p.m. and tickets are available at locations all around Marianna.
If Chipola wins tonight, they will play for the State Championship tomorrow at 5 p.m. Both games will be on campus in Marianna, which is hosting the state tournament this year.
Thursday, March 6, 2008
The meeting starts at 6:30 p.m. and will feature a presentation on the Battle of Kettle Creek, Georgia. Members, their spouses and prospective members are welcome.
To join the SAR, you must be able to trace your ancestry to a soldier who fought in the American Revolution.
Tuesday, March 4, 2008
February produced enough rain to begin bringing pond and lake levels back up and, while they still remain well below normal, things look much better.
We've been getting more rain today (1/2 of an inch so far today), with more to come. The bass are beginning to swirl in the ponds and lakes again and it looks like things are shaping up for good spring fishing!
Monday, March 3, 2008
Saturday, March 1, 2008
In our last post, we explored how Southern writer Caroline Lee Hentz wrote a novel years before the Civil War that told a story very similar to Jackson County's legend of Bellamy Bridge. According to Mrs. Hentz, her story was based on a real event that took place at a plantation near Columbus, Georgia. She indicated that she had based the character of "Mrs. Bellamy" in her book on a real person, a friend of her's during her residency in Columbus.
Shortly after writing Marcus Warland, Caroline Hentz moved to Florida. She lived for a time at the small resort community of St. Andrews (today's Panama City) before moving to Marianna to live with her son, Charles, in the Hunter house across Lafayette Street from St. Luke's Episcopal Church. Mrs. Hentz died in 1856 and was buried at St. Luke's.
Because she spent her last days in Jackson County, over time she became closely associated with Marianna. Many local residents came to believe, incorrectly, that her books had been based on her observations of life in and around the area. The spring in Marcus Warland, for example, was assumed to be a representation of Jackson County's Blue Spring. In reality, the description was based on a similar spring in Georgia.
The same was true of Mrs. Hentz' account of a tragic wedding night fire on the "Bellamy plantation." Although she was not describing the Bellamy plantation of Jackson County when she wrote the book, the story came to be associated with Samuel and Elizabeth Bellamy and, particularly, Elizabeth's lonely grave near Bellamy Bridge.
Over time, the memory of Caroline Hentz and her books faded, but her sad story of the tragic death of a young bride survived as part of the folklore of Jackson County. The identity of the victim, over time, was altered from a young slave named Cora to Elizabeth Bellamy and so was born the story of the Ghost of Bellamy Bridge.
It is a strange case of a real story in Georgia being used as the basis in a book of fiction that, in turn, finally evolved into a Florida legend.
Our series on the Ghost of Bellamy Bridge will conclude in the next post, which will feature an actual photograph of the "ghost." In the meantime, if you would like to read more, please visit www.exploresouthernhistory.com/bellamybridge.
Thursday, February 28, 2008
Tuesday, February 26, 2008
Monday, February 25, 2008
Saturday, February 23, 2008
A short time after their 1834 wedding, Samuel and Elizabeth joined with Edward and Ann in beginning a long trek to the Chipola country of Florida. The Crooms were already established in the new Territory and the two new Bellamy families were joining them. According to documents later filed before Florida's Supreme Court, they left North Carolina with everything needed to start new plantations in Jackson County: supplies, overseers, livestock and dozens of slaves.
Dr. Edward Bellamy had purchased the Fort Plantation, a farm carved from the wilderness the previous decade in the rich Chipola River valley at the site of today's Bellamy Bridge. This is the area of Jackson County still known as the "Bellamy Plantation," but it was the farm of Edward and Ann Bellamy.
Dr. Samuel Bellamy and his new wife, Elizabeth, actually acquired their land at a place called "Rock Cave" on the opposite side of the Chipola and closer to the new city of Marianna. Samuel and Elizabth's Rock Cave Plantation was in the Baker Creek settlement, named for a small stream (seen here) that rises northeast of Cottondale and flows north and east, eventually joining with other creeks and flowing into the Chipola River upstream from Marianna.
Although legend holds that Samuel built the magnificent new mansion in Marianna for Elizabeth, they actually lived out at Rock Cave. Through backbreaking labor, his gangs of enslaved laborers cleared fields and built a large home for the couple, along with all of the other necessary buildings of the plantation. It soon became one of the most successful plantations in Jackson County and was the source for the first bargeload of Sea Island cotton to navigate the Chipola River and safely reach Apalachicola.
Our series on the true story behind the legend of the Ghost of Bellamy Bridge will continue. In the meantime if you would like to read more, just follow this link to visit my Bellamy Bridge site.
Friday, February 22, 2008
Thursday, February 21, 2008
Wednesday, February 20, 2008
Sunday, February 17, 2008
Many of us who grew up in Two Egg knew and appreciated Mr. Hall for all he did for the community and his country. I grew up with several of his sons and have many fond memories of working in the fields and prowling through the woods with them. He announced, in withdrawing from the race, that he has cancer. It was a blow to him, I'm sure, and to all of us who know and appreciate him.
I hope you will join me in praying for his speedy recovery.
If you would like to read the entire story, just click here.
Wednesday, February 13, 2008
To visit the free website, just go to www.jacksoncountytimes.net.
If you haven't subscribed yet, you can also do that online.
Thursday, February 7, 2008
These people are our Southern neighbors and they need all the help they can get. Please consider helping with a local relief effort or donating through the American Red Cross at: http://www.redcross.org/news/ds/profiles/disaster_profile_southerntornados.html.
Please also keep them in your prayers.
Thank you and may God bless you.
Monday, February 4, 2008
Sunday, February 3, 2008
Saturday, February 2, 2008
Thursday, January 31, 2008
Tuesday, January 29, 2008
Although the details of what happened are unclear, a reward for the apprehension of two suspects was issued by Governor Madison S. Perry on September 14, 1860. Here is the notice that was published in the Tallahassee Floridian newspaper on October 6, 1860:
STATE OF FLORIDA
Whereas, Information has been this day filed in the Executive Department that a brutal murder was committed in Jackson County, during the night of the 20th ultimo, on the body of William J. Bazzell, by Daniel O. Neel, and Samuel H. Chisolm, and that they have fled from justice,
Now, therefore, in order that said Neel and Chisolm may be brought to condign punishment, I, Madison S. Perry, Governor of the State aforesaid, and by this my public proclamation, offer TWO HUNDRED DOLLARS reward for the apprehension and delivery of said criminals to the Sheriff of Jackson County.
MEN. – Daniel O. Neel is a middle aged man, about five feet ten inches high, --- black hair, with white lock on the right side of his head; of dark complexion, and heavy countenance, has very penetrating grey eyes, has a scar on his right arm between the wrist and elbow, made by a half ounce bullet, weight about 140 or 145 pounds, and wore at the time of his escape a very heavy beard. He is an Engineer by trade.
Samuel H. Chisolm is about twenty-one years ago, has fair skin prominent nose, blue-eyes, large mouth and dark curly hair; has rather a good countenance, is fine looking, and talks well and freely. Is about six feet high and wighs about 160 pounds, was clean shaven when he escaped.
It Testimony Whereof, I have hereto set my hand and caused to be affixed the Great Seal of the State of Florida. Done at the Capitol, in the city of Tallahassee, this 14th day of September, A.D. 1860.
Governor of Florida.
By the Governor – Attest:
Secretary of State.
The Florida Sentinal and Marianna Patriot run four times, and forward bills to the Comptroller’s office for settlement.
September 15, 1860.
Friday, January 25, 2008
If you've tried to pick up a copy of Two Egg, Florida: A Collection of Ghost Stories, Legends and Unusual Facts at Chipola River Book and Tea in Marianna this week, you already know this, but the most recent printing of the book has sold out. A new round is on the way and should be on hand by the end of next week.
In the meantime, if you would like to purchase copies, they are still in stock through www.barnesandnoble.com and www.amazon.com.
If you would prefer to order by mail, you can also send a check or money order to me and I'll be glad to place the order and have the book shipped to you. The price is $16.95 for the book plus $4.60 for shipping (Total amount: $20.55).
The address is:
P.O. Box 180814
Fort Smith, AR 72918
Thursday, January 24, 2008
- ► 2010 (16)
- ▼ December (2)
- Special Holiday Sale on Books by Dale Cox
- Happy Thanksgiving from Two Egg, Florida!
- Two Egg Oranges - An Unexpected Sight!
- Three Rivers State Park Facing Closure - Please Sp...
- Two Egg, Florida - Order Now for Christmas
- New Blog: History of Gadsden County, Florida
- The Two Egg Vote - Last Word on the 2008 Election!...
- Election Day is Tomorrow!
- ► October (3)
- ► September (3)
- ► August (2)
- ► May (6)
- ► April (6)
- Faye Dunaway and Two Egg, Florida
- Circle Hill Baptist Church - From the Air
- A spring morning in the Two Egg area
- Florida Caverns State Park - Marianna, Florida
- Happy Easter!
- Blooms of Spring in Two Egg
- Turkey Season in Two Egg
- Atlanta Storms
- Photographic Tombstones at Cowpen Pond
- A Connection to Daniel Boone, America's greatest p...
- Greenwood, Florida - Two Egg's long-time neighbor
- Historic Cowpen Pond Cemetery
- Springtime in Two Egg, Florida
- Congratulations Chipola!
- Good Luck to Chipola College!
- Dunaway Chapter meets tonight
- Rain falling in Two Egg
- The Ghost of Bellamy Bridge - Conclusion
- Bellamy Bridge, Part Seven
- Bellamy Bridge, Part Six
- Bellamy Bridge, Part Five
- Bellamy Bridge, Part Four
- Bellamy Bridge, Part Three
- Bellamy Bridge, Part Two
- Bellamy Bridge, Part One
- The Ghost of Bellamy Bridge
- Sheriff's Race for Jackson County
- Jackson County Times now online with a new website...
- Please remember the tornado victims
- The Willis Home - Greenwood, Florida
- The Open Pond near Two Egg, Florida
- The Steamboat Apalachee