Whether you are a long-term Florida resident or just a tourist passing through, make our front porch your first stop of any trip to Kissimmee.
Liz Stemm joined the staff of the Osceola County Historical Society in June 2012 as the organization’s first official curator. Although she was not raised in Osceola County, she was born and raised in Arcadia, FL – where her family’s “cracker” heritage was celebrated. Liz’s grandmother, Arlyn Whidden Christ, shared stories of her childhood in old Florida, and instilled Liz with a sense of pride and love of Florida history.
Shingle Creek Regional Trail Ground Breaking
At the Groundbreaking Ceremony for the Shingle Creek Regional Trail, elected officials and key members of the project team each grabbed their own ceremonial golden shovel and marked the official beginning of the first phase of the construction project on January 9, 2015.
The Osceola High School Kowboys’ varsity football team is bound for the 7A State Championship game on December 12th with hopes of making history for their school and Kowboys everywhere!
This is the eighth consecutive year the Kowboys have made it to the playoffs (a school record!), but it’s the first time they have made it to the championship game since 2007. In 2012 and 2013, the Kowboys were eliminated from the playoffs during the state semifinal round, including a 31-30 loss against Niceville last year.
We’ve shared a lot this summer about our beloved Pioneer Village. It’s a laundry list of history and information that has flooded the blog about the various historic structures from how they came to be (including the history of the pioneer families that once inhabited them) to so much more. If you missed out on any of it, here’s a little of what we have to offer:
- We’ve told the rich history of the Tyson House, the Cadman Family Bachelor’s Quarters and the Citrus Packing House.
- We’ve showed how the Seminole Tribe has become a part of our village through the building of the Seminole Chickee structures.
- And we’ve told you 9 things we learned from moving historic buildings in Osceola County (although we’ve probably learned even more by now!)
As the repository for Osceola County history, the Osceola County Historical Society receives a number of great historical treasures every year through the generous donations of our local community. While we are selective on what items are accepted into the permanent collections, gems from local history are added each year to help preserve and share Osceola County history with the public.
One time, an unexpected package was waiting on our doorstep and as we opened the package, we realized that one of those historical gems was hiding within the contents of the box. There, buried in layers of bubble wrap, was an original silver tea set from the Graystone Hotel of Kissimmee.
Another structure to make its move to the new Pioneer Village at Shingle Creek recently was the ol’ Tyson (Tison) House. The Tyson House allows the Osceola County Historical Society to tell the story of an average farming family of Osceola County in the late 1800’s and we thought you might like to take a step back in time today and learn a little bit about them.
The heritage of the Seminole tribe of Florida began long before the first pioneers moved into central Florida. In fact, Osceola County itself is named after the famous Seminole warrior, Osceola. After the Seminole wars of the 1800s, the U.S. government abandoned efforts to relocate remaining Seminoles, and the Seminoles moved farther south through Florida, traveling through central Florida. In their settlements, they built Chickee structures and lived off the Florida land. As time progressed, they began hunting deer, otters, alligators, and other wildlife to supply the hide market and growing millinery trade for wealthy buyers in the North.
The Silver Spurs Rodeo, billed as the largest rodeo east of the Mississippi, has been around since 1944 and is a long standing tradition for the local residents of Osceola County. The original rodeo, started by the Silver Spurs Riding Club, was a small rodeo that focused on horseback riding but grew into much more by the 1950s. In 1949 the club purchased the land on Highway 192 and built the original arena that consisted of a stadium, stands, and a concession area.