Lawrence was born in Kenansville, Florida on November 8, 1891, to former Georgia slave Tom Silas and his wife Elizabeth, the sixth of thirteen children. Because it was a rural area, Tom built a school and hired a teacher so his children could receive an education.
The only child of Nathaniel and Elizabeth Williams, Minnie was born in Ocala on March 6, 1890. Following the death of her father during a circus high wire act, Minnie moved to Kissimmee with her mother in 1903. Minnie stopped attending school upon arriving in Kissimmee when a doctor said if she were “confined to school, she would go blind” due to an unknown condition she’d had since birth. Along with taking care of the house, Minnie assisted her mother with the laundry of turpentine camp workers, using a scrub board and boiling water in a pot.
With the start of the New Year many of you may have a list of New Year’s Resolutions, I know I do! Some of the most popular New Year Resolutions are to lose weight, eat healthier, stop a bad habit, reduce stress, and travel more.
Laura Wakefield has been attending Osceola County Historical Society events for years. Born and raised in Osceola County, Laura was a history teacher in the county for over 18 years and would bring her students to the Pioneer Village at Shingle Creek to research local history. In June 2018, Laura joined the OCHS team as a grant specialist. Larissa Bixby caught up with Laura to get to know her a bit better.
An exciting aspect of museum work is making new discoveries. Sometimes, these discoveries may only be new to the researcher. Usually, this means an item has been “rediscovered” in the museum’s archives. The Osceola County Historical Society has made such a discovery! In reorganizing our archives, we happened upon a postcard from 136 years ago. The postcard was addressed to a Miss Martha A. Pierce of Holliston, MA and was sent from her step-sister, Annie of Livermore Falls, Maine. This may sound like an unappealing find, and it certainly is not relevant to Osceola County history. However, what is unique about the postcard is Annie was able to fit 620 words on it, and they are legible (mostly)! Even after 136 years, the writing of a young woman, updating her step-sister of her life can still be read and enjoyed. We’ll count this as a win for history!
Each year, the Florida Association of Museums honors those who help museums fulfill their individual missions. One such honor, the Outstanding Volunteer Award is given to a “volunteer whose service to a museum has made a lasting impact on the fulfillment of the institution’s mission”. Osceola County Historical Society has many wonderful volunteers and, as a result, decided to nominate one of them: Anza Bast.
Congratulations are in order for the Osceola County Historical Society after being awarded the Non-Profit of the Year Award by the St. Cloud Chamber of Commerce on September 29, 2018. As a dedicated member of the St. Cloud Chamber of Commerce, we are honored to receive this prestigious award. OCHS’ goal is to collect and preserve the history of Osceola County and it is wonderful to be recognized for the hard work the staff, volunteers, board of directors, and donors put forth.
Celebrate Osceola County's first residents and the pioneering spirit of the late 19th century during the 27th Annual Pioneer Day. Here are some reasons why you won't want to miss this event, 27 reasons to be exact!
Topics: 27th Annual Pioneer Day, Pioneer Village at Shingle Creek, Osceola County Historical Society, Outdoor Event, Fall Festival, History, Free Admission, Big John's Rockin' BBQ, Boggy Creek Airboat Adventures
The Osceola County Historical Society would like to welcome Kimberly Murray as the new Executive Director. Kimberly has a Master of Science Degree in Human Services Management and officially joined the OCHS team on October 1, 2018.