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.
Do you like trying new foods? Are you a fan of unique stores? How about classic vehicles and muscle cars? If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, then Old Town in Kissimmee is perfect for you!
Topics: Old Town, Kissimmee, Outdoor, Oscoela County Historical Society, Business Membership, Osceola County, City of Kissimmee, Around Osceola County, Osceola County History, Summer Activities, History, Tourism, Osceola History, Around Osceola
Prior to being one of the early settlers of St. Cloud, Florida, Levi Shambow was also a pioneer in the cities of Aurora, Illinois, Portland and Eugene, Oregon, Seattle, Washington and Butte, Montana.
The Lanier family, like many others, migrated from another state to the wild frontier of Florida. The patriarch, John Lanier, came from Georgia where he was born in 1805. The exact date when John came to Florida is unknown. However, we do know that it was after his first wife’s passing and preceding his marriage to Margaret Hogan in 1839. It was during his time in Florida that he made a name for himself and his family in the cattle industry.
Topics: Kissimmee, Oscoela County Historical Society, Osceola County, Pioneer Village at Shingle Creek, City of Kissimmee, Around Osceola County, Pioneer Village, Osceola County History, Educational, History, Shingle Creek, The Pioneer Village, Pioneer Family, Osceola History, Around Osceola
Fair warning—this blog post contains pictures of mouth-watering barbeque food. Be prepared to crave this amazing food!
Topics: Big John's BBQ, Kissimmee, Oscoela County Historical Society, Business Membership, Osceola County, Dine with the Departed, City of Kissimmee, Around Osceola County, Osceola County History, History, Osceola History, Around Osceola
The pride of St. Cloud, Florida; in 1925, was the clock attached to the People’s Bank Building located at the corner of Tenth Street and New York Avenue. The clock first chimed on Monday, July 20, 1925, striking various musical combinations arranged for each quarter hour. When the bank failed in 1928, the St. Cloud City Commission voted to purchase the clock, offering $250.00 - the amount to be absorbed in taxes owed.
Topics: Osceola County History
When the ten-year-old wooden Osceola High School burned to the ground on July 7, 1908; the headlines read “Pride of Osceola Is Laid In Ashes”. A committee of citizens was immediately appointed by the School Board to secure plans for the erection of a new school building. Cooper Contracting Company of Fitzgerald, Georgia was awarded the contract for $17,500 to construct the three-story structure using sand lime brick.
Built in 1924-1925, the Interocean Hotel located on Highway 17-92 seven miles south of Kissimmee, Florida; sat empty the year following completion.
It was slightly different in design but dating to the same 1890s time period as the replica schoolhouse at the Pioneer Village and two stories have emerged regarding how the school got its name. Miss Emma Yowell, one of the early teachers refers to it as “Shaker Rag” and stated in a 1940 newspaper interview that it was later known as “Pine Grove” in a 1940 newspaper.
Imagine transporting a student from the 1890’s schoolhouse at Pioneer Village at Shingle Creek to a heavily populated area in Osceola County, Florida in 1980; where wild turkeys and bobcats once roamed. What they would see would be startling. An earth-covered school, the design borrowed from Southwest American Indian tribes; was being built to save energy. Referred to as “The dirt school, Groundhog or Eskimo Elementary”, the name chosen was ”Reedy Creek Elementary”.