Osceola County Historical Society Blog

Shake Rag School

Posted by Anza Bast on Aug 14, 2018 8:00:00 AM

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.

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Topics: Osceola History, Around Osceola, History, Educational, Osceola County History, City of Kissimmee, Osceola County, Oscoela County Historical Society, Kissimmee

Earth-Covered School

Posted by Anza Bast on Aug 7, 2018 8:00:00 AM

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”.

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Topics: Osceola History, Around Osceola, History, Educational, Osceola County History, Around Osceola County, City of Kissimmee, Osceola County, Oscoela County Historical Society, Kissimmee

Where was Neallo?

Posted by Anza Bast on Aug 2, 2018 8:00:00 AM

One of the official actions at the first School Board meeting on August 29, 1887 was to name and number the schools.  # 5 was Shiloh, #7 Cross Prairie, #11 Neallo and #13 was Lakeview, to name a few.  There were a total of twenty-one with #22, Merry Winter, added the following month.  The salary for teachers assigned between ten and fifteen students was set at $20 a month; classes above fifteen students would result in $1.50 per student per month additional payment.

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Topics: Osceola History, Around Osceola, The Pioneer Village, Educational, St. Cloud, Osceola County History, Pioneer Village, City of Kissimmee, Pioneer Village at Shingle Creek, City of St. Cloud, Osceola County Historical Society, Osceola County, Oscoela County Historical Society, Samuel Lincoln Lupfer,, Kissimmee

Summer Activities in Osceola County!

Posted by Kayla Smith on Jun 28, 2018 8:00:00 AM

Summer time in Florida is the perfect opportunity to explore the activities and attractions Osceola County has to offer! Offering family-friendly adventures, there are plenty of activities to ensure everyone has fun! Check out some of our favorite places to visit with our family and friends: 

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Topics: Osceola History, Around Osceola, Shingle Creek Regional Park, The Pioneer Village, Tourism, Shingle Creek, History, Summer Activities, Osceola County History, KUA, Pioneer Village, Around Osceola County, City of Kissimmee, Pioneer Village at Shingle Creek, Airboats, Gatorland, Osceola County Historical Society, Osceola County, Toho Water Authority, Totally Tots! Temporary Exhibit, Kissimmee, The Paddling Center, Old Town, Boggy Creek Airboat Rides, Experience Kissimmee, Steffee Landing, Big John's BBQ, Cici's Pizza, United Arts of Central Florida

Dine with the Departed 2018 Recap

Posted by Larissa Bixby on Mar 27, 2018 9:00:00 AM

As dusk fell over Kissimmee’s Historic Rose Hill Cemetery, guests of Osceola County Historical Society’s 9th annual Dine with the Departed sponsored by Gatorland fundraiser began to arrive. Music filled the air as guests perused over 40 silent auction items before taking their seats. Dinner, succulent barbequed chicken and pulled pork accompanied by baked beans and green beans, was catered by Big John’s Rockin’ BBQ.  When dinner service came to a close, the live auction began and was facilitated by OCHS board member, Ricky Booth.  After the live auction closed, the winners of the silent auctions were announced.

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Topics: History, Osceola County History, Dine with the Departed, Rose Hill Cemetery

John Carroll: The "Big Boss"

Posted by Anza Bast on Jan 25, 2018 9:00:00 AM

Born in Bedford, Ohio, John Carroll worked for Ohio oil companies until 1936 when he became manager of his father’s 55,000 acre Carrollton Ranch in Deer Park.  In 1947, he became Vice President of the First National Bank of Kissimmee, retiring in 1975 as Chairman of the Board.  John was one of the sixteen horsemen who rode in the inaugural parade for Governor Spessard Holland in 1941.  He was a charter member of the Silver Spurs quadrille, helped organize the Silver Spurs Riding Club and was its first “Big Boss” in 1942.  At the age of 81, John was honored by being named “Coca Cola Cowboy” in 1988 by the Club.  Bestowed annually since 1982, the honor was given to an Osceola County resident who had worked to promote the rodeo and its way of life.  After receiving the honor, he replied “You don’t know what it means to a Yankee to be accepted like I have been.”

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Topics: History, Osceola County History, Silver Spurs Rodeo, John Carroll

Mary Essie Petrie Caldwell: Dine with the Departed "Passed" Resident

Posted by Anza Bast on Jan 11, 2018 9:00:00 AM

Mary Essie Petrie Caldwell was featured at the first Dine with the Departed event hosted by the Osceola County Historical Society in 2010.  Of distinguished Hugenot ancestry, Essie, as she was fondly known, was born June 3, 1838 in Cheraw, South Carolina to Reverend George H.W. Petrie and his wife Mary Jane.  Rev. Petrie was an eminent clergyman of the Southern Presbyterian Church and Essie’s grandfather was an officer in the American Revolution.

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Topics: Osceola County History, Dine with the Departed, Rose Hill Cemetery, Mary Essie Petrie Caldwell

Ernest P. "Kayo" Murphy

Posted by Anza Bast on Nov 7, 2017 9:00:00 AM

 As a boxer in high school, he was always the smallest of the group.  The nickname “Kayo”, little brother of cartoon character Moon Mullins, was bestowed upon him.  He was born in Brooklyn, Texas; on Christmas Eve in 1916, to A.J. and Florence Murphy and had six brothers and two sisters.  The family moved to Kissimmee when Kayo was in second grade.  His childhood was spent attending local schools, enjoying summers at the old swimming hole on Mill Slough and climbing up trees to watch movies in an open air theater on the corner of Monument Avenue and the railroad tracks.  He later graduated from St. Leo Preparatory College where he excelled in sports and was inducted into the St. Leo College Athletic Hall of Fame.

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Topics: History, Osceola County History, Ernest P. "Kayo" Murphy, Veteran

Top 26 Reasons to Attend the 26th Annual Pioneer Day Event

Posted by Krystal Baize on Oct 17, 2017 9:00:00 AM

Every once in a while an event rolls around that you just don't want to miss...this year, that event is the Osceola County Historical Society's 26th Annual Pioneer Day Event!

Here are the Top 26 Reasons to Attend the 26th Annual Pioneer Day Event on Saturday, November 11, 2017 from 10AM to 4PM!

1. Learn the History! Osceola County is full of rich history. Pioneer Day allows residents and visitors to better understand the Pioneer families and what life in the 1800s would have been like without air conditioning and cell phones. 

2. Help us celebrate our anniversary. This year we will celebrate the 26th Annual Pioneer Day.

3. Save on admission with this great FREE event! That’s right, we are offering free admission to the Pioneer Village at Shingle Creek. Saturday, November 11th  from 10AM to 4PM. FREE ADMISSION AND FREE PARKING!!

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Topics: Osceola County Historical Society Membership, Educational, Kid Friendly, Osceola County History, Free Admission, Pioneer Village, 26th Annual Pioneer Day

Company B Reunion

Posted by Anza Bast on Aug 3, 2017 9:00:00 AM

Company B 2nd Florida Infantry unit has been featured in previous blogs, but have you wondered what happened to these men?   News articles discovered in the Osceola County Historical Society archives tell of a reunion held by the “Border Boys”, an appropriate name for the U.S. Army horsemen who crossed the Rio Grande from Texas in 1916 to fight the Mexican bandit, Pancho Villa.  In the fall of 1969 invitations were sent to twenty of the surviving members, thirteen still resided in Kissimmee and two in St. Cloud, while others lived in California.  Fifteen or sixteen reunions had previously been held on the ranch of Jennings Overstreet, whose father Mack was one of the “Border Boys”.

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Topics: Osceola County History, Company B, 2nd Infantry

About this Blog

The Osceola County Historical Society is focused on preserving Osceola County’s rich, cultural history while sharing it with others. This blog is perfect for just that. 

Remember, here you can find information on:

  • Osceola County History
  • Pioneer Families
  • Events at the Welcome Center and History Museum
  • Much, much more!

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