Osceola County Historical Society Blog

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

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

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

The Reward of Loving History!

Posted by Krystal Baize on Jun 27, 2018 11:34:50 AM

History is happening every day, the Narcoossee Area Chapter of the Osceola County Historical Society made history of their own at the Florida Trust for Historic Preservation's 40th Annual Conference in Jacksonville, FL,  The chapter received an Outstanding Achievement Award from The Florida Trust for Historic Preservation, recognizing the circa 1886 Narcoossee Schoolhouse project.

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Topics: Narcoossee, Narcoossee Schoolhouse, Osceola History, Osceola County Historical Society Curator, Volunteer

Joseph Tripp Burbank

Posted by Anza Bast on Nov 14, 2017 9:30:00 PM

In 1915, at the age of seventy-seven, Joseph Tripp Burbank was known as the “Champion Combination Drummer of the World” according to the St. Cloud Tribune.  Born in Bradford County, Pennsylvania on October 12, 1836, J.T., as he was later known, was one of nine children born to Jacob and Sophia Burbank.

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Topics: Veteran, St. Cloud, Osceola History

Antique Funeral Coach

Posted by Kari Whaley on Oct 31, 2016 9:30:00 AM

The haunted history of Osceola County has creaked into the artifact collection at OCHS. The antique funeral coach, shrouded in mystery, was donated to the Osceola County Historical Society by Osceola Memory Gardens in 2015. Although the origin of the coach is unknown, it is suspected to have been manufactured in Upstate New York, Pennsylvania, or Massachusetts circa 1890. However, the only shocking part of this tale is that the horse-drawn funeral hearse has remained in excellent condition, complete with full seat cushions, seat drops, curtains, hitch, and coffin. 

 An official appraisal suggests that the coach may have been manufactured by Cunningham Coach, based in Rochester, New York or George Brownell, who hailed from Bristol County, Massachusetts. Both were award winning manufacturers, known for creating fine carriages of the highest grade. The rise of petrol-driven hearses, circa 1909 in the United States, brought about the decline of horse-drawn hearses. 

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Topics: Educational, Osceola History, Artifact Spotlight, Antique Funeral Coach

Dr. Thomas M. Rivers

Posted by Anza Bast on Oct 20, 2016 9:30:00 AM

Born near Lake City, Columbia County, Florida on August 8, 1868, Thomas Maximus Rivers was the fourth of nine children born to Susan Amanda Walston and Lewis William Rivers. After a general education, he attended the Medical College of South Carolina and graduated in the class of 1900. While attending medical school, Thomas and Rosalie Clare Godfrey married on September 4, 1895 in Lake Park, Georgia. Thomas began his medical profession in Lake Park where he and Rosalie had three sons, but by 1902 only their third son remained. It appears Thomas and Rosalie’s marriage ended shortly afterwards and Thomas married Roberta Peterson about 1903. They added two daughters to the family and in January of 1906 the family arrived in Kissimmee, Florida where Thomas embarked on a thirty-seven year practice.

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Topics: Osceola History, Dr. Thomas M. Rivers, History, Osceola County History

Fraternity Hall

Posted by Anza Bast on Sep 15, 2016 9:30:00 AM

In July 1908, W.B. Tally was hired to design a building, to be called Fraternity Hall. The Masons and Pythians long felt the need for a meeting place for their organizations, one which would be large enough to accommodate their groups. The site of the old saloon next to S.C.G. Hardware Company was secured and W.B. Tally was hired as the architect.

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Topics: History, Fraternity Hall, Osceola History

The History behind the Holy Redeemer Catholic Church

Posted by Anza Bast on Aug 26, 2016 9:30:00 AM

The history of Holy Redeemer Catholic Church begins with the arrival of Mr. Anthony Tress from Beaver Falls, Pennsylvania.  He came to Kissimmee in the fall of 1895 on account of poor health and before the end of the year, a Mass was celebrated at the Tropical Hotel by a Jesuit Father from Tampa.  Following the arrival of his wife, Annie and two children in 1898, a defunct bank building was used 3 times a year for Mass services.  There was only one other Catholic family in town.

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Topics: Osceola History, History, Holy Redeemer Catholic Church

5 Reasons to Visit the Pioneer Village This Summer

Posted by Krystal McIntee on Jul 12, 2016 9:30:00 AM

Looking for something unique to do with family and friends this summer? Look no farther! The Pioneer Village at Shingle Creek is comprised of a permanent collection of 8 historic structures which once stood in different areas of Osceola County. While walking through the Pioneer Village, you’ll feel as though you are taking a stroll back in time. Here is a list of the top 5 reasons you should come visit.

Here is a list of the top 5 reasons you should come visit the Pioneer Village this summer!

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Topics: History, Osceola History, The Pioneer Village, Summer Activities, Educational, Facility Rentals, Affordable, Kid Friendly, Field Trips and Group Trips

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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