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Florida Times-Union: 1904

Florida Times-Union: 1904

Florida circa 1904. "Jacksonville and St. Johns River." Plus the headquarters of the Florida Times-Union newspaper and much transportation-related signage. 8x10 inch glass negative, Detroit Publishing Company. View full size.

 

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The Florida Times-Union moved out

Not later than 1921 this building at 136 W. Bay Street became the Atlantic Hotel. An article in The Florida Times-Union was about a character they referred to as the Human Fly, actually a Mr. Rockett. It reads in part:

"Mr. Rockett had assembled a crowd in downtown Jacksonville Jan. 9, 1921, on the premise of scaling the front of the Atlantic Hotel, a three-story building at Bay and Hogan streets."

Jacksonville got bypassed

It wouldn't be long before all those travelers and freight would hit Jacksonville and keep right on going. The city's days as a destination were doomed by the relentless push southward of Henry Flagler's railroads and hotels. By the time I grew up there in the 1950s, Jacksonville was more or less Atlanta-lite with a beach.

Jacksonville got "urban renewed"

The St. Johns River is still there and more or less the same. The docks are gone, and any buildings that remain are unrecognizably altered. There are a few ghost signs visible here and there in downtown Jacksonville.

Signs of the times

I would have loved to have studied under some of the great sign painters of those times. Does anyone know if anything in this picture still exists?

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