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First Presbyterian: 1904

First Presbyterian: 1904

Circa 1904. "Jacksonville, Florida. First Presbyterian Church." 8x10 inch dry plate glass negative, Detroit Publishing Company. View full size.


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Newer isn't better.

What a nice arc lamp. Color rendering index (CRI) near 100. Modern sodium lamp CRI = 20. Things were better then.

House divided

The church's website notes that in the 1860s it split over "regional and political differences." (Interpret that!) In the late nineteenth century there were two Presbyterian churches on this street, one block apart. Today's location seems to descend from the liberal group; the site of the competing congregation is now a Masonic temple. Just when Jacksonville's Presbyterians made up, and on what terms, isn't clear.

Out of the Ashes

The church, like most of Jacksonville's downtown, was rebuilt after the city's Great Fire of 1901. In just eight hours the conflagration leveled 146 city blocks, destroyed over 2,000 buildings and left almost 10,000 people homeless. The new Jacksonville Public Library, next door to the church at the right, was under construction when this photo was taken. The new "fireproof" library opened in 1905, built with funds donated by Andrew Carnegie.

Unknown Electrical Device

That device hanging near the telegraph pole. Electric fire siren? Anti-squirrel bird feeder?

[It's an arc lamp. - Dave]

At East Monroe and Ocean

It looks like the church has swallowed up some of the houses beside it.

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Even though it's a church

... there's not a soul in sight. Not much "saving" going on this day.

[Wrong denomination. If it's "saving" you want, try the Baptist church down the street. - Dave]

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