In all probability, the first person who sought to develop and sell land in what is today Broward County was Arthur Williams. In 1887 he purchased 100 acres of land in what is today Fort Lauderdale, on the south side of the New River. He called the development Palm City and advertised 50 by 100-foot lots at $10.00 each.
Apparently, only a little over a couple dozen lots were sold, and many of them were lost for non-payment of taxes. Within a few years Williams was attempting to sell property in his Palm City as acreage.
Williams was about a decade before his time — it was not until the FEC Railway reached the area in 1896 that selling South Florida real estate became (potentially) profitable.
TALLAHASSEE — The State cabinet Wednesday made its annual gift of 100 automobile license plates of Florida Seminole Indians.
“We went down there about ten years ago for a pow-wow with the Seminoles,” Commissioner of Agriculture Nathan Mayo recalled. “They said they didn’t want us to do anything for them except leave them alone and give them a hundred auto tags. So we’ve been doing it ever since.”
The tags will be sent to Kenneth A. Marmon, Seminole agency superintendent, for distribution among the Indians. The cabinet secretary said the cost to the State will be about seven dollars — just enough to cover the cost of making the tags.
The Palm Beach Post, December 28, 1944
The Historical Society’s monthly public program will be moving a few blocks away on May 15th — to Art Hall (50 NE First Street, Pompano Beach) where artworks with an “Old Pompano” theme will be on display. The event will be held from 5:30 to 8:00 pm and will include food and entertainment.
The art will be produced under the auspices of the Broward Art Guild. On May 11th, artists will assemble in Old Pompano and have two hours to produce their artwork. The finished products will then be on exhibit at Art Hall and a silent auction will be held for those wishing to acquire a piece of art.
Another interesting combination of art and history.
A state-wide manhunt was underway today for a lone bandit who successfully held up the Farmers Bank of Pompano and made off with more than $11,000.
The masked bandit entered the bank last night [Friday, January 31st] just a few minutes before the 7 p.m. closing. He carried a sawed-off shotgun and a brown leather briefcase.
There were only three customers in the bank at that time and the man went directly to the teller’s cage of Clarence W. Benson and told him that it was a stickup and he wasn’t fooling.
The bandit, described as being tall and slim, shoved the briefcase onto the counter and ordered Mr. Benson to put all of his money into it.
He then leaned over to the cage of J. G. Curry and said, “Give me yours, too.”
Although it won’t be known definitely until later today exactly how much the bandit was able to get away with, it was determined that he did get slightly more than $1,000 from Mr. Curry and maybe as much as $10,000 from Mr. Benson.
Miami News, Febrary 1, 1958
The Pompano Beach Fishing Rodeo, which takes place in a couple weeks, began in 1965 as a project of the Pompano Beach Chamber of Commerce. It was intended to help keep tourists in the area for just a little while longer and to support the local charter fishing boats. In 1978, the Rodeo was incorporated as a non-profit organization.
Gertrude Mason Blount (1900 - 1981) was one of a small number of early Pompano residents who did not come from the South — she was a native New Yorker. Her family arrived here in 1917. She graduated from Fort Lauderdale High School (there was no high school at that time in Pompano), where she was elected president of her class. In 1921, she married William H. Blount (1888 - 1966), one of the area’s most prominent agriculturalists and civic leaders.
On April 30, 1562, a French expedition consisting of two ships under the command of Jean Ribaut landed in Florida near St. Augustine. The expedition consisted of 140 French Huguenots (Protestants) seeking to establish a colony in the New World.
Ribaut then sailed northward to the mouth of the St. Johns River, where he had a stone marker erected which contained the French Coat of arms, thus signifying France’s claim to Florida.
When Palm Beach County was created in 1909, Pompano was its southernmost town. The new county had about 5,300 residents and included areas that would later become Boward (1915), Okeechobee (1917) and Martin (1925) counties.
Prior to its incorporation as a City in July 1963, the area that was to become Coral Springs was part of a huge tract of land acquired by Henry “Bud” Lyons between 1911 and 1939 that totaled over 20,000 acres of marshy wilderness in western Broward County. Clearing and draining the land himself, with the help of workers from the Bahamas, most of the land was used to grow beans, earning him the nickname “Titan of the Bean Patch.” Lyons died in 1952, leaving his vast land holdings to his family, who converted the land to be used for ranching, bringing in 5,000 head of cattle.
Excerpt from History of Coral Springs (City of Coral Springs website)
The Pompano State Farmers’ Market (PSFM), established in 1939, is one of the oldest markets in the states’ Farmers’ Market system. The market initially served Broward County agricultural producers as an assembly point for fruits and winter vegetables. Local producers brought their fresh produce to the market where it was graded, packed and shipped to local and state markets. Over time, the PSFM established itself as a major wholesale shipping point, attracting large numbers of South Florida sellers, brokers, and buyers from distant markets. By 1980, over 5.3 million packages of fresh produce were passing through the market.
Excerpt from An Economic Assessment of the Lon-Run Viability of the Pompano State Farmer’ Market (University of Florida, 1999), p. 1