Florida, now America's third most populous state, was a remote, under-populated wilderness in the early 19th century. Two men, father and son, were major players in the state's development and eventual statehood. Yet their roles were vastly different and they achieved prominence in totally divergent ways. Despite their achievements they remain mostly forgotten today. Moses Elias Levy, a businessman and developer, bought thousands of acres of Florida land from Spanish grantees and established "Pilgrimage", intended as a homeland for displaced Jews. He proposed America's first school for Jewish children and relentlessly advocated for Judaism (as well as the abolition of slavery). His son, David Levy Yulee became a lawyer, politician, territorial delegate to Congress and ultimately, one of Florida's first two Senators. He lobbied for Florida's admission to the Union in 1845. He was the stubborn builder of Florida's first cross-state railroad at a time when there were virtually no roads. This is a history of Frontier Florida, a story of religion and politics, slavery and the Civil War, and a glimpse into relationships of fathers and sons.
©2017 Jerald Blizin (P)2017 Clear Voice Media