Thursday, May 24, 2007

Rambling in the Sunshine State

I’ve been on vacation for the past week – we started out by spending a weekend in Savannah, then came on down to Florida to visit with my folks. I am once again reminded of all of the people who made Florida what is, after they were soldiers in the War. Many of them were North Carolinians.

Here in Greater Orlando, we have Capt. Bluford M. Sims. He was in Thomas’s Legion and came to the area west of town, and basically created the town of Ocoee and is buried there.

Col. John B. Palmer of the 58th NCT came to what is now Winter Park and bought a number of acres of old orange groves on Lake Maitland. Palmer Ave, the main thoroughfare through old Winter Park, is named for him, and the canal where the boat tours are run was once called Palmer Creek.

The founder of the newspaper in Apopka (whose name escapes me right now – hey, I’m on vacation) was a former soldier from Haywood County.

And, there are many others. Zellwood was named in honor of Lt. Col. Thomas Ellwood Zell of the 121st Pennsylvania Infantry (Not sure where the Lt. Col. rank came from as he is only listed as a captain in NPS).

St. Cloud, south of Orlando, was founded as a home for Union Veterans.

Yesterday, while out rambling, I came upon the grave of “Col. John L. Moore 3rd Ga. Regt.” in the Umatilla Cemetery I wonder what his story is?

To go a little further afield, if I remember correctly, both Maj. Ellis of the 20th Maine and Maj. Gen. John B. Gordon died in Miami.

There are hundreds of these little stories all across the state.

So many stories, so little time….

I should be back home in a day or so.

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