The Ocoee massacre was a white mob attack on African-American residents in northern Ocoee, Florida, which occurred on November 2, 1920, the day of the U.S. presidential election. In 1913 he bought a home on West Oakland avenue and converted one of the rooms into a library which he allowed the community to use. The town is in Orange County near Orlando. The Town of Ocoee was the name of a subdivision platted by Dr. H.K. It wasn’t until the 1970s that records show a Black person owned property in Ocoee again, Schwartz noted. As recently as 1960, the population was only about 2,500, but this population would increase rapidly as several major roadways were constructed through the City, creating a more accessible environment. The first school in Ocoee was established in 1880. The Ocoee Fall Music Festival (formerly Ocoee Founders' Day Festival) is dedicated to celebrating Ocoee’s small town traditions with country music, community, small businesses, and fun. The city logo is inspired by this flower. Part of the community since 1965, WMFE focuses on providing … Florida’s Turnpike was the next major roadway constructed through Ocoee. Florida — A documentary is set to release on a piece of Central Florida history you may never have heard about. The Ocoee station burned in a fire of undetermined origin on December 4, 1928. Starke, stricken with malaria, led a group of slaves, similarly stricken, to the north side of an open pine wooded lake that provided clear and clean water to avoid further malaria outbreaks. Though the shadows of the Confederacy still lingered in Central Florida long into the 1900s, pioneer Ocoee was a model of a post-slavery economically integrated Southern town. [11] In late 1990, Ocoee was connected to Orlando by a western extension of Florida State Road 408 (the East-West Expressway) which then joined the Florida's Turnpike south of SR 50. As of the 2010 census, the city had a population of 35,579. He took the name from a river in Tennessee. Many of the measures now on the books focus on education. In 1920, a mob burned a Black community in Ocoee, Florida, because an African American man tried to vote. WMFE is Central Florida's primary provider of NPR programming on 90.7 FM and Classical Music on 90.7 HD2. The population density was 1,843.1 inhabitants per square mile (711.8/km2). The Town of Ocoee was recognized as a municipality by the Flori… On the night of the massacre, white World War I veterans from throughout Orange County murdered dozens of African American residents. State Road 50 (SR 50) was constructed south of downtown Ocoee in 1959 and provided a direct east-west connection between the City and a growing Orlando. [11], Highway construction was the impetus for Ocoee's growth in the 20th century. The history of lynching and anti-Black violence should be taught in schools. Over the past 26 years, we have seen our Festival grow from a few hundred to 20,000 attendees. The Ocoee massacre, considered the “single bloodiest day in modern American political history,” was a violent race riot that broke out on November 2, 1920. Hard surfaced roads did not come until many years later, but the sand trails were improved. [11], Bluford Sims began groundbreaking work in budding wild orange trees while in Ocoee. MIAMI (CBSMiami) – As Florida prepares for Election Day, it is remembering a dark day in its political history. “Florida failed,” said Paul Ortiz, a professor of history at the University of Florida. The median income for a household in the city was $53,225, and the median income for a family was $56,865. What happened in Ocoee, Florida in 1920? [7] It is part of the Orlando–Kissimmee–Sanford, Florida Metropolitan Statistical Area. In the small town of Ocoee, Fla., a racist mob went on a rampage after a Black man tried to cast his ballot on Nov. 2, 1920. How do I find out where my vehicle has been towed. For more than 40 years, Ocoee remained an all-white sundown town. Many more settlers moved in, large areas were cleared, and the market grew larger with better transportation facilities. Important Information in Regards to the Coronavirus. As a result crops like corn, cotton, and sweet potatoes were abandoned in favor of more lucrative citrus groves and vegetables for the winter market of the north. It is called the ‘Ocoee Massacre’ and the story centers around one group’s fight for the right to vote. Until recently, the destruction of Ocoee’s Black community 100 years ago was a mostly forgotten piece of history. There were 8,405 housing units at an average density of 635.1 per square mile (245.3/km2). Orlando Int'l became the official station of record for Orlando in February 1974. Ocoee remained a small town through the mid 1900’s, when the rapidly expanding Orlando Metropolitan Area began to grow westward. In the mid-1850s, Dr. J.D. What are the City of Ocoee Utility Billing Rates? The city logo is inspired by this flower. It was a massacre all but forgotten for decades. But what if we told you, however, that it’s the city where the plans for Disney World were developed For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 94.3 males. That structure was replaced in the early 1920s with a brick building. He was also Postmaster and Justice of the Peace. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 15.20% of the population. He holds degrees from the College of William and Mary in Virginia and the University of Central Florida… [24], Residents are zoned to Orange County Public Schools. Ocoee was incorporated in 1922[10] (or 1923[11]) and became a city in 1925. His commercial citrus nursery was the first in the United States in Ocoee, supplying many other groves in Florida with their first trees as well as shipping young citrus trees to California. Completed in 2000, this tollway connects U.S. 441 in the north and Interstate-4 (I-4), just south of Walt Disney World. Sen. Bracy sponsored the 2020 Florida law designed to ensure that the Ocoee Massacre of 1920 was included in Florida school history curriculums, as well as in state museum exhibits and programming. Hispanic or Latino of any race was 16.6%. ORLANDO, Fla. — Ocoee, Florida, is not a city widely known outside of the greater Orlando area. Blakely would devote more than 50 years to teaching, running a general store, and promoting Ocoee as a desirable place to live. The Town of Ocoee was recognized as a municipality by the Florida legislature in 1923 and became the City of Ocoee in May 1925. The historical record around the event does not show the number of dead so clearly, however. Other African Americans living in southern Ocoee were later killed or driven out on threat of more violence. Though the Florida Midland Railroad would experience some decline and disrepair over time for another more preferred gauge of track, it had unquestionably done much to spur growth in Ocoee. The dark day in Florida's history escalated after one Black citizen tried to exercise his right to vote at a polling location but was turned away on Election Day. Ocoee was served by the Atlantic Coast Line Railroad. Roper created the Town of Ocoee subdivision in 1886. Clarke, Charles J. Chun and R.B.F. Ocoee was really the name of a subdivision platted by Bluford Sims. It is the section of land Sims used for citrus growth which now comprises most of what is considered downtown Ocoee. Ocoee is currently growing at a rate of 2.73% annually and its population has increased by 41.64% since the most recent census, which recorded a population of 35,579 in 2010. Approximately 50 Blacks and two whites died in the violence and the entire Black community of Ocoee was forced to flee the town. He took the name from a river in Tennessee. How do I make my monthly service payments? The Town of Ocoee, Florida— 1920. On November 2, 1920, after July Perry and Mose Norman, two black men, attempted to vote and encouraged other blacks to vote, the entire black population of the town was attacked by a mob organized by the Ku Klux Klan. As the tracks were laid and completed for the Florida Midland Railroad in the 1880s, growth in the area was rapid. In the mid-1850s, Dr. J.D. Under Florida law, e-mail addresses are public records. OCOEE, Fla. - More than 100 new state laws took effect on July 1, covering issues from regulating electric bikes to increasing fines for bear poaching. [28], ‡This populated place also has portions in an adjacent county or counties. Located near Orlando in central Florida’s Orange County, Ocoee had a population of just more than 35,000 residents at the time of the last census. On Election Day, November 2, 1920 African Americans in Ocoee and in other parts of Florida sought to cast their ballots for President. It was a three sided hut located on Floral street, which was later replaced by a two-story wooden structure built on Bluford Avenue. As voters went into the polls Tuesday, many remembered a more grim Election Day from a century ago. You are invited to join us this Sunday for a time of praise, fellowship and contemplation as we celebrate our Savior and explore the mysteries of faith. [8] Captain Sims received a land grant for a 74-acre parcel to the west of Starke Lake in what is now the downtown portion of Ocoee on October 5, 1883. Ocoee essentially became an … OCOEE, Fla. - One hundred years ago, racism won in Ocoee. Mrs. E D. Perkins was the original teacher. Events unfolded on Election Day 1920, when Mose Norman, a black U.S. citizen, attempted to exercise his legal right to vote in Ocoee and was turned away from the polls. Ocoee unveiled a historic marker Sunday for the victims of the 1920 election day massacre. The tollway, also known as the East-West Expressway, connects the Turnpike south of SR 50, through downtown Orlando, and to the University of Central Florida in the east. For every 100 females, there were 97.4 males. Hazen, Bob (January 7, 2020), "Ocoee leaders seek eminent domain over area believed to be historic black cemetery," https://www.wesh.com/article/ocoee-leaders-seek-eminent-domain-over-area-believed-to-be-historic-black-cemetery/30434506# At least 24 black homes were burned, the institutions constituting the black community were destroyed and Perry was lynched. The per capita income for the city was $20,896. Males had a median income of $33,628 versus $26,519 for females. As of the census[5] of 2000, there were 24,391 people, 8,072 households, and 6,554 families residing in the city. 840 Maguire Rd Ocoee, FL 34761 321-315-6262 - Sales (407) 927-2002 - Sales (407) 324-7778 - Office On November 2, 1920, a Black man attempted to vote in Ocoee, Florida—and sparked the bloodiest Election Day massacre in U.S. history. Ocoee (/əˈkoʊ.i/) is a city in Orange County, Florida, United States. Decades later, in late 1990, the connection between Ocoee and Orlando was further secured when the western extension of SR 408 was completed. [9] In 1886, Captain Sims, along with a group of original settlers, led an effort to have the town platted and changed the name to Ocoee, after a river he grew up near in Tennessee. Ocoee means "apricot vine" in the Cherokee language - what we now call the passion flower. Johnson, Whitney (November 6, 2020), "A Century After Massacre, Descendants Make a Point of Voting," National Geographic https://email.nationalgeographic.com/H/2/v6000001759f2c481a9834ee6e96c660a0/4abed65a-d0b7-4c07-bfae-deba30def7ba/HTML. Orlando–Kissimmee–Sanford, Florida Metropolitan Statistical Area, https://www.wesh.com/article/ocoee-leaders-seek-eminent-domain-over-area-believed-to-be-historic-black-cemetery/30434506#, https://email.nationalgeographic.com/H/2/v6000001759f2c481a9834ee6e96c660a0/4abed65a-d0b7-4c07-bfae-deba30def7ba/HTML, "Profile of General Population and Housing Characteristics: 2010 Demographic Profile Data (DP-1): Ocoee city, Florida", "A White mob unleashed the worst Election Day violence in U.S. history in Florida a century ago", "Ocoee, where massacre occurred in 1920, aims to shed past reputation as 'sundown' town", "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990", "Geographic Identifiers: 2010 Demographic Profile Data (G001): Ocoee city, Florida", National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, "WMO Climate Normals for ORLANDO/JETPORT, FL 1961–1990", https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Ocoee,_Florida&oldid=996575181, Short description is different from Wikidata, Pages using infobox settlement with possible area code list, Wikipedia articles with MusicBrainz area identifiers, Wikipedia articles with WORLDCATID identifiers, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, Source: NOAA (relative humidity 1961–1990), This page was last edited on 27 December 2020, at 12:32. A township of 820 residents, Ocoee was first settled adjacent to Starke Lake, southeast of Lake Apopka, in the mid-1800s. The average household size was 2.99 and the average family size was 3.28. [27] and Olympia High School. William Blakely arrived in Ocoee in 1881. That was not, as far as we know, the largest killing of Black people by whites in Florida — that happened in Newberry in 1916. [16], According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 15.7 square miles (40.6 km2), of which 14.7 square miles (38.1 km2) is land and 0.97 square miles (2.5 km2) (6.12%) is water.[17]. Ocoee Massacre: A look back on the state’s little-known violent political, voting history Florida The massacre is considered the largest incident of voting-day violence in United States history It was 1920 and, in Central Florida, Ocoee had a … The development of SR 50 made Ocoee more accessible and attractive to developers, who wanted to build new affordable housing developments. Following the end of the Civil War, a number of settlers moved into the area including Captain Bluford M. Sims, a native of Tennessee who served in the Confederacy. [13][14] In 2018, the city commission issued a proclamation formally acknowledging the massacre and declaring that Ocoee is no longer a sundown town. Description of the History of the Ocoee African Methodist Episcopal Church-Image from Florida Memory. Today their families are still fighting for voter rights. About 4.2% of families and 5.6% of the population were below the poverty line, including 6.6% of those under age 18 and 8.1% of those age 65 or over. The city's population increased further after the American Civil War as Confederate soldiers and their families settled into the area, including Captain Bluford Sims and General William Temple Withers who wintered at the location. 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