[11] Florida's Turnpike was opened just south of downtown Ocoee in 1964. ... Florida History. As the camp grew into a village, it took the name Starke Lake, a name the lake upon which the group settled bears to this day. The population density was 1,843.1 inhabitants per square mile (711.8/km2). 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. Ocoee Massacre: A look back on the state’s little-known violent political, voting history That mob, made up of white World War I veterans from throughout Orange County galvanized. [10] The construction of the Florida Midland Railroad in the 1880s spurred growth in the area and many more settlers moved in.[11]. 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. Males had a median income of $33,628 versus $26,519 for females. Until recently, the destruction of Ocoee’s Black community 100 years ago was a mostly forgotten piece of history. 13.2% of all households were made up of individuals, and 3.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The history of lynching and anti-Black violence should be taught in schools. That structure was replaced in the early 1920s with a brick building. That was not, as far as we know, the largest killing of Black people by whites in Florida — that happened in Newberry in 1916. WMFE is Central Florida's primary provider of NPR programming on 90.7 FM and Classical Music on 90.7 HD2. There were 8,072 households, out of which 44.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 65.9% were married couples living together, 10.7% had a female householder with no husband present, and 18.8% were non-families. In the mid-1850s, Dr. J.D. Florida’s Turnpike was the next major roadway constructed through Ocoee. 840 Maguire Rd Ocoee, FL 34761 321-315-6262 - Sales (407) 927-2002 - Sales (407) 324-7778 - Office What browsers are supported by the City of Ocoee's website? Part of the community since 1965, WMFE focuses on providing … Video: Bill mandating history of Ocoee massacre be taught in Florida schools signed into law Share By: Daralene Jones, WFTV.com and Sarah Wilson, WFTV.com Updated: June 24, 2020 - 6:45 PM In my view, it should not be just the Ocoee Massacre that is taught in Florida schools. In Emancipation Betrayed: The Hidden History of Black Organizing and White Violence in Florida from Reconstruction to the Bloody Election of 1920, Paul Ortiz concludes “American history has completely erased the martyrs of 1920” (Oritz 229).Who are these martyrs and why were they forgotten? 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. Roper created the Town of Ocoee subdivision in 1886. House Bill 1213, signed into Florida law this month, will make sure public school students learn about two very important historical events. [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. Clarke, Charles J. Chun and R.B.F. He took the name from a river in Tennessee. The city logo is inspired by this flower. In 1920, a mob burned a Black community in Ocoee, Florida, because an African American man tried to vote. On Election Day, November 2, 1920 African Americans in Ocoee and in other parts of Florida sought to cast their ballots for President. The City of Ocoee was formed as a small agricultural settlement supported by the local citrus and vegetable farming industry. Ocoee is a city located in Florida.With a 2020 population of 50,394, it is the 60th largest city in Florida and the 785th largest city in the United States. 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. [15] The city has not yet issued an apology. 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. William Blakely arrived in Ocoee in 1881. “Florida failed,” said Paul Ortiz, a professor of history at the University of Florida. Under Florida law, e-mail addresses are public records. the highest and lowest temperature readings during an entire month or year) calculated based on data at said location from 1981 to 2010. But what if we told you, however, that it’s the city where the plans for Disney World were developed Approximately 50 Blacks and two whites died in the violence and the entire Black community of Ocoee was forced to flee the town. Mrs. E D. Perkins was the original teacher. [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]. He soon became school principal and teacher. It is called the ‘Ocoee Massacre’ and the story centers around one group’s fight for the right to vote. Other African Americans living in southern Ocoee were later killed or driven out on threat of more violence. Roper created the Town of Ocoee subdivision in 1886. [11], Highway construction was the impetus for Ocoee's growth in the 20th century. 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. Hard surfaced roads did not come until many years later, but the sand trails were improved. The historical record around the event does not show the number of dead so clearly, however. African-American-owned buildings and residences in northern Ocoee, a city in Orange County, Florida, were burned to the ground. On the night of the massacre, white World War I veterans from throughout Orange County murdered dozens of African American residents. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 15.20% of the population. Completed in 2000, this tollway connects U.S. 441 in the north and Interstate-4 (I-4), just south of Walt Disney World. The Ocoee station burned in a fire of undetermined origin on December 4, 1928. For every 100 females, there were 97.4 males. Orlando Int'l became the official station of record for Orlando in February 1974. Ocoee was incorporated in 1922[10] (or 1923[11]) and became a city in 1925. 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. 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. As the camp grew into a village, it took the name Starke Lake, a name the lake upon which the group settled bears to this day. The Town of Ocoee was the name of a subdivision platted by Dr. H.K. The city's population … 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. [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. In the city, the population was spread out, with 29.2% under the age of 18, 8.0% from 18 to 24, 36.2% from 25 to 44, 19.3% from 45 to 64, and 7.3% who were 65 years of age or older. The development of what would become Florida State Road 50 made the town more accessible to housing developers. The median income for a household in the city was $53,225, and the median income for a family was $56,865. It was a revolutionary act. 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. Many of the measures now on the books focus on education. Clarke, Charles J. Chun and R.B.F. The racial makeup of the city was 81.47% White, 6.59% African American, 0.35% Native American, 2.93% Asian, 0.06% Pacific Islander, 6.22% from other races, and 2.38% from two or more races. The city logo is inspired by this flower. [11], Ocoee is located at 28°34′27″N 81°31′50″W / 28.574050°N 81.530596°W / 28.574050; -81.530596. A township of 820 residents, Ocoee was first settled adjacent to Starke Lake, southeast of Lake Apopka, in the mid-1800s. Ocoee has a Livability Score of 80 /100, which is considered exceptional; Ocoee crime rates are 19% higher than the Florida average; Cost of living in Ocoee is 1% lower than the Florida average; Ocoee real estate prices are 9% higher than the Florida average; Rental prices in Ocoee are 14% higher than the Florida average [13][14] In 2018, the city commission issued a proclamation formally acknowledging the massacre and declaring that Ocoee is no longer a sundown town. As of the 2010 census, the city had a population of 35,579. Hispanic or Latino of any race was 16.6%. Most African American-owned buildings and residences in northern Ocoee were burned to the ground. The camp built by the group provided a base of operations from which to commute during the day to work the fields near Lake Apopka and rest at night. Ocoee means "apricot vine" in the Cherokee language - what we now call the passion flower. Ocoee means "apricot vine" in the Cherokee language - what we now call the passion flower. Today their families are still fighting for voter rights. The Town of Ocoee was the name of a subdivision platted by Dr. H.K. A township of 820 residents, Ocoee was first settled adjacent to Starke Lake, southeast of Lake Apopka, in the mid-1800s. It was 1920 and, in Central Florida, Ocoee had a … It wasn’t until the 1970s that records show a Black person owned property in Ocoee again, Schwartz noted. 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. Key findings. ORLANDO, Fla. — Ocoee, Florida, is not a city widely known outside of the greater Orlando area. 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. [9] Ocoee is a Cherokee Indian word anglicized from uwagahi, meaning "apricot vine place"[10] and this inspired the choice of the city's flower. [27] and Olympia High School. Blakely would devote more than 50 years to teaching, running a general store, and promoting Ocoee as a desirable place to live. Sims had a number of other credits and accomplishments to his name including road commissioner, Freemason, and contractor for the first framed court house in Orlando. [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. The Ocoee Massacre, which occurred in the town of Ocoee, Florida on November 2-3, 1920, was the largest election-related massacre in the 20th Century. What are the City of Ocoee Utility Billing Rates? This 309 mile long freeway was extended through West Orange County in 1964, just south of the Ocoee downtown area, and provided Ocoee with excellent north-south access. The average household size was 2.99 and the average family size was 3.28. 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. As of the 2005-2009 American Community Survey the population was 31,544, and the city had a racial makeup of 74.9% White, 13.8% African American, 4.0% Asian, 0.2% Native American, 0.1% Pacific Islander, 5.4% some other race and 1.6% two or more races. 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. The state of Florida has recently mandated a law requiring that public schools and state institutions teach the history of the Ocoee Massacre. How do I make my monthly service payments? Most estimates total 30–35 black people killed. Ocoee essentially became an … He took the name from a river in Tennessee. It was a three sided hut located on Floral street, which was later replaced by a two-story wooden structure built on Bluford Avenue. [12] Before the massacre, Ocoee's black population numbered approximately five hundred; after the massacre, however, the black population was nearly eliminated. As the tracks were laid and completed for the Florida Midland Railroad in the 1880s, growth in the area was rapid. It was a massacre all but forgotten for decades. Important Information in Regards to the Coronavirus. Ocoee remained a small town through the mid 1900’s, when the rapidly expanding Orlando Metropolitan Area began to grow westward. [7] It is part of the Orlando–Kissimmee–Sanford, Florida Metropolitan Statistical Area. [11], Bluford Sims began groundbreaking work in budding wild orange trees while in Ocoee. Many more settlers moved in, large areas were cleared, and the market grew larger with better transportation facilities. The front page of the Orlando Evening Star from Nov. 3, 1920 notes that eight died in a riot in Ocoee. The first school in Ocoee was established in 1880. For more than 40 years, Ocoee remained an all-white sundown town. 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. Florida — A documentary is set to release on a piece of Central Florida history you may never have heard about. 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. 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. He had purchased a tract of land from Dr. J. D. Starke and established the first citrus nursery in the United States. ... A historical marker honoring July Perry was placed in Heritage Square outside the Orange County Regional History Center, on 21 June 2019. 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. 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 The town is in Orange County near Orlando. 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. [24], Residents are zoned to Orange County Public Schools. He holds degrees from the College of William and Mary in Virginia and the University of Central Florida… On November 2, 1920, a Black man attempted to vote in Ocoee, Florida—and sparked the bloodiest Election Day massacre in U.S. history. 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. There were 8,405 housing units at an average density of 635.1 per square mile (245.3/km2). He was also Postmaster and Justice of the Peace. 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. Explore seven sites, spread throughout Central Florida, where you can observe and experience the region's Civil Rights history and learn about … Description of the History of the Ocoee African Methodist Episcopal Church-Image from Florida Memory. The final piece of the Ocoee connectivity story is SR 429, also known as the Western Expressway. How do I find out where my vehicle has been towed. Ocoee unveiled a historic marker Sunday for the victims of the 1920 election day massacre. Decades later, in late 1990, the connection between Ocoee and Orlando was further secured when the western extension of SR 408 was completed. MIAMI (CBSMiami) – As Florida prepares for Election Day, it is remembering a dark day in its political history. It is the section of land Sims used for citrus growth which now comprises most of what is considered downtown Ocoee. The median age was 33 years. As of the census[5] of 2000, there were 24,391 people, 8,072 households, and 6,554 families residing in the city. Ocoee was really the name of a subdivision platted by Bluford Sims. The Town of Ocoee was recognized as a municipality by the Flori… The 1920 Ocoee Massacre in Orange County, Florida, remains the largest incident of voting-day violence in United States history. The Town of Ocoee, Florida— 1920. [11] In 2000, the completion of Florida State Road 429 (the Western Expressway) linked Ocoee with Walt Disney World to the south. 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. The per capita income for the city was $20,896. 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. Ocoee Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) is a caring community of faith that welcomes individuals from all walks of life. 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. What happened in Ocoee, Florida in 1920? Mean monthly maxima and minima (i.e. 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. 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. The camp built by the group provided a base of operations from which to commute during the day to work the fields near Lake Apopka and rest at night. 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. 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. OCOEE, Fla. - One hundred years ago, racism won in Ocoee. [28], ‡This populated place also has portions in an adjacent county or counties. 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. Ocoee (/əˈkoʊ.i/) is a city in Orange County, Florida, United States. In the midst of a national euphoria of forgetting, a town called Ocoee, Florida has taken the bold step of remembering an event in the nation's history that many had tried to cover up. [25], High schools serving sections of Ocoee include Ocoee High School,[26] West Orange High School. ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. – In addition to Election Day, Florida is just days away from marking 100 years since an important yet dark moment in Central Florida’s history: The Ocoee Massacre. The development of SR 50 made Ocoee more accessible and attractive to developers, who wanted to build new affordable housing developments. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 94.3 males. Ocoee was served by the Atlantic Coast Line Railroad. In the mid-1850s, Dr. J.D. As voters went into the polls Tuesday, many remembered a more grim Election Day from a century ago. Over the past 26 years, we have seen our Festival grow from a few hundred to 20,000 attendees. 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