Bouncing Baby
The film Bouncing Baby, featured here, is a prime example of the works produced by the Vim Comedy Company in Jacksonville, Florida, during the early years of silent films. Favorable weather, political support, and cheap real estate and labor helped to make Jacksonville a major center for motion picture production in this period. The mayor of Jacksonville in 1915−17, J.E.T. Bowden, set out to restore business confidence in northeastern Florida after a recessionary slump and extended an open invitation “to the moving picture fraternity of this country ...
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State Library and Archives of Florida
Will of Zephaniah Kingsley, 1843
Zephaniah Kingsley was a wealthy planter and slave owner in northeast Florida. His heirs included his wife, a freed slave named Anna M. J. Kingsley, and their children. Kingsley was both a defender of slavery and an activist for the legal rights of free blacks. Born in Bristol, England, in 1765, Kingsley moved to Charleston, South Carolina, then a British colony, in 1770. By the 1790s, Kingsley was active in maritime commerce, including the slave trade. In 1803, he became a citizen of Spanish Florida and began acquiring land in ...
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State Library and Archives of Florida
Thousands of Live Alligators on Free Exhibition
This broadside, dating from about 1950, is an advertisement for Osky’s, also known as Osky’s Curio Shop or Osky’s Alligator Store, a Jacksonville mercantile store that sold gift items, rare or bizarre decorative items, and goods made out of alligator skin, including lamps, purses, and wallets. The shop also exhibited live alligators and other reptiles. Jacksonville was home to many of Florida’s earliest tourist attractions, including the Florida Alligator Farm. Operating for several decades on Jacksonville’s historic Bay Street, Osky’s promoted itself through postcards ...
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State Library and Archives of Florida
Confederate Veterans Convention
Reunions of Civil War veterans from both the North and South were a prominent feature of public life in the United States in the early decades of the 20th century. This 1914 silent film records the meeting of 40,000 Confederate veterans in Jacksonville, Florida, nearly a half century after the end of the war. Titles are used to explain each sequence. The motion of the film is somewhat jerky but the quality of the images is good. Aging veterans dance to the music of two fiddlers and gather to ...
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State Library and Archives of Florida