Monday, December 10, 2007

What is "Seminole"?

Taking a short break from politics for this week. I'll return next week. In the meantime, I will tout a store in our own county that is unique, fun, and people from all political stripes should visit. (PS-I'm not getting paid for this. But I do want to give my support to a local Seminole business owner)

I drove past this store many times and finally decided to go in. I wanted an antique map of Florida to hang in my office and figured this would be the place. I dragged my wife to the Map and Globe Store, located in Sanford, FL. Although she didn't want to go, she was glad she did. The owner of the store has visited every continent and virtually every country. She is a cartographer who publishes many official maps for the state; but she collects antique maps and globes as a hobby. Her unique globes are all around the store--some are exquisite; others are funny (such as the one with Disney characters from their native lands); and then there is the 70s globe that becomes a bar. It has other interesting items:

  • There is a wooden map of the world, where each nation is made out of wood indigenous to that country (with the exception of Antarctica).

  • There is the United States Map made out of state licesnse plates.

  • There is the map of Florida where each city is a fun drawing of something unique (it even has UCF's new football stadium)

  • There is a collection of different world maps that each attempt to accurately capture the spherical globe. (The most common is the "Good God Greenland map", which shows Greenland on par with Africa. The most accurate is the Peters map, which scrunch up the continents)

  • OLD, VERY OLD Florida maps. Interestingly, the maps of the 1800s are sealed in plastic, but the VERY old ones, such as one from the 1600s, you can touch as much as you want. The reason? The very old maps were printed on parchment, made from animal skin--not paper.
It made me want to learn some more about where I live.

Quick question: How many counties does Florida currently have?

If you said two, you would have been right 150 years ago. Florida was divided into just two counties in 1845: St. John's on the right and Escambia on the left. Today, it has 67.

St. John's County was divided up several more times, which includes a giant county that streched from Central to South Florida called Mosquito County: (in yellow):

When Florida became a state, Mosquito County was renamed Orange County (better for tourists), and was further cut up into Volusia, Brevard, and Osceola County.

Orange was still pretty populated. It was getting too big--so on April 25, 1913, the top portion split into Seminole County. It was named after the tribe of Indians native to Florida. (There is talk today of Orange breaking again into the western portion, but the map today is pretty set.)

By the way, the Seminole County museum is also located in Sanford. It's free admission if you'd like to check it out some time. Sanford is the county seat of government. The historic area is featured on the top right of this blog's title bar; and the newer portion (to include the new courthouse) is seen on the top left.

Well, that's the Seminole portion of the Seminole Democrat (Republican). Hope you learned something. Visit the museum and the store for more info.

Next week, I'll return to focusing on the rest of the title....

1 comment :

  1. I recommend trying the Orange County museum downtown as well.