Educational Units

What were Civil Wars solders doing in Pensacola, Florida? What do you do when primary source documents about the same event tell different stories?

Students use Civil War diaries, an essay from Zora Neale Hurston, and advertisements from World War II to examine the raw materials of Florida history.

Before Statehood

The Florida Seminoles

Go to "The Florida Seminoles."

This unit introduces major themes, events, and individuals in Seminole history using primary sources from the collections of the State Library and Archives of Florida.

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Civil War in Florida 1861-1865

Florida in the Civil War

Go to "Florida in the Civil War."

Read letters, diaries ("I forgot to mention that President Lincoln and some of his cabinet were assassinated on Saturday night.") and official records.

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Post-Civil War Florida 1865-1913

The Koreshan Unity: Florida’s Pioneer Utopian Community

Go to "The Koreshan Unity."

Learn about one of Florida’s most interesting and influential pioneering communities: the Koreshan Unity.

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Florida and the Spanish-American War of 1898

Go to "Images of Florida and the War for Cuban Independence, 1898."

Florida, the closest state to the Caribbean and home to a large Cuban immigrant population, became the setting for much of the action in Cuba's fight for independence from Spain.

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Mary McLeod Bethune

Go to "Mary McLeod Bethune."

Mary McLeod Bethune founded the Daytona Normal and Industrial School for Negro Girls which is now Bethune-Cookman College in Daytona, Florida. Read the transcript of an interview for an unfinished biography.

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The Cigar Industry Changes Florida

Go to "The Cigar Industry Changes Florida"

In the decades after the Civil War, cigar making became one of the most important industries in the southeastern United States.

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Railroads Change Florida

Go to "Railroads Change Florida"

Trains helped to establish new towns and cities in Florida, and served the lumber, phosphate, tourist, manufacturing and agricultural industries.

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Depression and the New Deal Years in Florida, 1930-1941

Neale Hurston, the WPA in Florida, and the Cross City Turpentine Camp

Go to "Zora Neale Hurston, the WPA in Florida, and the Cross City Turpentine Camp."

Zora Neale Hurston was already a published writer when she began working for the Florida division of the Work Projects Administration (WPA). In August of 1939, Hurston went on a recording expedition to the turpentine camps in Cross City, Florida.

View Neale Hurston, the WPA in Florida, and the Cross City Turpentine Camp »

Florida During World War II

Go to "Florida During World War II."

Letters, telegrams, advertisements and brochures depicting life during World War II.

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Contemporary Florida, 1960-Present

Civil Rights Movement in Florida

Go to "Images of the Civil Rights Movement in Florida."

This unit introduces major themes, events, and individuals in the history of the Civil Rights Movement in Florida using primary sources from the collections of the State Library and Archives of Florida.

View the Civil Rights Movement in Florida »

The Cuban Experience in Florida: Revolution and Exodus

Go to "The Cuban Experience in Florida."

This unit provides insight into the experience of Cuban refugees in Florida using photographs, government documents, letters, videos and interviews.

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NASA and the Space Program Change Florida

Go to "NASA and the Space Program Change Florida"

This unit provides an introduction to Florida’s involvement in the Space Age through photographs, lesson plans, and exercises.

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Lucreaty Clark, White Oak Basket Maker

Go to "Lucreaty Clark, White Oak Basket Maker."

Clark learned to make white oak baskets from her parents. Originally these sturdy baskets were used to hold cotton and carry vegetables. The tradition of white oak basket making has been carried on by Lucreaty Clark's grandson, Alphonso Jennings.

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Netmaking and Net Fishing in Florida

Go to "Netmaking and Net Fishing in Florida."

Longtime net maker and Fernandina resident Billy Burbank III discusses the history and practices of the net making trade.

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Seminole Doll Making

Go to "Seminole Doll Making."

Seminole doll maker Mary B. Billie and her daughter, Claudia C. John, discuss the history and practices of Seminole doll making.

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Sacred Harp

Go to "Sacred Harp."

Documents and audio recordings in this unit are primarily drawn from The Sacred Harp Sing, a slide and tape show created by the Florida Folklife Program in 1978, and field recordings by Alton Morris in 1949 in Gainesville, Florida.

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