Miami Pioneers and Natives of Dade
Miami Pioneers & Natives Of Dade -

Next Meeting
February 5
at 2:30pm

Central Christian Church
222 Menores Ave, Coral Gables 33134

Enter the door at the south side of the building on Mendoza Ave. Parking in west lot is also available if you enter from Menores Ave. Street parking is also free on Sunday.

Please bring $1 donation to cover the cost of the room. We very much appreciate those who can provide refreshments such as cookies, crackers, brownies, etc.

We welcome one and all to join us for our monthly historical programs and special events.

We usually meet on the first Sunday of each month except for July and August, or on holiday weekends.

Have a question or comment or suggestion?

Send us an email.

2016-17 Officers

our president is Jim Hartnett

past president, Caesar Philips
treasurer, Marlene B. Carlin
sergeant at arms, Gerda Marchese
parliamentarian, Linda Hertz

February 5 Sunday Meeting

The next meeting of the Miami Pioneers and Natives of Dade will take place at the usual location at 2:30pm on Sunday, February 5, 2017.

Dade Heritage Trust
with chairman Christine Rupp

Christine Rupp is the Director of Dade Heritage Trust. She joined the organization in November of 2015 and has made public awareness and education a priority.

In addition to integrating new educational and heritage tour programs, she has developed a relationship with the National Trust for Historic Preservation to assist with preservation issues in Miami.

Due to the new focus of the organization and its outreach efforts, The Greater Miami Convention and Visitors Bureau also recently named the Dade Heritage Trust headquarters an Official Heritage Tourism Visitors Center.

Prior to joining Dade Heritage Trust, Ms. Rupp was the Director of the Coral Gables Museum.

Chris is an avid cyclist, who works tirelessly to promote the benefits of bicycling as a means to get to work and for pleasure. She leads the Dade Heritage Trust bike tours each month and continues her work with Bike Walk Coral Gables and the City of Coral Gables to program bike-friendly events such as the annual Coral Gables Bike Day.

In addition to her involvement in the South Florida community, she also owns a family farmhouse and barns on five acres in Ohio which she is restoring to become a working farm.

Thank You James R. Haj

Our speaker last month was James Haj, president and CEO of The Children's Trust for the past eight months. The trust is an entity established by voter referendum to improve the lives of children and families in Miami-Dade County. Voters overwhelmingly recognized the need to help area children. The group is funded through an independent special district as a component of property tax revenues.

The trust emphasizes collaboration and partnership in order to provide the programs and services needed by children and families. With an annual budget of more than 100 million, at least 10% of funds go to disabled children.

The group seeks to help train the parents of disabled children and provide books for early learning. Their Youth Development activities involves after school and summer programs for 25-30,000 children.

They are promoting health and wellness in schools, which includes school clinics staffed with both RNs and Master Social Work counseling, as well as medical, dental and vision services.

Mr. Haj may be contacted via the Miami Children's Trust we site.

The Cutler Trail, Ingraham Highway and Old Cutler Road

The origins of this coastal route predates the building of roads in Dade County, as a trail along the high ridge of South Florida's coastline, often referred to by pioneer settlers as "The Reef."

From the state historical marker placed on the road: "Old Cutler Road owes its name to the former town of Cutler, a farming community founded by William Fuzzard in the late 1800s. The town was named after Dr. William Cutler of Massachusetts who visited the area about 1880 and encouraged Fuzzard and others to settle here. In 1883, Fuzzard, with the help of other residents of Cutler, cut a path north and east through a wilderness of pine rocklands and hardwood hammocks to the Village of Coconut Grove. The road followed a natural limestone ridge along Biscayne Bay, and established the first overland route connecting Coconut Grove and Cutler. It was subsequently widened to a wagon trail, and was declared a public road in 1895. The road became known as Cutler Road, later as Ingraham Highway, and still later as Old Cutler Road. Today, Old Cutler Road, which follows a somewhat altered course, maintains the appearance and atmosphere of a country road, and provides a tangible reminder of the heritage of the Miami area. Old Cutler Road was declared a State Historic Highway in 1974 by the Florida Legislature."

Progress on paving the route was greatly improved by installing a concrete bridge over Snapper Creek in 1916. Soon, the road reached all the way to Royal Palm Park, a magnificent natural area featuring the largest stand of Royal Palms in North America (later part of Everglades National Park).

In 1916 members of the Miami Woman's Club successfully petitioned the Dade County Commission to name the road in honor of James Ingraham, brought in by Mr. Flagler as his Land Commissioner to manage FEC land holdings, buying, selling and attaining them as grants. Eventually, the FEC Land Department became the Model Land Company and Mr. Ingraham was given the title of "3rd Vice President," in charge of that company.

The completion of Ingraham Highway to the Everglades was instrumental in the establishment of Royal Palm State Park, owned by the General Federation of Woman's Clubs.

Several prominent land owners were successful in diverting the original highway around their properties. Just south of Snapper Creek, the road once ran through the Montgomery Estate, right past the main house, proceeding through what is now the Gulliver School property.

Further south, the road ran through Chapman Field USDA Subtropical Horticulture Research Station, and further, through the Charles Deering Estate, past the Richmond Cottage early settlement on Biscayne Bay.

From the History of Chapman Field: "Within the USDA Station at Chapman field, an access road west of and parallel to 60th Avenue is a remnant of the old Ingraham Highway, which was relocated about three quarters of a mile to the west as the base was constructed. Ingraham Highway would eventually be renamed Old Cutler Road."

Deering successfully petitioned the Dade County Commissioners to allow him to divert the road around his estate in exchange for building a public dock at the south end of his property which would allow local farmers and the general public in the Cutler area direct access to Biscayne Bay.

Remnants of the old road still run through these properties, and some portions of the original route, notably in Coconut Grove and near the entrance to Everglades National Park, still carry the name Ingraham Highway.

Save The Date: March 5
On the first Sunday in February we'll meet again to enjoy a wonderful program.

Dues Are Past Due
Please bring your annual $20 dues to the meeting, or mail your check made to MP/NOD to our Treasurer: Marlene B. Carlin, 14900 SW 71 Ave, Miami, FL 33158. Lifetime members are welcome to make a donation to help cover our increasing expenses.

Bring Friends and Family
Our president, Jim Hartnett, is calling on all members to invite family and friends to the monthly meetings to share our enthusiasm and love for local history, and to enjoy our wonderful speakers that make historic presentations.

Find MPNOD on Facebook
Your favorite local historical society has joined the future with the establishment of our MPNOD Facebook page.

Welcome New Members
Miami Pioneers and Natives of Dade are pleased to welcome new members.

We are reminded to invite friends who enjoy and appreciate local history to become MP/NOD members.

Thank You Members
Thank you to all members who bring refreshments which make our social so enjoyable.

And, thanks to everyone who makes a generous donation to the "Money Jar" which goes to paying for the room. We recently increased our donation to the church to $125 per meeting.

Newsletter: Snail Mail or Email?
The cost of printing, stuffing and mailing our monthly newsletter is significant -- our largest annual expense. If you'd prefer to receive your monthly MPNOD newsletter via email, and save your club the cost of printing and postage, please let us know.