Today in Keys History

Little Palm Island Resort opened for business in 1988.

1821: Excerpt for the Logbook of the U.S. Schooner Shark LCDR M.C. Perry commanding: Fresh Trade Winds, Working round Point Aagra. At 5 a.m. made the Island of Canaria on the Starboard Bow. I had heard of a soi-disant Patriot Vessel being off Canaria and altho’ this Cruiser had invariably respected the American Flag so far as I could learn, I was desirous of overhauling her, for the purpose of Correctly ascertaining her character and intentions. Off Gran Canaria. On the Sick List 1. Expenditure of Water 168 Gallons. Remains on board 2215 Gallons.

1856: William Hackley recorded in his diary: Rose at 4:45 and walked to the Barracks, returned home and bathed. At 8 a.m. barometer 29.51, thermometer 85, wind east northeast 1, clouds 2. Weather very hot with light air from the northwest at times calm. Mosquitos bad in the evening and I have prickly heat worse than I have had it for years.

1861: Robert Watson left Key West on the schooner Lady Bannerman for the Bahamas from where he would go to Tampa to join the Southern cause, which he would record in his “Confederate War Diary.”

1876: St. James Missionary Baptist Church was founded by The Rev. McIntosh and a few Blacks who settled in Key West from other areas of the South.

1931: Fire Chief Ralph Pinder resigned and was replaced by Harry Baker. Pinder resigned over the friction cause by the firemen not getting paid. He urged them to remain on the job until the city could work out its financial difficulties.

1944: Southern Bell Telephone and Telegraph finished distribution of 2,993 copies of the new phone directory. The number of directories were restricted because of the war time shortage of paper.

1945: The population from the 1945 Florida State Census for Monroe County was 18,718 of which 17,774 lived in Key West.

1945: Radio station WKWF, owned by John Spottswood, began its first broadcast giving hurricane warning every 15 minutes with Spottswood as the announcer.

1975: Abraham E. Golan died while on vacation in Italy. In 1949 Golan, Vincent Conley and Charles Helberg bought most of the eastern end of Key West. He had built the Key Ambassador Motel on South Roosevelt and the Ramada Inn on North Roosevelt.

1976: County Commissioner Harry Harris, who lost his bid for re-election, submitted his resignation to the governor. Harris was first elected to the commission in 1942.

1988: Little Palm Island, a luxury resort off Little Torch Key, opened for business.