"homestead florida" Homestead by doug48

Homestead Travel Guide: 40 reviews and 106 photos


the town of homestead is located on US highway 1 between south miami and florida city. homestead was originally a construction camp for workers building henry flagler's florida east coast railway from south florida to key west. homestead was incorporated in 1913. homestead was once home to the homestead airforce base which was an important base during the 1962 cuban missle crisis. homestead was devastated by hurricane andrew in 1992 and the damaged airforce based was closed. of interest to the tourist is edward leedskalnin's coral castle and the nearby deering mansion. also ten miles south of homestead is florida city which is the gateway to the everglades national park.

homestead's most famous tourist attraction is edward leedskalnin's coral castle. leedskalnin, better known as just ed immigrated to america from latvia when his 16 year old fiancee "a. k. a. sweetsixteen" jilted him a day before his wedding. ed contracted tuberculosis in 1919 and moved to florida city. ed began building his castle in florida city in 1923. ed quarried massive blocks of coral rock and constructed the castle using simple block and tackle techniques. in 1936 ed moved the castle and sculptures to it's present location in homestead. between 1936 and 1940 ed built the castle wall that surrounds his compound. during his life in florida ed spent his entire existance working on his castle and reading and writing. ed made his living charging admission to tourists and locals to tour his castle. in december 1951 ed hung a sign on his front gate saying that he was going to the hospital. ed died of stomach cancer in a miami hospital three days later. the coral castle is listed on the national register of historic places.

located north of homestead in the village of cutler is the charles deering estate. charles deering was the son of william deering who was the founder of the deering harvester company. in 1902 the deering harvester company merged with the mc cormick harvester company to form international harvester. charles deering was the first chairman of the board of international harvester. in 1916 deering bought richmond cottage in cutler and later built a stone mansion on the site. deering's brother james built the vizcaya mansion in miami. the deering estate is listed on the national register of historic places. see my "off the beaten path" section for a virtual tour of the estate.

  • Last visit to Homestead: Sep 2011
  • Intro Updated May 9, 2016
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