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by Joan Gill Blank
Just south of Miami Beach lies the southernmost sand barrier island of the continental United States Key Biscayne. Long the symbol of an idyllic, barefoot, island lifestyle, this swirl of sand, 5 miles long by 1 1/2 miles wide, is the subject of this lucid history, which begins 4,000 years ago and continues through its discovery by Ponce de León, its use as a military and lighthouse reservation, the Seminole Wars, shipwreck salvaging, and its present function as public parkland and residential and high-rise condominium village.
On Cape Florida, Key Biscaynes southern end, the Cape Florida Lighthouse, newly restored, stands watch as it has for over 170 years. Drawing from original documents, including many letters and pictures saved by descendants of settlers and lighthouse keepers, the author creates a vivid portrait of this compelling Florida island.
"A splendid read. Florida history and literature will be enriched by this original and well researched book about our southernmost barrier island. Both the general reader and the scholar will discover new information about early pioneers, lighthouse keepers, and international figures who affected the destiny of Key Biscayne." --Reubin O'D. Askew, Former Governor of Florida
"Joan Gill Blank's Book vividly illustrates what a fascinating piece of geography Key Biscayne is. More than a tropical paradise, the island has been a sort of crossroads, where native Americans once encountered white settlers, environmentalism has met up with land development, and man has collided with one of nature's most powerful forces--the hurricane." --Gilbert M. Grosvenor, President and Chairman of the National Geographic Society
A resident of Key Biscayne since 1951, Joan Gill Blank has authored or edited numerous books and articles on Floridas cultural, historical, and ecological heritage, including Born of the Sun, the official bicentennial history book of the state of Florida.
Hardbound $29.95 ISBN 1-56164-096-4