Carrabelle in Franklin County, Florida — The American South (South Atlantic)
The Legend of Tate's Hell
Cebe Tate helped clear his father's land, chased cattle, and gathered pine oil. His mother died from yellow fever sometime after the war. It was hard going, and Cebe's father made a pact with a local medicine man for good fortune. As long as they stayed out of the tiny cypress forest and gave him one pig a year, they would have good fortune.
For three years, they gave up a pig when the medicine man came around, and things were good. But in 1874, they decided to keep the pig and deny the old Indian. The Medicine man warned them that they would not only see hard times, but they would go through hell. That year Cebe's father died from malaria, the pine trees gave very little oil, the sugar cane was stunted, and scrub cows started to disappear. But the pigs ate good, and multiplied so fast Cebe had to build two new pig pens in the fall.
In the spring of 1875, Cebe married a mail-order bride from New York City. She was a fiery German immigrant. But there was a problem, Cebe only had pigs left, and she was of the Jewish Faith. She ate corn, potatoes, and pancakes with molasses, but she wanted beef. Cebe took off into the woods to find a cow, any cow, to quiet his bride.
Armed with a shotgun and accompanied by his hunting dogs, he journeyed into the swamp in search of a cow. His dogs took off chasing a panther, and he lost his gun in the mud. Tate was lost in the swamp for seven days and nights. He went into the Dwarf Cypress stand to escape the relentless bugs, and fell asleep against the trees that were protected by the Indian's magic.
He awoke when bitten by a snake and ran blindly thru the swamp, delirious from the bite and from drinking the murky waters. Finally he came to a clearing near Carrabelle, living only long enough to murmur the words, "My name is Cebe Tate, and I just came through Hell!"
And ever since, our legendary and forbidden swamp has been called Tate's Hell.
Erected by Carrabelle History Museum.
Location. 29° 51.024′ N, 84° 39.868′ W. Marker is in Carrabelle, Florida, in Franklin County. Marker is on Avenue B South (Business Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 109 Avenue B South, Carrabelle FL 32322, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 7 other markers are within 14 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Marvin N. Justiss Building (a few steps from this marker); World's Smallest Police Station (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); World War II D-Day Training Site (approx. 2.2 miles away); Camp Gordon Johnston Training Area (approx. 2.3 miles away); Crooked River Lighthouse History (approx. 2.7 miles away); Camp Gordon Johnston (approx. 4.4 miles away); William Augustus Bowles (approx. 13.9 miles away).
More about this marker. This is very large "billboard-style" marker.
Also see . . .
1. Tate's Hell State Forest. Tate's Hell State Forest is one continuous tract of land comprising over 202,437 acres. Conquering this wet and seemingly unproductive area for timber production was the focus of the timber industry from the 1950s to early 1990s. During the 1960s and 1970s, the hydrology was substantially altered in an attempt to establish extensive tracts of pine plantations and to enhance the production of pine timber. These alterations involved the construction of roads and associated ditches, followed by the planting of large, dense stands of slash pine that were fertilized with phosphorus and nitrogen. (Submitted on August 22, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.)
2. How Tate’s Hell State Forest Got its Name (Submitted on August 22, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.)
Categories. • Native Americans • Parks & Recreational Areas • Science & Medicine • Settlements & Settlers •
More. Search the internet for The Legend of Tate's Hell.
Credits. This page was last revised on November 10, 2019. This page originally submitted on August 18, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. This page has been viewed 116 times since then and 64 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. submitted on August 22, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. • Andrew Ruppenstein was the editor who published this page.