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Islamadora in Monroe County, Florida — The American South (South Atlantic)
 

The Florida Keys Memorial

 
 
The Florida Keys Memorial Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Julie Szabo, August 16, 2007
1. The Florida Keys Memorial Marker
Inscription.  The Florida Keys Memorial, known locally as the “Hurricane Monument,” was built to honor hundreds of American veterans and local civilians who perished in the “Great Hurricane” on Labor Day, September 2, 1935. Islamadora sustained winds of 200 miles per hour and a barometer reading of 26.35 inches for several hours on that fateful holiday; most local buildings and the Florida East Coast Railway were destroyed by what remains the most savage hurricane on record. Hundreds of World War I veterans who had been camped in the Matecumbe area while working on the construction of U.S. Highway One for the Works Progress Administration (WPA) were killed. In 1937 the cremated remains of approximately 300 people were placed within the tiled crypt in front of the monument. The monument is composed of native keystone, and its striking frieze depicts coconut palm trees bending before the force of hurricane winds while the waters from an angry sea lap at the bottom of their trunks. Monument construction was funded by the WPA and regional veterans’ associations. Over the years the Hurricane Monument has been cared for by local veterans,
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hurricane survivors, and descendants of the victims.
 
Topics and series. This historical marker and memorial is listed in these topic lists: DisastersNotable EventsRailroads & StreetcarsRoads & Vehicles. In addition, it is included in the Florida East Coast Railroad and Hotels, and the Works Progress Administration (WPA) projects series lists. A significant historical month for this entry is September 1824.
 
Location. 24° 55.023′ N, 80° 38.165′ W. Marker is in Islamadora, Florida, in Monroe County. Marker is on U.S. 1, on the left when traveling south. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Islamorada FL 33036, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. The 1935 Hurricane (a few steps from this marker); Hurricane Monument (a few steps from this marker); The Sweeting House (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Hurricane Houses (about 400 feet away); Pioneer Cemetery (approx. 0.2 miles away); Green Turtle Inn (approx. half a mile away); Islamorada Baptist Church (approx. half a mile away); The Storm that Still Howls (approx. 0.9 miles away).
 
Regarding The Florida Keys Memorial. Henry Flagler’s East Coast Railway dispatched a rescue train to pick up the road workers; however it was blown off the tracks by the storm surge except
The Florida Keys Memorial Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Julie Szabo, August 16, 2007
2. The Florida Keys Memorial Marker
for its engine, “Old 447.”
 
Also see . . .  The Florida Keys Memorial. (Submitted on May 13, 2015, by Marsha A. Matson of Palmetto Bay, Florida.)
 
The Florida Keys Memorial marker and surrounding area. image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Tim Fillmon, November 5, 2019
3. The Florida Keys Memorial marker and surrounding area.
Close-up of Memorial image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Marsha A. Matson, May 11, 2015
4. Close-up of Memorial
The Florida Keys Memorial with Flag image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Marsha A. Matson, May 11, 2015
5. The Florida Keys Memorial with Flag
Bronze marker on the front of the Memorial image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Marsha A. Matson, May 11, 2015
6. Bronze marker on the front of the Memorial
Dedicated
To the memory of the
civilians and war veterans
whose lives were lost
in the hurricane of
September second, 1935
Meditation area image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Marsha A. Matson, May 11, 2015
7. Meditation area
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on November 6, 2019. It was originally submitted on October 31, 2007, by Julie Szabo of Oldsmar, Florida. This page has been viewed 2,764 times since then and 102 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on October 31, 2007, by Julie Szabo of Oldsmar, Florida.   3. submitted on November 5, 2019, by Tim Fillmon of Webster, Florida.   4, 5, 6, 7. submitted on May 13, 2015, by Marsha A. Matson of Palmetto Bay, Florida. • J. J. Prats was the editor who published this page.

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Jul. 24, 2024