Monday, April 3, 2017

Historic Apalachicola #5

This is the last installment from our visit to Apalachicola Florida.  We took so many photos of this historic town that I couldn’t let them go to waste…  This time, our primary focus was on historic buildings other than homes.

In 1836 - 1837 the Apalachicola Land Company built 43 identical brick and granite cotton warehouses along the waterfront.  This is one of only two that remain in town.  It has been repurposed and it now serves as the Apalachicola City Hall. 

FYI… What is now Apalachicola was originally named Cottonton.  In 1828, it was incorporated as West Point.  It was renamed Apalachicola in 1831.  The town on the other side of the Apalachicola River is still named East Point.

This is the second of those two surviving cotton warehouses that was built along the waterfront.  This one was originally built as the Harrison-Raney Cotton Exchange in 1836.

A local resident recognized the building’s cultural and historic significance and restored the structure in the late 1990s.  With funding from the Florida Communities Trust, the City of Apalachicola acquired the building in 2005.

Today, the Center for History, Culture and Art is an important venue in Apalachicola’s historic downtown district.  The gallery space presents the work of local, regional and nationally recognized artists to both locals and tourists.  The building is home to the Apalachicola School of Art.  The restored historic space also serves as a venue for meetings, receptions, lectures, and the national recognized Forgotten Coast “Plein Air” Art event.  See the following link for this major painting event:

FYI…“plein air,” is a French expression meaning “open air” (and used colloquially by the French for camping and outdoor sports) that refers to creating a work of art outside.

The Center for History, Culture and Art is open to the public.  To learn more go to:

The Dixie Theatre was constructed in 1912.  It served as the entertainment center for Franklin County, with live shows and movies too.  In the 1950s a drive-in theater opened west of town.  That and competition from television lead to the demise of the Dixie in 1967. 

The two-story brick structure featured a screen for showing movies and a stage for live performances.  The balcony was reserved for blacks and smokers. After closing in 1967 the theater sat empty and deteriorating.  In the late 1990s a couple 'found' the old theater.  Since their daughter was also named Dixie, they took the name as a good omen and purchased the building.   They had to completely reconstruct the building.  The only original portions of the structure are the side and rear walls.  The Dixie reopened on July 31, 1998 and live entertainment is regularly offered.  Check out upcoming event at

St. Patrick’s Roman Catholic Church was originally organized in 1845...although I saw another reference that dated its beginning date as 1833.  The first church was replaced with an ornate wooden structure just before the Civil War.  It was seriously damaged by a fire in 1928 and a decision was made to move it and use it as a fellowship hall.  This stucco over brick Early Italian-Romanesque Style church replaced the fire damaged structure.    

I thought that we’d end the tour with one more fabulous refurbished home in Apalachicola’s Historic District.  This one isn’t listed separately but it is spectacular… The effort to restore this home was completed in the last year or so.  We just loved that huge front porch!

That’s all for Apalachicola…for this trip anyway!

Just click on any of the photos to enlarge them…

Thanks for stopping by for a tour and a bit of history!

Take Care, Big Daddy Dave


  1. Interesting history of that church... Isn't it amazing to read about so many wonderful structures getting destroyed by fire all through the years... Kinda sad --but tis history!!!

    I love that last picture of that beautiful old home... As I told you before, homes like that remind me of my Great Aunt's home in Bristol, VA... My Mom had 7 Aunts that I remember... Three of them were on her mother's side of the family and the other four were on her Dad's side of the family... Very few of them ever married --and many were school teachers (called 'old maid teachers' back then).. ha

    Have a great week and month.

  2. The architecture in Apalachicola is great! And the palm trees complement them all. I'm kind of curious as to who built that gorgeous home, maybe someone to do with cotton or the busy port. It would be a treat to see the inside of it. And great that the Dixie is still operating. Small towns have much to offer and this one certainly is deep in history! Have a good day and thanks for the journey!

  3. Fascinating history and post, Dave, and I love all the buildings in your photos! And the Dixie is delightful! Thank you so much for sharing, and I hope you have a great week.

  4. Love this St. Patrick’s Roman Catholic Church David, look like many churchs from here. xoxox