Dunedin - One of West Coast's Jewels



   Dunedin justly claims to be one of the most beautiful and enterprising little towns on the west coast of Florida and has made wonderful progress in the past twelve months.
   A number of new buildings have been erected and more are under construction.
   Whitmore & Addington’s brick store building and the new Stanton two-story brick veneer building are the most prominent in the business part of town. The new Commercial Club building, proposed by Dr. A. B. McQueen, to be erected on the lot between the Dunedin Pharmacy and the Stanton building, will also be a brick structure.
   Operations will commence at once on Dunedin’s $10,000 school building in Dunedin Heights. An excellent water source has already been procured, at a depth of eighty feet, which, with tank and motor, will equip the school with a convenient and healthful water supply. The large, spacious, grounds will afford the school children of Dunedin, every comfort and advantage.
   The Dunedin Mercantile Company, located in the new Whitmore & Addington building a first-class and up-to-date firm in every respect, handling groceries, dry goods, shoes, hardware and furniture fills a long felt want, as heretofore, Dunedin citizens were compelled to go to Clearwater to purchase goods of this description. Several years ago Percy D. Miller, a young North Carolinian, accepted a position with Col. Gilchrest, one of Dunedin’s pioneer merchants. While in the employ of Col. Gilchrest, Mr. Niven made a host of friends and drew many customers by his courteous treatment and up-to-date methods. Some months after the death of Col. Gilchrest, Mr. Niven engaged in a small grocery business for himself. By the same unfailing courtesy that distinguished him as clerk, Mr. Niven built up his business with a few months until it was too large for the building he then occupied, so that when the Whitmore & Addington building was complete, he leased the entire building and he and his partner, Mr. Tharin,  of Savannah, a former knight of the grip, in the shoe line and a most enterprising business man, opened a strictly cash business in the new stand, under the name of the Dunedin Mercantile Company.
   There are two more good general stores in Dunedin: E. T. Pooser keeps a first class line of merchandise and Lamar & Patton are doing a thriving business at the old Gilchrest stand.
   Dunedin has a first-class physician in Dr. A. B. McQueen, who is also the proprietor in the Dunedin Pharmacy, and up-to-date drug store in every respect; an up-to-date meat market owned by Gettys Strickland, handles a fine grade of meats, making a specialty of velvet-bean-fed beef.
   Dunedin possesses a first-class barber shop, two hotels, a restaurant, several boarding houses, two livery stables and a feed store.
   The Dunedin Yacht Club boasts a beautiful fleet of yachts and sailing vessels, a handsome pavilion and reading room. The spacious town hall, public library, mother’s club and various societies, social events and public benefits entertainments speak of the enterprising spirit of Dunedin citizens. Dunedin possesses three churches.


   Dunedin has four citrus packing houses and ships many thousands of boxes each season. The Skinner Manufacturing Company’s plant heads the list of Dunedin’s industries.
   L. B. Skinner, the owner, and one of Dunedin’s leading citizens, inventor of the Skinner washing and drying machines and other packing house equipment, owner of a large fruit acreage, manager of the famous Milwaukee grove, president of Florida Growers and Shippers League, vice-president of the Florida State Horticultural Society and owner and manager of a dozen other business concerns, Mr. Skinner has done more for Dunedin in a progressive way than any other three or four persons combined. He was the first Mayor after Dunedin was incorporated, a number of years before another town of its size had thought about it and it was Mr. Skinner’s enterprising management of municipal affairs that has kept Dunedin what it is. Mr. Skinner owns a beautiful bayshore home and two years ago built an equally handsome residence just adjoining, for his son, B. C. Skinner, who is manager of the manufacturing plant. Mr. Skinner also owns a fine yacht and was the first owner of an automobile in town, where now there are about fifty machines.
   Dunedin is free from the pest of both hogs and cattle roaming the streets, which is more than can be said of many towns the same size and of many larger.
   Dunedin is a heavy producer of many citrus fruits, also of many tropical and deciduous fruits.
   B. C. Bass, owner of the Martha grove, has a bearing avocado pear tree on his place from which he has sold several hundred dollars worth of fruit. Mrs. Kate Whitfield also has a splendid avocado tree in her yard, from which she sold some fine fruit the past season and still another avocado pear tree by Mr. Williams, in his beautiful yard on the bayshore.
   Mr. Bass has recently set 150 inoculated trees, which he expects to bear in less than five years. Mr. Bass also has a fine citrus grove and five acres in peach trees.
   Some fine mangoes are also grown in the vicinity of Dunedin and pecan trees.


   Dunedin has many beautiful rural homes, handsome residences that are a source of pride to the community. W. O. Hagin’s new home is nearing completion and Manavista, E. W. Nigel’s handsome bungalow, is one of the new rural homes recently built. Le Roy Garrison has commenced a neat residence on his place east of town and Prof. Blatchley, ex-State Geologist of Indiana, has purchased a bayshore lot and will commence operations at once, an eight or nine room bungalow.
   San Sarah Hall, built and named by Baron O. Quarlos Van Uffard, a Holland Nobleman, and purchased about five years ago by J. P. Hardie, of Tampa, is perhaps the showiest country place in the county. When Mr. Hardie purchased the estate it was little more than a beautiful building in a wilderness, while at present time it is surrounded on all sides by fruit trees of every description. Mr. Hardie has planted about sixty acres to citrus trees, nearly seven acres to peaches, equal to any in variety raised in Georgia. Last season Mr. Hardie’s orchard produced an immense crop of early peaches, which were sold all over the county. Mr. Hardie has about thirty budded pecan trees and nearly every kind of fruit or ornamental fruit nameable, on his place. He is also an extensive planter, having a number of acres to sugar cane, sweet potatoes, cassava, peanuts, chufas, etc.
   D. A. and E. W. Nigels are also extensive planters of farm and vegetable crops and owners of fine citrus groves.
   W. T. Harrison, of Clearwater, has cleared an eighty-acre tract of land northeast of Dunedin and has planted the entire tract to citrus trees, making one of the largest young groves in the county. Mr. Harrison also owns an extensive strip of bayshore property north of Dunedin and expects to develop it in the near future.
   Despite the cry of hard times and general business depression everywhere, the Bank of Dunedin, established a little over a year ago, has prospered and the two real estate offices the town affords are doing a moderate  amount of business and expect considerably more to materialize after the holidays.
   Dunedin is proud of her progress and attainments, of the high standards and sterling qualities of her citizens, of her moral cleanliness and in being an enterprising and up-to-date Florida town. 

Mrs. S. S. Saunders

Source: Tampa Tribune: 12-13-1914
Transcribed, Formatted  and Submitted by Linda Flowers

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