Tag Archives: University of North Florida

The Barnett National Bank Building, Its Deep Roots and Tendrils through Time

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It was “the Year of the Skyscraper.” The 10 story building next door began to tilt. Alfred duPont raised Florida from the Great Depression, merely from infusions of his personal wealth. When Barnett began the Bank of Jacksonville in 1877, he couldn’t have known it would grow into one of the largest banks in the South. After Herbert Hoover, Alfred’s wife, Jessie Ball duPont, changed direction. Her hair was graying, but her eyes still sparkled.

Barnett’s personification of its first Automatic Teller Machine frightened Southern working class families. Charles Rice said he’d never sell “Bion Barnett’s bank.” Then he checked into rehab. Then he sold. Then he drowned in his own swimming pool. Now UNF is making the Barnett “the front door to the startup community in Jacksonville.”

Death on the Railroad Tracks in Riverside

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His couchsurfing.com profile says he last logged in 12 months ago. He lived another month. The profile claims he still “Wants to Meet Up.” He’d helped a previously homeless student move into UNF dorms. He’d been arrested for skateboarding. 

There are two eyewitness accounts of his being hit by the train on the tracks between Nighthawks and The Metro in Riverside.

 

Florida Junior College, What the Beginning Looks Like, the Chance to Create a New World

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“It was not a frivolous time. We felt like we were doing something really important. You couldn’t help but feel that way.”

In idealistic camaraderie, they built a new curriculum and course outlines from scratch, socialized until late in the night, and discussed what books their students should read.

Erstwhile underground bomb shelters opened up. In one building “down toward Park Street,” FJC headquartered its Experimental College.