Florida has a lot of incredible history and fascinating landmarks to explore, and everyone should try to get out and see them. Our state is perfect for road trips, but these old photos of Florida’s landmarks will make you wish you had a time machine instead.
1. Casino pool at the Alcazar Hotel: St. Augustine, 1905
This building that now houses the Lightner Museum once housed a huge indoor pool, but the area is now used for the museum's cafe.
2. W.J. Howey Manison: Howey-in-the-Hills, 1925
Sadly, this mansion looks much different today, after sitting abandoned for years.
3. Gregory House: Ocheesee Landing, Florida, 1935
This house in Ocheesee Landing has gone the opposite way of the Howey Mansion and now looks much better. Not long after this photo was taken, the house was taken apart and reassembled across the Apalachicola River in Torreya River State Park.
4. Old Orlando Railroad Depot, 1910
Also known as Church Street Station, this landmark has had many transformations over the years, serving as a popular club spot in the '70s and '80s. Who knows what incarnations it will see in the future?
5. Parking lot at Bok Tower: Lake Wales, Florida, 1935
Bok Tower still looks similar to this photo from its early days, and it remains a popular destination for tourists and residents in Central Florida.
6. Golfers at Castillo de San Marcos: St. Augustine, 1902
"On the golf links, St. Augustine, 1902
These interesting photos from the state archives show Castillo de San Marcos being used for a friendly game of golf. Though the country's earliest fort is still very popular, I doubt this would fly today.
7. Florida State Capitol building: Tallahassee, 1902
Florida's Old Capitol was completed in 1845 and first expanded in 1902, which is when the first photo was taken. It was almost demolished when the new Capitol was built in the '70s, but luckily it survived and today houses the Historic Capitol Museum.
8. Chalet Suzanne: Lake Wales, 1967
Chalet Suzanne was a favorite among locals and travelers in Lake Wales for many, many years. It earned many awards for its creative cuisine, and its atmosphere was lovably quirky. Many Floridians were sad to see it close its doors in 2014.
9. Venetian Pool: Coral Gables, 1945
Venetian Pool is still a beautiful place to swim and relax, but somehow it doesn't look as fun it was in 1945.
10. Union Bank Building during move: Tallahassee, 1971
The Union Bank of Tallahassee goes all the way back to the mid 1800s, making it the oldest surviving bank building in Florida. It served as a bank for emancipated slaves after the Civil War. At one time or another it has been a coffee house, shoe factory, dance studio, beauty shop, and many other things. The first photo shows the bank being moved to its current site near the Capitol. Today it houses exhibits from Florida A&M University's Southeastern Regional Black Archives.
What did you think of these photos? Have you visited any of these or other interesting Florida landmarks?