Florida Stories

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"Because Orlando was selected, as to location on the peninsula of Florida for healthy conditions, drinking water, comfort winter and summer, freedom from mosquitoes, flies and other annoying insects, absence from malaria and fever conditions, for natural beauty…" - Excerpt from Orlando, Florida.

Writers, newspaper columnists, and promoters lauded Central Florida's healthful climate. Florida's mild winters, pure waters and unspoiled landscape lured winter tourists and residents from northern climates. Compared to the conditions most faced in Northern cities, Central Florida must indeed have seemed a paradise to visitors in the 19th and early 20th centuries.

Orlando's earliest hospitals were run by religious organizations. In 1908, a group of Seventh Day Adventists established the Florida Hospital and Sanitarium, which later became the nucleus of the Florida Hospital system.

Central Florida was spared from many of the epidemics that hit northern cities. Many northerners were advised by their physicians to spend winters in Florida to improve their health, and some sanitariums catered to those recovering from tuberculosis.

"You will see we are home agin at last, Ruby is very well and fat, but I rather hate being so far away from the doctor or in fact any help if she gets ill…" - Excerpt from a letter, Helen F. Warner to her Mother, dated July 22, 1886, Narcoossee, Florida.

"There is a scare of yellow fever just now, we are all in quarantine but there are only about four cases in Key West, but the people north got nervous and have quarantined the whole of Florida, no-one here is the least alarmed, so you need not be nervous, I will let you know if it comes any nearer, I know Mrs. Warner will be in fits about it…" - Excerpt from a letter, Helen F. Warner to her Mother, dated June 8, 1887, Kissimmee, Florida.

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