Volume X Issue 3
 September 2014

The General Meetings of the Seminole Historical Society begin at 7 p.m. on the fourth Wednesday of each month, except during the summer months and December. 
Meetings are held in Room 210B of the Seminole Recreation Center
(Holland G. Mangum Center), 9100 113th Street, across from City Hall. 
Admission is free. Meetings are open to the public. 
We encourage everyone to join the Society for a nominal annual fee. 
Membership includes this Newsletter to let you know of future programs 
and to keep you advised of plans for our new Museum and meeting place. 


September 24, 2014 - BonSue Brandvik
BonSue Brandvik, preservationist and author of historic romance novels, will speak to us about on-going efforts to salvage the iconic Belleview Biltmore hotel. From its opening in 1897, the magnificent resort attracted many visitors to Clearwater and played a significant role in the development of Pinellas County. Now, after reigning over the highest bluff on the Gulf Coast for a hundred years as the largest occupied wooden structure in the world, it has fallen upon hard times. Although its future is in dispute, it is still the source of legends, lore and reports of paranormal activity. BonSue sill bring copies of her novel “Pearls: Spirits of the Belleview Biltmore” (her second novel, “Ripples,” is nearing completion). She will come early to sign books for those interested.  

October 22, 2014 – Mark Ely
This is the fourth year in a row that the City of Seminole’s Community Development Director, Mark Ely, has come to bring us up to date on what’s going on in the city. And there will be plenty to talk about, especially the big new complex down by Bay Pines and the proposed Seminole Mall replacement. Mark has been our Community Development Director since October 1, 2006 and is responsible for overseeing long-range planning and zoning, development and redevelopment, and coordinating with the building division and code enforcement staff. He is a graduate of Seminole High School and University of Florida.

November 19, 2014 – Eugene Mohney

Eugene B. Mohney is a real old-timer in Seminole. Start with this: He was Seminole’s first Eagle Scout, a long time ago. He served in the United States Marines during WWII, mostly at Guantanamo After the war, he returned to Seminole and went into business—an interesting career—with his father. He married his sweetheart, Marilyn Johnson Mohney, in 1949; they had four children—Alan, Andy, Beverly and Sarah. Things he’ll probably tell you about: Seminole Civic Club, Kiwanis (54 years perfect attendance), Seminole Methodist Church, Mr. Seminole 1997. Gene is one of those people we cherish. 

Please note that, as in the past, the date for this November meeting has been moved forward to November 19 in order to accommodate Thanksgiving.

The Future Home Of The
Seminole Historical Society Museum

OUR NEW MUSEUM is taking shape! Drive through City Park and take a look at the exterior (they probably wouldn’t let you go inside). Don’t want to predict or prognosticate, which might “jinx” us; but wouldn’t it be nice to be moving in next year and celebrating our Grand Opening? Keep us in mind if you have items that should be displayed in the museum. Grab one of the Directors to tell us what you might want to donate to the Museum.

Here are some items we’re most anxious to receive: World War II items (uniforms, V-mail, ration stamps). Kitchen utensils (cookware, silverware, dishware). Seminole ephemera (photos, maps, citrus grove catalogs and postcards, similar items for businesses and banks, newspaper clippings). Early postcards for businesses, Florida scenery, significant structures. Land deeds, tax documents, area maps. Railroad items (timetables, tickets, photos). Church bulletins and photos. Family items (reunion photos, anything related to schools, report cards). Any type of collections. An authentic old Victrola. Just for fun – women’s hats.

“If you want to preserve an item for posterity, this is the place,” said our Historian, Jimmy Vines. “Anything nostalgic can be historic. And as for photos and anything printable, they can be copied and the originals returned to the owner.”


Recently we have made a serious effort to set up our mailing list with email addresses for everyone. If we can send the Newsletter to your email addresses, it will save us the cost of paper, ink and postage, not to mention labor to fold and stuff. If you receive this Newsletter in printed form, that means we don’t have an email address for you. If you HAVE an email address, send it to Celeste Horn, Membership Chairman, jhorn25@tampabay.rr.com

Remembering Springtime even as we slide closer to Fall

Wasn’t our Holloway Haven Garden Tour delightful? Our President Sandy has two acres of loveliness that makes you want to live in the Florida that used to be. Victoria Rozner in her yellow colonial gown enhanced the beauty of the day. Gypsy Wind and Hammerhead Dulcimer Society of Tampa Bay provided musical charming background music. There was an interesting collection of displays—Mac Perry’s archeological examples, some found on the Indian mound he lives atop; Bob Stanton’s train books; Jim Schnur’s new Madeira Beach book; both the Campbell cookbook and the Caladesi cookbook for sale; an exhibit telling about the Centennial Celebration for Seminole Elementary School in 2015—oh my, hope we haven’t forgotten anyone.  

Our deep appreciation to Lake Seminole Square for all they have done to help in the success of our Garden Tour. 

We Appreciate You

THANK YOU to Joe Lupacchina of Hottin’s Trophies and Awards who donated name tags for our Directors – now you can find us to share your thoughts about future programs or the museum or whatever is on your mind….

Music In The Park

MUSIC IN THE PARK - Again this year, the Society has signed up as a sponsor for Music in the Park. We were sponsors for the September 19 performance and we’ll be there again on Friday, October 19. Come by our table for a visit! Look forward to seeing you there. We enjoy being part of this pleasant community event. Thanks to the Recreation Department – don’t they do a great job!

Upcoming Event

SAVE THE DATE – JANUARY 21, 2015  – when our speaker will be none other than Jay Starkey, Jr., son of Jay Starkey for whom Starkey Road is named—bet you’ve put in lots of miles on that road!  The family’s philanthropy is well known and appreciated.  There aren’t many occasions to hear from the Starkey family, growing up and growing cattle in Pinellas, and spreading to a 16,000-acre ranch in Pasco County.  We are so pleased to have this opportunity.  Don’t miss it!  Note:  Our library has a copy of Jay Sr.’s book, “Things I Remember,” if you’d like to borrow it.