Museum visitor

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A visitor to the museum today (Feb. 4, 2017) was Basil Gaines (GHS ’67), son of a former Pasco County sheriff with the same name, who served in the 1960s and 1970s. Basil gave us some old photos and newspapaer clippings. He recalled that his father obtained the first helicopter for the sheriff’s department. His father and Archie Boyd went to Arizona to get the helicopter and drove it back to Pasco County on the back of a flatbed truck.

The Hacienda interior then and now

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The old picture, from 1927 or 1928, is the only interior view of the Hacienda we have from the 1920s (although there are a couple of advance artists’ renderings of what it might look like inside). The modern picture is approximately the same view, March 24, 2016.

Museum visitors

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Two very welcome visitors to the museum today were J. W. Hunnicutt and Nell Moody Woodcock. In 2010 they and Theresa Osbron Smith created a tremendous web site with much information and many old pictures about the history of northeast Pasco County. They plan to shut down the site in July, and they have given Jeff Miller permission to import the pages and pictures from their site into his history of Pasco County site.

J. W. was born in Lacoochee in 1937 and graduated from Pasco High School in 1955. His great-great-grandparents came here from Thomasville, Georgia, in 1872. Nell Moody (Woodcock) was born in Baxley, Georgia, in 1926, but came to Lacoochee as an infant when her father worked at the Cummer Sons Cypress Company’s Crate Mill. She attended schools in Lacoochee and Dade City and graduated from Pasco High School in 1944.

Mr. Hunnicutt donated to the museum a set of historic photos of the Cummer Sons mill at Lacoochee and allowed us to scan some of his old original photos.

At the museum

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Midge London-Prace and Joy Lane-Hetz smile for the camera at the museum today (1/6/17). Midge is a former President of the West Pasco Historical Society. Joy Pierce grew up in Elfers and graduated from Gulf High School in 1952.

Norma Nelson

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We understand that Norma Nelson, one of the founding members of the West Pasco Historical Society, and a past president, died on Dec. 31. She was 91 years old and was living in The Villages.

Norma was one of the authors of the book West Pasco’s Heritage, the first major project of the historical society, which was the combined work of a number members, most notably Julie Obenreder.

Julie wrote that when the historical society was founded, but before the museum existed, the valuable data, scrapbooks, and historical memorabilia donated to the society were stored in “Ida Brunner’s garage, Julie Obenreder’s residence, and Norma Nelson’s attic.”

A gifted artist, she created the portraits of Spanish conquistadors and Seminole leaders that graced the walls of the museum for many years.

She retired from Community Hospital in New Port Richey after working in the data processing department for 20 years.

NPR Christmas trees

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The New Port Richey Christmas tree in Sims Park in 1921 and in 2016!

In 1921 the park was still called Enchantment Park.

In the older picture, Mrs. George Sims is believed to be #2 and Mrs. Fred (Emma) Rowan is #5. If you recognize anyone else, let us know!