Past Events


Florida Department of State Honors Black History Month through Viva Florida Events

TALLAHASSEE, FLORIDA –

In recognition of Black History Month in February 2014, the Florida Department of State will host a number of opportunities to honor Florida’s black heritage and history in our state. The Department of State’s Divisions of Cultural Affairs and Library and Information Services, which include the Museum of Florida History, State Library and Archives of Florida and the Florida Memory Project, will offer exhibitions, lectures and music throughout the month of February.  These events are part of Viva Florida, a statewide multi-year initiative that promotes Florida’s history and cultural heritage.

“This year’s Black History Month is significant given that our nation is observing the anniversary of 50 years since the enactment of the Civil Rights Act of 1964,” said Secretary of State Ken Detzner. “Black History Month is a time to reflect on the diversity of our state and the vital contributions of Floridians to our social, political and cultural life today.”

Florida has more than 500 years of African American history and the Florida Department of State and the many Viva Florida partners will draw attention to this during the 2014 Black History Month and as Viva Florida continues through 2015.

Black History Month Events at The Florida Department of State

Exhibition of paintings by Rose Jefferson and Historic Photographic display
Throughout February 
Two exhibitions on display in the lobby of the R.A. Gray Building will honor black history and the arts in Florida.  One features the official 2014 Black History Month artist selected by Governor Scott, Rose Marian Jefferson from Melbourne, Florida. A selection of her work will be shown from January 24 – February 26, 2014.   Starting January 31 there will also be a photographic exhibition from the State Archives of Florida which honors a few of the many events and individuals critical to the Civil Rights Movement in Tallahassee. These exhibitions are free and open to the public.

Historic Photograph Identification Day - African American Life in Tallahassee
February 18, 2014 | 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. 
The State Archives of Florida, in partnership with the John G. Riley House and Museum in Tallahassee (RileyMuseum.org), will hold a photo identification day in room 307 of the R.A. Gray Building.  Visitors will be able to review the recently digitized historic photographs in the Tallahassee Democrat photographic collection featuring unidentified scenes of African-American life in Tallahassee in the 1950s and 1960s. In addition, archives staff will be available to record identification information for the people, places and events shown in these photographs. This event is free and open to the public.

Museum of Florida History 3rd Thursday
February 20, 2014 | 5 p.m. (Lecture at 7 p.m.)
Dr. Jane Landers will discuss “Africans as Discoverers and Settlers in La Florida” to illustrate the emergence of a blended and multiracial colonial society. Dr. Landers is an Associate Professor of History and Director of the Center for Latin American and Iberian Studies at Vanderbilt University. Enjoy free live music from the Bill Peterson Trio and catering by Up in Smoke. The event is free and open to the public, dinner is $10 for members and $15 for nonmembers.

History at High Noon at the Museum of Florida History
February 25, 2014 | 12 p.m.
In honor of Black History Month, Dr. Will Guzman from the Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University in Tallahassee will speak on the Civil Rights Act of 1964, incorporating state and local events connected to the national legislation. This event is free and open to the public.

For more information on these events and for a listing of statewide Black History Month events, visitVivaFlorida.org.

The Department of State will also be leading a campaign to highlight Black History Month on social media. To find out more, follow the hashtag #FLBlackHistory on Twitter and Facebook.

View the Press Release

State Archives of Florida hosts Scan Day

TALLAHASSEE, FLORIDA –

Saturday October 12, 2013, from 10 a.m - 4 p.m.

The public is encouraged to bring in original Florida-related family photographs (no digital images please) for possible inclusion in the collections of the State Archives of Florida.

Many of these images will eventually be made available on the Florida Memory website as part of a special "Big Bend Area" photographic collection.

During the scan day, Archives staff will scan photographs and return the originals to the donor. The Archives will not take permanent physical possession of the images unless the donor requests otherwise. Staff will be on hand to discuss the process as well as address any questions.

Please join us for this unique opportunity to preserve your family legacy and share your history with the world.

Donor's Photo Information Sheet (PDF) 

More Information

Event is free, open to the public, and will be held at the R.A. Gray Building, 500 S. Bronough Street, Tallahassee, Florida, 32399.

Please direct any questions to: Archives@dos.myflorida.com, attention “Archives Month.”

Refreshments for the slideshow event are generously provided by the Friends of the State Library and Archives of Florida.

Download the Archives Month flier.

Archives: Month Images from the Tallahassee Democrat Slideshow

TALLAHASSEE, FLORIDA –

Friday October 11, 2013, from 6 - 8 p.m.

Visitors will be treated to free food, drinks, and a slideshow in the lobby of the R.A. Gray Building.

The slideshow will feature images from the Tallahassee Democrat, many unpublished, showing scenes of Tallahassee life from the mid-1950s to the mid-1960s.

More Information

Event is free, open to the public, and will be held at the R.A. Gray Building, 500 S. Bronough Street, Tallahassee, Florida, 32399.

Please direct any questions to: Archives@dos.myflorida.com, attention “Archives Month.”

Refreshments for the slideshow event are generously provided by the Friends of the State Library and Archives of Florida.

Download the Archives Month flier.

Florida Department of State Celebrates American Archives Month

TALLAHASSEE, FLORIDA –

In celebration of American Archives Month in October, the Florida Department of State, Division of Library and Information Services, State Archives of Florida, announces a weekend of special events during Archives Month to promote the study of Florida history and culture, and to foster a closer relationship between the public and the archives. The feature events during this month long celebration will be a digital photography show and an Archives "scan day."

Secretary of State Ken Detzner said, "The photographic resources of the State Archives of Florida are easily accessed via the Florida Memory website, which provides online access to archival resources that illustrate significant moments in the state's history, offers educational resources for students of all ages, and makes available collections for historical research.”

Florida Memory provides a glimpse into Florida's past and supports heritage tourism for destinations across the state. Attending the digital photography show and participating in the Archives scan day will be a unique opportunity to preserve your family legacy and share your Florida history with fellow Floridians.

On Friday, October 11, 2013, visitors will be treated to a digital photography show featuring many unpublished images from the Tallahassee Democrat, showing scenes of Tallahassee life from the mid-1950s to the mid-1960s. Complementary refreshments for the photography show event, which will run from 6:00-8:00 p.m., will be generously provided by the Friends of the State Library and Archives of Florida.

On Saturday, October 12, 2013, the Archives’ Imaging Lab will be open to the public. Residents of Tallahassee and the surrounding area are encouraged to bring in their original Florida related family photographs (no digital images please) for possible inclusion in the collections of the State Archives of Florida. Many of these images will eventually be made available on the Florida Memory website (FloridaMemory.com) as part of a special "Big Bend Area" photographic collection.

During the scan day, Archives staff will scan photographs and return the originals to the donor.  The Archives will not take permanent physical possession of the images unless the donor requests otherwise. Staff will be on hand to discuss the process as well as address any questions.

For more information, visit: Floridamemory.com/about/archivesmonth.  Both events are free, open to the public, and will be held at the R.A. Gray Building, 500 S. Bronough Street, Tallahassee, Florida, 32399. Please direct any questions to: Archives@dos.myflorida.com, attention: Archives Month.

View the Press Release

Florida Department of State Celebrates American Archives Month

TALLAHASSEE, FLORIDA –

In anticipation of the 50 year anniversary of the Civil Rights Act in 2014, The Florida Department of State's Florida Memory Program has launched a new educational exhibit of photographs and films illustrating the history of civil rights in Florida.

"Florida played an integral but underappreciated role in the long, nationwide struggle for racial equality," said Secretary Detzner. "Florida was home to pioneering activists such as Mary McLeod Bethune and James Weldon Johnson, as well as C.K. Steele and Patricia Stevens Due, who carried the torch in the 1950s and 1960s. The struggle for civil rights is a dramatic and compelling aspect of Florida history."

Highlights from The Civil Rights Movement in Florida educational exhibit include film footage of wade-in demonstrations at St. Augustine Beach in June 1964; photographs of the Tallahassee Bus Boycott of 1956-57; and student letters to Governor Reubin Askew on busing and school desegregation.

As students, parents, and teachers grapple with sweeping changes in curriculum outlined by the Common Core standards, they will increasingly need access to primary source materials to ensure student success. All primary source materials in The Civil Rights Movement in Florida lesson plans are presented alongside guides for teachers that provide suggestions for incorporating these resources into the classroom. These guides are accompanied by brief essays on historical context designed to correspond with the Common Core and Next Generation Sunshine State Standards.

For more information and to view all Educational Units offered by the Florida Memory Program, visit FloridaMemory.com.


About Florida Memory Program

The Florida Memory Program provides free online access to significant photographs, films, sound recordings, and original documents from the collections of the State Library and Archives of Florida. Florida Memory is funded under the provisions of the Library Services and Technology Act, from the Institute of Museum and Library Services, administered by the Florida Department of State's Division of Library and Information Services.

About The Division of Library and Information Services

The Division of Library and Information Services (DLIS) is the designated information resource provider for the Florida Legislature and all state agencies. DLIS also coordinates and helps fund the activities of public libraries, provides a framework for statewide library initiatives, provides archival and records management services, and preserves, collects, and makes available the published and unpublished documentary history of the state.

Attached Images:


Sit-in at Woolworths lunch counter in Tallahassee FLSit-in at Woolworth's lunch counter: Tallahassee, Florida (1960)

Confrontation between integrationists and segregationists at a whites-only beach in St. Augustine Confrontation between integrationists and segregationists at a whites-only beach: St. Augustine (1964)

View the Press Release

Florida Department of State to Feature Photographs of World-renowned Photographer Joseph Janney Steinmetz During 'First Friday' Event

Free event at 6:00 p.m. on Friday, November 2, 2012 at the R.A. Gray Building in Tallahassee

TALLAHASSEE, FLORIDA –

The Florida Department of State's Division of Library and Information Services is hosting a First Friday slideshow event featuring the work of world-renowned photographer Joseph Janney Steinmetz at the R.A. Gray Building in Tallahassee on Friday, November 2, 2012 from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. The slideshow will showcase more than 200 photographs from the Steinmetz Photographic Collection, a recent acquisition of the Florida Photographic Collection at the State Library and Archives of Florida.

Recognized for an ability to capture candid moments of everyday life, Steinmetz's work has been referred to as "an American social history" that documents diverse scenes of American life, from affluent northeasterners to middle-class Floridians. Steinmetz's photographs have appeared in such publications as The Saturday Evening Post, Life, Look, Holiday, Collier's and Town and Country. His Florida images in particular document the rapid development of the state and the marketing strategies commonly employed in post-World War II America.

The Museum of Florida History will also be open during the slideshow. Featured exhibits include Forever Changed: La Florida, 1513-1821 and the 31st Annual Capital City Quilt Show: Tomorrow's Quilts Today.

Food and refreshments will be provided by the Friends of the State Library and Archives of Florida Inc., a citizen support organization for the preservation, promotion and enrichment of Florida's public and archival heritage. Admission to both events is free and open to the public.

DATE: Friday, November 2, 2012
TIME: 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
LOCATION: R.A. Gray Building
500 S. Bronough St.
Tallahassee, FL 32399

About the Florida Photographic Collection

The Florida Photographic Collection is a special collection of photographic images administered by the Bureau of Archives and Record Management within the Florida Department of State's Division of Library and Information Services. Of the more than one million photographs housed in the State Archives, more than 174,000 photographs are available on the Florida Memory website, www.FloridaMemory.com. Florida Memory is the most complete visual history of Florida online, providing access to a searchable database containing more than 500,000 digitized photographs, films, sound recordings and archival documents from the collections of the State Library and Archives of Florida.

About the Florida Department of State's Division of Library and Information Services

The Florida Department of State's Division of Library and Information Services is the designated information resource provider for the Florida Legislature and all state agencies. It also coordinates and helps fund activities for public libraries, provides a framework for statewide library initiatives, provides archival and records management services, and preserves, collects, and makes available the published and unpublished documentary history of the state.

View the Press Release

General's Diary from Second Seminole War Added to Florida Memory Website

Diary follows day-to-day activities of General Jesup from October 1836 to May 1837

TALLAHASSEE, FLORIDA –

Secretary of State Ken Detzner today announced the addition of General Thomas Sidney Jesup's diary, from the Second Seminole War, to the Florida Memory website. The diary follows the day-to-day activities of General Jesup from October 1836, when he first arrived in Florida, to May 1837. General Jesup discusses troop movements, the challenges of supply, battles and negotiations to remove the Seminoles from Florida.

"General Jesup's diary is an invaluable resource for historians of Native American History, as well as our state and country's history," said Secretary Detzner. "His thoughts and observations offer a unique insight into one of the most dramatic and controversial conflicts in U.S. history."

General Jesup was one of the longest serving officers in U.S. military history and the longest serving Quartermaster General of the U.S. Army. General Jesup's fate and that of the Seminoles became entwined in October 1836, when he arrived in Florida to take command of U.S. forces in the territory. Beginning in December, when he formally assumed command, General Jesup spent a year and a half trying to defeat the Seminoles, who resisted the U.S. campaign to take their land and remove them to the West.

Some of the most important events of the Second Seminole War, which lasted from 1835 to 1842, occurred during the time General Jesup was in command, including the capture of Osceola, the Battle of Lake Okeechobee, the pursuit of Black Seminoles (escaped slaves who fought alongside the Seminoles), and a dramatic increase in the number of U.S. troops deployed in Florida. General Jesup ended his role in the controversial conflict in May 1838, when he returned to Washington, D.C. and resumed his position as Quartermaster General.

Visit the Florida Memory website www.FloridaMemory.com to learn more about General Thomas Sidney Jesup and the Second Seminole War. General Jesup's diary can be found at http://www.floridamemory.com/collections/jesup/.


About the Florida Memory Website
The Florida Memory websiteprovides online access to more than 550,000 photographs, textual records, sound recordings and moving images. The Florida Memory program is funded by a Library Services and Technology Act grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services, administered by the Florida Department of State's Division of Library and Information Services. Users can access the same web address used by the program since its creation in 1998, www.FloridaMemory.com.

About the Florida Department of State's Division of Library and Information Services
The Florida Department of State's Division of Library and Information Services is the designated information resource provider for the Florida Legislature and all state agencies. It also coordinates and helps fund activities for public libraries, provides a framework for statewide library initiatives, provides archival and records management services, and preserves, collects, and makes available the published and unpublished documentary history of the state.

Secretary Detzner Announces Addition of New Church Records to Florida Memory Website

Approximately 20,000 digitized church records from the 1930's and 40's added to Florida Memory website

TALLAHASSEE, FLORIDA –

Secretary of State Ken Detzner today announced the addition of approximately 20,000 digitized church records to the Florida Memory website, www.floridamemory.com. The records, officially known as the Church Archives Inventory, were created by the Works Progress Administration (WPA) in the late 1930's and early 1940's to document archival holdings in Florida's churches and synagogues.

"The WPA Church Archives Inventory is a tremendous addition to the Florida Memory website and only increases the reputation the website has as the best resource for Florida's historical photographs, documents, audio and video," said Secretary Detzner. "I encourage anyone interested in Florida history to visit the site and see these new records that illustrate the significant role organized religion had on community life in American history."

The new records added to the Florida Memory website contain a wealth of information about the size and ethnic background of congregations and clergy members as well as historical narratives and lists of church property. Created in an age when religious institutions often held the only documentation of major life events such as birth, marriage and death, the WPA church records offer tremendous insight for genealogists and others interested in Florida history.

This collection of WPA church records is from the State Library of Florida's collections. One of the most significant undertakings of the Historical Records Survey was a nationwide survey of churches and church records, known as the Church Archives Inventory. Each state created a list of known churches and synagogues to be surveyed, organized by county. Survey workers then ventured out into the field to document church histories and record holdings by interviewing clergy and congregation members. This collection contains the documents created by the state of Florida.

All documents contained in the WPA church records database are accessible on the Florida Memory website, specifically at http://floridamemory.com/collections/churchrecords. Users can search the records by pastor's name, church or synagogue name or denomination. Users can also sort the records by county, year of church incorporation and ethnicity. Accompanying the church records are digitized copies of the original forms used by survey workers, the field manual issued by the WPA and a historical essay on the scope and significance of the collection.


About the Florida Memory Website

The Florida Memory websiteprovides online access to more than 550,000 photographs, textual records, sound recordings and moving images. The Florida Memory program is funded by a Library Services and Technology Act grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services, administered by the Florida Department of State's Division of Library and Information Services. Users can access the same web address used by the program since its creation in 1998, www.FloridaMemory.com

About the Florida Department of State's Division of Library and Information Services

The Florida Department of State's Division of Library and Information Services is the designated information resource provider for the Florida Legislature and all state agencies. It also coordinates and helps fund activities for public libraries, provides a framework for statewide library initiatives, provides archival and records management services, and preserves, collects, and makes available the published and unpublished documentary history of the state.

View the Press Release