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1,400 images of Florida's state parks and historic sites

Collection Number: S 236

Creator: Division of Recreation and Parks (Florida Park Service)

Title: Photographic collection, 1935-1985

Quantity: 3000+ photographs (not all are online)


This series consists of photographs maintained by the Division of Recreation and Parks (Florida Park Service). Included in the series are images of state parks and scenic views of Florida, as well as some of the personnel and activities of the Division and the Department of Natural Resources (DNR). Some of the images date back to the origins of the park service, including images of the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) and the Board of Parks and Historic Memorials. The majority of these images were created by and maintained by former FPS director and Chief of Education and Information C. H. Schaeffer.

Historical Note:

The Board of Parks and Historic Memorials, commonly known as the Florida Park Service, was originally created in 1935 and was administered within the Board of Forestry. The park service's first eight parks were designed and built by the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC). In 1949, the park service became an independent agency, the Board of Parks and Historic Memorials. Its purpose was to administer and control the operation and development of the state parks and historic sites of Florida. In 1969, the Board was merged with the Outdoor Recreational Development Council to form the Division of Recreation and Parks under the Department of Natural Resources. The Division eventually moved to the newly created Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) in 1993.

After becoming an independent agency in 1949, the Board created the position of Chief of Information and Education to implement and coordinate publicity, public interpretation such as brochures, signs, and exhibits, and advertising for the Florida Park Service (FPS). The first chief was Carl Liddle, who left in 1952. He was followed by Charles H. Schaeffer, former park service director, in 1953. Schaeffer was a landscape architect and Board of Forestry employee in 1935 when the FPS was created. As director, he coordinated the acquisition and construction of the first state parks with the Civilian Conservation Corps and the National Park Service. He left in 1937 for an out-of-state job. Schaeffer died in October 1959 while still chief of information and education.