| Located on the northern shore
of Lake Okeechobee "big water", Okeechobee County was created from parts of
Osceola and St. Lucie Counties in 1917. The county seat is also known as Okeechobee, or
Okeechobee City, originally called "Tantie" after settler Tantie Huckabee. Not
far away is the site of "Colonel Taylor's Christmas Party," where future
President Zachary Taylor fought the Seminole Chief "Billy Bowlegs" on December
25, 1837; Taylor reported that the Seminoles retreated after several unsuccessful charges,
but on a later visit to the Capitol an aged Bowlegs, upon spotting a portrait of Taylor,
boasted, "Me whip!"
The current Okeechobee Courthouse dates from 1926, following the approval of legislation authorizing the sale of bonds. The architect was George Gaynor Hyde and the structure was built by the firm of Rogers and Duncanson at an estimated cost of $200,000. The black-and-white view of this courthouse was taken immedately after construction and is from History of Okeechobee County by Kyle S. Van Landingham and Alma Hetherington.
Home Page 5 Index