Woodmen of the World

If you’ve visited Indian Spring cemetery in Punta Gorda, FL, you’ve probably noticed the highly detailed tree trunk grave stones. These grave markers bear the words ‘Woodmen of the World’ and often feature other similar iconography. According to Waymarking.com “Many of these tree stump monuments stand 4 to 5 feet high and show sawed or broken limbs traditionally symbolizing a life cut short.”

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Miss Ollie Brackett’s Secret

The most famous prostitute of Punta Gorda was Miss Ollie Brackett. Ollie ran a “disorderly, bawdy house of ill repute” at the west end of Marion Avenue – in those days it was known as the bad part of town. Miss Ollie served a few […]

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A Horse Named Perry McAdow

Perry McAdow was one of the founding citizens of Punta Gorda. He arrived in Punta Gorda in 1897 with his young new bride Marian. Another Perry McAdow of the same era was a Thoroughbred race horse. Perry McAdow, the horse, is listed in the racing […]

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Who Killed Marshal Bowman? Suspect 1: Isaiah Cooper

According to authors U.S. Cleveland and Lindsey Williams, Isaiah E. Cooper was convicted of Marshal Bowman’s assassination, but enough doubt existed that his scheduled execution was postponed three times, and ultimately when former Punta Gorda resident Albert Gilchrist was elected governor of Florida in 1908, […]

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Meet the Mysterious Mrs. B

Laura Bowman has been snubbed by other local historians. According to Lindsey Williams and U.S. Cleveland, after the assassination of her husband, Marshal John Bowman on January 29, 1903, “Mrs. Bowman moved to her mother’s home at Charlotte Harbor town and died two years later. […]

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The Dick Family Mystery

The Dick family’s short presence in Punta Gorda’s early history is a mystery. Angie Larkin tellls of the Dick family arrival in her book In Old Punta Gorda. The Dick family came to Punta Gorda in 1884 by covered wagon from Texas. They spent their […]

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The Mysterious Demise of Commodore Colt

He “died in the Hotel Punta Gorda,” posted the Scranton Republican on January 23, 1894. “Caldwell Colt was the richest bachelor in America and he was also the youngest capitalist … his age was only 35 and he leaves millions,” printed the Scranton Republican four […]

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