History of Coconut Grove - Part 1

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Coconut Grove was originally founded in the late 1800s, by a few pioneering families and Bahamian immigrants.  The first of the pioneers were the Frow and the Pent families who were lighthouse keepers in Cape Florida in the 1830s.  Eventually the families settled in the area that would become home to Coconut Grove real estate.  The Beasley family next homesteaded in the area, acquiring 160 acres of land along the bay. 

The Peacock family came next, eventually opening the first hotel in the still unnamed area, which they called the Bay View Inn.  Later the historic hotel would be renamed with their last name, becoming the Peacock Inn.  The hotel was monumental in the history of real estate in Coconut Grove, so named at this point after its first post office.  With the opening of the Bay View Inn came new people to the area.  Workers came from the Bahamas for employment at the new hotel.  The Bay View Inn also became a large tourist draw to South Florida, and many of these tourists would decide to make the area their new home upon visiting and discovering the yet untapped exotic locale.  The new community was growing and thriving, and by the beginning of the twentieth century, it had established a yacht club, a library, a school, and a chapel. 

Word began to spread of the budding community with beautiful weather year-round.  Soon, visitors were coming, particularly from the Northeast, to make South Florida real estate their home to escape the harsh northern winters.  Coconut Grove was officially annexed by the city of Miami in 1925, but the perseverance of its residents helped it to maintain its unique identity, even as the population of Coconut Grove homes exploded.

For more on the later history of the area, read History of Coconut Grove - Part 2.

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