Five Generations Later, Real Estate is Still in the Blood

Real Estate Agent with Falcon Property Solutions

Fifth Generation Land Trader


Real estate is in my blood. Generations before me were passionate about the trading of land, about building restoration, about the purchase and sale of property. I am proudly carrying on that tradition.


In the mid 1800s in Central Florida, my great-great grandfather, Willoughby Tillis, owned a vast amount of acreage in Ft. Meade. He planted crops and raised cattle, and as the area settled, it became a time of prosperity. Will began purchasing more parcels and constructing dwellings for others in the area, becoming a land trader. When the Civil War broke out and Will became a prisoner-of-war, his ten children carried on his tradition.


My great-grandmother, Caroline Augusta Tillis (“Callie”), was the last surviving girl in the Tillis family. When her father was taken prisoner, Callie was a strong and determined young woman who helped raise her siblings. She continued to work the realty and exchanged buildings as her father had taught her, and prospered their holdings even more. When her father returned from the War, she married John Calhoun Jordan, a Methodist minister, and moved nearby to Palm Harbor, Florida.


As Callie’s seven children grew, she continued to buy and sell acres and acquire property. She had a lot of gumption and a magic touch with real estate, and bartered for tracts to build the JC Jordan Store in an area that had no general store. Every commodity imaginable at the time was sold there – from wheels to clothes to toothpaste. She continued to trade and build.


The late 1800s saw a great financial crash, but Callie was able to sustain her family with the land and gold she had acquired over the years. Three of her sons became agents in real estate. She built one of her sons a gas station on a large corner lot on the highway in Palm Harbor in the 1920s. Another son, Walter Dallas Jordan, my grandfather, was responsible for keeping her assets flourishing.


A millionaire prior to the stock market crash of 1929, Walter lost almost everything, but was able to ride it out with the blessing of their resources. When Callie died in 1931, Walter turned her holdings into a thriving real estate empire again.



From the age of ten, my mother, Virginia Jordan Henry, worked for her beloved father in his St. Petersburg, Florida real estate office, answering phones, writing ads, and typing contracts. When her four children were raised, Virginia got the real estate itch again and began buying and selling houses in Central Florida.


After I had five daughters, the long-dormant real estate gene in me came out full force. My husband and I began buying and selling Victorian homes in Downtown Colorado Springs. We searched high and low for a Realtor who would understand our excitement for older homes and who would help us achieve our goals.


When we couldn’t find one, it was a natural progression for me to want to do what generations before me had done, and I couldn’t help but wonder why I hadn’t been doing it all along. Real estate was a tradition and a passion, and I obviously passed it along. I now have the honor that two of my daughters are also licensed Realtors in Colorado. (And another daughter is named 'Callie' after her great-great grandmother.)


For five years in a row, I have been voted one of Colorado Springs Best Realtors. If you are looking for an Agent who knows the business, I would be honored to talk with you about your specific goals. I specialize in residential home sales in the Colorado Springs region for both Buyers and Sellers, as well as military relocation, selling rental property for out-of-state owners, and vintage homes. Having lived in Colorado for the past five decades, I know the area well. I look forward to hearing from you.

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Selling homes throughout Colorado Springs, Old Colorado City, Manitou Springs, and surrounding areas



Mimi Foster

(719) 460-7570


Mimi has received the honor of being voted one of the best Realtors in Colorado Springs five years in a row. With over two decades of experience, she is committed to making the home buying/selling process as painless and enjoyable as possible. Read Full Bio…

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Sheri Sperry - MCNE®
Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage - Sedona, AZ
(928) 274-7355 ~ YOUR Solutions REALTOR®

Hi Mimi Foster,

I love to read about history and when it is your own, that is so very special. Thanks so much for sharing your story. It is amazing.

Dec 10, 2019 12:49 PM #9
Anna Banana Kruchten Broker/Owner, CRB, CRS
Phoenix Property Shoppe - Phoenix, AZ

Hi Mimi Foster what an awesome family history!  And you clearly have the family 'gene'!!  I loved the part about your great-grandmother Callie - she was one kick a** woman for that time period.  Love love love it!!

Dec 10, 2019 12:59 PM #10
Jay Markanich
Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC - Bristow, VA
Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia

¡ Maravilloso !  Me gusta, y me gusta.  Bien hecho.

Great story!  So, it's in the genes!  No wonder.  And I love the house in the photo that you guys restored! 

My first relative got here in 1650, a Wallace, and the second in 1702, a Magruder (the MacGregors had their name revoked by King James).  The two families intermarried for over 200 years!  So part of me is quite Scotch!  Which, unlike the family, I don't drink...

As a result I am a Son of the American Revolution, which is where I probably get my rebel streak.  Don't tread on me!

We have some cool photos and about 700 relatives on Ancestry and Family Search.  I love reading the family stories, many of which I have written and posted on line.  One is here on AR!

And now your story is!  I love it!

Be good, young one.

Dec 10, 2019 01:11 PM #11
Jay Markanich
Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC - Bristow, VA
Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia

I'm thinking about putting up a Christmas post tomorrow, with a twist for the economics inclined.

Dec 10, 2019 01:20 PM #12
Michael Jacobs
Pasadena, CA
Los Angeles Pasadena 818.516.4393

Hi Mimi - what a wonderful story. Great photos too.  

Dec 10, 2019 05:45 PM #13
Debra Leisek
Bay Realty,Inc Homer Alaska - Homer, AK

Wonderful post about you family and history. You certainly have a way with words and telling us your story in a captivating way.  Your grandfather was quite the dapper gentleman. Your Mother quite lovely! Nice!

Dec 10, 2019 11:14 PM #14
Robin Wells
RAW Chimney Sweep and Inspections - Penetanguishene, ON
Giving Peace Of Mind One Chimney At A Time

Thanks for the post and amazing family history story.  Enjoyed very much!

Dec 11, 2019 04:11 AM #15
Carla Freund
Keller Williams Preferred Realty - Raleigh, NC
Carolina Life RealEstate & Relocation 919-602-8489

Wow Mimi, what a cool story!

Dec 11, 2019 04:42 AM #16
Kat Palmiotti
406-270-3667,, Broker, Blackstone Realty Group - brokered by eXp Realty - Kalispell, MT
The House Kat

What a fantastic family story! Thank you for sharing five generations of real estate accomplishments, along with wonderful photos. 

Have a great day!

Dec 11, 2019 06:02 AM #17
Bob Force (REALTOR®)
Weichert - McKenna & Vane - Mount Airy, MD
The FORCE in Maryland Real Estate

Great story and well written.  Hope you a yours keep it going.

Dec 11, 2019 06:58 AM #18
Karen Climer
Demetree School of Real Estate - Orlando, FL
Teaching people to pass the real estate exam

I love this story.  I am a third generation real estate licensee.  Also, a third generation native Florida.  So I loved the Central Florida portions.  Thanks for sharing.

Dec 11, 2019 09:07 AM #19
Susan McCall, Independent Listing and Buyer Agent
Compass Realty Solutions - Portland, OR
Bringing buyers and sellers together!

Thanks for sharing your family story and sharing the photos.  You are also so fortunate that you have a family whose history is traceable and you are a part of the history.  Some of us are not so lucky, we can't pick our relatives!

Dec 11, 2019 07:41 PM #20
Andrea Bedard
Thompson Company, REALTORS® - Silver Spring, MD
M.A.; REALTOR® Silver Spring, MD and beyond

From the very beginning of your family's story I wondered, whether or not any of your daughters have caught the Real Estate bug, too :) Thank you for sharing Mimi, just loved the pictures! 

Although my blood-family has no love affair with Real Estate (Europe + WW2 + communism), my professional family does. I am affiliated with the oldest family brokerage in the county, founded in 1946 (not quite as far back) which is now being led by the 3rd generation. It's fascinating to look through their old records, seeing pictures, signage, and advertisements. 

How did you end up in CO? 

Dec 12, 2019 07:00 AM #21
Anne Corbin
Long and Foster - Lake Anna - Spotsylvania, VA
Serving Lake Anna & Central Virginia

What a legacy! It's great that you wrote this and you should put a copy in your personal papers. I'm sure your daughters will enjoy passing this along to their children and generations thereafter.

Dec 12, 2019 07:40 AM #22
Marte Cliff
Marte Cliff Copywriting - Priest River, ID
Your real estate writer

I love your story and the photos. Loved hearing about Cassie - some old-time women were really tough!

Dec 12, 2019 12:31 PM #23
Jill Sackler
Charles Rutenberg Realty Inc. 516-575-7500 - Long Beach, NY
LI South Shore Real Estate - Broker Associate

You come from a long line that is smart and chic!

Dec 12, 2019 01:46 PM #24
Nick Vandekar, 610-203-4543
Long & Foster Real Estate Inc 610-225-7400 - Devon, PA
Tredyffrin Easttown Realtor, Philly Main Line

Great story and obviously the apple never fell far from the tree. Glad you have kept up the tradition. 

Dec 12, 2019 02:07 PM #25
Debb Janes EcoBroker and Bernie Stea JD
ViewHomes of Clark County - Nature As Neighbors - Camas, WA
REALTORS® in Clark County, WA

What a wonderful story, Mimi. It was a fascinating read and fun glimpse into your family's history. You are obviously doing what you are supposed to be doing - that's a huge gift in life. 

Dec 13, 2019 07:37 AM #26
Jan Green
Value Added Service, 602-620-2699 - Scottsdale, AZ
HomeSmart Elite Group, REALTOR®, EcoBroker, GREEN

What an amazing story!  You are lucky to have had such a tradition, much less to know and understand their stories.  Wow!  Thank you for sharing!

Dec 20, 2019 11:04 AM #27
Debe Maxwell, CRS | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC
Charlotte Homes for Sale - Charlotte Neighborhoods

Oh, I love this story, Mimi! I adore history and loved hearing the progression of those in your family through the generations in this business. 

I also love that you named your daughter after your great grandmother - Callie is a beautiful name!

Dec 28, 2019 07:03 PM #28
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Mimi Foster

Voted Colorado Springs Best Realtor
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