Today in Keys History – Dec. 1, 2022

A row of people stand along a picket fence in front of a white lighthouse.

1830 – William R. Hackley recorded in his diary: Rose a little after the sun. The Sloop-of-war Natchez went out this morning. I took a dose of salts as I feel the effects of the wine drank, slightly. Brother is so sick that he has not risen and complains much of headache. Captain Wallace still sick. About 6 P.M. the Schooner Thames from New York for St. Marks came in and one of the passengers a Mr. Buel brought me a letter from Father of the 2nd ultimo containing an opinion of Gen. Van Renssclair and of Mr. H.H. Storrs on his title to the claim of Florida lands. Sloop Sara Isabella arrived from the reef. Wind northeast. Weather pleasant

1845 – Benjamin Sawyer was re-elected mayor of Key West and Joseph Y. Porter, John Boyle, Michael Shanahan and Samuel O. Tift were chosen for the city council.

1908 – The Governor of Cuba, Charles E. Magoon, arrived in Key West on the steamer Miami en route to Washington, DC.

1959 – Delio Cobo was re-elected Mayor of Key West and Gerald Abreu and Kenneth A. Archer were elected to the commission.

1965 – The Cuban boat lift from Matanzas Bay ended when the first airliner with 93 refugees landed in Miami. During the boat lift that began in October a total of 4,598 refugees came through the port of Key West.

1969 – After 123 years of service, the Key West Lighthouse was turned off by Mrs. Jennie DeBoer. Mrs. DeBoer’s mother was one of the keepers of the Key West Lighthouse.

A man holds a sign with two rows of names on them.

1987 – Delbert Layton, former mayor and founder of the City of Layton on Long Key, died at age 81.

1994 – An audit of the Monroe County Fine Arts Council revealed misuse of thousands of dollars and the executive director using funds to pay personal expenses.

Information compiled by Tom Hambright, Historian Emeritus, Florida Keys History Center, Monroe County Public Library


1) The Key West Lighthouse.

2) Del Layton holding a list of members of the Long Key Fishing Club. C 1970s. Wright Langley Collection.

Both: Florida Keys History Center, Monroe County Public Library.


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