Model Land Company Records (University of Miami)
The Model Land Company (MLC) Records date from 1907 - 1967 (inclusive)
with bulk dates of 1910 - 1940. The MLC Records are housed in one hundred
and fifty-nine (159) boxes and total sixty-six (66) cubic feet of files.
The MLC Records are arranged in two series: Series I: Special Files
and Series II: Sales Files. The files consist of the administrative
and financial records of the MLC's Miami-based land agent, Frederick
S. Morse, and those agencies that followed Morse, including Pepper and
Potter; Pepper and Coffrin, Inc.; Frank J. Pepper and Son, Inc.; and
Frank J. Pepper, Inc. The files do not represent the comprehensive records
of the Model Land Company, although this material constitutes a large
portion of the surviving records. Unfortunately, most of the records
of the central office in St. Augustine were destroyed between 1963 and
The MLC had an enormous impact on the history of the Everglades. The
region known as Cape Sable is documented in a number of files recording
land transactions and plans to develop roads, experimental farms and
other facilities. James Ingraham initiated the drainage and development
of the area. As an employee of Henry B. Plant's South Florida Railroad,
Ingraham explored the Everglades for construction of a railroad route
to the Keys. He reported that the land was unsuitable for a railroad
but had enormous potential for farming. Plant was uninterested, but
Flagler pursued this information and eventually acquired and began the
process of draining the land so it could be sold as farmland. In addition
to promoting the sale of the land and encouraging the establishment
of agricultural experiment centers by providing low rate leases, the
company constructed roadways and advertised hunting and fishing attractions.
The files contain maps showing various proposed boundary lines, newspaper
clippings, pamphlets, memos, transcripts of radio broadcasts, and other
materials documenting the company's activities in the Everglades.
Description prepared by Ruthanne Vogel,
University of Miami
Also available: brief biographies of Henry
M. Flagler and James E. Ingraham.