History of Clearwater
Part Two
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The Healthiest Spot on Earth

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Clearwater pioneers Arthur (A.C.) and Lillian Turner homesteaded a large tract north and south of Turner Street from South Fort Harrison Avenue to the bay.
Transportation and communication lines of the day were slow, but Clearwater was making steady progress. The 1850 census showed the Pinellas peninsula was home to 35 families and a total population of 178.

The beauty of the area, the bluffs in Clearwater and live oaks growing out over the water attracted more pioneers to the area. In the early 1850s, Captain James Parramore McMullen (1823 - 1895) built a log cabin which still stands today in the historic Pinellas Heritage Park in Largo.

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Completion of the railroad from Clearwater to St. Petersburg was the most important local event of the decade. Before automobiles, the ox-drawn cart was family transportation for Pinellas settlers.

By 1860, large-scale plantation agriculture, rare in southern Florida, started to develop in the Tampa Bay area. Cotton plantations and open cattle herding were successful. Census figures from 1860 show the Pinellas peninsula was up to 82 families, with 381 individuals, including 36 Whitehursts and eight McMullens.

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