Articles by Casey Piket

Banyan tree in parking lot on November 28, 1954

Last Remnant of the Royal Palm Gardens

On Saturday, December 10, 1955, the last tree that once stood in the Royal Palm gardens was felled and removed from a parking lot in downtown Miami. Years earlier, the banyan tree was rooted along the west wall of the…


Booker T Washington High School on February 15, 1930

Booker T Washington School in Overtown

By the peak of the great building boom in 1925, the population growth of Dade County had more doubled since the census of 1920, necessitating the need for a significant number of new schools to serve neighborhoods that became overwhelmed…


George Merrick speaking at the Cornerstone Dedication.

University of Miami Cornerstone Dedication in 1926

More than seven thousand people converged on the site selected for the University of Miami in Coral Gables to witness the cornerstone laying ceremony on Thursday, February 4, 1926. The pomp and circumstance surrounding this event represented a seminal moment…


Aerial of Expo Building in 1937

Exposition Building in Downtown Miami (1937)

After ten years of economic malaise during the Great Depression, South Florida began to show signs of economic recovery by 1936. Miami Beach saw a construction boom of apartment buildings and hotels which provided accommodations for the working class who…


Bentley Estate on August 24, 1962

Bentley Estate on Star Island

By the early 1920s, Miami and Miami Beach began to experience a population explosion based on the promise of beautiful year-round weather and the opulence of the tropics. This promise appealed to the ‘nouveau rich’ of the Gilded Age, particularly…