Go To Search

City of Homestead News

Posted on: October 13, 2014

Bill Passes in State Senate to Honor Florida Pioneer

Thanks to the efforts of Jackie Crucet, The Mahogany Youth, Vice Mayor Stephen Shelley and Senator Dwight Bullard, an unsung Florida pioneer’s legacy, Sir Lancelot Jones, was officially honored during a Special Council Presentation on September 22, 2014. Mrs. Crucet, mentors from The Mahogany Youth, Vice Mayor Stephen Shelley, Florida State Senator Dwight Bullard, Biscayne National Park Rangers and friends of the late Mr. Jones were on hand to celebrate the official designation by the State of Florida of Oct 13, 2014 as being “Lancelot Jones Day.”

lancelot jones.JPG

It was under the tutelage of National Parks Conservation Association Program Analyst Jackie Crucet and the enthusiasm she fostered within the members of the child advocacy group, The Mahogany Youth, with whom she mentors, that the idea to honor Lancelot Jones was born.
“It was during the logistical and planning phases for the National Parks Trolley Project, in which Jackie Crucet was intimately involved, that Ms. Crucet made me aware of Lancelot Jones’ story and his indelible connection to Biscayne National Park,” said Vice Mayor Shelley. “After hearing the story and how moved the kids and mentors over at The Mahogany Youth were to make his story known, I committed to introduce the Mahogany Youth to our State Legislators and help advocate to make Lancelot Jones Day a reality.

Inspired by the Mahogany Youth, Senator Bullard successfully pushed Senate Bill 1158 through the Florida Senate resulting in the designation of October 13, 2014 as “Lancelot Jones Day” in the State of Florida.

Lancelot Jones, so named by his father as a nod to the nobility of the legendary Knights of the Round Table, was born into an African-American pioneer family that made its home on the southern keys in what is now Biscayne National Park. Born into slavery, Lancelot’s father, Israel Jones, beat incredible odds both societally and economically to become a successful landowner and farmer. The Jones family thrived for almost a century on that land growing and exporting pineapples and key limes.

In the 1940s and 50s, Lancelot was hired as a fishing guide, often for the rich and famous which included three American presidents (Herbert Hoover, Lyndon Johnson and Richard Nixon.) By the 1960s, developers were eager to acquire the Jones’ land and Lancelot was offered a premium price to relinquish it. Unflappable, Mr. Jones never wavered in his belief that the land was a gift and that it should be preserved for future generations, so he sold all 277 acres to the National Park Service for well below market value and today it stands as the most pristine, beautiful section of Biscayne National Park. Without Lancelot Jones, Biscayne National Park would likely not exist today and instead the pristine barrier islands would be occupied by high rise condos and commercial development.

Representative Holly Raschein and Senator Dwight Bullard have committed to sponsor continuing resolutions in both the Florida House and Senate in 2015 with the hope of making Lancelot Jones Day a permanent re-occurring annual honor in the State of Florida.

Facebook Twitter Google Plus Email

Other News in City of Homestead News

NASCAR Championship Weekend Traffic Update

Posted on: November 14, 2017

Inside Homestead November 2017

Posted on: November 14, 2017

2017 City of Homestead Election Results

Posted on: November 6, 2017

Early Voting for 2017 General Election

Posted on: November 1, 2017

2017 Primary Election Results

Posted on: October 3, 2017

HPS Online & Telephone Bill Pay Maintenance

Posted on: September 27, 2017

Early Voting for 2017 Primary Election

Posted on: September 27, 2017

Offices of the City of Homestead Reopen

Posted on: September 14, 2017

Homestead Trolley Service Resumes

Posted on: September 13, 2017

HPS Energy Continues Power Restoration

Posted on: September 13, 2017

HPS Sanitation Resumes Regular Pickups

Posted on: September 12, 2017

Curfew for Miami-Dade County Extended

Posted on: September 11, 2017

Miami-Dade County Issues Curfew

Posted on: September 10, 2017

Additional Evacuation Shelters Open

Posted on: September 8, 2017

City of Homestead Under Hurricane Watch

Posted on: September 7, 2017

HPS Sanitation Schedule for Hurricane Irma

Posted on: September 5, 2017

Inside Homestead August 2017

Posted on: August 10, 2017

Inside Homestead July 2017

Posted on: July 12, 2017

2017 Hurricane Preparedness Guide

Posted on: June 1, 2017

Inside Homestead May 2017

Posted on: May 31, 2017

Inside Homestead March 2017

Posted on: March 7, 2017

Inside Homestead January 2017

Posted on: January 24, 2017

Inside Homestead November 2016

Posted on: November 18, 2016

November 2016 Community Center Newsletter

Posted on: November 15, 2016

HPS Energy Hosts Centennial Celebration

Posted on: November 1, 2016

Inside Homestead October 2016

Posted on: October 19, 2016

City Hall Goes Pink!

Posted on: September 27, 2016

2016 Homestead Staff Tribute: One Call Away

Posted on: September 13, 2016

Inside Homestead August 2016

Posted on: August 26, 2016

Inside Homestead Special Report

Posted on: August 4, 2016

Inside Homestead July 2016

Posted on: July 14, 2016

2016 National Day of Prayer

Posted on: May 4, 2016

Inside Homestead April 2016

Posted on: April 20, 2016

Inside Homestead News Show: January 2016

Posted on: January 22, 2016

January 2016 Community Center Newsletter

Posted on: December 30, 2015

2015 General Election Results

Posted on: November 3, 2015

2015 Primary Election Results

Posted on: October 6, 2015

Inside Homestead News Show First Episode

Posted on: November 7, 2014

Spooky Saturday, October 25, 2014!

Posted on: October 13, 2014

Fiscal Year 2015 Proposed Budget

Posted on: September 8, 2014

Focus Back on Biscayne-Everglades Greenway

Posted on: February 11, 2014

Everglades Poetry Exhibit at Losner Park

Posted on: January 27, 2014