Building New Bridges, Remembering the Old: 1934, “Franklin D. Roosevelt Highway Bridge,” SLR/IRL

I continue to share my mother’s historic documents for those who love and appreciate history. Today’s original 1934 Stuart Daily News publication is very impressive, oversized, with aerial photographs and pride-filled words lauding the City of Stuart, and her  Roosevelt Bridge as part of  the new “Gateway to the Gulf of Mexico.”

This gateway, of course, was the Cross State Canal that was federally funded through “navigation” with the dual use to discharge Lake Okeechobee water, that Nature would have flowed south to Florida Bay, into the northern estuaries enhancing “Fishing, Hunting, and Sports on the Beautiful St Lucie….Lake Okeechobee, and Caloosahtchee River….”

In 1934, an era of Man Over Nature, both men and women did not know their determination to control the environment  and its waters would, eventually, kill almost everything they loved.

And here we are today…

But as my hero Ernie Lyons, editor environmentalist of a later newspaper, the Stuart News said: “What men do they can undo.”

I believe this.

New bridges must be built. Not just of concrete but of the heart.

Bridges between people and politics. Bridges between corporations and children. Bridges between agriculture giants and fish. Bridges between developers and a new way to live. Why? Because like it or not, we are a Florida Water Family. All connected. All bridged together by depending on this place.


I will end with words from my mother, historian, Sandra Henderson Thurlow:

“Jacqui, This is a very large book that was published to celebrate the dedication of the original Roosevelt Bridge on January 8, 1934.  The pages are supposed to face each other so “Stuart–‘Atlantic Gateway to the Gulf of Mexico'” run together. The sentence at the bottom should be “The City of Stuart Invites You to Winter on the Beautiful St. Lucie River.” A gentleman who lives in Rio, Richard Lewis Miller,  shared the original in honor of his father, Alvin Richard Miller 1906-1976.” Mom (


Sandra Henderson Thurlow, website:

Joe Crankshaw, Transformation of Stuart, TCPalm,

Former Blog post on subject, JTL:

6 thoughts on “Building New Bridges, Remembering the Old: 1934, “Franklin D. Roosevelt Highway Bridge,” SLR/IRL

  1. Charming little Stuart. Old Stuart. My heart lives there still. Please continue to educate and entertain us with your delightful writing. Thank you, Jacqui—your mother sounds very intelligent and interesting. Love, Jane Irons Coupe’

  2. I have been putting calcium sand 30 miles north of sebastion inlet(on west shore). I noticed for about a quarter mile stretch —all along the shore there are big mullet so I decided to do something I love to do but have not the time. I cast nested and cut one up for bait. They are full of EGGS. These mullet are sponing far away from sebastion inlet.It is obvios –now that there is milky white calcium in the water and the chemistry is back ,they do not have to go all the way to sebastion inlet where they are slaugtered in mass. I am sure next year a billion baby mullet will start there lives in the safety of turttle grass which will grow at least a half mile out. 5+ years ago there was zero sea grass here.Republicans and democrats can both KISS MY ASS.

  3. Mark Perry and anyone else who is going to be an advisor to Brian Mast concerning the lagoon needs to be asked the question—–Do you think an estuary is healthy if there is no calcium in it for all the baby creatures to grow their bones? It would be good if Brian Mast asked them this question personaly.

  4. You would not think what is happening on the shore would affect weather or not sea grass grows half a mile or more from shore into the lagoon but it sure does.The last 2 days has had hard east wind. Somehow this compresses all the suspended materal in the water and brings it close to shore for historic chemical reaction to take place. I watched crab fishermen pulling crab traps with binoculars and traps were covered with turtle grass. I believe the endangered green sea turtle is about to make a dramatic comeback

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