Although Jupiter Inlet was sparsely populated in the 19th century, the lighthouse and its strategic location began to spawn communications of all kinds. In time, Jupiter would house the southernmost Western Union telegraph station, a major link in a transatlantic cable, a Weather Bureau Station, a U.S. Life Saving Station, a busy steamboat terminal, and a seven-mile railroad linking the “Jupiter River” (Loxahatchee) with the growing settlements along Lake Worth.
Charles Robert Carlin came to this country from England to work for the government. He met Mary Moorer Joyner in Titusville, FL where they married in 1868. They moved to Jupiter by sailboat before April 8, 1871 when he became Assistant Lighthouse Keeper to James A. Armour. Charles worked for 3 ½ years at the Jupiter Inlet Lighthouse. They returned to Titusville in late 1874 where he owned C.R. Carlin Boatworks in Joynerville, worked for the U.S. Geological Survey, and took early tourists on hunting and fishing trips down the Indian River. In 1885, the Carlin family moved back to Jupiter where Captain Carlin took command of the newly organized U.S. Life Saving Station at Jupiter Inlet. Once that was underway, he built the first private residence in Jupiter, completing it by 1887. Due to necessity, the home turned into a hotel called the Carlin House. It soon became the favorite haunt for yachtsmen, fishing parties, and scientific expeditions who came to study the wild Florida frontier full of new discovery.
Harry DuBois and his new wife Susan Sanders DuBois, purchased the Indian shell mound property on the south side of the Jupiter Inlet in 1898. It was the perfect place to build a home – high enough above sea level for the DuBois family to catch the ocean breezes and beautiful view. The house and prehistoric mound are now recorded on the National Register of Historic Places as the Jupiter Inlet Historical and Archaeological Site. The DuBois Pioneer Home is currently operated by Palm Beach County Parks & Recreation.
George Washington Tindall and his wife, Mary Victoria Pilcher Tindall, were married about 1872. George Tindall was a hunter, trapper, cattleman, and farmer for many years. When his health began to fail he decided to move to a warmer climate, bringing his family to Kissimmee, then Jupiter.
The historic cracker-style Tindall House was built by George Tindall on the Loxahatchee River in Jupiter in 1892 on his 128-acre homestead and is considered one of the oldest houses in Palm Beach County. The area is now known as Palm Point, just off Center Street in Jupiter. According to his testimony for Homestead Proof, George built a frame house with an attached kitchen, a well, a hen-house, and cleared 5 acres planted in tropical fruits and pineapples in the fall of 1892. The Tindall Pioneer Home is now a part of a pioneer homestead exhibit located at the Jupiter Inlet Lighthouse & Museum, operated by the Loxahatchee River Historical Society.
The Pennock Family were Philadelphia Quakers who owned successful floral shop businesses. Abraham Pennock came to Jupiter around 1902 where he developed and operated a fernery growing asparagus plumosus, used for the background of floral arrangements. The Pennocks shipped the ferns north to New York City and Philadelphia on Flagler’s new East Coast Railroad overnight, creating the first industry in Jupiter. They also operated a high tech dairy farm known as Pennock Plantation. Their property included Pennock Point, much of central Jupiter, stretching from Center Street to where Toney Penna Drive is today. In addition to being Jupiter’s largest employer for decades, Pennock Plantation hired many African Americans, providing employment, homes and dignity, setting an example for the rest of the segregated community.
William M. Sperry
Suni Sands Trailer Park located on the south side of the Jupiter Inlet along A1A was formerly the site of the winter home of William M. Sperry, of S & H Green Stamp fame. Mr. Sperry was particularly interested in boating and fishing. His boat house contained a cabin cruiser, speed boats, canoes, electric boats, and a dinghy. Sperry used the top floor of the old boathouse to entertain his northern guests with elaborate dances and a wondrous view of the moonlit water. The Sperry family frequented the Carlin House dining room as did many others in the “season.” Mr. Sperry had a reputation of having impeccable taste and insisted on things being done properly. His greatest influence on the Carlin House was in the dining room, which was eventually equipped with the finest dining china silver, crystal and cut flowers and ferns for each elegant table.
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The Jupiter Inlet Lighthouse & Museum is operated by the Loxahatchee River Historical Society, managing partner in the Jupiter Inlet Lighthouse Outstanding Natural Area.
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