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Street Scenes > Courthouse
If they wanted, Gainesville Christmas shoppers in the 1890s could buy Yuletime presents in the New York Racket, "Cheapest Store on Earth," in the middle of the block on the west side of the Alachua County Courthouse Square. There were no hard-paved streets, but a fire plug and overhead wires show that a water system and electric service had arrived. Street lights had been hanging over the intersections only a few years but electric Christmas tree lights were not yet to be found on merchants’ shelves. Such novelties as electric toy trains were not seen yet but real trains ran right down Main Street on tracks in front of these stores. Other shops shown are the Gainesville Grocery, Thomas Company (selling garden tools, farm equipment and furniture), Endel Clothing, and the Thomas Hardware and Seed Company. This photo was made from the original owned by Klein Graham, University of Florida Business Manager for many years. The street in the foreground is West Main Street, the first block south of University Avenue, and the tracks belonged to Atlantic Coast Line.
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