Social History

Gay Rights in Miami

The issue of gay rights grew into a national story in Miami on Jan. 18,1977 when a throng of conservatives — led by entertainer and Florida orange juice spokeswoman Anita Bryant — packed Miami-Dade County’s commission chambers to protest the potential passage of a gay rights ordinance. As a heated debate took place inside the downtown […]

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Gambling, bookies and bolita

Legal and illegal gambling has long been a part of Florida.

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Eastern Airlines Crash, 1972

In one of South Florida’s worst air disasters, Eastern Airlines Flight 401 from New York’s JFK Airport to Miami crashed on Dec. 29, 1972, in the Everglades after the crew became distracted by a burned out landing-gear light.

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Polio Vaccine reaches Miami

In the 1950s, after Dr. Jonas Salk developed a vaccine against polio, citizens in Miami and across the nation lined up for shots to prevent the feared disease, which paralyzed thousands of children each year, killing some.

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Jim Morrison Arrested in Miami, 1969

After a March 1, 1969, concert in the old Dinner Key Auditorium, rocker Jim Morrison, lead singer of The Doors, was arrested in Miami on charges he exposed himself onstage.

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Jack “Murph the Surf” Murphy

A teen violin prodigy and champion surfer, Jack “Murph the Surf” Murphy seemed to be destined for folklore when he and two accomplices stole the Star of India sapphire and the 100-carat Delong ruby from the American Museum of Natural History in New York.

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