Backstory and Context
James C. Bronaugh was a physician in the United State Army. (No records exist as to why there is a difference in spelling between the street name and Bronaugh’s actual name). He and Andrew Jackson grew very close as they both rose through the ranks of the Army together in the Southern Military District, Jackson through command and Bronaugh through the medical service. Their friendship was one of mutual respect, confidence, and long-lasting. After Bronaugh served Jackson in the diplomatic mission to Pensacola (territorial capitol of West Florida), Jackson appointed him resident physician of the city. Later, Bronaugh would personally carry Jackson’s resignation as military governor to President James Monroe.
Once the full Territory of Florida was organized in early 1822, Bronaugh was appointed by President Monroe as a member of the Legislative Council. He was unanimously elected President of the Council. This position put Bronaugh in the lead for the delegate’s seat to Congress that the Territory gained. A decisive vote regarding suffrage for military men stationed in Florida put Bronaugh at odds with another council member with designs on the delegate’s seat, future Territorial Governor Richard Keith Call. Bronaugh favored broad manhood suffrage to include military men in the territory. Call favored a more restrictive manhood suffrage.
In the summer of 1822, the Council was forced to move its meetings out of Pensacola due to the arrival of Yellow Fever. The controversy over suffrage and the burgeoning division between fellow Jackson friends, Bronaugh and Call, ended rather abruptly with the epidemic. The rivalry that seemingly developed between Bronaugh and Call was put to a final end when Bronaugh contracted Yellow Fever and died in September 1822. Bronaugh was a slave owner and accounts report his slaves were sent to his mother after his death. Two years later, as part of his plan for Tallahassee, Territorial Governor Willam DuVal proposed the naming of a street to honor the former doctor.
1.Doherty, Herbert J. "The Governorship of Andrew Jackson." The Florida Historical Quarterly 33, no. 1 (1954): 3-31. Accessed April 11, 2020. www.jstor.org/stable/30138932
2.Doherty, Herbert J., and Andrew Jackson. "Andrew Jackson's Cronies in Florida Territorial Politics: With Three Unpublished Letters to His Cronies." The Florida Historical Quarterly 34, no. 1 (1955): 3-29. Accessed April 11, 2020. www.jstor.org/stable/30139730.
3.Groene, Bertram, Ante-Bellum Tallahassee (Tallahassee, FL: Florida Heritage Foundation, 1971), p.19 https://ufdc.ufl.edu/FS00000017/00001/27j.
4.Jackson, Andrew, and James Craine Bronaugh. James Craine Bronaugh to Andrew Jackson. 1822. Manuscript/Mixed Material. https://www.loc.gov/item/maj010145/.
5.Knott House Museum. Know Your Neighborhood: Tallahassee Street Name Origins. Tallahassee, FL: Knott House Museum, 1997
https://www.flickr.com/photos/healthyfla/15784611602/ and http://www.floridamemory.com/items/show/26780