Backstory and Context
To know about Presidential Circle you have to know a little bit of the Hollywood Florida that surrounds Presidential Circle. Joseph Young was the founder of Florida's Hollywood and by extension was the founder of the Presidential Circle. Joseph Young came during the 1920 land boom along with many others in order to find a prime spot to create his “Dream City in Florida”. After spending millions of dollars and much of time on the construction of many buildings and roads of the Hollywood. Hollywood began to see a heavy increase of northerners who came down to the south to escape the freezing climates in the winter on the northern hemisphere of the country. The same northerners would leave in the summer time and return to their homes back up north to escape the harsh humid climates that hit the southern hemisphere part of the country during the summertime. Due to these influx of temporary residents coming and going seasonally large amounts of hotels began to increase to tackle this demand for this growing market.
One of the hotels that sprang up was the hotel known as Hollywood Hills inn which was built on surge circle the same circle that later was to be known as Presidential circle. The Hollywood Hills inn was originally created to as hotel just a little ways from the beach. The Hollywood Hills inn appealed to the northerners that wanted to get away from the freezing temperatures up north, but didn’t not want to stay near the ocean. Since the majority of the hotels were on the beach it seemed like an ideal spot. The Hollywood hill Inn was built 3 stories the hotel had 200 rooms each room had a private tile bath and the hotel had a main dinning room. In 1926 a huge hurricane hit Florida and devastated Hollywood including the Hollywood Hills inn luckily he hotel was able to be repaired.
In the early 1920’s a man by the name of Beavers came down to Florida in hopes of building the prospects of building a wintertime military school for his military academy Riverside Military Academy up in Hollywood Florida. His hope was to have a military school that in the summertime would attend school in Georgia and in the wintertime come down to Hollywood Florida and continue attending in order to avoid the harsh Georgia snow. Beavers agreed to buy the hotel and the land surrounding for an amount of ten dollars. Reconstruction and rehabilitation on the hotel was started and 1932 and for ten years the grounds did exactly what was it was built for the grounds worked as excellent an place for a winter place. Then world war two broke out and between 1942 and 1944 then the United States military took over the school. The United States navy converted the military academy into a Naval air Gunners’ School which trained people to a mounted gun from a stationary turret on an aircraft. The building was given back to the academy in 1945 at the end of the war and they returned that same year. The building was used by the academy for another fifteen year without incident.
Then another catastrophe stuck the and the main building of the academy’s school in Hollywood caught fire and burned down. Thankfully no one was hurt in the fires and the people of Hollywood were kind and allow the cadets to stay in their house for a night. The next night the cadets left to return to their the academy in Gainesville Georgia. The cadets returned years later after some reconstruction in 1961 where they continued to use the school until the Hollywood campus closed down in 1984. Then years later the circle was renamed from surge circle to Presidential circle and in 1989 the presidential building was constructed and completed along with a plaque in 1995 that commemorated the for military academy that once stood their. Which Beavers proudly gave a speech about the time the military school once stood there.
History of Hollywood, City of Hollywood Florida, http://www.hollywoodfl.org/187/History-of-Hollywood
Young, Jim. “Riverside Military Academy Hollywood, FL with Col. "Judge" Beaver” YouTube. Speaker Col. John L. Beaver, April 21 2015, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vxCCuAi6zuA
Gannon, Michael. The History of Florida. Gainesville, Florida. University Press of Florida, 2013.