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Coconuts and South Beach
People and coconut palms have one thing in common, they both love warm, sunny days. This may seem like something strange to point out. And it is. But the love human beings and coconut trees share for wonderful weather is why South Beach Miami is a tourist mecca.
In 1868 South Beach first came under private ownership, when the Lum brothers bought the sandy strip of land from the federal government for thirty cents an acre. The brothers began a plantation. At the time, South Beach was an isolated barrier island off the coast of Florida. While the coconuts grew plentifully, the business failed. It was darned hard getting their coconuts off the island.
In 1913 John Collins bought the plantation. To succeed he knew he would need to move coconuts. So John Collins built the world’s longest wooden bridge. Two and a half miles long. It connected his coconuts to the U.S. market.
And, so to speak, it connected the U.S. to the coconuts. With the bridge, tourists began to visit the tropical perfection of South Beach. Hotels sprung up. And South Beach became the tourism hot spot we know today.