The Hilliard Family

James Kinchen Hilliard was born in Coffee County, Georgia on December 17, 1852.  He lost his father in 1863 during the War Between the States.  Perhaps to ease the burden of his mother, who was left to rear some of his eleven siblings, James headed to Texas at the age of fourteen. For nine years he roamed the central west encountering Indians and buffalo and gathering tales of his experiences.

Ernest P. “Kayo” Murphy

The nickname “Kayo” would follow Ernest Patrick Murphy, all his life and only strangers would call him Ernest. In February, 1942;Ernest P. “Kayo” Murphy Kayo was drafted into the U.S. Army. Assigned to the 504 Parachute Infantry Regiment of the famous 82nd Airborne Division, he fought for 2 ½ years in major campaigns in the Mediterranean and European Theater of Operations. The Purple Heart was awarded to Sgt. Murphy for wounds received at Anzio Beachhead in Italy, along with a Battlefield Commission to 2nd Lieutenant during that battle.

Shingle Creek Monster: A catfish or more?

Forty years ago, on November eighth,  people in the Shingle Creek area may have had a real monster on their hands. This story of the Shingle Creek Monster (pictured in this blog) was the headline for the Osceola-Polk section of the Sentinel Star. I followed Frank Carroll’s footsteps when writing about this mysterious creature, nicknamed the “Loch Shingle Monster”, which doesn’t flow like the Loch Ness Monster.  Many people that lived in the area brushed off the beliefs that it could have been something other than a very large catfish. Many made it a personal goal to catch the moster of Shingle Creek, but they all came up empty handed.  

The Monts De Oca Family

Translations of the name Monts De Oca vary as do stories regarding the origin of the family.  Ancestry.com tells us it is “ Topographic name from a range of mountains forming the watershed between the rivers Ebro and Duero in northern Spain, named with the plural of monte ‘mountain’ and oca ‘goose’.”  The Urban Dictionary defines it as “large hills with an oak forest on top” or “large hills with geese on top”.

$80,000 Cultural Facility Grant awarded to OCHS for 1800s Replica General Store

The Osceola County Historical Society received an $80,000 Cultural Facility Grant through the Florida Department of State Division of Cultural Affairs. The organization will use the state funds from this grant to continue the next phase of the expansion of the Pioneer Village at Shingle Creek (2491 Babb Rd., Kissimmee, FL 34746), which will include the construction and furnishing of a late-1800s replica General Store. The replica General Store is scheduled to be completed this fall and open during the 26th Annual Pioneer Day on November 11, 2017. 

History is Happening!
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