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The old Chipley City Hall is in downtown Chipley (no surprise), in the Panhandle. The Mediterranean Revival hall was built in 1924, and has also served as a public library. It now functions as the county Visitors Information Center and area Chamber of Commerce. It is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, and included in “A Guide to Florida’s Historic Architecture”. See more photos here.

I have a fondness for Chipley. After moving back down to live with Mom in early ’06, I took my first Panhandle roadtrip in October. It was a few weeks early, but I considered it my birthday treat. I got my digital camera for Christmas, and the next year I took my next Panhandle trip, this time a few days after my birthday. I started it in Chipley. It’s a four hour drive from Ocala to Chipley, so I left at 4 AM on a Saturday to get there early. Saw the sunrise as I got to the I-10 exit for Chipley. Thanks to Google, I was discombobulated, but I found my way to the historic stuff I wanted to see, then worked my way back east.

In March 2008, I left work early the Thursday before Easter so I could spend the night in Chipley. It’s about halfway between Tallahassee and Pensacola, so it was a great starting point to amble my way through the hills and woods along U.S. 90 through the Easter weekend. I didn’t go back for my birthday that year, since that’s when Mom wasn’t feeling good and she was subsequently diagnosed with cancer.

The following year I didn’t do much roadtripping at all, since I wanted to spend as much time with Mom while she was still with us. She passed in early 2010, and by November I was ready for another Panhandle roadtrip. I took a couple of days off work and made it an extra long weekend. I of course went through Chipley.

Last year, of course, was the unemployment, and by November I didn’t feel like going anywhere. Now that I’m gainful again, I’m looking forward to making Panhandle birthdays a regular tradition. And I’m sure I”ll go through or stay in Chipley during the journey.

Well, that’s it, round one done. I’ve done a “Where is Florida” for every county. Guess it’s time for round two.

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Sun Bright is in DeFuniak Springs, in the Panhandle. It was the home of Sidney J. Catts, who was the state’s 22nd governor (1917 to 1921).  The house was built between 1886 and 1890. There are a number of old homes like this in DeFuniak Springs, mostly around Lake DeFuniak. It is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, and included in “A Guide to Florida’s Historic Architecture”. See more photos here.

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The Baker Homestead is in Orange Home, off SR 44 near Wildwood, in the north central part of the state. The house was built in 1896 by state senator David Hume Baker. The mansard roof is unusual for a home constructed in nineteenth century Florida. It is included in “A Guide to Florida’s Historic Architecture”. See more photos here.

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St. Marks Lighthouse is in the St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge in St. Marks, in the Panhandle. Built in 1842, it was damaged during the Civil War and rebuilt afterwards. It is the second-oldest light station in the state, the oldest being the Cape Florida Lighthouse, built near Miami in 1825. It is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, and included in “A Guide to Florida’s Historic Architecture”. See more photos here.

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The Miakka School House is in Miakka, a small town 17 miles west of Sarasota, in the southwestern part of the state. This Frame Vernacular school was built in 1914, and is the only simple rural schoolhouse remaining in Sarasota County. It is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, and included in “A Guide to Florida’s Historic Architecture”. See more photos here.

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The old Taylor County Jail is in Perry, at the eastern fringe of the Panhandle. It was built in 1912, and is now the home of law offices. It is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. See more photos here‎.

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The Polk Hotel is in Haines City, in the central part of the state. The Italian Renaissance Revival hotel was built in 1926. It is currently used by the Landmark Baptist College. The hotel is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. See more photos here.

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