Main Street Banner Program
Through funding by the Gadsden County Board of County Commissioners, and to create an aesthetic improvement to Chattahoochee’s downtown area, Main Street banners will be installed on the lamp posts that line the sidewalks on US 90/Washington Street.
Artwork created by 5th grade students at Chattahoochee Elementary School is being included in the design to showcase what the children love about the City of Chattahoochee. This project provides an opportunity for the school children to have tangible involvement in a civic process and instills community pride at a young age.
Heritage Park Caboose Restoration Project
In 2014, Chattahoochee Main Street received a wealth of volunteer help and supplies from the City of Chattahoochee, the Department of Corrections, and Florida State Hospital/Aramark on a restorative beautification project to repaint the caboose at Heritage Park.
Annual Commemoration of the CSS Chattahoochee
On May 27, 1863, an explosion of the boiler on the Confederate gunboat, CSS Chattahoochee, killed 17 men. Their names are memorialized on the monument on S. Main Street, just north of the Methodist Church. For the last two years, Chattahoochee Main Street has held a brief ceremony marking the anniversary of the incident honoring the men who perished. Going forward, this will be an annual event to honor these soldiers, their families, descendants, and their mission by recounting the incident and speaking aloud each of their names.
Strategic Community Vision Plan
Since the inception of the “Chattahoochee Revitalization Project” in August 2012, which was incorporated as Chattahoochee Main Street in March 2013, community input and ideas have been collected and recorded to begin shaping plans for Chattahoochee’s future. In November 2014, a funding and program agreement through a Small Community Technical Assistance Grant was executed between the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO) and Chattahoochee Main Street, Inc. to complete the public involvement process and prepare a Draft Strategic Community Vision Plan. This draft vision plan, completed in May 2015, has been recognized by the Secretary of State for the 2015 Florida Main Street highest honor award for Outstanding Public/Private Partnership between the City of Chattahoochee and Chattahoochee Main Street. Annually, the Secretary of State honors and celebrates the most innovative projects, and the people involved, that advance the Florida Main Street objectives. This prestigious award recognizes that the citizens of Chattahoochee, the City Council and the City Manager have been invaluable partners to Chattahoochee Main Street in developing the Strategic Community Vision Plan; a plan that is designed to shape the direction of the community’s future.
Gadsden County Development Council – Business Retention & Expansion Consortium
The Gadsden County Development Council (GCDC) Business Retention & Expansion (BRE) Consortium is a newly initiated County program designed to help provide connections to resources for existing local businesses. Future economic development will not succeed without improving the health of the local business community.
As reported by Opportunity Florida, 80 percent of new jobs are generated from existing businesses (in Gadsden County, approximately 90-95 percent of new jobs are created from existing businesses). In the economic development industry, it is repeatedly stated and emphasized that the best tool for business recruitment is a healthy and thriving business climate. The BRE Consortium helps open doors to resources to help existing business thrive.
Chattahoochee Main Street is an active partner in this program. The magnitude of the efforts currently underway on both a local and county-wide level have never before been initiated. The pathway to success is formidable and demands patience. These efforts will not succeed without full faith and support of the community and its civic leaders.
Historic Structure Survey (Phase I)
In partnership with Laura Lee Corbett, a Secretary of the Interior qualified Architectural Historian, Chattahoochee Main Street performed a Historic Resources Survey of pre-1970’s structures through a grant the City received from the State of Florida’s Bureau of Historic Preservation.
Having a baseline historic structures survey will pave the way for our City to apply to become a Certified Local Government (CLG). Through the National Park Service (NPS) and State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO), CLG certification opens doors to funding, technical assistance, and other preservation successes.
The final deliverable for the Historic Structures Survey was submitted to the Division of Historic Resources in July 2015 with 506 surveyed structures in the final report. A grant application for Phase II has been submitted to the State to complete the project.
Competitive Florida Partnership Program
Gadsden County is one of only four communities in the state to be awarded participation in the Competitive Florida Partnership Program. This grant funded partnership, supported by technical assistance from the Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO), will help our county and community identify and value assets that make us unique and will challenge us to set realistic goals for advancing our economic development vision. This initiative is a two-year project that will result in the creation of economic development strategies and policies to further economic development in Gadsden County. Chattahoochee Main Street is an active partner in this project and provides assistance in developing the economic development plan.
Nicolls’ Outpost Historic Marker
On November 9, 2014, a historic marker was unveiled at the River Landing to honor and memorialize the historical significance of Nicoll’s Outpost; a British outpost that was constructed 200 years ago in November of 1814 during the closing months of the War of 1812.
Chattahoochee Main Street wishes to thank Dale Cox, renowned author and historian, for his diligent research in uncovering the rich history of the Chattahoochee River Landing and for his generosity in donating the proceeds from the sale of his books for the placement of the historic marker. CMS also wants to thank the West Gadsden Historical Society for their coordination in getting the historic marker made.
According to Mr. Cox, the entire structure of the outpost was located high above the east bank of the Apalachicola River atop the largest Indian mound at Chattahoochee’s River Landing. Under the command of Bvt. Lt. Colonel Edward Nicolls, the outpost served as one of two permanent British military installations in the South during the War of 1812. It was reported to have been armed with two pieces of artillery, a howitzer and a cohorn mortar, and fortified with 180 black and white British troops and approximately 500 Red Stick Creek and Seminole Indians.
To learn more about Nicolls’ Outpost and many other interesting facts about the history of Chattahoochee and other areas in the southeastern United States, visit Mr. Cox’s website at www.exploresouthernhistory.com.
Chattahoochee Landing Mound Group Historic Marker
In the Fall of 2015, an additional historic marker will be placed on the large Indian mound at the River Landing. The marker will commemorate the remains of the prehistoric mound group. Believed to date from the Fort Walton time period (A.D. 900 – A.D. 1500), the original appearance of the largest of the seven mounds was that of a flat-topped pyramid. Archaeologists believe that a high status individual such as a chief or priest once lived on its top. The mounds formed the center of an important community that was occupied for thousands of years. Its location just below the confluence of the Chattahoochee and Flint Rivers was ideal for trade both up and downstream. Two of the other six mounds are still visible and archaeologists have located the probable sites of the other four. They formed a semi-circle around this large mound and all were likely used as platforms for homes or other structures. The site was abandoned when the first Spanish explorers arrived here in 1674. The landing was an important stop on the Old Spanish Trail (1674-1821) and was the site of a British fort during the War of 1812. The Scott Massacre, an important battle of the First Seminole War, was fought along the riverbanks here on November 30, 1817. The landing later served as an important port for paddlewheel riverboats, the wrecks of several of which can still be seen.