coral gables george merrickGeorge Merrick

The City of Coral Gables did not start off like any normal city. It was actually a grapefruit farm when it was first established. In 1899, Reverend Solomon Merrick, George Merrick’s father, bought 160 acres of land and created avocado, orange, and grapefruit groves. By 1911, Reverend Merrick had passed and George Merrick, the city’s founder, started to get into real estate. In 1921, he had accumulated 1,200 acres of land. Coral Gables’ development was greatly influenced by The Beautiful City movement in the 1900’s hence the city’s nickname. Because of this movement, Merrick decided to go all out and make this city as wonderful as it could be. He hired architects and artists to design everything for the city, including lampposts and corner signs. The city chose ocher and sienna as its main colors, and this gave it a very old-fashioned feel. By 1925, the city was incorporated. During its development, Merrick planted over 20,000 shrubs and trees. His love for vegetation and beautiful Mediterranean architecture can still be seen today on every street and in every building and home.

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