Tag Archives: history

Florida Highwaymen art show


By David Volz

Al Black can remember the struggles that African American artists faced years ago when they tried to sell their paintings. He is one of the original Florida Highwaymen and began as a salesman for other artists in the group. They would travel the highways of Florida and sell their paintings door to door or from their cars.

“I remember what it was like back then,” he said. “Now we are getting a lot more money for our paintings.”

Black enjoys painting Florida landscapes. “I have some paintings of Royal Poinciana trees here,” said Black.

He was among 11 Florida Highwaymen who displayed their paintings at the Sample-McDougald House art show on March 20 and 21. Many people came to view their work and to purchase paintings. Most of the work involves Florida landscapes.


Roy McLendon participated in the event. “I just like to paint,” he said.

James Gibson, one of the original Florida Highwaymen, has many of his works on display at the Florida Governor’s Mansion and Florida government buildings. “I love to paint Florida landscapes,” he said.


Farm Heritage Days celebrates the agricultural past of Pompano Beach



By David Volz

Cherryl Cook spent her childhood living in the Sample-McDougald House. Her mother was Mary Ellen McDougald.

“I have good memories of living in the house. It was a great time in my life,” said Cook.

She had a 40 year teaching career and recently retired. Now she is a docent at the Sample-McDougald House and shows people where she grew up. “I want to share the history of this house with visitors,” said Cook.

The historic Sample-McDougald House was open for Farm Heritage Days, featuring exhibits and activities. Individuals and families could learn about Pompano Beach’s farming past.

Laura Salerno and Ruth Grassmann enjoy serving as senior docents. “This is great for everyone. It was fun event,” said Grassmann.


“This house is a part of history and a great place for families to come and learn about Pompano Beach,” said Salerno.

Pat Anderson, an artist, was painting pictures of farm life when Pompano Beach was an agricultural community. She sold one painting to Cook. “I love being a part of this,” said Anderson.

Visitors could view antique tractors and farming equipment from days gone by, interact with farm animals in the petting zoo, and take a ride on a pony, as well as learn about the agricultural roots of this area through displays. There were games, music and food and tours of the Sample-McDougald House.

People could also buy vegetables similar to the ones grown in Pompano Beach during its farming heyday. Before Pompano Beach became a tourist destination, there were extensive farms growing beans, peppers, squash and eggplant. Now most of those farming operations have moved north to Palm Beach County.

The historic Sample-McDougald House dates from Broward County’s pioneer era. Built by Albert Neal Sample, it once sat alongside Dixie Highway surrounded by pineapple fields. In 2001, the house was moved to its current location to ensure its preservation. The structure is listed in the National Register of Historic Places. Its grounds have been designated by the City of Pompano Beach as Centennial Park.