Greynolds Park – North Miami Beach FL

Description

Miami and the surrounding Dade County were effectively without city or county parks until the 1930s.  The city got its first park in 1925, after which the city was devastated by a hurricane the following year. The county received its first donation of land for a park in 1929, which became Matheson Hammock Park.  In 1930, the park system got its own director and a beach park, Surfside, was added in 1932. The county began improvements on the parks using mostly convict labor and men sent by the Charity Office once the Depression hit, as well as starting a Roadside Beautification program.

As in many other places, the New Deal provided essential resources to get the Dade County park system off the ground.  Local park advocates quickly took advantage of FERA funds and then put in requests to the National Park Service for CCC workers in 1933 to work on Matheson Hammock Park.  When the Park Service balked at the small size of the projects, the locals quickly added two new units, Fairchild Tropical Garden (next to Matheson Hammock) and Greynolds Park to the north.  As part of the deal, CCC workers were also assigned to Royal Palms State Park, later included in Everglades National Park.

CCC camps were laid out by the US Army and the ‘boys’ went to work laying the foundations for the parks, first at Greynolds in 1933 and then at Matheson Hammock in 1935.  They constructed roads, cleared grounds, dug lagoons and a harbor, laid walls, planted trees and built picnic tables and shelters.  They also added several key operations buildings at each site.  Later, as parks use soared, local managers sought the WPA’s aid to complete their plans, although the CCC remained active in the parks until termination of the program in 1942.

Key local actors were A. Douglas Barnes, who served as county parks director for some sixty years and worked alone until the parks department was expanded after World War II.  It was he who invited in the National Park Service and the CCC boys.  The park designs were laid out by noted landscape architects W. L. Phillips (a student of the Olmsteds) and Raymond Ward.

Greynolds Park has several lagoons and is noted for its ‘mound’ with a castle-like structure on top built by the CCC.  The mound covers up the remnants of the dredge used to build the lagoons.

(For more information, see the History of the Dade County Park System: The First Forty Years by A.D. Barnes (1986), a downloadable pdf)

Source notes

History of the Dade County Park System: The First Forty Years by A.D. Barnes (1986)

Project originally submitted by Richard Walker on July 12, 2014.

We welcome contributions of additional information on any New Deal project site.

SUBMIT MORE INFORMATION OR PHOTOGRAPHS FOR THIS SITE

Location Info


17530 W Dixie Hwy
North Miami Beach, FL 33156

Coordinates: 25.942006359931447, -80.15390001586911

3 comments on “Greynolds Park – North Miami Beach FL

  1. Dooley Bevins

    Greynolds Park is not actually in North Miami Beach. It is located in unincorporated Miami-Dade County. It may get its mail for the North Miami Beach post office, but it is not in North Miami Beach.

    • Gabriel Milner

      Can you provide a specific address? All we’re finding is a N. Miami Beach address.

  2. Can you re-link the link to the .pdf book mentioned (below) on this page.
    https://livingnewdeal.org/projects/greynolds-park-coral-gables-fl/

    Greynolds Park has several lagoons and is noted for its ‘mound’ with a castle-like structure on top built by the CCC. The mound covers up the remnants of the dredge used to build the lagoons.

    (For more information, see the History of the Dade County Park System: The First Forty Years by A.D. Barnes (1986), a downloadable pdf)

    Thank you!

    Ivan

Leave a Reply

Before leaving a comment, please note:

  • Comments allow viewers to share information with others or alert us to errors or changes in a New Deal site.
  • We are not involved in the management of New Deal sites and have no information about visits, hours or rentals.
  • This page shows all the information we have for this site; if you have new information or photos to share, click below.

SUBMIT MORE INFORMATION OR PHOTOGRAPHS FOR THIS SITE

We welcome contributions of additional information on any New Deal project site.

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.