The intent of this cache is to introduce you to not too distant historical event. Near the cache you will find the final resting place of Judge John Cheney and Police Chief Sam Salisbury. July Perry is within eyesight of them.
Prior to 1920, Ocoee, FL had two black neighborhoods. Methodist Quarters and Baptist Quarters.
The U.S. Senate election of 1920 produced a violent chapter in Ocoee's history. One candidate was Republican judge John M. Cheney, who was encouraging black voter registration in Ocoee. On the Sunday before the election, the Ku Klux Klan staged a silent march through Winter Garden and Orlando to warn blacks to stay away from the polls.
Mose Norman, black Ocoee farmer, was turned away from the polls(N28.34.091 / W081.32.798)when he showed up to vote. He returned with a shotgun, but was disarmed and beaten. He then went to the home of his neighbor July Perry (N28.34.779 / W081.33.064), an influential and respected black landowner. Perry obtained a note from Cheney stating that he and Norman were eligible to vote.
A group of white men came with Orlando Police Chief Sam Salisbury to arrest Perry. When they burst into Perry's home two of the white men were killed. Perry, who was badly wounded, was arrested and jailed in Orlando, where a mob broke in and lynched him not far from Cheney's home by the Orlando Country Club.
In Ocoee, whites burned down black homes, churches and businesses. Many blacks were killed, and by the end of the day, most of the rest left. By 1921, only 17 black residents remained. In 1925, there were none, and Ocoee had no black population for about the next 50 years.
Perry's grave was only recently marked (N28.32.040 / W81.21.514). Judge John Cheney (N28.31.974 / W081.21.552) and Orlando Police Chief Salisbury’s (N28.31.970 / w081.21.531) remains rest in the same cemetery. All of the key players are now together forever!