The mission of the Oakland Park Historical Society, a not-for-profit entity, is to identify, protect and preserve the historical identity, structures, sites and heritage of Oakland Park through advocacy, education and promotion.
This isn’t just any old house. It was built by Dewey Hawkins, the first
Mayor of Oakland Park, in the early 1930s as a rental property. It later served as home to other city
leaders, including a later mayor and Fire Chief
Ed Bailey. The home was built of
sturdy Dade County Pine which remains solid and sturdy despite the disintegration
of some of the other materials used in its construction.
Mayor Dewey Hawkins was Oakland Park's longest serving Mayor, serving from 1926 to 1947, when he retired. He was not satisfied by the new leadership and won back his seat in 1949, serving to 1955 when his health forced him to retire.
Dewey Hawlins used to dress as Santa Claus and give dollars out to the local children. He is reported to have covered the grocery bills of needy residents during hard times. When he passed, he instructed his son-in-law to burn all his IOU's.
Recently, the Oakland Park City Commission recognized Mayor Hawkins when in named the boat and kayak launch on the North Fork of the Middle River, J. Dewey Hawkins Landing. Stay tuned for our announcement of a celebration to officially cut the ribbon.