The combined capital invested by incorporated companies in Jacksonville for real estate operations, reclaiming and improving lands, manufacturing and commercial purposes -- exclusive of banking, transportation companies, building and loan associations and private investments -- amounts to the enormous sum of $21,881,000. Of course all of this is not paid in, but it represents the capitalization of the companies engaged. More than half of this sum is devoted to real estate operations, which are not confined to Jacksonville by any means, but reach over a great portion of the interior. The business of buying and selling real estate has for years been very active in Jacksonville, and a large number of persons have engaged in it, generally with success. Jacksonville has never suffered from a "boom;" there has never been any wild speculations by syndicates or individual capitalists, consequently there has been no unhealthy inflation of prices, no bubble blowing, but the markets have always been normal with the varying fluctuations incident to "good" or "hard" times. On the whole prices have shown a steady increae from year to year, and while values are equal to that of other cities of like size and prospects, they are not, and never ere, excessive. Of course the value of property depends entirely on its location and condition. In the heart of the business portion it is worth as high as $1,000 a foot front on Bay Street, with river and wharf facilities, while corner lots, a mile distant, may e had for from $1,000 to $3,000. Building lots in more distant parts of the City bring from $100 to $3,000. As electric cars penetrate to every portion of the City and suburbs, there is no reason why any industrious citizen, at such prices, cannot own a home of his own, and that within easy access to every part of the town. The Building and Loan Associations, of which there are several, all in a flourishing condition, are always open to new members. They have advanced many thousands of dollars to workingmen and others, who, by paying from ten dollars to forty dollars a month into the association, instead of paying it in rents to landlords, are soon enabled to possess their own homes. These associations are organized by State enactment, and have been very successfully and economically conducted, and of great benefit to their members. Through their instrumentality many a man in moderate circumstances has been enabled to build a house, which he could not have done otherwise.
Brown, S. Paul
The book of Jacksonville: a history
Poughkeepsie, N.Y.: A.V. Haight, printer and bookbinder, 1895, pp. 124-125