Andrew Walton Garnett, age twenty, accompanied by James “Ed” Hamilton, age thirty, and James Porter, age twenty-five, arrived on the shores of Lake Worth in June 1885. They were all from Cadiz, Trigg County, Kentucky. Andrew had a small inheritance from his parents, and he wanted to become a citrus grower in central Florida. His father died when Andrew was six, and his mother ten years later.
The winter of 1884 they spent in Bartow. It was unusually cold so they sought a warmer spot. To reach the East Coast, they had to take the train to Fernandina, then make their way south to Titusville, where they could reach the Lake Worth area via the Indian River.
Each of the young men bought land on the mainland opposite the Pierce home, which was at the south end of Hypoluxo Island. Later they each applied for a homestead. Hamilton died in the line of duty, delivering the mail. Garnett’s homestead lay from Hypoluxo Road north toward the present-day ballpark, and Porter’s homestead was south of Hypoluxo Road. The property is still in the hands of the Porter family. (See Barefoot Mail Route.)
In 1896, eleven years after coming to the shores of the lake of Lake Worth, Andrew made a trip back to Kentucky to marry his sister’s friend, Lillie Mae Morehead, a teacher in Mayfield. Andrew and Lillie had six children, all born in Hypoluxo with the aid of a midwife. The first child, a girl, lived eight days and is buried in Lantana’s Evergreen Cemetery. The others are In B., Roy E., A. Leland, Lewis W. and Margaret. Irl and Roy lived out their lives in Palm Beach County. In! continued farming and growing fruit. He will be remembered for his fruit stand and packing house at the east end of Hypoluxo Road. Irl married Julia Butler of Virginia and their children are Lindsey and Katherine (Mrs. Richard Eubanks), both of whom reside in Lantana.
Andrew Garnett took a very active role in the community. After the death of Ed Hamilton, he and Charles Pierce carried the mail, walking the beach to Biscayne Bay (Miami). Later he was the first postmaster of Hypoluxo, with the office in his home. From 1894 to 1896, Andrew was treasurer of Dade County of which this area was then a part. He served as a member of the Dade County School Board from 1898 to 1902 and traveled to Miami to attend board meetings. He also clerked in Breisford Brothers store in Palm Beach as well as Lyman’s General Store in Lantana. A strong Christian, he provided space for the first Sunday School, and he and Lillie were charter members of Boynton Methodist Church. Andrew, specializing in grapefruit, grew citrus on his home place and on 40 acres east of Lake Osborne that he bought. He shipped fancy gift boxes of mixed citrus. He also grew winter vegetables which he shipped north in box cars on the F.E.C. Railway. He grew pineapples on the land he had homesteaded.
Andrew died 6 April 1940 and is buried in Hillcrest Cemetery, West Palm Beach. Years before, Samuel Blakely, the landscaper for the ill-fated Kelsey City, bought Royal palm trees from Andrew. When he couldn’t pay for them, Andrew accepted lots in Hillcrest Cemetery as payment. Lillie died in 1957 and is buried beside Andrew.
Roy was a prominent banker in Lake Worth for years. He was a member of many organizations and served on the board of the City of Lake Worth Library. Roy married Vivian Boutelle, the niece of Lilla Shepley. They had a daughter, Lillian, who married Allen 0. Nelson, an educator.
A. Leland Garnett lived in Waynesville, North Carolina. Lewis Garnett and his wife live in Miami. Margaret Garnett married Clyde Harris, and they have three sons, Kendall, Paul and Neil. Margaret was a teacher in Palm Beach County for seven years. Clyde, also an educator, was a school administrator before his retirement.