Lake Worth Pioneers' Association, Inc.


Upcoming Events

lwpa Annual Meeting


John Yeend

1109 S. Congress Ave.
West Palm Beach, FL 33406

Phone: 561-642-4200


Affliate Links

lwpa Palm Beach Historical Society

lwpa Yeend, Castaneda & Flynn, LLP

lwpa Jupiter Lighthouse

lwpa Norton Art Museum



Wilbur Leroy Forrey

Wilbur LeRoy Forrey came to the shores of Lake Worth in 1893. Born about 1870 in Marshall- town, Marshall County, Iowa, he was one of the ten children of Joseph and Ellen Forrey.

Two of Wilbur’s sisters, Ida Cram and Mary Palmer, either came with him or by themselves not long after. Wilbur’s brothers, Elmer and Melvin, arrived about 1898 and they all bought 10 acre strips of land running from County Road
(U.S.#1) to the lake (Lake Worth) in Hypoluxo.

Wilbur, Elmer and Melvin, and their sister Mary’s husband, Francis W. Palmer, all enlisted in the Spanish-American War in 1898 and were stationed in Fernandina, Tampa and West Palm Beach. When the men returned from service, they went into farming, growing mainly pineapples and tomatoes. As they now lived closer to Boynton, they became a part of that community.

Their parents, Joseph and Ellen Forrey, moved to the area from Iowa about 1899. Not long after, their father died while milking his cow. His tombstone is in Lantana’s Evergreen Cemetery with the dates 1828-1900.

Three sisters, Jessie, Annie and Katherine Ford, came to Boynton from Alabama sometime before 1908. Jessie married Wilbur Forrey. An early account indicates that they lived in Will Moore’s house on Hypoluxo Island. In 1911, a bridge was built to span the canal in Boynton. The Will Forreys became the bridge tenders there in 1924. Later their home was just south of Second Avenue and west of the Florida East Coast Railroad.

When Jessie died 6 February 1932, Will went to live with his bachelor brother, Elmer. Will died sometime before 1950. Family sources say that Wilbur and Jessie are both buried in unmarked graves in Lantana’s Evergreen Cemetery.


Copyright 2007 Lake Worth Pioneers' Association, Inc. All Rights Reserved.