image preview

Creation Date



The marker reads: "THE GAINESVILLE SERVICEMEN'S CENTER -- The City of Gainesville purchased the Servicemen’s Center lot on December 7th 1942. The Federal Works Agency constructed a $37,000 building with a ballroom, stage, dressing rooms, second floor reading room, three showers, three telephone booths for long distance calls, a coat check room, a 20-foot-long snack bar, and a kitchen with a ten-burner stove. The FWA provided sofas and easy chairs, a baby grand piano, a fiddle, trombone, radio, juke box, and a victrola. The city paid for kitchen equipment, flowered drapes, the mantle mirror, ping pong and snooker tables. They also paved NE 2nd Avenue and laid sidewalks. The Garden Club supplied and installed plants. Senator Claude Pepper dedicated the building on July 23rd 1943. Servicemen from Camp Blanding, the Alachua Army Air Base, the Officer Candidate School and the 62nd College Training Detachment attended events organized by program director Thelma Boltin (1904-1992) seven days a week from 10:00 AM to 11:00 PM that included dances, plays, variety shows, sing alongs, chess, pinochle and bingo. Outdoor activities included badminton, barbeque and shuffleboard. Civic clubs provided funds and hostesses for meals including 400 dinners on Thanksgiving. F-645 A FLORIDA HERITAGE SITE SPONSORED BY THE ALACHUA COUNTY HISTORICAL COMMISSION AND THE FLORIDA DEPARTMENT OF STATE 2008" Top of sign: Florida Heritage emblem

Latitude, Longitude

29 deg 39' 12.88", 82 deg 19' 15.26"

Rights Statement


Taylor, George Lansing, Jr.; Lance Taylor; Photographers -- Florida –Jacksonville; Photograph collections -- Florida – Jacksonville; Historic markers – Florida -- Alachua County; Florida Heritage Landmark; Gainesville (Fla.); Historic buildings; Clubs and Associations; Civic centers; Military personnel; Servicemen; Images

Image Location