Photos: Old South In Tallahassee, Before Political Standoffs

May 29, 2015

A special session for the Florida State Legislature starts Monday in Tallahassee. And that's a good a time as any to revisit the history of the 200,000-city, which used to be just a town of the Old South.

Mark Silva, former Tallahassee bureau chief for the Miami Herald, wrote about the capital's past in a National Geographic story

Silva notes the tint of the Old South was strong in Tallahassee when he moved there (he mentions a restaurant serving "Wop Salad," served with Italian dressing), but with the growth of the city's political class, things have changed.

He writes that governors in the 1960s started aiming to separate Florida from its neighboring southern states through changes in education and environmental policies. The Sunshine State's rapid growth in the '50s and '60s had begun threatening environmental treasures, such as springs in North Florida once known for their "gin-clear" waters.

As state officials meet to do the work that has come to define Florida's capital now, we bring you photos of Tallahassee's past, from the State Archives of Florida. Click through the photos above.

Below, click through the years to see how the city's demographics have changed.

Tallahassee over the years | Create infographics