Letter from Sydney Chase to Joshua Chase (September 2, 1927)


Dublin Core


Letter from Sydney Chase to Joshua Chase (September 2, 1927)

Alternative Title

Chase Correspondence (September 2, 1927)


Chase, Sydney Octavius, 1860-1941
Chase, Joshua Coffin, 1858-1948
Citrus fruit industry--Florida
Sanford (Fla.)
Camden (Me.)
Chase and Company (Sanford, Fla.)
Celery industry
Banks and banking--Florida


An original letter of correspondence between brothers and business partners Sydney Octavius Chase and Joshua Coffin Chase. Topics discussed in the letter include information about Chase & Company operations, the company's status on growing celery, and the controversy surrounding the Seminole County Bank and its founder, politician Forrest Lake. By the 1890s, Lake became known as a local politician in Sanford, Florida, and later became a member of state government. He was charged with bank fraud in 1928 and was forced to close the Seminole County Bank.

Chase & Company was established by Joshua Chase and his brother Sydney in 1884. The company sold insurance and later invested in storage facilities and fertilizer sales. Chase & Company was known mainly for its agricultural interests and maintained a series of citrus groves throughout Central Florida. The company was based out of Sanford and became one of the city's largest employers into the early twentieth century.


Chase, Sydney Octavius


Original letter from Sydney Octavius Chase to Joshua Coffin Chase, September 2, 1927: Chase Collection (MS 14), box 3, folder 13.46, Special and Area Studies Collections, George A. Smathers Libraries, University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida.

Date Created


Is Format Of

Digital reproduction of original letter from Sydney Octavius Chase to Joshua Coffin Chase, September 2, 1927.

Is Part Of

Chase Collection (MS 14), box 3, folder 13.46, Special and Area Studies Collections, George A. Smathers Libraries, University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida.
Chase Collection, RICHES of Central Florida.

Is Referenced By

Folder referenced in Chase Collection finding guide, http://web.uflib.ufl.edu/spec/pkyonge/chase.htm.




5,649 KB


3 page typewritten letter on Chase & Company letterhead






Sanford, Florida
Camden, Maine
Sanford, Florida

Spatial Coverage

28.811729, -81.268138
44.209526, -69.064922
28.811732, -81.267409

Temporal Coverage


Accrual Method


Audience Education Level

SS.K.A.1.2; SS.1.A.1.1; SS.1.A.2.2; SS.1.A.2.4; SS.1.E.1.4; SS.2.A.1.1; SS.3.A.1.1; SS.4.A.1.1; SS.4.A.7.1; SS.4.E.1.1; SS.4.E.1.2; SS.5.A.1.1; SS.6.W.1.3; SS.7.E.1.2; SS.7.E.1.4; SS.7.E.2.2; SS.7.E.2.4; SS.7.E.2.5; SS.8.A.1.5; SS.8.E.2.1; SS.8.E.2.3; SS.912.A.1.1; SS.912.A.1.6; SS.912.A.5.4; SS.912.E.1.5; SS.912.E.1.14; SS.912.E.2.3; SS.912.E.2.12; SS.912.W.1.3


History Teacher
Economics Teacher


Entire Chase Collection is comprised of four separate accessions from various donors, including Cecilia Johnson, the granddaughter of Joshua Coffin Chase and the children of Randall Chase.

Rights Holder

The displayed collection item is housed at Special and Area Studies Collections at the University of Florida in Gainesville, Florida. Rights to this item belong to the said institution, and therefore inquiries about the item should be directed there. RICHES of Central Florida has obtained permission from Special and Area Studies Collections at the University of Florida to display this item for educational purposes only.

Contributing Project


Marra, Katherine

Digital Collection

External Reference

"Sydney Chase Sr. (1860-1941)." Florida Citrus Hall of Fame. Copyright 2012. http://floridacitrushalloffame.com/index.php/inductees/inductee-name/?ref_cID=89&bID=0&dd_asId=600.
Warner, S.C. "Development of Marketing Citrus Fruits in Florida." Florida State Horticultural Society vol. 36 (1923): 198-200.
Hopkins, James T. Fifty Years of Citrus, the Florida Citrus Exchange: 1909-1959. Gainesville, Florida: University of Florida Press: 1960.
Gilmartin, Daniel O. "Mayor Forrest Lake of Sanford." Florida Historical Quarterly74, No. 4 (Spring, 1996), pp. 391-404.
Sanford Historical Society, Inc. Sanford. Charleston, South Carolina: Arcadia Publishing, 2003.
"14-YEAR TERM GIVEN BANKER: Forrest Lake of Sanford Sentenced in Connection With Financial Trouble." The Sarasota Herald-Tribune. May 5. 1928. http://news.google.com/newspapers?id=MJUcAAAAIBAJ&sjid=LWQEAAAAIBAJ&pg=3645%2C6433680.
Robison, Jim. "Rise And Decline Of Forrest Lake Seemed To Follow State's Fortunes." The Orlando Sentinel, May 3, 1990. http://articles.orlandosentinel.com/1990-05-03/news/9005030412_1_lake-cashier-bank-fraud.
Ping, Dan. "Sanford's Archives: Former mayor was turn-of-century Madoff." The Sanford Herald, August 5, 2009. http://mysanfordherald.com/bookmark/3095854-Sanford-s-Archives-Former-mayor-was-turn-of-century-Madoff.
Mills, Jerry W., and F. Blair Reeves. A Chronology of the Development of the City of Sanford, Florida: With Major Emphasis on Early Growth, 1975.


SANFORD, FLORIDA September 2, 1927
Mr. J. C. Chase,
Camden, Maine
Dear Josh:
Gray promised to mail to Justice tonight at least
four complete audits of the Chase & Company business for the year ending July 31, 1927. He is incorporating in this audit some supplementary information, which he has not heretofore included in his audit, which he thought would be helpful to Justice when interviewing some of our banking connections.

I am enclosing copy of letter am writing Justice today.
I was very much surprised to learn that the
sales in the merchandise department of the Sanford office
for the past month checks up about equal with August 1926, in that the fertilizer items were not as heavy as a year ago but the building material items exceed those of a year ago. We have a right good man on the outside, and he seems to be getting the business. We are watching the
accounts, and when necessary will protect ourselves by
filing builder's liens before it is too late to do so. We
have a large booking for fertilizer, but it has not yet commenced to move out, hence is not included in our August figures.
Leffler has been away, for a month, and is ex¬pected home on the afternoon of the 5th,
Matters in town since the closing of the Seminole bank have been more or less confused so far as money matters are concerned, however the American Growers have some sort of sewer connection with some Federal Land Bank organization, thru whom they are having some of the growers financed. The growers pay a bonus, and then give a mortgage to protect the Farm Loan Bank. It may be they are operating under
the Federal Land Bank which is located at Columbia. Some¬how I do not look with favor upon this sort of financing.
We were in hopes that the acreage planted to celery this year would be considerably less than a year ago, but if this form of financing continues the acreage will not be reduced as much as we hoped for. The First National Bank is not loosening up very much. They have weathered the trying conditions very satisfactorily, and
are showing a slight gain in deposits.
I am expecting Mr. Boggs here tonight, and have
asked him to stop with us at the house. There are certain matters in connection with the City affairs which I think
he can be of considerable assistance on by working with
DeCottes. It would be impossible to have a lawyer working independent of DeCottes at the present time. It looks
to me as if the Chase National Bank is bound to lose a
bunch of money, due to the fact that they accepted unauthorized issues of City certificates of indebtedness, which were passed to them by Lake without being authorized by the Commission or anyone else.
The State Bank Examiner expected to complete his work far enough to make a preliminary report to the
Comptroller at the end of this week. Just what loss will
fall on the City is difficult t to determine at this time.
Lake told me that he had advanced the City several hundred thousand dollars to cover payments on improvements, which were to be lifted as, and when, we had bond sales. It seems that as soon as he got certificates of indebtedness covering unauthorized advances he immediately hypothecated these certificates so it happened during the intrum when there was about half a million dollars in bond money placed to the credit of the Seminole County Bank in the Chase National Bank, proceeds from the sale of bonds the 1st. of July, the City was not protected, and this is where we got in trouble, although I think I told you when you were here in July that as the Seminole County Bank had advanced more money to the City than the City had on deposit we had an
off-set, and were safe.

Yours very truly,

Dry iced shipped Tuesday lost or blown up, not arrived-Love w(?) for duplicate shipment, so square(?) shipment delayed (?).

Document Item Type Metadata

Original Format

3 page typewritten letter on Chase & Company letterhead



Chase, Sydney Octavius, “Letter from Sydney Chase to Joshua Chase (September 2, 1927),” RICHES, accessed April 12, 2024, https://richesmi.cah.ucf.edu/omeka/items/show/652.