Joseph Forsyth  - Founder of Bagdad  

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Joseph Forsyth is the founder of Bagdad, FL, located in Santa Rosa County.  In 1840, Forsyth and his partners moved their sawmill facilities from upper Pond Creek downstream to a more strategic location where Pond Creek empties her waters into the Blackwater River.  It is here that the Village of Bagdad developed as a lumber mill community.

Joseph Forsyth

Joseph  Forsyth,  the  founder  of  Bagdad, was born in Connecticut in 1802.  He came to Pensacola via New Orleans in the early 1820's.  He bought a land tract on Pond Creek from Juan de la Rua in 1828 known today as Arcadia.

Forsyth, along with business partner E. E. Simpson and the rest of his associates, transformed this site into a thriving lumber industry for Santa Rosa County, Florida.

In 1840, Forsyth & Simpson Company moved their sawmill operations to the confluence of Pond Creek and the Blackwater River to better facilitate the production and transportation of their lumber products.  This location and its surrounding mill town was named Bagdad by Forsyth.

 

Forsyth   continued   building, setting up a sash factory and converting the Arcadia site into Florida's first textile factory.

This map is a survey of Bagdad, FL, circa 1851, and depicts the areas in Santa Rosa County, FL, where Joseph Forsyth held tracts of land. Joseph Forsyth, the founder of Bagdad, FL, was born in Connecticut in 1802.  He came to Pensacola via New Orleans in the early 1820's.  He bought a land tract on Pond Creek from Juan de la Rua in 1828 known today as Arcadia.  Forsyth, along with business partner E. E. Simpson and the rest of his associates transformed this site into a thriving lumber industry for Santa Rosa County, Florida.  In 1840, Forsyth & Simpson Company moved their sawmill operations to the confluence of Pond Creek and the Blackwater River to better facilitate the transportation of their lumber products.  This location and its surrounding mill town were named Bagdad by Forsyth.  Forsyth continued building, setting up a sash factory and converting the Arcadia site into Florida's first textile factory while his new location for the lumber mill went on to flourish.
Joseph Forsyth, founder of Bagdad, FL, located in Santa Rosa County, was an active promoter of business for the region in industrial development and internal improvements.  He married Cordelia M. Creary in 1849 and fathered four girls.  He went on to serve in the Florida Senate from 1852 to 1854.  In 1855, only one year later, Joseph Forsyth died.  He is buried atop the hill in the Bagdad Cemetery that overlooks the village.  Forsyth's grave is marked by an impressive nine foot obelisk.   Alongside the tall granite monument is a small headstone marking the grave of his daughter Elizabeth, who died of yellow fever in 1852.

Joseph Forsyth was an active promoter of business for the region in industrial development and internal improvements.  He married Cordelia M. Creary in 1849 and fathered four girls.  He went on to serve in the Florida Senate from 1852 to 1854.

 

In 1855, only one year later, Joseph Forsyth died.  He is buried atop the hill in the Bagdad Historic Cemetery that overlooks the village.

Forsyth's grave is marked by an impressive nine-foot obelisk.   Along- side the tall granite monument is a small headstone marking the grave of his daughter Elizabeth, who died of yellow fever in 1852.

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