On Jan. 22, 1912, the first train steamed into Key West via Henry Flagler’s Over-Sea Railroad, linking the Florida Keys to the mainland for the first time. By 1935, the railroad was bankrupt and a devastating hurricane ended its run for good. But this weekend, the Keys are throwing a party to commemorate the completion of what has been declared “the greatest single construction and engineering feat in U.S. – and possibly world – history.”
On Saturday a period-costume ball (sold out) is planned at Key West’s historic Casa Marina, the hotel that was built to accommodate well-heeled railway passengers. On Sunday, a parade on Key West’s Duval Street will end at the Custom House Museum, where a new exhibit, Flagler Speedway to Sunshine, will be unveiled.