Highlighting The Mother of Miami: The Only American City Founded by a Woman

Shye Lee
3 min readMar 5, 2021

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As a female entrepreneur and co-founder of a brand that revolves around women empowerment and entrepreneurship, it only felt right to remind everyone of this iconic title a fellow female entrepreneur has earned herself. My business partner and I recently moved to Miami and got really intrigued by Miami’s history and it’s interesting connections to female entrepreneurship.

It seems as though history has overlooked her, so in honor of women’s history month we want to take out the time to highlight the female entrepreneur that is responsible of founding the city that is internationally loved. Thanks to Julia Tuttle, and all her efforts in developing the city that is now known as Miami.

Her Journey to starting the city:

Julias first business venture was actually back when she lived in Ohio, she started a small business by turning their house into a tearoom for other women. This was shortly after her husband passed away and she needed to create an income for herself. In the meantime, her parents were already living in South Florida and didn’t decide to relocate until after her dads death. She sold the home in Ohio and moved down to Biscayne bay in Florida. She used the money that her parents had in estate to purchase 640 acres of land, that is now the city we call.. Miami!

That is when the entrepreneur set out to develop the city of Miami. Julie immediately knew she needed help with transportation for the city so she could the project could be a success.

She set out to contact Henry Flagler, who is the founder of the Florida East Coast Railway, to extend railroads to Miami. She tried to get in touch with him many times and since she was a very determined woman she even went to go find him in person and offer half of her real estate in exchange for railroad transportation in Miami.

Due to a misfortune with his business he finally made an effort to contact her back to talk about their potential business opportunities. Henry agreed to the terms presented to him and started his part of the deal. On April 22, 1896 the Florida East Coast Railways train service was finally available in the city. Then on July 28, votes determined Miami was in fact officially a…

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Shye Lee
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The world of an entrepreneur @shye.lee