Historic Markers Across Florida



State Road 4A



Marker ID: FLHM F-901
Location: 24700 Overseas Hwy, Summerland Key, FL
County: Monroe
Coordinates: N 24° 39.696    W 081° 26.804
  24.6616    -81.44673333
Style: Free Standing **
Waymark: None
 



Text:

State Road 4A


The first Overseas Highway, also known as State Road 4A (SR 4A), consisted of two roadway segments both completed by 1928. One spanned from Key West to No Name Key, and the other from Key Largo to Upper Matecumbe Key. Ferries transported cars between the segments. The roads were constructed of local rock and marl. In the 1930s, World War I veterans were sent as part of the Federal Emergency Relief Administration to work on bridges to close the gap, but construction was cut short when the 1935 Labor Day hurricane claimed the lives of more than 400 workers and their families. The catastrophe sparked debate over whether to rebuild the Florida East Coast (FEC) Railway or the highway. Monroe County opted for the highway, and the railway’s Bahia Honda Bridge was converted for automotive use. In 1938, a toll road linked Lower Matecumbe to Big Pine Keys and created the first continuous road from Miami to Key West. During World War II, the Overseas Highway moved from SR 4A to a new alignment using the FEC’s straighter route. The new highway connected with US 1 and most of SR 4A was abandoned or became local streets. The section of SR 4A located north of this point, is part of the Florida Keys Overseas Heritage Trail.

A Florida Heritage Site






F-901 2016