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Coconut Grove was Miami's first black settlement in the city, and is one of the largest continuous communities in Miami. The community is home to the same community of Bahamian immigrants who have lived in Coconut Grove since its inception, more than 140 years ago. The group built its own homes with materials they brought with them--homes which have withstood Miami hurricanes and are still standing today.

Editorial Assistant at the National Trust Carson Bear writes:

In addition to the labor they put into constructing the city of Miami, the Bahamian community also built their own neighborhood in the shotgun style. The shotgun houses—named for their long, rectangular shape where a shotgun blast could supposedly travel through the building without hitting a wall—were one room wide, with rooms placed back to back.

In 2018, Dade Heritage Trust worked with local community members to preserve and protect many of the historic shotgun homes in Coconut Grove. The City of Miami’s Historic and Environmental Protection Board successfully designated multiple properties in Coconut Grove for both their architectural and historic significance. But development is a serious concern for Coconut Grove, and a large part of the community continues to fight for the protection of their homes. Out of the designated properties, 15 are under appeal, the majority of which have come from owners who recently purchased the properties in order to demolish them.

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