Miami sprang into existence on July 28, 1896, following the extension of the Florida East Coast Railway from West Palm Beach on April 15, 1896, and the publication of the soon-to-be city’s first newspaper, The Miami Metropolis, on May 15, 1896. However, evidence suggests people lived in the area as early as the 1700s. Nicknamed “the Magic City” by publicists working for railroad and hotel builder Henry Flagler, Miami has weathered yellow fever epidemics, World War I, the 1920s boom and bust, World War II, and numerous other economic ups and downs to become one of the world’s great cities and the catalyst for the growth of the South Florida megalopolis.
Toledo began the 20th century as it had ended the 19th―with a rapid expansion in industrialization, urbanization, and immigration. The titans of industry who shaped Toledo’s early history continued to expand their fortunes and were joined by others who took advantage of the city’s potential. A new industry emerged from the bicycle factories and wagon works of the 19th century―the automobile industry. It would dominate Toledo’s economy in the 20th century. In addition to Jeeps, scales, glass, spark plugs, and transmissions, Toledo was also known for its civic reforms, strong labor unions, and fine cultural institutions during the 20th century. While Toledo never became “The Future Great City of the World” that Jesup Scott envisioned or even the futuristic “Toledo Tomorrow” that Norman Bel Geddes imagined, by the end of the 20th century, it was a successful city with an interesting past and a hopeful future.