Did You Know-town is a series of hyper-local trivia bits about the City Beautiful.
Mr. Joseph Bumby was one of Orlando’s best-loved pioneers and many of the city’s buildings and even a street bare his name.
Joseph Bumby married the love of his life, Mary Flowers Elderkin at “high noon” in 1867 in Waterloo UK, then promptly left for America in 1873. It took Bumby two weeks to cross the Atlantic on a fancy (for the times) steamboat, to Jacksonville, via Nova Scotia, and a ferryboat ride up the St. John’s River.
He, his wife, and their nine children were one of the first families in the Orlando area. Bumby’s homestead of 160 acres stretched from Summerlin to the Executive airport. While his orange trees matured, Bumby delivered mail between Orlando and Mellonville (now Sanford), and then opened the first hardware store, over on Church Street in 1886 – which now houses Hamburger Mary’s (Facebook | Website).
Joseph Bumby was an active member of the community as an elder trustee of the First Presbyterian Church, the Rotary Club as well as a member of the Olivet Commandery no. 4 of the Knights Templar.
When he died the Hardware store was passed on to his six sons, the “Bumby Boys” and it stayed in business until 1966, when it closed its doors after 80 years of operation.
Editor’s Note: “Bumby Boys” would make a great punk band name.