SPACE COAST HISTORY
The original initials of
the Goodrich couple’s
daughter are set in
concrete, along with
a date when she was
spending time at the pool.
When Ella died in 1963 at the age of 91, the Hartford Courant noted she
was a founder of the Women’s Association of Wethersfield and supported
the Wethersfield Public Library through the Ella R. Goodrich Library Fund.
She also was a past president of the American Legion Auxiliary in her
Ella sold the Florida property, including the island, to her daughter, Mary
Goodrich Jenson, in 1944. In the 1960s, members of the Roseland Garden
Club were startled to learn that the Florida Flood Control District, precursor
to today’s water management districts, planned to destroy the island by
dumping spoil on it from a dredging project, the Orlando Sentinel reported.
Officials apparently didn’t realize the island was privately owned. Jenson
acted quickly to protect the island by donating it to the Florida Audubon
Society, which still owns it. Like Pelican Island, Goodrich Island is off
limits to humans, who can view birds from boats or kayaks. Signs will be
posted to mark the island as an Audubon-protected bird sanctuary.
AVIATION, JOURNALISM PIONEER
Mary Goodrich Jenson, who died in 2004 at the age of 96, accomplished
a great deal during her long life. In 1928 she became the first woman in
Connecticut to earn a pilot’s license. She was the first woman to fly solo to
Cuba, presumably from Florida, said William Goodrich III, her nephew two
“I knew her well and loved all her stories,” Goodrich said. “Her license was
signed by one of the Wright brothers. I saw it once. She was friends with
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JASON HOOK PHOTOS
Fountain in the patio gives a Mediterranean look in keeping with
the M >> oorish architecture of the original house.