In 2009, a group of civic leaders, including Broward County Commissioner Suzanne Gunzburger, met at the north end of the Kline tract now known as part of the John U. Lloyd State Beach Park to witness the installation of a State Historic Marker memorializing the County’s purchase of a one mile stretch of beach south of the Port Everglades Inlet in the summer of 1954.
The purpose of the purchase was to maintain segregated beaches in Broward County. The 1954 purchase cost the county $1.5 million to buy what became known as the ‘Colored Beach’ during the dark days of segregation. The county promised road access to the beach. Seven years later, the only access to the secluded beach was by ferry from Port Everglades. There were no bathroom facilities, concession stands, water or electricity. The black community believed that the county commission had not kept its word.
On July 4, 1961, seven years after the opening of the ‘Colored Beach’, and seven moths after the world premiere of Where the Boys Are,” Eula Jihnson and Dr. Von D. Mizell led five young black men to the first of what would become a series of wade-ins at the beaches of Fort Lauderdale, culminating a month later The wade-ins attracted worldwide attention. The City of Ft. Lauderdale filed suit to stop the wade-ins. A year after the first wade-ins In August 1962, Broward County Circuit Judge Ted Cabot, a white, elected state court jurist held that the black community had a constitutional right to enjoy the beach on an equal basis with th the white community. Segregated beaches had become a thing