Verle A. Pope
(1903-1973)

Died aged c. 70

Verle A. Pope, 51st president of the Florida Senate, was born in Jacksonville, December 12, 1903. He spent most of his life in St. Augustine where he became a successful businessman and one of St. Johns County’s largest landowners. He first entered politics in 1934 as a candidate for the St. Johns County Commission. He won a seat in the Florida House of Representatives in 1942 but resigned to enter the U. S. Army. He returned to St. Augustine in 1945 and in 1948 was elected to the Florida Senate. He served as Senate President from 1966 to 1968. Pope helped approve the Florida Constitutional revision of 1968, establish the community college system, create the Historic St. Augustine Preservation Board and advance the Florida School for the Deaf and Blind. He donated 40 acres of land to the St. Augustine Technical School and contributed to historic preservation in St. Augustine. Verle A. Pope died at his St. Augustine home July 18, 1973.

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Verle Allyn Pope (December 12, 1903 – July 18, 1973), nicknamed The Lion of St. Johns, was a prominent Florida legislator, serving for 24 years in the Florida House of Representatives and the Florida Senate. Born in Jacksonville to deaf-mute parents, he attended high school, prominent in athletics and speech. He enlisted in the Air Corps in 1928 but was forced out of service due to a previously sustained knee injury. Seeking political office in 1934, he became county commissioner of St. Johns County. Eight years later, he successfully ran for a seat in the Florida House of Representatives, but later resigned due to acceptance into the U.S. Army. Shortly upon his return from oversees that saw him win awards for his service, in 1948, he ran, again successfully, as a senator for St. Augustine in the Florida Senate. Among the 24 years he served, he was involved in many important issues and held positions like President pro tempore and President of the Senate. He was forced into retirement in 1972 by bone cancer and died of it the year after.

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Commemorated on 1 plaque

Verle A. Pope

Verle A. Pope [full inscription unknown]

Florida School for the Deaf and Blind, 207 North San Marco Avenue, St. Augustine, FL, United States where they was