Rogers, C.M. Papers 1834-1923





1.35 CUBIC FT.


MSS. 2003




MARCH 2003


Biographical Note


       C.M. (Clarence Mord) Rogers (1873-1933) was born in Plainfield, New Jersey and grew up in Daytona Beach, Florida. His father, D.D. (David Dunham) Rogers, established a Civil Engineering Office there in 1875, and after C. M. Rogers graduated from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in 1903, he joined his father in the firm.  In the course of their careers, C. M. and his father produced hundreds of maps, surveys, and drawings - often under the most difficult conditions.  These covered the period 1880 to 1933, and the eastern portion of Florida from Jacksonville to Key West.

       C.M. honed his bridge making skills in the early 1900’s when he was engaged in the Key West extension of Henry Flagler’s railroad.  In 1911, he was chief engineer for St. Lucie County, laying out a system of hard-surfaced roads. From 1912 to 1914, C.M. was design engineer and engineer in Ft. Pierce for construction of water works, electric light plant, and sewerage system.  In 1915, C. M. Rogers started work on the Cocoa-Merritt Island Bridge and in 1919 he was again chief engineer for the Melbourne-Indialantic Bridge.

       C.M. Rogers was much respected for his integrity and character, and his opinions were sought by national, state, and community leaders.  He married Louise F. Mannl in 1905 and by her had nine children.


Scope and Content

     There are 21 copies of early U.S. Field Notes from which Rogers and his father worked.  The early copies were hand written while later ones were typed.  The original field notes were done between 1834 and 1888 but it is unknown when the copies were made.  Also included are ten hand-written survey maps of lands in Brevard County.  These were drawn in the 19th Century.  In addition, there are nine survey plats drawn in the early 20th Century.

     The collection deals mostly with Rogers’ construction of three bridges in Brevard County, Florida, and the laying out and paving of roads in Cocoa and Merritt Island.  The Cocoa-Merritt Island Bridge was completed in 1917.  Rogers’ correspondence includes: itemized cost estimates, methods of procedure, notice to bidders, and a hand-written list of contractors and the payments to them. Included are many letters

and proposals from various companies and some local businesses.  There is an advertisement promoting the sale of gold bonds. This document describes in detail the assets of the surrounding area, particularly the city of Cocoa.

     Later, the roads on Merritt Island were laid out and paved, and a bridge across the Banana River to Cocoa Beach was completed in 1923.  Rogers had an assistant, W.J. Weir, and this collection includes his many hand-written progress reports.

     The Melbourne-Indialantic Bridge was completed in 1921... These papers include Rogers’ correspondence with Ernest Kouwen-Hoven, the developer of Indialantic-by-

the-SeaRogers’ chief assistant was, again, W.J.Weir and his many hand written progress reports are included.

     The collection also includes papers on the drainage in West Palm Beach in 1903, the Fort Pierce public works system from 1911 to 1914, St. Lucie roadwork in 1912, and the Daytona Bridge in 1923.

     In 1915, Rogers claimed that some people, including Mayor Titus were trying to defame him. An indictment was brought against Rogers & Rogers and then annulled in 1918.



       The collection is organized into 6 series

                 1. U.S. Field Notes

                 2. Cocoa-Merritt Island Bridge

                 3. Cocoa and Merritt Island Roadwork                   

                 4. Banana River Bridge (from Merritt Island to Cocoa Beach)

                 5. Melbourne-Indialantic Bridge

                 6. Fort Pierce Public Works System.



       The collection is arranged by series and then in chronological order within the series.  The survey maps are catalogued and stored in the map drawers.



       C.M. Rogers’ three granddaughters (Mary McFall, Elizabeth Sarver, and Julia Childs) donated these papers and maps between 1998 and 2000.



       There are no restrictions on access.


Subject Headings

       Rogers, C.M. (Clarence Mord) - Archives

       Florida - Surveyors - 19th century

       Florida - Construction projects - early 20th century

       Florida - Survey maps - Brevard County




U.S. Field Notes Series    Listed by Township, Range, Surveyor, and Date


Folder  1       T 17   R30     1834


Folder  2       T16   R33      includes  T19   R32     1835


Folder  3       T18   R34     Henry Washington     1844


Folder  4       T 23,24   R36     A.H. Jones    1844


Folder  5       T30   R38,39     1844


Folder  6       T42   R43  A.H. Jones  1845.    Resurveyed W.J. Reyes  1858 


Folder  7       T18   R32   F.L. Ming 1835.   H. Washington  1843Geo.Houston 1846


Folder  8       T20   R35, also 19/35, 19/33. Jos R. Richard, H. Washington, David Burr


Folder  9       T18,19   R34     C.C. Tracy.  1848


Folder 10      T16,17   R29,30    A.W. Randolph   1849


Folder 11      T10   R25    A. MacKay   1849


Folder 12      T18   R34    David H. Burr  1850


Folder 13      T18   R35     1859


Folder 14      T32   R40    William S. Harris  1859


Folder 15      T57   R42    M.A. Williams  1872


Folder 16      T63   R38    C.F. Smith  1873


Folder 17      T67   R27    C.F. Smith  1873


Folder 18      T17,18   R29   includes 18/30      1852


Folder 19      T17   R34     David H. Barr   1849


Folder 20      T21   R35      1844


Folder 21      T31   R31,32






Cocoa - Merritt Island Bridge Series


Folder  1       1913. Handwritten letter from Otto Grosse pertaining to a mass meeting to discuss a bridge from Cocoa to Merritt Island.


Folder  2       1915. “Method of Procedure”.  Handwritten and signed by Rogers.


Folder  3       1915-1917.  Soundings, test borings, and dredge fill.


Folder  4       1915. Requests from various companies to furnish lumber, reinforced concrete & steel, and draw bridge.  Itemized estimate of total cost



Folder  5       1915.  More requests from companies interested in bidding.


Folder  6       1916 Feb-May. Correspondence with Gus Edwards and local businesses concerning approval of bonds and type of bridge.

                     A six page draft of the bridge specifications.


Folder  7       1916.  Advertisement for sale of gold bonds to finance bridge. Gives a glowing account of Cocoa and “Merritt’s Island”.


Folder  8       1916 July .  Notice To Bidders.


Folder  9       1916  Aug.  Inquiries & proposals from various companies.


Folder 10      1916  SeptMore inquiries & proposals.


Folder 11      1916-1917 More inquiries & proposals.


Folder 12      Handwritten list of contractors and payments to them.


Cocoa and Merritt Island Roadwork Series


Folder 13       1915, 1916.  Estimates on paving Cocoa roads.  Notice To Bidders.


Folder 14       1917.  Cost of bridge and connecting roads on Merritt Island.  Also a letter from A.A. Buck suggesting using “shell from convenient shell

                      mounds” to resurface the marl roads.


Folder 15       1918-1920.  Includes 5 letters from Gus Edwards on the different routes across Merritt Island to New Found Harbor.






Melbourne-Indialantic Bridge Series


Folder  1       1917-1921.  Letters to obtain permits. Letters to companies and individuals interested in construction of bridge.


Folder  2       1917-1918. Correspondence between Rogers and Ernest Kouwen-Hoven.  Rogers agrees to do “all necessary engineering and superintendence

                     for 10% of the cost of the bridge.


Folder  3       1919-1921.  More Rogers and Kouwen-Hoven correspondence.


Folder  4       Invoices from Kouwen-Hoven’s company.


Folder  5       1919.  Letters between Rogers and W.J. Weir.  Includes Weir’s hand written progress reports.


Folder  6       Typed transcripts of Weir’s reports.


Folder  7       Advertisements for Indialantic-By-the-Sea.  Reprint of picture of the Melbourne Bridge.


Fort Pierce Public Works System Series


Folder  8       1911-1914. Water works and sewer systems.


Folder  9       1912-1913 Electric Light plant.


Folder 10       Typed outline of above correspondence done by Rogers’ granddaughters.  There is a brief description of the contents, grouped by correspondent.