Sunday, December 10, 2006

Hot Times in the Cold War

Melvin and Maria Mininson honeymooned in a Miami bomb shelter in June 1959. Chosen from over 100 couples, the newlyweds spent two encapsulated weeks as a publicity stunt sponsored by a shelter manufacturer.

There are small bomb shelters and fallout shelters all over Florida, part of the state’s Cold war legacy. Periodically local media report on some of these, such as this Creative Loafing story about a South Tampa bomb shelter. The best-known shelter in the state is President Kennedy’s Peanut Island site near Palm Beach, now open to the public, under the management of the Palm Beach Maritime Museum.
Even before the Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962, Florida was an active participant in the Cold War. The National Park Service’s report Cold War in South Florida Historical Resource Study presents a historical overview, and an inventory and descriptions of Cold War properties in the Sunshine State.

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