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340: Edwin Binney

Posted By Alexander Robinson, Saturday, December 14, 2013

Address: 4211 SW 28th Street West Park, FL

Edwin Binney           

This garden was planted in the honor of Mr. Edwin Binney simply because he was a great businessman and Community leader.  Mr. Binney was born in Westchester County, New York in 1866. Back in 1885 Edwin took over the operations of the Peeksill Chemical Co., his father's business, a company that produced natural gas, and was also the largest manufacturer of carbon black, which was eventually used to color automobile tires.  In 1900, along with his cousin C. Harold Smith, Edwin Binney opened a mill in Easton, Pennsylvania to produce slate pencils for schools.  Binney began experimenting with a combination of old slate waste, cement, and talc, and Binney & Smith created the first dustless white chalk.

They soon saw the need for affordable wax crayons, and in 1903 Binney & Smith produced the first box of eight Crayola crayons. Alice Binney Edwin's wife, joined the French word "craie" or chalk, and "ola" short for oleaginou or oily, as they are made from a petroleum based wax.  In 1911 the Binney family was living in St. Lucie County located in Florida.  Edwin at one time owned 1,000 acres of citrus groves in the area, which was then called Fort Pierce Farms.  Mr. Binney was an avid sportsman and fisherman.  He was a community activist, and had a dramatic impact on our St. Lucie County. 

    Edwin showed himself to be a friend of the community on many occasions.  The most noteworthy would probably be his vision, in 1919, to have Fort Pierce become a port and an inlet.  By his actions this was accomplished by 1922, complete with a refrigerated terminal for holding fruit and the Fort Pierce Inlet.

So I planted this garden in memory of Edwin Binny at a house for rehabbing children because Mr. Binny was a pillar in his community constantly trying to help people and make things better.

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