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The Very First Ones Part 8

During the next few weeks “Twenty Five Years Ago” will be taking you through a list of “Firsts” in San Pedro and Ambergris Caye which have set the pace for a good start and have led to the development of San Pedro as we know it today. This is the third week with the continuation of “FIRSTS” in San Pedro. So who and what and when and why were the “Firsts”?

The First Residents of San Pablo: Last week we learned about the first residents in the San Juan area. Some of you might have quickly asked, “What about San Pablo?” Well, the very first ones to live there were Bruce and Victoria Collins, the first owners and editors of the San Pedro Sun. San Pablo has a unique history. The Town Board dreamed this project along with the famous Glen Godfrey. The land was purchased and some two hundred locals were invited to put three hundred dollars per lot so that the land could be paid for. Some people purchased three or up to ten lots. Everyone immediately received one lot and others are still waiting to get their lots. Some lots were sold along the canals at higher prices to subsidize the other lots. Lincoln Eiley was the second resident there and he was followed by “Yours Truly” and his family. That was exactly ten years ago. There was electricity, but no lights on the poles. Soon afterwards BTL installed its lines and Coral Cable Television followed too. Every had faith in the project and today there are many stores, a restaurant, a sports field, a bar, many workshops, WASA water lines, three churches, a park, over one hundred voters and some two hundred and fifty residences. San Pablo will soon be the center or the town. It is the fastest growing residential area of San Pedro with two universities in its vicinity.

The Very First High School: The very first high school and only one so far was San Pedro High School founded in 1971. At that time only two students were going to the city to do high school and San Pedro High offered the opportunity to more locals. The first class had about thirty students and there were only two teachers. It was located at the community center, later to become the town hall. The rooms downstairs of the town hall are rooms built by San Pedro High for its expansion. The school even borrowed buildings around town. Mr. Apoloño “Tuto” Alamilla generously lent a building and so did Father Raszkowski. The school moved into its own building in 1987 with six rooms, an office and two bathrooms. Today it boasts three offices, a staff room, a basketball court, volleyball court, saloon, two bathrooms, 16 rooms including a library and conference room. Its population has grown from thirty to 260 students. Like San Pablo, SPHS has truly come a long way.

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