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One of the most significant trends of the postwar era has been steady population growth, resulting from large migrations to the state from within the U.S. and from countries throughout the western hemisphere, notably Cuba and Haiti. Florida is now the fourth most populous state in the nation.

The people who make up Florida's diverse population have worked to make the Sunshine State a place where all citizens have equal rights under the law. Since the 1950s, Florida's public education system and public places have undergone great changes. African American citizens, joined by Governor LeRoy Collins and other white supporters, fought to end racial discrimination in schools and other institutions.

Since World War II, Florida's economy also has become more diverse. Tourism, cattle, citrus, and phosphate have been joined by a host of new industries that have greatly expanded the numbers of jobs available to residents.


Text from: A Short History of Florida
Used with the permission of Florida's Division of Historical Resources

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