Preserving First Coast History


The University of North Florida (UNF) hosted an appreciation reception on March 20 in recognition of Richard Mette, a lifelong Jacksonville resident who donated various relics of First Coast history to UNF Library’s Special Collections & University Archives.

Comprised of over 600 items, the Richard Mette Collection is comprised of photographs, postcards, stereograph cards, documents and other memorabilia that represent the heritage of Northeast Florida. According to Mette, whose family ties back to the First Coast for several generations, the collection was appraised at over $50,000. Part of the collection is currently displayed at a special UNF exhibit at Jacksonville International Airport.

“This collection will indeed help educate and give a glance of our past,” says Mette. “It is my honor to donate these important artifacts to UNF for others to view for generations to come.”

The appreciation reception held at Thomas G. Carpenter Library was hosted by UNF President John A. Delaney and Library Dean Dr. Elizabeth Curry and attended by over 100 people. Those in attendance included former Secretary of State of Florida Bruce Smathers, former Jacksonville Mayor Tommy Hazouri, former City Councilman Matt Carlucci, former Florida State Attorney Angela Corey and FirstCoastNews anchor Ken Amaro, among others.

For more information about the collection, visit