Historians have contended that during the period of Reconstruction when the Republican party dominated the political stage in Florida, the state was controlled by incompetent, illiterate, and venal Negroes. A critical examination of primary sources, however, shows that this is not a valid conception. Negro office holders were always in a decided minority and among those who held office on the state and local level there were many capable men. The best example of a Florida Negro who disproves the stereotyped freedman politician is Jonathan C. Gibbs, one of the best educated and most cultured persons holding a political office.
Richardson, Joe M.
"Jonathan C. Gibbs: Florida's Only Negro Cabinet Member,"
Florida Historical Quarterly: Vol. 42
, Article 7.
Available at: https://stars.library.ucf.edu/fhq/vol42/iss4/7