Apalachicola in the 1840s was Florida’s busiest port. It also was a town that cotton built. To its north lay the Apalachicola, Chipola, Flint, and Chattahoochee rivers which together comprised the longest riverine system east of the Mississippi. Along those waterways lay thousands of cotton fields, and from as far away as Columbus, Georgia, planters dispatched their crops in steamers and pole boats to the Gulf of Mexico by way of Apalachicola.
"Apalachicola Aweigh: Shipping and Seamen at Florida's Premier Cotton Port,"
Florida Historical Quarterly: Vol. 69:
2, Article 5.
Available at: https://stars.library.ucf.edu/fhq/vol69/iss2/5