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MARKER DATABASE
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
near Callahan in Nassau County, Florida — The American South (South Atlantic)
 

Italia

 
 
Italia Marker image. Click for full size.
By Mike Stroud, March 30, 2012
1. Italia Marker
Inscription. The town of Italia was founded here in 1882 by Irish-born entrepreneur William MacWilliams. Italia was located at milepost 18 on the Florida Transit Railroad, which ran from Fernandina to Cedar Key. The town began when former U.S. Senator David Levy Yulee, President of the Florida Transit Railroad, convinced MacWilliams to build a brick factory here. Timber businesses soon came to Italia with the opening of a wood- shingle mill and a sawmill to take advantage of nearby forests. By 1885, Italia had about 100 inhabitants and included a depot, post office, and general store. Products made here were used in commercial and residential buildings in Fernandina and many other northeast Florida locations. Thomas J. Shave brought new life to Italia when he built a turpentine still in 1905. By 1910, turpentine was the area's primary business. Italia suffered a fatal blow in the mid - 1920s when the railroad was re-routed from Callahan to Gross, leaving the town without a viable link to distant markets. MacWilliams named his town Italia, reflecting a then - popular Florida marketing campaign which promoted the state as "America's Italy" because of its similar peninsular shape and temperate climate.
 
Erected 2012 by A Florida Heritage Site Sponsored by the Friends of Italia and the Florida Department of State
Italia Marker, looking west along State Road A1A image. Click for full size.
By Mike Stroud, March 30, 2012
2. Italia Marker, looking west along State Road A1A
. (Marker Number F-731.)
 
Location. 30° 36.939′ N, 81° 43.093′ W. Marker is in near Callahan, Florida, in Nassau County. Marker is on The Buccaneer Trail (State Road 200) (State Road A1A) near near Rocking Horse Lane, on the right when traveling west. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Callahan FL 32011, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 13 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. American Revolutionary War Battle of Thomas Creek (approx. 7.1 miles away); Historic Florida Railroad (approx. 7.7 miles away); Battle of Thomas Creek (approx. 8.7 miles away); Mount Olive Baptist Church (approx. 12.1 miles away); Captain Lemuel Johnson Memorial and Park (approx. 12.5 miles away in Georgia); Clark-Berssant House (approx. 12.6 miles away in Georgia); George Washington Oak Tree Site (approx. 12.6 miles away in Georgia); Washington Pump & Oak (approx. 12.6 miles away in Georgia).
 
Categories. Industry & CommerceSettlements & Settlers
 
Italia Marker, seen looking east along State Road A1A image. Click for full size.
By Mike Stroud, March 30, 2012
3. Italia Marker, seen looking east along State Road A1A
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on April 7, 2012, by Mike Stroud of Bluffton, South Carolina. This page has been viewed 471 times since then and 52 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on April 7, 2012, by Mike Stroud of Bluffton, South Carolina.
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