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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Fort George Island in Duval County, Florida — The American South (South Atlantic)
 

Fort George Island

 
 
Fort George Island Marker image. Click for full size.
By Mike Stroud, 2012
1. Fort George Island Marker
Inscription. Ft. George Island presents a cross-section of the Florida story. Timucuan Indians inhabited this island when French explorer Jean Ribault landed nearby in 1562. A Spanish mission was established here before 1600 to serve the Timucuans. Known to the Spanish as "San Juan," this island was renamed "St. George" by Georgia Governor James Oglethorpe. He built a fort- Ft. George- here in the 1730's during a British invasion of Spanish Florida. During the 2nd Spanish Period (1783-1821), three American planters in succession owned this island: Don Juan McQueen, John Houstoun McIntosh and Zephaniah Kingsley. Two plantation houses and the ruins of slave dwellings which remain from that period are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
(Reverse text)
Shortly after the Civil War, Ft. George Island was acquired by John F. Rollins of New Hampshire. He remodeled the Kingsley Plantation main house and called his new Florida residence the "Homestead." As postmaster, Rollins had the area's post office removed to nearby Batten Island to take advantage of river traffic on the ST. Johns. Although Ft. George Island could be reached only by boat, it became a popular tourist resort during the 1880's. There were new year-round residents as well. The construction in 1881 of St. George's Episcopal church signified the growth of the
Fort George Island Marker, reverse side image. Click for full size.
By Mike Stroud, 2012
2. Fort George Island Marker, reverse side
island's population. But by about 1890, the extension of the railroad along Florida's east coast combined with a yellow fever epidemic and destructive fire to end the tourist era on Ft. George Island. Later, during the Florida "Boom" of the 1920's, the island experienced new prosperity. Two fashionable clubs opened there, and a road - Hecksher Drive - built by New York millionaire August Hecksher brought the automobile to the island. After World War II, part of Ft. George Island became a state park, and tourists once again were attracted to this historic island.
 
Erected 1976 by The Jacksonville Historical Society in Cooperation with Department of State. (Marker Number F-271.)
 
Location. 30° 25.678′ N, 81° 25.521′ W. Marker is in Fort George Island, Florida, in Duval County. Marker is on Fort George Road, on the right when traveling north. Touch for map. Located at the State Cultural Site and and Ribault Club. Marker is in this post office area: Jacksonville FL 32226, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Site of the Mission of San Juan del Puerto (a few steps from this marker); Ribault Club Inn (within shouting distance of this marker); Slave Cabins (approx.
Fort George Island Marker, far left, looking south on Fort George Road image. Click for full size.
By Mike Stroud, July 10, 2012
3. Fort George Island Marker, far left, looking south on Fort George Road
one mile away); a different marker also named Slave Cabins (approx. one mile away); a different marker also named Slave Cabins (approx. one mile away); a different marker also named Slave Cabins (approx. one mile away); a different marker also named Slave Cabins (approx. one mile away); a different marker also named Slave Cabins (approx. one mile away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Fort George Island.
 
Categories. Notable Places
 
Fort George Island Marker at the Ribault Club image. Click for full size.
By Mike Stroud, July 10, 2012
4. Fort George Island Marker at the Ribault Club
Fort George Island Marker near the north end of Fort George Road image. Click for full size.
By Mike Stroud, July 10, 2012
5. Fort George Island Marker near the north end of Fort George Road
Fort George Island Cultural State Park - Native Americans feasted here, colonists built a fort, and the Smart Set of the 1920s came for vacations. A site of human occupation for over 5,000 years, Fort George Island was named for a 1736 fort built to defend the southern flank of Georgia when it was a colony. Today´s visitors come for boating, fishing, off-road bicycling, and hiking. A key attraction is the restored Ribault Club. Once an exclusive resort, it is now a visitor center with meeting space available for special functions. Behind the club, small boats, canoes, and kayaks can be launched on the tidal waters.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on August 13, 2012, by Mike Stroud of Bluffton, South Carolina. This page has been viewed 483 times since then and 37 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on August 13, 2012, by Mike Stroud of Bluffton, South Carolina.
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