Ocala in Marion County, Florida — The American South (South Atlantic)
Brick City Fever
by artist Cliﬀ Fink
On Thanksgiving Day, November 29th, 1883 fire broke out in Ocala. All of the buildings on the east side of today’s SE 1st Avenue from Silver Springs Boulevard to Fort King Street were destroyed. Five blocks of the business district were left in ashes and numerous records were lost, including files containing a great deal of Ocala and Marion County’s early history. The rebuilding of the town began almost immediately. Frame buildings were replaced utilizing brick, granite and metal. Within five years, Ocala was identified throughout the state as “The Brick City”.
“Brick City Fever” was sculpted by Cliff Fink in honor of our city’s heritage for Horse Fever, a public art project produced by the Marion Cultural Alliance which raised $850,000 for charity.
“Brick City Fever” was purchased by Danny Gaekwad at the Horse Fever art auction and dedicated at this location on July 11, 2002 by Mayor Gerald Engle.
Location. 29° 9.049′ N, 82° 11.041′ W. Marker is in Ocala, Florida, in Marion County. Marker is on Southwest College Road (State Road 200) east of Interstate 75, on the right when traveling east. Touch for map. Marker is in front of
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 7 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. American National Thrift Association Hospital (approx. 3.6 miles away); The Old Courthouse Square (approx. 3.8 miles away); Ocala Demands (approx. 3.8 miles away); Ocala (approx. 3.9 miles away); Evergreen Cemetery (approx. 4 miles away); Marion County Confederate Memorial Marker (approx. 5˝ miles away); Fort King Burying Ground (approx. 6˝ miles away); Fort King (approx. 6.6 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Ocala.
Also see . . .
1. Anniversary of landmark 1883 fire prompts look back.
The disaster, which occurred on Thanksgiving Day that year, is known as the Brick City fire among local historians.
Technically, Brick City did not exist until after the fire, when Ocala began to rebuild the devastated downtown.
By the end of the 1880s, the town square was newly surrounded by sturdy, three- and four-story brick blocks, such as the Marion Block Building, which housed offices and a pharmacy and, on the third floor, what Ocala called its "opera house." (Submitted on April 8, 2014, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.)
2. Horse Fever.
Horse Fever features a series of almost life sized horse statues created by various artists. Horse Fever began in 2001 as the first project for the Marion Cultural Alliance. There were 52 horses which were auctioned off for charity. The project was similar to those done by other cities. New Orleans did fish, New York cows and Montana did moose. (Submitted on April 8, 2014, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.)
Categories. • Charity & Public Work • Disasters • Man-Made Features •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on April 8, 2014, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. This page has been viewed 595 times since then and 33 times this year. Last updated on April 9, 2014, by Keith S Smith of West Chester, Pennsylvania. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on April 8, 2014, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. • Bernard Fisher was the editor who published this page.
Editor’s want-list for this marker. A wide view photo of the marker and the surrounding area together in context. • Can you help?