As volunteers with the Wekiva Wilderness Trust, we get asked lots of questions about the state park, and many people want to know more about the history of the springs. Over the last few months, we have done a lot of research and we now have a much better idea about the history of Wekiwa, and what a fascinating history it is. Until 1906, Wekiwa Springs was called Clay Springs and for several years it was a bustling township with its own school, railways station, steamboat jetty, and even a newspaper. A fifty-room, three-story hotel accommodated guests who came in by steamer to swim in the restorative waters of the springs. Wekiwa was also home to the first tourist attraction in Central Florida almost 100 years before Walt Disney World.

To download a free copy of our Wekiwa History Book, please click here.

Also, learn about the rich history of Rock Springs. Read about the long-forgotten town of Ethel, William S. Delk who owned the largest plantation in the area at the time of the Civil War, and the remarkable life of Anthony Frazier, one of Delk’s slaves who fought with the Union Army, became a free man and landowner and was later appointed an Orange County Commissioner for Roads. To download a free copy of the Ethel story, click here.