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a park with monuments and cannons

Discover Our History


The rich history of Lake City, Florida’s Springlands may surprise you. It includes a pretty diverse selection of offerings along our historical timeline: Native American settlements. The arrival of Europeans — the conquistador DeSoto trekked his army through here in 1539. The Second Seminole War. Civil War battles. Florida’s first elevator. The founding of the University of Florida. WWII pilot training and more. And here’s a bit of historical trivia everyone seems to like: Lake City was originally named Alligator. You can get a crash course in our history and culture at the Columbia County History Museum in Lake City. There’s also a museum dedicated to Stephen Foster, widely regarded as America’s first popular songwriter. (You’ve heard “Camptown Races,” right?) So explore our history and have an “Oh, Doo-Dah Day!”


  • O’Leno State Park Interpretive Exhibits

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    Just eight miles north of High Springs, O’Leno State Park is conveniently located off of U.S. Route 441 at 410 SE O'Leno Park Road. While at the park, you can also visit the Civilian Conservation Corps Museum and the Bellamy Road Interpretive Panels, where you can walk the trail on Old Bellamy Road.

  • Downtown Lake City

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    Downtown Lake City is known for its treasure trove of history, natural wonders and even its possible hauntings, making it an exciting place to visit where there’s always something happening.

  • Lake Isabella Historic District

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    The Lake Isabella Historic Residential District consists of all or parts of thirty blocks southeast of Lake City’s downtown area. The district encompasses a large and concentrated collection of buildings that reflect national trends in architecture during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.

  • Lake City-Columbia County Historical Museum

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    The Lake City-Columbia County Historical Museum is housed in an 1870s-era home previously owned by the Vinzant family. This museum includes two stories of the history of Columbia County and artifacts from the Civil War. A portion of the museum is devoted to Vinzant family artifacts, including family photos. In addition to the various exhibitions, the museum also offers genealogical research, tours and special events.