Orange Park/Fleming Island

Located on the west side of the St. Johns River, Clay County’s rural pastoral qualities and proximity to Jacksonville make it a popular residential area. Orange Park is home to St. Johns River Community College, one of the region’s major shopping malls, the Orange Park Kennel Club, country clubs, golf courses and medical facilities. Waterways are plentiful and easily accessible for boating, fishing, kayaking or jet skiing. Clay County has three other incorporated municipalities: Green Cove Springs, Keystone Heights and Penney Farms. Middleburg offers rural areas for hunting and bird watching as well as quaint communities and picturesque neighborhoods. Just down the road from Orange Park are expansive communities like Fleming Island and Eagle Harbor. These communities bring a “whole town” experience. Replete with amenities, residents here know that whatever they need truly is…right around the corner. The Town of Orange Park was founded in 1877 by the Florida Winter Home and Improvement Company, with owners and trustees predominantly from Boston, Massachusetts. As a direct result of hard times following the Civil War, the old “McIntosh” plantation at Laurel Grove was in shambles and changed hands several times. After purchasing several thousand acres of property in the area, the Florida Winter Home and Improvement Company created a new town and called it Orange Park! The property was subdivided into building lots and small farm tracts, and the present street system was laid out which included Kingsley Avenue, River Road and Plainfield Avenue. To enhance the sale of the property that was marketed up north, many lots were planted in Orange Trees, a cash crop even in those days. Two years later, following a local referendum, the Town was incorporated by a Special Act of the Florida Legislature in 1879. A large hotel was built at the foot of Kingsley Avenue, along with a 1200 foot wooden pier that extended well into the river and could accommodate steamboats which attracted the northern tourist trade. The Town has roots back to the 1780’s and 90’s during the second Spanish period in Florida history.

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