History - On June 15, 1822 a group of citizens
decided to petition Congress to make Cowford city
a port of entry. It was then called Jacksonville.
In the early 1820’s the first lay out of the
town was made by the city founder Isaiah D. Hart decided
to lay out a town for the small river crossing. It
was in 1845 that Florida that Florida became a state.
In the 1880’s Jacksonville was called the “Winter
City in a Summer Land”. It had plenty of visitors
to the area, especially in the winter months.
In 1888 the city experienced an outbreak of Yellow
Fever, which scared the public because there were
board of health warnings, but not for long. Once again
by 1990 people were coming to Jacksonville
from all over the place.
Shortly after noon on May 3, 1901, a spark at a mattress
factory started a fire and in less than a day it destroyed
2,368 buildings in its path. 23 churches and all the
Downtown public buildings and Ten hotels were destroyed
by The Great Fire of 1901.
In the early 1900’s, Downtown Jacksonville
continued to attract vacationers during in the winter
months. In 1919 it became a hub for rail transit In
the 1980’s and early 1990’s, Jacksonville
Landing, a riverfront marketplace modeled on Baltimore’s
Inner Harbor helped to make the area even more popular.
Mayor John Delaney in 1995 and the establishment
of Downtown Vision, Inc. in 2000 it continues to grow
and prosper. Jacksonville is becoming
the cultural, sports and entertainment center of the
region hosting the Superbowl festivities for the year
2005. People from all over the world are visiting
Jacksonville every year to see what all it has to
For more information about the history of Downtown
Jacksonville, contact the Jacksonville Historical