Sumter Historical Society

Sumter Historical Society “To collect, preserve, promote and communicate the history of Sumter County.”

Operating as usual

1904 March 25
09/22/2021

1904 March 25

1904 March 25

Advertizement for the Seaboard Air Line Railway published in the Sumter County Times March 29, 1901.  Keep your eyes ope...
09/22/2021

Advertizement for the Seaboard Air Line Railway published in the Sumter County Times March 29, 1901. Keep your eyes open for more fun adds and articles.

Advertizement for the Seaboard Air Line Railway published in the Sumter County Times March 29, 1901. Keep your eyes open for more fun adds and articles.

Timeline Photos
08/10/2021

Timeline Photos

8/8 Today in Florida History from the Florida Historical Society!

1896- Author Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings was born on this day in 1896 in Washington, D.C. Rawlings is best known for her Pulitzer Prize-winning novel The Yearling (1938), and her popular memoir Cross Creek (1942). Rawlings lived for many years in Cross Creek, Florida where she wrote short stories and novels, most of which were about life in rural Florida.

Rawlings' last novel, The Sojourner, was published shortly before her death in 1953, in St. Augustine, of a cerebral hemorrhage. She is buried at Antioch Cemetery near Island Grove, Florida. Rawlings left her property to the University of Florida, where she had once taught creative writing. In 1970, Rawlings' Cross Creek home was listed in the National Registry of Historic Places. Today, the property is designated as The Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings Historic State Park.

06/11/2021

Opening the muesum

Crum family round up circle c ranch. 1900
06/07/2021

Crum family round up circle c ranch. 1900

Crum family round up circle c ranch. 1900

A lovely picture of the Crum family and Sutton Beville in front of the Crum homestead.
05/31/2021

A lovely picture of the Crum family and Sutton Beville in front of the Crum homestead.

A lovely picture of the Crum family and Sutton Beville in front of the Crum homestead.

05/27/2021
05/27/2021

We will be going Live Shortly!! Meeting starts At 7am

Meeting Tonight!! Sumterville Community Center and LIVE!! Women Sherriffs Program: Presented By Ms. Shanda Shaw
05/27/2021

Meeting Tonight!! Sumterville Community Center and LIVE!!

Women Sherriffs Program: Presented By Ms. Shanda Shaw

Meeting Tonight!! Sumterville Community Center and LIVE!!

Women Sherriffs Program: Presented By Ms. Shanda Shaw

The Old Sumter Court HouseAlso A test of the system. Please give us a comment, a like, or a reaction. Thank you!
05/24/2021

The Old Sumter Court House
Also A test of the system. Please give us a comment, a like, or a reaction. Thank you!

The Old Sumter Court House
Also A test of the system. Please give us a comment, a like, or a reaction. Thank you!

Want to become a member and support the  Sumter Historical Society. Join today https://checkout.square.site/buy/LXEWNRUG...
04/24/2021
Become a Member!

Want to become a member and support the Sumter Historical Society. Join today https://checkout.square.site/buy/LXEWNRUGY6TDYJAJQUYMXZ4H

The Historical Society is looking for new members! The Sumter County Historical Society is a 5013c Non-profit volunteer operated society and was founded in January, 1977 by Broward Miller. Membership meetings are held on the 4th Thursday of each month, 7 pm.Except in July, Au...

04/22/2021
04/22/2021

We are setting up to go live!!

The swearing in of Mrs KW Baldree as sheriff of Sumter County from 1946-1947
04/11/2021

The swearing in of Mrs KW Baldree as sheriff of Sumter County from 1946-1947

The swearing in of Mrs KW Baldree as sheriff of Sumter County from 1946-1947

Florida archives records of the Edwnfield Baptist church founded in 1915. Dissolved in 1925 with members going to First ...
04/06/2021

Florida archives records of the Edwnfield Baptist church founded in 1915. Dissolved in 1925 with members going to First Baptist Church in Bushnell and Mare Hill Primitive Baptist Church Bushnell Fl

04/06/2021

There will be a meeting this month at the Summerville community center keep watching for more updates

A look back at Evan's Hardware in Bushnell during the 1970's. The building was originally one of Bushnell's five hotels ...
03/14/2021

A look back at Evan's Hardware in Bushnell during the 1970's. The building was originally one of Bushnell's five hotels and can be seen in many historic photographs of the plaza.

A look back at Evan's Hardware in Bushnell during the 1970's. The building was originally one of Bushnell's five hotels and can be seen in many historic photographs of the plaza.

Fleece Family Home 1922. James O. Fleece & Carrie E. Fleece  holding her grandson Alorson W. Fussell. The house was cons...
03/07/2021

Fleece Family Home 1922. James O. Fleece & Carrie E. Fleece holding her grandson Alorson W. Fussell. The house was constructed in 1909 or 1910 and Carrie Leavel Fleece lived there until 1948 when it was sold to the Tucker family.

Fleece Family Home 1922. James O. Fleece & Carrie E. Fleece holding her grandson Alorson W. Fussell. The house was constructed in 1909 or 1910 and Carrie Leavel Fleece lived there until 1948 when it was sold to the Tucker family.

Two 1920's postcards from Center Hill Florida, boasting the great quality of freshwater fishing in the area. 🐟
02/28/2021

Two 1920's postcards from Center Hill Florida, boasting the great quality of freshwater fishing in the area. 🐟

Judge John Tillman Seated, Mark Cathcart standing 1899 Sumterville Florida.
02/21/2021

Judge John Tillman Seated, Mark Cathcart standing 1899 Sumterville Florida.

Judge John Tillman Seated, Mark Cathcart standing 1899 Sumterville Florida.

Florence Beville and Ralph F Collins pictured on their wedding day, December 18, 1904.
02/14/2021

Florence Beville and Ralph F Collins pictured on their wedding day, December 18, 1904.

Florence Beville and Ralph F Collins pictured on their wedding day, December 18, 1904.

Large group of Industry workers at a packing house in Oxford 1910The men in this photo are all unidentified.
02/08/2021

Large group of Industry workers at a packing house in Oxford 1910
The men in this photo are all unidentified.

Large group of Industry workers at a packing house in Oxford 1910
The men in this photo are all unidentified.

Sam Potter and family crossing the Withlacoochee River on the Alto Ferry 1915
01/24/2021

Sam Potter and family crossing the Withlacoochee River on the Alto Ferry 1915

Sam Potter and family crossing the Withlacoochee River on the Alto Ferry 1915

A street view of Cumpressco taken in 1920. Cu**er Sons Cypress Company founded the logging town of Cumpressco in 1905. T...
01/17/2021

A street view of Cumpressco taken in 1920.

Cu**er Sons Cypress Company founded the logging town of Cumpressco in 1905. The logging operation at Cumpressco was a vital component of the Cu**er Sons Cypress Company's sawmill located in nearby Lacoochee. It was a hustling, bustling community with rows of houses for company employees and their families. The town had a commissary, doctor and doctor’s office, a Baptist Church, a school, a community center, train depot, and lumber yard. The town was evacuated, when the federal government took on ownership of the area during WWII.

A street view of Cumpressco taken in 1920.

Cu**er Sons Cypress Company founded the logging town of Cumpressco in 1905. The logging operation at Cumpressco was a vital component of the Cu**er Sons Cypress Company's sawmill located in nearby Lacoochee. It was a hustling, bustling community with rows of houses for company employees and their families. The town had a commissary, doctor and doctor’s office, a Baptist Church, a school, a community center, train depot, and lumber yard. The town was evacuated, when the federal government took on ownership of the area during WWII.

Webster High School Class 1910 🎓
01/10/2021

Webster High School Class 1910 🎓

129 Noble Ave Bushnell - home of William A & Athlia Collins - W A Collins standing on the porch
01/03/2021

129 Noble Ave Bushnell - home of William A & Athlia Collins - W A Collins standing on the porch

The Antioch Baptist Church was the first church built in the Center Hill area. It was located 1 1/2 miles north west fro...
12/27/2020

The Antioch Baptist Church was the first church built in the Center Hill area. It was located 1 1/2 miles north west from Center Hill. Year of the photo is unknown.

Early settlers of Pemberton Ferry posed near the Withlacoochee River 1886.
12/20/2020

Early settlers of Pemberton Ferry posed near the Withlacoochee River 1886.

1890's photo of a store, Sumterville Florida
12/13/2020

1890's photo of a store, Sumterville Florida

This 1889 photo shows the Steamboat "Sam Pyles" at the Panasoffkee landing with engine 11
12/06/2020

This 1889 photo shows the Steamboat "Sam Pyles" at the Panasoffkee landing with engine 11

Photo of early settlers of Center Hill Florida, taken about 1910. All of the people in this photograph need to be identi...
11/29/2020

Photo of early settlers of Center Hill Florida, taken about 1910. All of the people in this photograph need to be identified, If you can help put a name to any of these pioneers, please let us know!

The very first Bushnell High school building. Photo taken in 1910 Bushnell Florida.
11/22/2020

The very first Bushnell High school building. Photo taken in 1910 Bushnell Florida.

Tarrytown Sumter County Florida 1955
11/15/2020

Tarrytown Sumter County Florida 1955

Address

217 N Market St
Bushnell, FL
33513

Opening Hours

1pm - 4pm

Telephone

+13523035063

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Sumter County Historical Society

The Sumter County Historical Society meets every 4th Thursday of the month at 7:00 p.m. at the Sumter County Museum (Old Library Building) located at 217 N. Market Street, Bushnell. Our museum is open to the public every Friday from 1-4pm.

Sumter County has a rich history, that we strive to collect, and communicate to the residents of the county. Because of this, the Sumter County Historical Society solicits historical information from the residents of the county so it can be passed on to the next generation. In particular we are interested in information on the following settlements: Edenfield, Cumpresco, Pemberton (Pemberton Ferry) Warnell, Wilson’s Corner, Croom-a-Coochee, The Green Settlement (Green Plantation), Beville’s Corner, Carlson’s Landing, Kelven, Jerry Taylor Landing, Tema, Abraham's Town (Pilaklikaha), Terrell, Scott’s Mills, Bamboo, Rerdell, Long Hammock, Rockhouse Gardens, and Cherry Lake. Additionally, the Sumter County Historical Society request copies of photographs of Sumter County. The older the better! Especially photographs of: Schools, Towns, Churches, Festivals/Fairs, Farm Life, Aerials, Exterior/Interior photos of historic buildings/homes, and any photos of the Sumter County Courthouses past and present. Courthouses were located in these following cities: Adamsville, Leesburg, Sumterville and Bushnell.

The mission statement of the Sumter County Historical Society is: “To collect, preserve, promote and communicate the history of Sumter County.” The Sumter County Historical Society, is a not-for-profit 501(c)3 member-supported organization, it is dedicated to the preservation and interpretation of the history of the County Of Sumter Florida. In fulfilling this goal, the Society will:


  • Collect, preserve and interpret genealogical, biographical, architectural, cultural and historical matter pertaining to the county of Sumter
  • Nearby museums


    Other History Museums in Bushnell

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    LINDEN FAMILIES AT TRILBY Several families from Linden temporarily relocated to TRILBY in the 1910s and 1920s when it was a commercial and railroad center. Among those were the PARISH, TOMPKINS, WADE, and FIELDING families, as well as others. Charles P Parish and Charles L Tompkins partnered with the Parish & Tompkins Store in Trilby and other Tompkins family members at Trilby were Dallas and Wesley Tompkins. Tom and Edgar Wade also had commercial interests at Trilby during that time (drug store and electric generation) and Claude and Sallie (Lee) Fielding lived there. Ida Parish and Maude and Loca Carter married Trilby men (Henry Bradham, Thomas Blitch and Clarence Brock) and Josephine (Blitch) Wade was originally from Trilby. Some of their businesses were destroyed in the Trilby fire in May 1925. Are there any descendants of these families that have stories and photos of their relatives' times at Trilby? I continue to research the history of Trilby and try to locate the families of the early residents and would appreciate any input. I always try to attend the Linden Picnic and look forward to being there this Saturday. Please reach out to me if you have any Trilby information about your families. Thank you very much!
    History of Alto in Sumter County
    Hello Sumter Co. friends! I’m hoping some of you might have some stories or information to share with me. I would love to find out more information about the history of the Mitchell Scott Hill family, and their historic family home in Coleman. My father-in-law’s landscape company purchased the land and home, and my family has been so blessed to live in this house for almost a year now! The house was built in 1850, and it is an absolute dream. It is a true Old Florida gem. I’m attaching some pictures & descriptions of the Hill family, that came with the house (undated, sadly). Also, attaching some pictures of the house as it looks today. I wish there had been some old photos of the house, along with the family photos, to see what the house has looked like, over the years. Thank you, in advance, for any information you might have!!
    Sumter County area - Near Center Hill - I took four Ranges and put them together in PhotoShop - AFTER aligning them. Included is both OLD plats and modern maps - WITH TRACED old roads and other marks onto it. This allows you to sort-of compare where are these old routes in relation to modern roadways - without all the other plat details. At the very top is Ft. McClure which is very near the southern part of The Villages. Flying my drone - I have more or less located the fort’s location relative to Fenny Spring and the Village of Fenny - on private property. You will also see Dade Battlefield location as well as the discussion in my prior postings with Center Hill - town. The old road from Tampa (Ft. Brooke) to Ocala (Ft. King) sort-of follows US-301 - but not exactly ALL THE TIME. There are some stretches - it aligns exactly and others - it just veers off.
    Center Hill - The next two images show the larger view of the road system noted by the surveyors in the late 1840s early 1850s. Here is a cropped portion of the plat - WITH (in orange) a modern map in the background. I highlighted the OLD roads in red - and I think it is worth noting that the surveyor was NOT responsible for drawing roads - and really - any annecdotal information - like springs, sink holes, wells, etc.
    Center Hill - As shown in my prior post - the original land grant plat shows John Mobley in Section 22. The BLM aligns the modern map with the original survey. Using a computer I drew the aliquot lines - which subdivide the grant locations into 40-acre squares. To assist people in understanding the somewhat cryptic wording of a grant - I labeled the quadrants (NE, NW etc.) and in the background you can see the modern roads. Basically, Section 22 is the entire town limits - generally speaking. As you will see not every square was granted - which is not that unusual. Note the grant dates in Monthy/day/year format. Maybe the town name would have been Mobley Town. I did NOT subdivide Section 21 on the left (west) nor Section 23 on the right (to the east) - but I did note the grantees - which were very few (two) in 21 - but 23 I wanted to show John Bird - which was noted by the surveyor. Also I did scribble in that John Mobley had an adjoining grant in 23 - just to the east of Shadrack Clay - for 80-acres. John certainly owned a lot of land. PERHAPS this will more accurately define the land-ownership more accurately in time. Both John Mobley and George R. Mobley served in Capt. Abner Johnston’s Co. during the Second Seminole War. However, their grants were NOT all due to serving in the war - they actually obtained their grants under the early occupation laws - and their early grants were from Newnansville.
    Center Hill - Florida State Land Grants. While cataloging all of the grants into atlases, Center Hill is located in a well defined area. Section 22 of township 21, Range 23 - defines the location of Center Hill today. The BLM database references a modern map to the geo-references of the original surveys of the State. This Section/Range was completed April 1849, and was approved in December of 1849. Focusing on Section 22, there was a well defined road system and early grantees. Focusing on this original plat - which I have cropped you can see a square area between John Mobley and E. Mobley above - this hash-marked area represents a “field”. Reading the surveyor’s notes he noted the field and measured it as 18.5 chains or 1221 feet - along the section line. So if you assume that this field is square the size is about 34-acres. In my experience of describing all the plats in the State, this represents an abandoned Indian Field. However, if there was remnants of a village they will note it as such - and there are many examples where they located villages and well document them. Nevertheless, there are three well defined grantees - Mobley family and the Bird family - to the east of Center Hill. MY NEXT POST will document the grantees in Section 22 - using a modern map via BLM.
    Sumterville School - my grandmother & uncle (Vivian Abney & Felton Abney) - elementary school picture is written on the back, so circa 1910
    Bushnell Elementary 1936 - 4th Grade - my father John Barron, Jr. standing right behind teacher
    I hope you enjoy my video exploring Lake Panasoffkkee, a city that never was. This was going to be the orange capital of the world in the 1800’s.
    There was a post of the Porcelain License Plates of Sumter County, What happened to it? Can't fine it!
    Here is an almost complete set of Sumter (Sumpter) County Porcelain License Plates issued to residents of Sumter County before the state of Florida started issuing License Plates back in 1918. Still looking for a 1916 to complete the year set. Note the 2 different spellings of the 1915's, both types, Private & For Hire. Enjoy.