Sunday, May 6, 2012

How Orlando, Florida got its name

How Orlando, Florida got its name

April 8, 2012. How Orlando, Florida got its name...

I have posted about the legends of how Orlando, Florida got its beautiful and unique name several months ago.

I've found that a lot of this blog's visitors, particularly locals, were curious about this story. I am reposting some of the details of both versions from my post mentioned above, along with a previously unpublished picture of the "Orlando Reeves" memorial on the shores of Lake Eola.

Originally, Orlando was known as Jernigan after a prominent cattle family in the area. It became Orlando in 1857. There are two versions to the story. I'll relate the official version endorsed by the city first, followed by what I consider the more likely story.

According to the city, Orlando got its name from a soldier named Orlando Reeves in the Seminole War who was killed on the banks of what is now Lake Eola in 1835. The problem is that there are absolutely no records that a soldier named Orlando Reeves ever existed. Some have tried to explain around this fact by pointing out that it may have been a landowner in the area called Orlando Rees, an associate of John James Audubon, but the dates of death are all wrong to fit with the legend.

Another version of the story is that the name was chosen by Judge T. G. Speer, who arranged for Orlando to become the county seat through some creative vote manipulation. Judge Speer was a huge Shakespeare fan and named the city after his favorite character in "As You Like It." This version is very well documented by his descendants, and it also helps explain the naming of Rosalind Avenue.

Leica X1. 24.0 mm. 1/125. f/8.0. ISO 200. LR 2.

No comments:

Post a Comment