Port Orange

Florida Historical Markers Near Port Orange Spanish Mills and Bongoland

This page is dedicated to Florida historical markers near Port Orange Spanish Mills and Bongoland. There are many historical markers in Florida. This marker in Volusia County is an excellent example.

Spanish Mills and Bongoland

This Florida Historical Marker is entitled Spanish Mills and Bongoland , and is located in Port Orange in Volusia County, Florida. The location is 950 Old Sugar Mill Road. Marker can be reached from Old Sugar Mill Road east of Herbert Street, on the left when traveling east.

Inscription on the Marker

The inscription reads:

Spanish Mills and Bongoland. . After the 1850s, Dunlawton’s days as a serious sugar venture were through. John Marshall moved away, tried to rid himself of the Florida plantation, and finally snared a buyer in 1871. His successors included Charles Dougherty (a noted lawyer-politician but no farmer); Henry Flagler (who bought a corridor for his coastal rail line); and J. Saxton Lloyd (a prominent businessman who helped create an early theme park, then gave the lands to Volusia County in 1963)., In short, Dunlawton had a second life. As local people and tourists explored East Florida after the Civil War, they found mysterious ruins nestled in the cattle lands and orange groves. Early postcards, photos, and travel writings pictured Dunlawton as worth seeing – but they also botched its story. By popular acclaim, this place became the site of an “Old Spanish Sugar Mill.”, Fun and fantasy soon defined Dunlawton. After World War II, paying visitors could stop by the “Lost Mission and Olde English Sugar Mill,” complete with gardens that gave rise to a botanical park. Girls in beachwear posed for state tourism photos. And for years people enjoyed Bongoland, with its concrete dinosaurs, miniature train, and resident baboon named Bongo. It was a long way from the hard work of frontier sugar making., [ Postcards ] , Early postcard views of Dunlawton: a pre-World War I scene (printed in Germany) and a 1920s photo with “Spanish” models. Though publishers got its story wrong, the site appeared in many twentieth-century picture cards., [ Brochure cover; Photo ] , After World War II, Dunlawton became a fun, romantic tourist site. Promoters advertised a Franciscan mission (later occupied by “enterprising English colonists”), and photographers used the ruins as a scenic backdrop., [ Brochure cover; Illustration ] , Bongoland, with its famous “monkey host.” Among other things, this family park featured a Seminole Indian Village and “re-created strange prehistoric monsters.” , Model-and-ruins photo (1946) by the State Department of Commerce, courtesy of the Florida Photographic Collection/State Archives. , Postcards and brochures courtesy of Tom Baskett, Jr.

Marker Sponsor and Install Date for Spanish Mills and Bongoland

Placed by Volusia County and the State of Florida, Department of State, Division of Historical Resources, assisted by the Florida Historical Commission.

Maps & Location Views

Using mapping services from Google, we can show detailed location maps and street views if they are available.

Sometimes you will be able to see the Spanish Mills and Bongoland Marker in Google Maps. A 360-degree view of the area near the marker is available on the link below. You can see the marker or monument and read it in many cases.

The History of Port Orange

Florida Historical Markers Near Port Orange - Spanish Mills and Bongoland

More than a century before the Pilgrims set foot at Plymouth Rock, in 1513, Florida began its modern-day history, of which Orlando is a part.

During this period, Florida was still part of the United States Territory and not yet a state; therefore, many Native American tribes occupied land throughout Central Florida, including Seminole Indians who had migrated there from Georgia during the First Seminole War (1817-1818).

In 1838, the U.S. Army built Fort Gatlin south of the present-day Orlando City limits to protect settlers from attacks by Indians during the Second Seminole War. During the Civil War, Orlando’s role included supplying the Confederacy with food, cattle, and horses from the vast plantations in the region.

Today Orlando is recognized as a global tourist attraction and entertainment city

About the Florida Historical Marker Program

One of the most well-known and noticeable public history initiatives of the Division of Historical Resources is the Florida Historical Marker Program. It is intended to increase residents’ and visitors’ enjoyment of Florida’s historic places and to increase public knowledge of the state’s rich cultural past.

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