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Archer

Alachua County

Year Founded: 1850

History

The town was established by the Florida Land Company (or the Florida Town Improvement Company) of Fernandina Beach, Florida, probably in anticipation of construction of the Florida Railroad from Fernandina Beach to Cedar Key. David Levy Yulee was granted a charter in 1855 to build the railroad and the first trains arrived in 1859. The city was first called Deer Hammock. The current name of Archer was derived from James T. Archer, Florida ‘s first secretary of state (1845-1849), who was an advocate of internal improvement. In 1880, Quakers from Ohio and Indiana organized a company that planted extensive orange groves using rows of oak trees as windbreaks. The freezes of 1894-1895 destroyed the orange groves. The Maddox Foundry, established in 1905 by H. Maddox, continues as a major industry. Archer remains an agricultural center.

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