History Happened Here

A campaign commemorating Florida's diverse cities.
Brought to you by the Florida League of Cities.


Polk County

Year Founded: 1915


Some say this city, founded about 1853, was named after a colonel; others say it was named after a conductor. The military officer was Colonel William Davenport, who commanded a military camp located about 12 miles northwest of the present site during the Second Seminole War. The gentleman honored, according to the other version, was a conductor named Davenport on the old South Florida Railroad. The town was incorporated in 1915 and, two days later, the new officers held the first Town Council meeting. They raised $3.30 to purchase the town seal. The City Hall was built in 1927 and still houses the administrative staff, the police department and the Council chambers. Originally chartered as a council-weak mayor form of government, the city adopted the council-manager form of government in 1985.

Back to Map Back to Top