History Happened Here

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Frostproof

Polk County

Previously known as: Keystone, Lakemont

History

The City of Frostproof, known as “The Friendly City” is a small rural community of 3000 residents located in southeastern Polk County. The original footprint of the City resembles an hour glass between two lakes, Clinch Lake on the western boundary and Reedy Lake on the eastern boundary. The main street in Frostproof is Wall Street, and as we all know, “everything begins on Wall Street”.
Historical buildings include the old Frostproof High School, 111 West 1st Street, which is listed on the National Historic Registry and serves as City Hall. The previous City Hall located on Wall Street serves as individual offices and rentals. The former Library has been transformed into a historical museum, with a new library donated to the City by the Latt Maxcy Foundation, known as the Latt Maxcy Memorial Library. The old theater on Wall Street has been renovated and qualifies for the National Historic Registry, and is a great venue for musical performances, Mystery Dinners, weddings, meetings, as well as many other functions. The Ramon Theater was originally built in 1925 and is now the catalyst of Frostproof. Complementing the community is the Frostproof Art League formed by art enthusiasts. Both provide cultural opportunities to the residents and surrounding communities. The City maintains “The Little House” on the shores of Clinch Lake for the Girl Scouts.
Citrus and agriculture are the primary resources in the Frostproof community, and Frostproof is home to two major distribution centers, Lowe’s Distribution Center and Ferguson Distribution Center, both located in the Industrial Park. Dollar General and Family Dollar, as well as McDonalds are some of the commercial establishments.
In the early 1880’s the Roger Brothers and G. W. Hendry, fishermen and hunters, came to our area and built two small cabins, platted a small subdivision and called it Keystone.
In 1886, Stephen W. Carson, who lived in Fort Meade discovered the wilderness and lakes and he and wife Permelia with their two sons Joe and Munzy, two daughters Sophronia and Mamie, chose a hill above Clinch Lake for their home, where they resided until 1892 when more families arrived. Since they received their mail from Fort Meade, delivered by a man on horseback, the group met to apply for a post office and decide on a name for the post office and town. The vote was unanimous for the name, Lakemont. Joe Carson, son of Stephen W. Carson, cast his vote for Frostproof. Joe Carson volunteered to deliver the application to the Fort Meade Postmaster to be sent to Washington, D. C. and on the way changed the name.
When Walter Overrocker received his postmaster appointment on December 8, 1892, it was for “Frostproof”, not Lakemont!
In February 1895, there was a freeze and the fruit trees were cut back, sprouted and bore fruit in a few months. Another freeze occurred in 1898 causing the settlers to think the name Frostproof was dishonest, so they changed the name to Lakemont. It was later learned that the fruit trees to the north, south, east and west had been killed, but the trees in Lakemont sustained and bore fruit. After eight years as Lakemont, the name Frostproof was restored on August 24, 1906 and has remained ever since.

Story of City's Founding

Included above in history

Key Historical Events

Event: “The Spirit of Frostproof”
Event Description:

The second war bond drive of World War II, Frostproof received a quota of $42,500 but sold approximately $375,000, representing almost 900% of expected quota. Population of 1,700 was a record. In appreciation, the War Department named a North American B-25 medium bomber “The Spirit of Frostproof”.

Event: Frostproof Bombed
Event Description:

Air Force used the Avon Park Bombing Range for practice bombing. During World War II, the bombers saw the street light pattern and mistakenly bombed the City. Officials from McDill apologized, but the next week the City was bombed again. True story but no Air Force records.

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