Founders of Villa City
George Thomas King
The Villa City Roadside Marker:
Title: VILLA CITY
Location: Lake Emma Road, 3 miles north of Groveland
Description: On this site in 1885, George Thomas King, founder of Villa City, built an estate that was the showplace of the area. By 1895, the town had a post office, school, church, hotel, photographic studio, dispensary and 35 homes. The citrus based community flourished until the Big Freeze of 1894-95. A warm spell, after a devastating Dec. 29 freeze, filled the trees with sap. Snow then fell in the evening of Feb. 7, 1895. The frozen trees exploded when the warming sun returned. Their hopes and dreams broken, the settlers left. The last original house, the Gano House, was demolished in 1968, but the beauty of the area remains.
Sponsors: VILLA CITY COMMUNITY ASSOCIATION AND THE FLORIDA DEPARTMENT OF STATE