Historical Jax Facts

Learn about Jacksonville’s history with these fast facts!

We are excited to celebrate Jacksonville’s bicentennial! Every week we will share a new fact about Jacksonville on social media. Check out all the facts below!


  • During the 18th century, Jacksonville was a British settlement. Its original name was Cowford.
  • Prior to colonialism, much of Jacksonville was inhabited by the Timucuan Indians.
  • In 1562, French Huguenot settlers landed at the mouth of the St. Johns River and later established Fort Caroline.
  • Spanish colonies invaded Fort Caroline in 1568, renaming it San Matteo.
  • In 1822, Jacksonville was named for Andrew Jackson. At the time, Jackson was the military governor of the Florida territory.
  • Jacksonville became an official port of entry in 1822. Since then, the city has grown as a national logistics center.
  • Much of Jacksonville’s urban core was destroyed by the Great Fire of 1901.
  • Mayport is among the largest U.S. Naval ports in the country.
  • All towns within Duval County were consolidated under the city of Jacksonville in 1968.
  • By land area, Jacksonville is the largest city in the contiguous United States.
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