FORT KING Ocala, Florida – “In the winter of 1834 orders were received for the troops at Fort Marion to take up the line of march for Fort King, Seminole Agency. This was to strengthen the force at the Fort under the command of Brigadier D. L. Clinch, pending the negotiations between the Seminole tribe of Indians and the United States Agent, General Thompson.” So begins the story of Fort King.
The Fort King National Historic Landmark is located in Ocala, Florida – Marion County. Fort King, which was originally built in 1827, was named for Colonel William King who had commanded the Fourth Infantry before Brevet Brigadier General Duncan L. Clinch. In July 1836, Fort King was abandoned and burned by the Seminoles. In 1837 the second Fort King was build. This site was the military headquarters for most of the Second Seminole War.
Fast forward to just under a couple hundred years…
A vast majority of the Fort King site comes under local government ownership (City of Ocala and Marion County own the property jointly) and on February 24, 2004, Secretary of the Interior, Gale Norton designated Fort King as a National Historic Landmark.
Fort King is operated by the City of Ocala. The Fort King Heritage Association, Inc. is a Florida not-for profit corporation formed to protect, preserve and develop the history of Fort King. The City works closely with the FKHA and with Marion County to further our collective goals to advance an understanding of our heritage through Fort King.
The park is open to visitors on Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays and Mondays from noon to 7 p.m. or dark (whichever comes first) beginning May 31, 2014. Park amenities include a visitor center, interpretive trail and picnic facilities.