Saint Marks
Population (2016)
305
Area (Square miles)
1.7
Year founded
Abt 1820
Year incorporated
1963
Most references show that the City of St. Marks was incorporated in 1963 in the State of Florida. That may be so, but official records show that the 22nd Congress of the United States officially declared St. Marks a town on March 2, 1833, and deemed that public lands would be laid off into lots, streets, and town squares.

Long before that, in 1679, at the present day site of St. Marks, a fort named San Marcos de Apalache was constructed by the Spanish at the confluence of the Wakulla and St. Marks Rivers. In 1818 Spain transferred the territory of Florida to the United States and in 1821 Andrew Jackson became the first territorial governor. By 1823, St. Marks was a well established port just upstream from the old fort, and with the establishment of Florida's first railroad from St. Marks to the new capital in 1835, it became known as "tallahassee's port city".

The Tallahassee-St. Marks Railroad began operation with mule-drawn cars that were used to transport cotton and other goods from warehouses in Tallahassee to the port at St. Marks. In 1856, the mules were replaced with a steam locomotive. During the Civil War, the railroad was used to transport troops and naval stores, and later it was used to tranport timber for the logging industry. In 1983, the railroad was abandoned for commercial use, and the right-of-way was purchased by the State of Florida and turned over to the Florida Park Service for use as the multi-use Tallahassee-St. Marks Historic Railroad State Trail
St. Marks continues to exude its historic charm and ambience today. Surrounded by
St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge to the south and east, Appalachee National Forest to the west, and Wakulla Springs State Park to the north, it is a perfect launching point for those wanting to explore the Nature Coast. A historic bed and breakfast inn, and several local eateries and pubs also make this an interesting vacation spot. Boaters and fisherman from Tallahassee and other points north still make this a popular port town for launching into the Wakulla and St. Marks Rivers, or for access to the Gulf of Mexico.


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