Old Kings Road      The route to Florida History

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Books by William Ryan
The Search for Old Kings Road
I am Grey Eyes
Osceola His Capture
Bulow Gold
Door to Time
Lost Plantations










 


The Search for Old Kings Road

British engineers built it before the American revolution around 1774.  It connected the Florida border at the St. Mary's river running south to what would become the settlement of New Smyrna.  It was intended to connect with existing roads from Savannah Georgia and bring settlers into the then almost unpopulated Florida.

It was a well constructed roadway suitable for carriage or stage coach usage, bridging streams, and containing causeways over wet land areas.  Remarkably it was in active use right up into the 20th century being replaced around 1914 by new roadways.  While much of it has vanished being covered up or relocated by Florida development, small sections can still be located.  It was once called "An American engineering treasure."

Much of Florida's early history happened along Old Kings.  New plantation ventures were constructed here.  Along its length were the battles, the famous men, refugees, escaping slaves, the Seminole cattlemen, the 'Cracker' families looking for a new life, and the brave men and women who wanted to make the wilds of Florida their new home.

History author and researcher Bill Ryan commented on this his first work in the now extensive "Old Kings Road Series" of Florida history:

"When I arrived in Florida some 25 years ago I did the first County Internet Web Site.  I was able to read the extensive research of attorney and historian Al Hadeed. This  launched me on a mission to find as much as I could about this old roadway that ran through Flagler County Florida.  I was amazed to discover how much of our history happened here, some that was vanishing even as I began to look and photograph sites.  I was able to write some of the stories I found.  With the aid of some old maps and much help by local residents I hope to show you a bit more of the rich and often amazing early Florida history."

On November 17, 2002 the Flagler County Commission named the day as Bill Ryan Day for his efforts to record County History on their new internet web site.  This was the basis for The Search for Old Kings Road recognized as an important link to the Flagler County Florida history.



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