Lecanto is situated in
the geographical center of this Citrus County. Its population is near
five hundred. Its surface is rolling; both the hills and the valleys
being covered with a splendid growth of yellow pine. The healthfulness
of this section is exceptional. Its altitude being considerable for
this portion of the state. Malaria is almost unknown. The soil varies
from a gray loam to heavy black. Both soils having red clay sub soil
ranging from eight inches to several feet in depth.
Until the double freeze of 94 and 95, orange culture was the principle industry thus being supplemented by stock raising and general farming on a small scale; the soil having adapted to quality ? as orange culture has as good fruit here as any place in the state. Since the freeze however, general farming on a large scale supplemented by stock raising is the principle industry. Corn, peanuts, velvet beans, melons and oats besides the usual garden and lesser field crops are grown. The velvet bean of recent years is being grown for fatning stock in winter. This is developing as quite an industry. The land grows fine peaches. In a few years this will prove an important industry. Peach trees on this soil grow to large size and are very long lived. One tree we know of has a spread of more than thirty feet. Several fields of corn will average twenty-five bushels to the acre. Hay making is occupying the attention of our farmers more each year. Improved machinery is being introduced as rapidly as the mood of the farmers will allow. Already this section boasts of reapers and binders, mowers, hay presses, pea hullers, corn planters and sulky plows, as well as other minor tools. As to education this locally boasts of a large two story school building having a faculty of three teachers and an enrollment of sixty. The need of our farmers as to lumber is supplied by a sawmill located about the center of the locality
On the 1900 census for Lecanto, there were two hundred eighty-nine inhabitants. It was mostly a farming town and of the population, only twenty-two were black. Some of the persons who called Lecanto "home" were the James Davis, William Hart and William E. McGahagin families. Mrs. Sarah McGahagins was a dressmaker and Miss Emma Hiers was a teacher. Mr. Isaac Pearson and his family was one of the few black families residing in Lecanto at the time.
Source: Crystal River News: 8-18-1905; 1900 United States Federal Census
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|Graduating Class of 1953|