Named for a nearby Seminole Indian War fort, Fort White is Columbia County’s only other municipality. Fort White was incorporated in 1884 under mayor Thomas H. Reddick.
The town’s population grew to about 2,000 people in 1900 when the towns economy was based on timber, cotton and phosphate. A rail line ran through the town attracting additional people to the area.
Fort White’s population steadily declined through the years with the advent of dependence on agriculture and the railroad.
Today, Fort White has an estimated population of about 580 people.
In this small town you will find that the crystalline Ichetucknee River flows six miles through shaded hammocks and wetlands before it joins the Santa Fe River. In 1972, the head spring of the river was declared a National Natural Landmark by the U. S. Department of the Interior. From the end of May until early September, tubing down the river is the premier activity in the area. In addition to tubing, visitors can enjoy picnicking, snorkeling, canoeing, swimming, hiking, and wildlife viewing. October through March scuba diving is available in the Blue Hole only (you must be cave certified). White-tailed deer, raccoons, wild turkeys, wood ducks and great blue herons can be seen from the river. Picnic areas, equipped with tables and grills, are available throughout the park. A full-service concession offers food, refreshments, and outdoor products from Memorial Day through Labor Day. Tubes plus snorkeling and diving equipment can be rented from private vendors outside the park located four miles northwest of Fort White, off State Roads 47 and 238.