Top Video: Ancient Finds

The recent cleanup by the Southwest Florida Water Management District not only cleaned the Chassahowitzka Springs, it uncovered history, some of it ancient.

A brief history of Hernando County

Explorer Hernando de Soto

Around 1840, Fort DeSoto was established in present-day Hernando County in the northeast edge of present-day Brooksville to protect settlers in the area from Native Americans.

Fort DeSoto became a small community center, trading post, and way station on the route to Tampa. When settlement by the fort began around 1845, it was alternatively known as Pierceville.

Then encompassing a significantly larger area of west central Florida than it does today, Hernando County was officially established on February 27, 1843, two years prior to Florida's admission into the Union.

Levy County history

Levy County Courthouse in Bronson, Fla.

Levy County, Florida's 27th county, was formed March 10, 1845.

It was named in honor of David Levy Yulee, who is also the namesake of the town of Yulee in Nassau County.

Yulee, the founder of the Florida Railroad Company, was nicknamed "Father of Florida Railroads."

Yulee's company set out to build the first railroad in Florida connectingthe Atlantic Ocean to the Gulf of Mexico. The first train successfully arrived in Cedar Key, on the Gulf coast, from Jacksonville on March 1, 1861.

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