Welcome to Lady Lake
The Jewel of Central Florida
A community whose lifestyle is as gentle as its name, Lady Lake blossoms with spacious countryside and shimmering lakes. The town resides in the heart of Florida close to Orlando, and only an hour and thirty minutes from either coast. While several beautiful retirement communities reside here, Lady Lake continues to grow as young families are attracted to its southern hospitality and peaceful surroundings. Come experience for yourself the flavor of hometown America and the proud heritage that is Lady Lake.
Lady Lake, the northernmost town in west Lake County, owes its existence to the railroad which ran from Ocala to Leesburg in 1884. The railroad authorities wanted to name the new town Cooper, but the residents insisted on being called Lady Lake after a lake east of town. As legend has it, the lake was named by Indians for an unknown white woman they found drowned in the lake. It is also said that, from the air, the lake resembles a woman’s head.
The first store was built and operated by John Biles in 1885. A small section of the store was used as a post office and Mr. B. H. Boyd became the first postmaster. The log cabin that is in the center of town was built in 1935 and was originally the Town Hall but is now the home of the Lady Lake Chamber of Commerce.
Dr. Stevens became very interested in Lady Lake and planted many of the oak trees you see today. During 1886-87, an effort was made to beautify the town, trees were planted along the sides of the streets. These trees grew into the beautiful, massive oaks pictured below.The nationally known “Cathedral Arch” formed by these massive oak trees, overhung with moss along Lady Lake Boulevard was pictured in the Saturday Evening Post in 1929 (many reproductions of the picture have been made) and is one of the earlier works of the early settlers who were men of great vision. Through their efforts, Lady Lake was incorporated in 1925.
From that time until 1980, the population of the town increased by 811 from 382, making 1,193 residents. Today, the population stands over 13,000. More people moved to Lady Lake in each of the past 9 years than in the first 55 combined. There are many interesting historical photos and articles at the Historical Museum about the growth and development of Lady Lake.
The town of Lady Lake purchased one acre of ground between Old Dixie Highway and 441/27. A massive oak planted by the early settlers has been fenced in to preserve it. It has a girth of 17’4”, probably making it the largest in Florida. Several of its limbs touch the ground and then start growing upward. The tree shades about one-half acre of ground and is estimated to be 200-250 years old. The site has been developed into Heritage Park for the public to enjoy. The park has a gazebo and brick walkways. Personalized bricks can be purchased from the Town of Lady Lake and placed in Heritage Park. The park officially opened in October of 2000.