Astor, Florida

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Astor is a census-designated place (CDP) in Lake County, Florida, United States. It is located along the St. Johns River between Lake George and Lake Dexter, across from the community of Volusia. The population was 1,487 at the 2000 census. It is part of the OrlandoKissimmee Metropolitan Statistical Area.


Contents

Geography

Astor is located at 29°9′50″N 81°32′4″W / 29.16389°N 81.53444°W / 29.16389; -81.53444 (29.163869, -81.534562)[3].

According to the United States Census Bureau, the CDP has a total area of 2.5 square miles (6.4 km²), all of it land (this measurement seems to exclude Astor's network of canals, which extends over 4 miles (6.4 km) in length, providing river access for many of its residents.) Astor lies entirely within the boundaries of the Ocala National Forest.

Astor is primarily accessible by land via Florida State Road 40, which is the main highway through the community. State Road 40 bisects the Ocala National Forest, approaching Astor from the west and continuing east over the Astor Bridge across the St. Johns River to Volusia, in Volusia County.

History

The Astor area and much of the land along the St. Johns River was inhabited by Timucua natives prior to settlement by Europeans. Early attempts at settlement included an English trading post in 1763, and in 1822 a plantation growing sugar cane and oranges was established by Jewish immigrant Moses Elias Levy. By 1838 the Seminole Wars had begun and the United States government established Fort Butler to defend the river as the primary route of transportation inside Florida. These earliest efforts at settlement all met with failure due to war or disease, and until the 1870's the area was largely deserted.[4]

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