Historic Hernando County: The Mining Town of Oriole

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Oriole was a mining town in Hernando County, Florida during the 1800s. Today, a ranch sits on part of the land that once was a thriving mining community. Not much is known about the history of the town, but here are a few things that we have been able to find.

– Oriole was 1 ¼ miles away from the Withlacoochee River.

– Oriole was near Oriole Lake.

– Oriole was settled in 1884 by J.A. Clarkson Jr.

– Oriole’s population was approximately one hundred people.

– A cemetery was built adjacent to the town by the Giddens family in 1890.

– The mine was run by the Oriole Mining Company.

– The town of Oriole once had its own post office. It closed in 1898.

– While the Giddens family founded the Oriole Cemetery, many people mis-identify the location as Giddens Cemetery. The actual Giddens Cemetery is located in the Ridge Manor area of Hernando County.

– The Oriole Cemetery is the third oldest in Hernando County.

– The Oriole Mining Company received a permit to mine phosphate at a rate of fifty tons a day in 1912.

While most records indicate that the town of Oriole died out in the late 1800’s, this appears to be contradictory to the last fact of the Oriole Mining Company still have a noticeable presence in the area as late as 1912. It is difficult to find a definitive source for information on the town, making confirming information a very daunting task. The information provided is the most comprehensive information available online, pulled from multiple sources. Many professional databases have come up with less information about Oriole than is provided here. It is accurate to the best of our knowledge.

Sources:


Oriole Cemetery Hernando County

http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=cr&CRid=2457228
Oriole Cemetery

http://www.lakeorioleranch.com/
Lake Oriole Ranch