The Florida Land and Colonization Company, Limited, came into being as a result of Henry S. Sanford’s desire to make his Florida real estate holdings pay bigger dividends. In the years following the Civil War, Sanford, then minister to Belgium, had invested in the South - a cotton plantation in South Carolina, a sugar plantation in Louisiana, and a large block (approximately 23,000 acres) of undeveloped land on Lake Monroe in Florida, the so-called Sanford Grant. Sanford proposed to turn a portion of his land in Florida into a model orange grove and sell the remainder to others who he hoped would emulate him. In his attempt to lure large numbers of people to Florida, Sanford took the lead in founding and improving a town-Sanford, Florida. He built and operated a general store, hotel, slaughterhouse, cotton gin, wharf, and telegraph station, besides Belair, his plantation. He had streets constructed in the town and through his property the roads were graded. Town-building proved expensive; Sanford watched it eat all the profits from his many ventures. In addition, General Sanford, a Connecticut Yankee, found native Floridians less than friendly. Several Florida courts decided against him in land controversies. Sanford desired aid in his enterprise and sought to form a corporation which would not only take over, but expand his undertakings.
Amundson, Richard J.
"The Florida Land and Colonization Company,"
Florida Historical Quarterly: Vol. 44:
3, Article 3.
Available at: https://stars.library.ucf.edu/fhq/vol44/iss3/3