Dunedin reflects the rich American and Scottish heritage of its founding fathers.
This charming village like town has the distinction of being the oldest town
south of Cedar Key. Early in its
history, thanks to a dock built to accommodate schooners and sloops and the
ingenuity of pioneers from as near as Georgia and as far as Scotland, Dunedin
became one of Florida's chief seaport and trading centers. At one time Dunedin
had the largest fleet of sailing vessels in Florida. Early settlers were primarily
cotton and citrus growers, and it is hard to envision that most of what is
now downtown was once a big cotton field.
The first land deed was recorded in 1852 by Richard L. Garrison. only seven
became a state. Although it was George L. Jones who put up a sign over his
General Store in 1870 that read "Jonesboro." a petition in 1882
by two Scottish merchants. J.O. Douglas and James Somerville, officially named
the Post Office, then the town itself. Dunedin. The town became incorporated
in 1899, and a city in 1925.
Dunedin is proud of its "firsts" which are chronicled in Dunedin
Through the Years by William L. Davidson. The amphibious tractor, the Alligator,
assembled in Dunedin and used in World War II, played a decisive role in the
Pacific phase of the war. Frozen orange juice concentrate, and the "Pram"
sailboat racer both originated here. Dunedin was the first home of the prestigious
PGA (Professional Golfers Association). The first radio signals from Pinellas
County were sent from Dunedin. The oldest continuous garden club on Florida's
west coast is the Dunedin Garden Club. A master computer at A.C. Nielsen Company,
located in Dunedin since 1972, and one of the town's largest employers, is
responsible for the Nielsen ratings. It can be said that Dunedin determines
what television programs the whole country watches!
historic Atlantic Coast Line Depot on Main Street is home to the Dunedin Historical
and Museum plus the Orange Belt Quilt Club. The Society has designed
a walking tour of historic sites and works hard to collect area artifacts
and preserve buildings that are pertinent to Dunedin's past. Through their
efforts, the Douglas home and Andrews Memorial Chapel have been put on the
National Register of Historic Sites.
Dunedin's quality of life is linked to its appreciation of its diverse and
colorful past, and to the country that helped shape its future, Scotland.
In commemoration of its ancestral ties Dunedin has chosen Stirling, Scotland,
as its sister city.