History of Lake Placid In the mid-1800s the area now known as Highlands County was inhabited by Seminole Indians. Fish and turtles as well as
deer, bear and turkey were plentiful. After the last Seminole War (1856 - 58), the Seminoles retreated to the Everglades.After the Civil War the
railroad came to the area. Settlers arrived. A post office was formed. The town of Lake Stearns was named in honor of Marcellus Stearns, U.S.
Government Surveyor General at the time.At one time Lake Placid, known then as Lake Stearns, was the largest town in area in the United States.
What comprises the present Lake Placid, though sparsely settled, was then the center of population.In the 1920's Dr. Melvil Dewey, creator of the
Dewey Decimal System for classifying library books, arrived in the area. Finding the locale remarkably similar to his native Lake Placid, New York,
Dr. Dewey had visions of a resort town to surpass that chillier locale. He called the area his winter playground, and spurred development of the
community as a resort. In 1927 by legislative act, the town was renamed Lake Placid. ANOTHER POSITIVE FACTOR IN CONSIDERING LAKE
PLACID IS THE FACT THAT IT IS LOCATED NEAR all of the Orlando's exciting attractions, making Orlando your perfect weekend getaway!.
In the early years of its incorporation, Lake Placid thrived as a resort town. Main Street was dressed up with beautifully landscaped parkways and
picturesque arches. There were several large hotels and lodges, including the Little Loj and Lyvok on Lake Placid (now the Lake Placid Conference
Center), the Peggy O'Neal Lodge, and the Arcade Hotel (in town). The spontaneous growth Dewey expected did not occur, but a steady, more
reliable growth did; and the few hundred people in the area in 1928 swelled to the present population of several thousands. With its rolling hills,
beautiful lakes and near-perfect climate, it is popular for both vacation and retirement; and with industry becoming aware of the advantages of
climate, ample labor and a steadily increasing southern market, Lake Placid's future looks very promising..
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