Starting Tuesday, Oct. 10, the Fort King Visitor Center will be open on various days and times as follows: Tuesdays 12 – 3 p.m., Fridays 12 – 5 p.m. and Saturdays 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Visitors should note that these operating times ONLY pertain to the Visitor Center, not the park, trail head or site in general. Construction is still underway and we advise visitors to use caution when visiting. There is a designated Public Viewing Area so you can safely see our progress! Please be advised that there may still be periodic closures through November 2017 and we suggest you call before you visit at 352-368-5533. 

In the winter of 1834 orders were received for the troops at Fort Marion to take up the line of march for Fort King, Seminole Agency. This was to strengthen the force at the Fort under the command of Brigadier D. L. Clinch, pending the negotiations between the Seminole tribe of Indians and the United States Agent, General Thompson.”

So begins the story of Fort King.

fort king

The Fort King National Historic Landmark is located in Ocala, Florida – Marion County. Fort King, which was originally built in 1827, was named for Colonel William King who had commanded the Fourth Infantry before Brevet Brigadier General Duncan L. Clinch. In July 1836, Fort King was abandoned and burned by the Seminoles. In 1837 the second Fort King was built. This site was the military headquarters for most of the Second Seminole War.

Fast forward to just under a couple hundred years…

A vast majority of the Fort King site comes under local government ownership (City of Ocala and Marion County own the property jointly) and on February 24, 2004, Secretary of the Interior, Gale Norton designated Fort King as a National Historic Landmark.

Fort King is operated by the City of Ocala. The Fort King Heritage Association, Inc. is a Florida not-for profit corporation formed to protect, preserve and develop the history of Fort King. The City works closely with the FKHA and with Marion County to further our collective goals to advance an understanding of our heritage through Fort King.

The park is open every day from sunrise to sunset or 7 p.m. (whichever comes first). The Heritage Center is open from noon to 5 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays. Park amenities include the Heritage Center, interpretive trail and picnic facilities.