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Jacksonville

Jacksonville (pronounced dʒæksʌnˈvɪl or dʒæksʌnˈvʌl) is the largest city in Florida—in terms of both area and population—and is the county seat of Duval County. Since 1968, as a result of the consolidation of the city and county government (and a corresponding expansion of the city limits to include almost the entire county), Jacksonville has been the largest city in land area in the contiguous United States. In 2007, Jacksonville ranked as the United States' twelfth most populous city, with 805,605 residents.[4] It is the principal city in the Greater Jacksonville Metropolitan Area, a region with a population of 1,300,823,[5] and the fourth largest metropolitan area in the state, as of the 2006 Census Bureau estimates. Jacksonville is the third most populated city proper on the East Coast, after New York City and Philadelphia.

About 25 miles (40 km) south of the Georgia border, Jacksonville is in the First Coast region of northeast Florida and is centered on the banks of the St. Johns River. The settlement that became Jacksonville was founded in 1791 as Cowford because of its location at a narrow point in the river where cattle once crossed. In 1822, a year after the United States acquired Florida from Spain, the city was renamed for the first military governor of the Florida Territory, General Andrew Jackson, who would later be elected President of the United States. In 2008, Jacksonville was ranked as the third cleanest city in the United States by Yahoo! Real Estate[6] and fourth best outdoor city by Forbes.[7]

The history of Jacksonville spans hundreds of years. Ossachite, the name given by anthropologists to the first settlement in the area, was made over 6,000 years ago by the Timucua Indians in the vicinity of modern-day downtown Jacksonville.[8]

European explorers first arrived in 1562, when French Huguenot explorer Jean Ribault charted the St. Johns River. René Goulaine de Laudonnière established the first European settlement at Fort Caroline two years later. On September 20, 1565, a Spanish force from the nearby Spanish settlement of St. Augustine attacked Fort Caroline, and killed all the French soldiers defending it (except Catholics).[9] The Spanish renamed it Fort San Mateo. With the destruction of Fort Caroline, St. Augustineˈs position as the most important settlement in Florida was solidified.


The article above is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Jacksonville".