Micanopy is the oldest inland town in Florida. It was a village of the Potano Tribe of Timucua peoples in 1539 when Hernando De Soto led an expedition through the area. In 1774, botanist William Bartram visited the nearby Cuscawilla village. During the Second Seminole War, Fort Micanopy, also called Fort Defiance, was here, and several skirmishes, including the Battle of Micanopy and the Battle of Welika Pond took place in the area.
The Micanopy Branch celebrated 60 years of being a part of Micanopy’s rich history in 2019. The branch was opened in 1959 in a doctor’s waiting room thanks to the efforts of the Micanopy Friends of the Library. In 1960, the library moved to a new property in the main town center and held about 3,000 books. Within a year, the Friends purchased a small building next door and created what was known as “The Little Story House” for the children’s collection and story time.
In 1973, the library moved into its current location at Micanopy Town Hall. The Micanopy Branch now holds approximately 14,500 books, audiobooks, DVDs and CDs. One of our favorite books in the collection, Florida Ghost Stories by Robert R. Jones, features a story that takes place in the town hall building, which was built in 1895 to be the school. The branch also offers access to local newspapers, popular magazines, WiFi, computers, printing and scanning. In 2018, the branch opened a seed library. The seed library contains a variety of fruits, vegetables, flowers and herbs seeds for community members to check out and add to their gardens.
The town of Micanopy has something to entertain the whole family. The Native American Heritage Preserve and nearby Paynes Prairie State Park offer fantastic hiking trails and views of native plants and wildlife. The Micanopy Historical Museum and Micanopy Historic Cemetery offer unique glimpses into what life was like in Florida's past. There are also charming shops and eateries to explore. Branch staff present story time on Saturday at 10:30 a.m. at the park by the fire station. Library programs are offered on Saturday afternoons at 2 p.m. Check out the events calendar to see what's coming, and plan your trip to the Micanopy Branch! You may even meet our resident ghost.