Welcome to De Soto County

De Soto County Courthouse in Arcadia , FL
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Adjacent Counties
Hardee County, Florida - north
Highlands County, Florida - east
Glades County, Florida - southeast
Charlotte County, Florida - south
Sarasota County, Florida - west
Manatee County, Florida - northwest

De Soto County Information
De Soto County was created in May 1887. It was named for Hernando de Soto, Spanish explorer.
county map
The County Seat is Arcadia, which was named after Arcadia Albritton, the daughter of a settler.

Arcadia is in the Peace River valley
Former and merged names include:
Tater Hill Landing
Waldron's Homestead

DeSoto County originally included several present day counties. In 1921 Florida legislation was passed to break up the size of the county. This produced the following counties: Charlotte, Glades, Hardee, and Highlands.

The original DeSoto County seat, which had also served Manatee County since 1866, was located at Pine Level. Although apparently built of brick, the Pine Level courthouse, or at least its jail, was derided as "flimsy," allowing the escape of prisoners to such an extent that vigilantism was rampant in the large and undeveloped county. Ghost town researcher James Warnke has located the site of this structure, but reports that only a few bricks remain beneath the shade of an oak hammock.
The first courthouse in Arcadia was constructed by Peyton Read at a cost of $6,000. It is probable that this structure was destroyed in a 1905 fire.

The current DeSoto County Courthouse was built by the Read-Parker Construction Company in 1912-3. It was designed by the Tampa architectural firm of Bonfoey


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