Description - Approximately 1,000 slaves operated the 5,100-acre Yulee Sugar Mill plantation. Crops grown included, sugar cane, citrus, cotton, and produce, just to name a few. Most of the plantation was deeded to Yulee by Spain during the Spanish occupation. Picnicking is available across CR 490, which is a busy and dangerous road.
The most imposing feature of the plantation was the sugar mill, located near the Homosassa River. The mill operated for 13 years, producing sugar, syrup and molasses. The molasses was used to make rum. The mill was abandoned during the Civil War and Yulee's plantation home, located down the river, was burned. The plantation and mill never recovered from the war.
During a visit to this small park, you will see the ruins of this once prosperous mill. Still standing are the steam boiler, crushing machinery, and large cooking kettles. These had all been shipped to Florida from New York. Also remaining are the stonework chimney, well, and foundation. These had been quarried and constructed by the slaves. A small oval pathway leads visitors around the ruins to interpretive plaques that explain how the system worked.
Recreation - Across the street from the ruins is the park's picnic area. A six-table pavilion is available to groups on a first-come, first-served basis. Grills and picnic tables are also scattered throughout the picnic area. Restrooms are available. There are no fees charged to visit the park.
Note: Be aware, CR 490 is a busy road; watch the children.
Climate - Winters in west central Florida are normally mild with occasional temperatures dipping into the 30's and 40's Fahrenheit. However, averages range between 52 and 64 degrees Fahrenheit (11 - 18 Celsius). Summers are normally hot and muggy with temperatures and humidity usually exceeding 90 degrees Fahrenheit. Averages range between 81 and 83 degrees (27 - 29 Celsius). Precipitation for the central west area ranges between 52 and 56 inches per year.
Yulee Sugar Mill Ruins Historic State Park is located on County Route 490 west of U.S. Highway 19 in Homosassa. Note: Be aware, CR 490 is a busy road; watch the children.