Conant

Conant, Florida, once a thriving community started by a firm named Hollinshead, Dunning and Spaight, was named after Sherman Conant, one of the financiers of the Florida Southern Railroad.

Structures in the town included a 3-story hotel; the Osbern House, a ladies' finishing school built in 1884; the McLean Farm; a post office; Conant's General Store; and numerous nice homes.

Conant should have been a successful town of today with its promising start, but all that marks the site of the once flourishing town is a railroad sign. According to Lake County historian, William T. Kennedy, the demise of the town occurred because the promoters were snobbish and did not accept people who did their own work or who sent children to a public school. The sincere hard-working people who comprised most of the town's population moved to more congenial towns. The spacious hotel, suffering from lack of guests, was sold and torn down. The timber was transported to southern Florida to build a new hotel. Conant is the only town known for this practice of snobbery; the spirit of most thriving communities was comradeship, helpfulness and hospitality.

After Lady Lake was incorporated in 1925, the area previously known as Conant became a part of the town.

      
      

 

Mr. Poole and his horse with the Conant Hotel and post office in background.  
                           

Mr. McLean in front of Osbern House, the ladies' finishing school. 



Conant's General Store