Crescent City and Surrounding Area Features:
Crescent Lake and Lake Stella offer excellent fishing opportunities and are host to several renowned fishing events.
Daytona Bike Week -- Just a short drive from busy Daytona, you can rest easy away from the bustling city.
Antique shops and local restaurants within walking distance to The Sprague House.
Catfish Festival right here in Crescent City offers vendors, southern food, live music and more.
Crappie Tournament brings in fishing experts from all over to compete.
Central location - close to the large cities of St. Augustine, Jacksonville and Orlando (Disney), where you can retreat to the quiet, quaint town of Crescent City.
Country atmosphere and romantic ambiance will leave you falling in love with the area!
The Sprague House is Open All Year
Check In: 2PM to
6PM (later please make arrangements)
Check Out: 11AM
The Sprague House
125 Central Ave.
Crescent City, FL 32112
Crescent City, Florida History and Information
Welcome to Crescent City -- One of the Friendliest Places!
You will take
a step back in time when you visit this little town filled with old Florida
charm. Crescent City is a small, picturesque community full of beautiful turn of
the century homes, and churches. Parks abound here, as well as the wonderfully
quaint shops, and fine dining establishments.
As you drive though
the countryside, you will see several orange groves and ferneries surrounded by
majestic mossy oaks, echoing the southern charm of yesterday. Even though Crescent City is a small country town, it is a
short drive to Palatka, Deland, Daytona Beach, Jacksonville, St. Augustine, and
the Ocala National Forest. It is a scenic two-hour drive to Orlando, Walt Disney World,
Cape Canaveral, and Gainesville. Crescent City is located between Jacksonville
and Orlando on Highway 17. Crescent City offers a quiet place to get away from
it all. Crescent City sits between Lake Stella and Lake Crescent, one of the
largest fresh-water lakes in Florida, connecting to the St. Johns River. Lake
George is just to the west. Crescent City is at the heart of the "Bass Capital
of the World".
Lake Crescent is 16,000
acres and it is the thirdlargest freshwater lake in Florida and one of the largest freshwater lakes in the State of Florida.
The lake is approximately 13 miles in length and 2 miles wide. It connects to
the St. John's River on the North end via Dunn's Creek. Amazingly, this area is
largely undeveloped; the entire eastern shore of Lake Crescent is the same as it
was 100 years ago. Perfect for peaceful fishing, a quiet boat ride or water-side sight seeing.
The Catfish Festival:
This renowned even takes
place the first full weekend of April and brings approximately 30,000 visitors
to Crescent City. (Be sure to book your room early -- some guests book a year in advance!) A large collection of Arts and Crafts vendors fill the town along with a bevy of antique cars for the Antique Cars show, southern signature foods, games and live music are a big part of the festival. Food served includes fried catfish (of course) and chicken dinners, swamp cabbage, alligator tail, and
fresh strawberry shortcake. You will want a good seat to watch the Catfish
of the roads are closed for the parade, but the Sprague House is only a few
short blocks away from the festivities and within walking distance to all the major events. You can easily walk to the heart of the
Catfish Festival in 5 minutes and not have to worry about driving with our private on-site parking.
Crescent City History:
South Putnam was
settled in the 1700's when English landowners established rice and
indigo plantations along the shores of the St. John's River. Prior to
that it was home to Native American Indian tribes that fished the river,
hunted the forests and grew food crops.
Crescent City, on the western shore of Dunn's Lake, was first settled in
1852; however, there is evidence of earlier property owners before that
What is now Crescent City was once part of the "Old Oliver Plantation."
This was a tract of about 1,800 acres. In 1867 and 1870 large portions
of original tract were sold to three men and their wives and became the
City of Ellington, named for one of the wives. In 1876, Charles R.
Griffing and his wife Jennie purchased the land and began C.R. Griffing
& Company. The existing lake, known as Dunn’s Lake at that time, was
thought by Mrs. Griffing to have a crescent shape. She changed the name
of the lake to Lake Crescent. In 1876, an area of the shore was surveyed
and platted. The name chosen was Crescent City. Another lake on the west
was named Lake Stella because it looked like a star.
The primary route for settlers was on the St. John's River by steamship
from Jacksonville. Rail service to the community, inaugurated in 1886,
facilitated the transport of local goods and increased traffic to the
The early economy was based on agriculture in the form to truck crops
and citrus and tourism. Intensive advertising by Griffing's Crescent
City Real Estate Company in the northeast and midwest attracted a
significant number of winter residents to the shores of Crescent Lake. A
movement to form a municipal government was begun in 1883, and two years
later Crescent City was formally incorporated. By 1890 the population
had grown to 554. A Legislative Act extended the original boundary in
1911. The "Great Freeze" of the winter of 1894-95, however wiped out the
areas citrus groves and caused many of the city's residents to abandon
their holdings. During the Great Depression little in the way of new
construction occurred in the city. Both the local banks failed and many
residents were forced to seek relief through government-sponsored
programs. It was not until after WW2 that Crescent City fully
recovered from the affects of the Great Depression. Although orange growing
was the principal industry, the tourist business was also important.
Fern had begun to be a profitable business and many of the frozen groves
were turned into ferneries with some becoming pastures for raising
cattle. Today, Crescent City remains a rural area. Occupying 2,000 acres
under natural and artificial shade, this area's cut foliage is
distributed around North America, supplying approximately 84% of the US
cut foliage. It is also shipped overseas and is one of Florida's leading export
commodities. At one time, much commercial fishing took place here with
Crescent City becoming known as the "Bass Capital of the World" It was
named such by the Putnam County Courier after Al McClaine, fishing
editor of Field and Stream magazine selected Crescent City's waters as
being the best for largemouth bass.
Crescent City is on the
National Register of Historic Places.
Be sure to book your room in advance - with four rooms available, they fill up fast! Contact Us to Book Your Accommodations.