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Longwood is a small city located near Orlando, Florida, less than 6 square miles in size. The city is perhaps best known as the home of The Senator — not a U.S. political figure but a 3,000-year-old bald cypress tree that served as a navigational landmark for the state's early settlers. Although The Senator is no longer standing, it remains an iconic symbol of the city of Longwood.
The History of Longwood
The first settlements in the Longwood area came about in the late 1840s, after the end of the Second Seminole War. John Neill Searcy and Edward Warren Henck are considered Longwood's first original residents, developing homesteads and starting several businesses. By the late 1920s, more people had arrived in Longwood and developed a small community. They built churches, schoolhouses, grocery stores and other businesses to support citizens.
Longwood and other parts of central Florida experienced unsteady population booms and declines throughout the 20th century. The Great Depression and a couple of unexpected crop freezes had a negative impact on the local economy, which drove residents away. However, people continued to return to this sunny, resource-abundant city through the 1980s, when Longwood's development veered toward residential communities for people who worked in larger cities nearby.
Living in Longwood
Longwood is a picturesque city that offers beautiful weather year-round, with only occasional cold weather over the winter. Plus, Longwood has better air quality and lower pollution levels than most cities in the United States, making it enjoyable to spend time outdoors.
Several historic homes and buildings are sprinkled throughout Longwood, most of which exhibit Victorian, Spanish and mission-style architecture. Some of the earliest Longwood churches still stand, as does the historic Longwood Village Inn. While new construction is plentiful in Longwood, a popular activity for locals and visitors alike is to tour the downtown area and marvel at the architectural wonders of a previous age.
Orlando is less than half an hour away, but you don't have to visit the larger metropolis to enjoy shopping, dining or entertainment. Longwood offers a host of convenient amenities, from supermarkets and department stores to gyms and coffee houses. Public transit is highly accessible, as are schools and libraries.
Seminole County Public Schools operates the schools of Longwood. Depending on your location, your child may attend one of the schools just outside the city limits. There are a few private schools in Longwood as well, including several faith-based campuses and the Eagle Aerospace Military Academy.
Resources for Moving to Longwood
Here are a few helpful resources for planning your move to Longwood:
- Utilities: Duke Energy, TECO People's Gas and Florida Public Utilities are the major energy providers in Longwood. Water and sewer services are supplied by the city.
- Garbage and Recycling: The city of Longwood is divided into three collection zones, with designated pick-up schedules for each zone. You can expect your trash, recyclables and yard waste to be collected on a weekly basis.
- Transportation: Much of central Florida is connected via the Lynx public transit system, including the city of Longwood.
The price of housing in Longwood is slightly higher than the Orlando metropolitan average and significantly higher than national averages. If you prefer renting instead of buying, there are plenty of options to choose from, ranging from compact apartments to rental homes.