102 NW Seminary Avenue, Micanopy, FL
Located ten miles south of Gainesville, the seat of government for Alachua County, Micanopy is one of the oldest inland towns in Florida. Micanopy’s long history has been extensively studied and recorded, and a portion of the town was listed on the National Register of Historic Places as a historic district in 1983. It was the site of Cuscowilla, a Seminole Indian town described by William Bartram in 1774, and became the location of a village known as Wanton’s Trading Post during the Territorial Period. When Alachua County was created in 1824, the first county court met at Wanton’s house. Known for its excellent climate and soil, Micanopy, named in 1834 for a Seminole chief, became the center of an important citrus growing region. After Florida became a state in 1845, many new settlers set out large groves and business expanded within the town itself.
When Micanopy was platted in 1850 to resolve disputed land claims, John Livingston was allotted land on both sides of the Business Square (now Cholokka Boulevard) extending along the present Seminary Avenue to Division Street. The Winecoff House was within the Livingston Addition, a block west of the Business Square. The earliest record of ownership of the property has been traced to the sale of a town lot owned by John H. and Mary Simonton to Cynthia Winecoff in April of 1871 for a sum of $1,500.00. The lot was described as one on which Mrs. Winecoff “now resides.” It is not known conclusively whether the Simontons built the house, but the price on the deed indicates the presence of a valuable building. The property that was sold to Mrs. Winecoff included Lot 1 of Livingston’s Addition, the right of way of Seminary Avenue that fronts it, and the western half of Lot 14 of Livingston’s Addition.
Micanopy evolved from a growing market town when the Winecoff House was first built into a quiet village, as highways and modern development bypassed it. The commercial buildings that have survived fire and the decay of time are now popular antique shops and art galleries, and many older residences such as the Winecoff House have been restored. Micanopy is valued for its timeless quality.
The Winecoff House is a National Register of Historic Places.