Beautiful and peaceful, Fleming Island is located in Clay County and is an unincorporated community. According to Niche.com Fleming Island’s population is roughly 28,676 and it is one of the best places to live in Florida. The median household income is fairly high at over $94,000 and yet the median house value is relatively low as you can see below. The schools are some of the highest rated in the area and crime is extremely low. Fleming Island has a very suburban feel to it and the residents are generally very friendly.
Is Fleming Island an actual island? Well – it IS completely isolated by water. To get there from any direction, you do indeed have to cross a bridge. It’s bordered by Doctors Lake, the St. Johns River, Black Creek and Swimming Pen Creek. But, per this Jacksonville.com article, Black Creek and Swimming Pen Creek don’t quite touch. The two are connected by a shallow, permanently flooded wetland system that is not navigable by boat. In the above referenced article, Christopher Williams, geologist for the Dept. of Environmental Protection Florida Geological Survey says that Fleming Island sort of is an island and sort of isn’t. If the sea level were to rise by one foot it would fill in those wetlands and by all accounts it would be an actual island. Until then, it remains sort of up in the air as it does by some definitions qualify as an island but not by others.
Fleming Island’s History – Fleming Island was founded by Irishman George Fleming who arrived in 1783. He established Hibernia on an island (now Fleming Island). George Fleming was granted 1,000 acres by the Governor of Spanish East Florida for his service. He named this 1,000 acres Hibernia in honor of Ireland. Upon that 1,000 acres he and his family built a grand plantation and Hibernia was home to the Fleming family for over 200 years. Sadly, all that remains of the original Hibernia Plantation is the family cemetery and a private chapel. There is a very interesting read about the civil war years which refers to Fleming Island as being Florida’s Gone With the Wind here.