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Mount Dora is a city in Lake County, Florida, US. As of the 2010 census, it had a population of 12,370, and in 2019 the population was estimated to be 14,516. It is part of the Orlando - Kissimmee, Florida, Metropolitan Statistical Area. Founded in 1880, Mount Dora is known for its small-town southern charm. It has many antique shops in the downtown area. The downtown area overlooks Lake Dora. Mount Dora is home to one of three freshwater lighthouses in Florida. It hosts many monthly festivals and is known as the “Festival City.”
Downtown, the Modernism Museum displays modern furniture. Housed in a 1923 fire station, the Mount Dora History Museum documents local history. An extensive collection of classic cars, plus a replica of a 1940s gas station, are on display at the Museum of Speed. Northwest, bass-filled Lake Eustis has waterside restaurants.
The town of Mount Dora began in 1874 when the area was settled by David Simpson, his wife, and two children. In 1880, Ross C. Tremain became the town’s first postmaster and later a major real estate developer for the area. A post office called Mount Dora has been in operation since 1883. Tremain named the unincorporated village Royellou after his children, Roy, Ella, and Louis.
The community was renamed for Dora Ann Drawdy, who was an early settler of the town in the mid-1880s. In 1846, the surveyors named Lake Dora after her, and in 1883 the town was renamed after the lake. The Mount in Mount Dora reflects the fact that the town is on a plateau 184 feet above sea level. In addition to this, Dora is memorialized through Dora Drawdy Way, an alleyway located in the downtown area.