About Madison County

Madison County was named in honor of Founding Father James Madison in 1827, when it was created as Florida’s largest county. (That was before Florida was admitted to the Union, in 1845.) When first formed, Madison County extended from the Aucilla river to the Withlacoochee and Suwannee rivers, and from the Georgia border to the Gulf of Mexico.  Since then, the county has “surrendered” Taylor, Lafayette and Dixie Counties, but there are still 714 square miles of forests, rivers, lakes and gently rolling hills to enjoy.

The City of Madison is the County Seat and was named for Madison C. Livingston, who donated the first parcel of land to create the city on May 2, 1838. We have two other municipalities, the Town of Greenville and the Town of Lee.

The current population of Madison is approximately 19,224.  We are a single-member voting district, which means that citizens living in a particular district elect a Commissioner from that district to represent them.  We have 5 districts and 5 Commissioners.  For more information on voting information or voting district lines, you may contact Mr. Heath Driggers, Supervisor of Elections at (850) 973-6507 or visit his web site at www.votemadison.com.

Be sure to check out the “Madison Collection,” a photographic compliation from The Florida Memory Project.

About Colin P. Kelly:
On December 7, 1941 Pearl Harbor was attacked by the Japanese and war was declared. Within three days, a Madison County native became the first national hero of World War II — Captain Colin P. Kelly, Jr. On December 10th, Kelly’s B-17 Flying Fortress plane took off from Clark Field in the Philippines. During its bombing run, Kelly’s plane hit the Japanese cruiser Ashigara. On his return to Clark Field, Captain Kelly came under attack by Japanese Zero fighter planes. Captain Kelly managed to hold the plane in the air

until the surviving members of his crew were able to parachute to safety, however, Kelly was unable to escape and was killed. For his extraordinary heroism and selfless bravery, Captain Kelly was posthumously awarded the Distinguished Service Cross. The United States liberty ship SS Colin P. Kelly, Jr. was also named in his honor. The Four Freedoms Monument in Madison’s city park was commissioned by President Roosevelt and dedicated in Captain Kelly’s memory.

For information about Captain Colin P. Kelly, please view the following link:

Colin P. Kelly

The Four Freedoms Monument:
The Four Freedoms are goals articulated by President Franklin Roosevelt in the State of the Union Address he delivered to Congress on January 6, 1941.  In the address, Roosevelt enumerated four points as fundamental freedoms humans “everywhere in the world” ought to enjoy:

“In the future days which we seek to make secure, we look forward to a world founded upon four essential human freedoms.  The first is freedom of speech and expression — everywhere in the world.  The second is freedom of worship.  That is, freedom of every person to worship whomever (be it God, or any other deity/deities) in his own way — everywhere in the world.  The third is freedom from want, which translated into world terms, means economic understanding which will secure to every nation a healthy peacetime life for its inhabitants — everywhere in the world.  The fourth is freedom from fear, which, translated into world terms, means a world-wide reduction of armaments to such a point and in such a thorough fashion that no nation will be in a position to commit an act of physical agression against any neighbor — anywhere in the world.  That is no vision of a distant millennium.  It is a definite basis for a kind of world attainable in our own time and generation.  That kind of world is the very antithesis of the so-called “new order” of tyranny which the dictators seek to create with the crash of a bomb.”

President Roosevelt commissioned sculptor Walter A. Russell to create the Four Freedoms Monument to be dedicated to the first hero of World War II.  This beautiful statue was dedicated to Captain Colin P. Kelly in 1943 at Madison Square Garden in New York City before a crowd of 60,000.  On June 14, 1944 the monument was re-dedicated in Kelly’s hometown of Madison, Florida with a speech by Florida Governor Spessard Holland.