Historic Markers Across Florida

St. Mary's Missionary Baptist Church/Datson Dairy

Marker ID:  
Location: on S Conway Rd at Saint Mary’s Lane, Orlando, FL
County: Orange
Coordinates: N 28° 29.164    W 081° 19.837
  28.48606666    -81.33061666
Style: Free Standing **
Waymark: WMK5DJ


St. Mary's Missionary Baptist Church

St. Mary's Missionary Baptist Church was built on land donated by Mary Walker in 1915. It was a small frame building with a steeple to the side of the main entrance The small African American community surrounding the church developed when E.B. Conoley opened a turpentine still in the area and brought workers to Conway from as far away as Georgia to work in the piney woods. A one-room school behind the church served all of the African American children in grades one through eight. After the end of the turpentine industry in the area, the men turned to picking citrus in the groves.

Datson Dairy

The Datson Dairy was founded by Berton Clarence Datson in 1916 and was the first commercial dairy in Orlando. The original dairy was located on Hourglass Lake at the corner of Cloverlawn Avenue and Curry Ford Rd. Its processing plant was on West South Street in Orlando. The pastures were located between Conway Road and Lake Conway. The dairy began with 9 cows and grew to over 900- by 1937. In 1926, the dairy's founder died in an automobile accident, and the dairy operations were taken over by his four sons and son-in-law: Clarence, Theodore, Glenn, and Ricahrd and Robert B. Dawson. The dairy was sold in 1951.

Richard T. Crotty, Mayor-Linda A. Stewart, Commissioner District 4-Orange County Board of County Commissioners