How the town of Brookesville, Florida got its name

A lot of towns around the world often have a story as to how it got its name, but one story that sticks out to me is the town of Brookesville, Florida in Hernando County. Once called Pierceville, Brookesville got its name honoring the Congressman Preston Brooks during the pre-Civil War era of American History, specifically 1856.

One day, Senator Charles Sumner was giving a speech against slavery and also disparaging Preston Brooks’ uncle, Senator Andrew Butler. Preston Brooks took great offense to this and ended up assaulting Senator Sumner with a cane and not stopping until he was physically restrained by others in the room. Senator Sumner was severely injured and had to stay out of office until he recovered. Senator Sumner was reelected while recovering. When Pierceville heard of the incident, they decided to rename their county chair to Brookesville, honoring Congressman Preston Brooks.

Afterward, Congressman Brooks was often sent more canes that were often inscribed, taunting Sumner.


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