Reading List

Ditch of Dreams: The Cross Florida Barge Canal and the Struggle for Florida’s Future
By Steven Noll and David Tegeder
University of Florida Press, 2009

A must-read book chronicling the history of the Cross Florida Barge Canal and the exploitation of the Ocklawaha River.





Marjorie Harris Carr: Defender of Florida’s Environment
By Peggy Macdonald
University of Florida Press, 2014

The story of a Florida mother of five who stopped the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers from killing a river.

The first full-length biography of the self-described “housewife from Micanopy,” who in reality struggled to balance career and family with her husband, Archie Carr, a pioneering conservation biologist. For 35 years, Carr tirelessly led a coalition of citizen activists in the continuing battle to protect and restore the Ocklawaha River. To this day, this little-known river in the heart of central Florida remains blocked by the remnants of the Cross Florida Barge Canal, a U.S. Army Corps of Engineers project that Carr and her fellow Florida Defenders of the Environment (FDE) activists stopped before its construction was completed.  Marjorie Harris Carr is an intimate look at this remarkable woman who dedicated her life to conserving Florida’s wildlife and wild places.





Silenced Springs: Moving from Tragedy to Hope
By Dr. Robert L. Knight

To understand the impact of Rodman Dam on the Ocklawaha, Silver Springs and the St. Johns, one must understand this river system of springs and the plight of springs throughout Florida. Restoring the Ocklawaha River is key to revitalizing the Silver Springs ecosystem. After restoration, more than twenty lost springs will be uncovered, the historic fish will return to Silver Springs and 100s of manatees will find critically needed, natural warm water habitat.





River of Lake: A Journey on Florida’s St. Johns River
By Bill Belleville
University of Georgia Press, 2000

The Ocklawaha River is the largest tributary to the St. Johns River. This book explores the entire river including a short section on the Ocklawaha. Freeing the Ocklawaha by breaching the Rodman Dam will provide more flow to the St. Johns River and its estuaries at the confluence of the Atlantic Ocean.




An Ocklawaha River Odyssey: Paddling through Natural History
By Elizabeth Randall, Photos by Bob Randal
The History Press, 2019

Photojournalists Bob and Liz Randall share their two-year journey exploring the enchanted Ocklawaha River. Good guide for those wanting to explore the Ocklawaha River by paddle.





Ocklawaha River Steamboats
By Edward A. Mueller
Mendelson Printing Company, Jacksonville, 1983

Full of photos, drawings, articles and details of the historic steamboats of the Ocklawaha River.