Boulogne, Florida
The Town That Lived On Speeders

by Mike Miller
(Mount Dora, Florida)

Boulogne Florida Location Map

Boulogne Florida Location Map

Somewhere just south of the St. Mary's River and the Florida-Georgia border there was a sleepy little wide spot in the road named Boulogne.

Rhymes with baloney without the y.

US-1, US-301, and US-23 all cross the St. Mary's River on a bridge just north of Boulogne at the Georgia-Florida border. In the days before Interstate 95 was built, most northerners came down to Florida on one of these three highways.

In the early 1950s the State of Florida built a welcome station at this location where tourists could get a drink of orange juice while picking up maps and brochures from tourist attractions.

Although it was the first spot incoming tourists saw in Florida, it looked pretty much like south Georgia on the other side of the river.

The tiny town had a reputation as a speed trap. The speed limit through town abruptly changed from 55 mph in Georgia to 35 in Boulogne with no warning. The local cop was always on duty and looking for out of state license tags.

The AAA identified Boulogne as a speed tramp, and since it was the first place tourists entering into Florida usually went through, it was a source of concern for the state tourism industry.

Well, the politicians in Tallahassee got wind of the situation and warned the town to slow down on the speeding tickets. That didn't work, and the one car police force stayed busy writing tickets, the main source of the town's revenue.

Sometime later, still in the 1960s, the state legislature abolished the town of Boulogne. Not long after, when Interstate 95 was completed just east of town, the tourist welcome center also closed.

Boulogne exists no more except in memory. The old welcome station and nearby motels are in ruins and overgrown with weeds. One of the old motels has been converted into a nursing home.

I'm not sure many people miss Boulogne or even remember it was there.

Comments for Boulogne, Florida
The Town That Lived On Speeders

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Mar 27, 2022
My hometown
by: Lucy K Peistrup

I grew up in Boulougne. The spelling is up for debate. I believe the road sign doesn’t include the « u ».

I’m 48 now, but fondly recall the old Tahiti Motel across from the Stuckey’s (the very FIRST) built in FL, where Mama and I went to have dinner before it was razed. I LOVED to visit the Welcome Center to grab brochures of the places I wanted to visit (but never got to, as a child anyway).

The OJ was always a bit too tart for my liking, but I always obliging took some. Beasley’s Pizza Place was THE BEST PLACE for pizza around! I remember Mama giving me $5 and I got a 6 pack of strawberry soda, 2 regular size candy bars AND got change back in their convenience store ! That’s how long ago that was!

The building still stands but it is now a CB shop. One sign of hope is the building that is next to the State Line Bar IS being refurbished ! A welcome sight that an old building isn’t being torn down! I always lament when that happens—history lost.

All of those old places were built to last with cinder blocks…so sad to see them gone. One of them has a bomb shelter in it; I can’t recall which one. It is still there, though !

I love my little Boulougne and still own property there. It will always be HOME! :-) Thank you for writing about it!

May 03, 2021
Old pics
by: Anonymous

I want any old pics or phrases of the place I now call home! I want to have a t-shirt made with things listed about this use to be town I love the river and wildlife that is always seen here we need a dollar general and a small strip mall with a Dunkin’ Donuts and grocery store like Publix would be great and an upgraded gas station "make this place great!"

Feb 13, 2021
Florida Welcome Center
by: Anonymous

Does anyone have a picture of the old Welcome Center in Boulogne? Can anyone tell me when it was torn down? Any info is greatly appreciated!

Leave reply here and I will get in touch.

Dec 26, 2016
Lived in the area of Bolougne Florida just north of the town of Hilliard in the 60s and 70s.
by: Joe Hendrix

Thought I'd throw in my two cents, for what their worth. I grew up just outside the town limits of Hilliard, south of Bolougne in the 60s/70s. I don't remember anyone talking about speed traps at the time in or near Bolougne, however, the Florida Inspection and Weigh Station is just a couple of miles south of the Florida/Georgia line. The station inspects truck cargo and the weight of the vehicles to insure compliance with Florida law.

Many of the local truck drivers' were known to "by-pass" the Florida inspection station by using back roads to cross into or out of Georgia without being noticed. The state inspection station would position a vehicle to catch those attempting to avoid the scales and inspection.

I don't' recall if these units' ever pulled people over for speeding though. Florida state patrol and Nassau County deputies were known, however, to regularly stop speeders and other traffic violators in this area.


Mar 19, 2016
other history
by: Daryl Knowles

My father,Willie Lee Knowles was born here on December 23, 1923. He spoke fondly of the people of his youth and grew up to serve in three of the branches of the armed services in his 26 year career.

Jul 07, 2015
Removed Some Comments
by: Editor

I removed some comments that were personally abusive to the people that live in the Boulogne area. That wasn't the intent of my original article. I just wanted to share a little historical info on the town that was erased by the legislature because it was a speed trap. Many many many years ago.

Mar 10, 2014
Still a bad spot
by: Anonymous

Actually, it's still being run as a speed trap and truck trap by the FHP and the State. The speed limit sign that takes you down to 45 mph from 55 mph in Georgia has been hidden behind the gigantic blue F L O R I D A sign.

One of Florida law enforcement's favorite expressions "Get 'em!"

Dec 05, 2012
by: Anonymous

Boulogne is alive and well. You shouldn't be speeding in the first place. Don't blame the town.

Oct 05, 2011
Bolougne Still Lives................
by: Anonymous

It may be unincorporated but there are some nice businesses there, but more importantly, many of the nicest folks you'll ever meet.

Jan 28, 2011
I remember Boulogne
by: William Blake

I remember the little one horse town all to well. I got two speeding tickets over the years driving from Jacksonville to Waycross.

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