The Chautauqua Hall of Brotherhood in DeFuniak Springs
The rebuilt Chautauqua Hall of Brotherhood in DeFuniak Springs

DeFuniak Springs was named for Frederick R. De Funiak, vice-president of the Louisville & Nashville Railroad when the town was founded. The town was actually founded by officers of the Pensacola & Atlantibc Railroad, a subsidiary of the L & N. The railroad was building a connector between the terminus of the L & N in Pensacola and the terminus of the ?Seaboard Air Line Railroad at Chattahoochee. However, they felt the area of DeFuniak Springs would make a good destination resort and all their plans for the town revolved around that idea. To that end, they enlisted the aid and cooperation of the Chautauqua Movement, and they built a 4,000-seat auditorium (the Chautauqua Hall of Brotherhood) in the center of town on Lake DeFuniak. The primary use of the building was for classes, seminars and workshops about the Chautauqua Movement for folks who'd come to DeFuniak Springs for vacation. It was in the Hall of Brotherhood that the Florida Education Association was first formed. The building was severely damaged by Hurricane Eloise in 1975 and was subsequently torn down.