Discover the past at this 30 acre archaeological, historical, and environmental outdoor interpretive museum located on Little Sarasota Bay.
Over 5,000 years ago people began to build settlements along the shallow bay at what is now Historic Spanish Point. Here these early Floridians fished and hunted, made tools from shell, bone and wood, wove baskets and fishing nets, created pottery vessels, cooked food over firepits, and buried their dead in mounds. Archaeological investigations have taught us much about them and the 4,000 years they lived here. Two large middens, which are mounds made from the accumulation of shell, bone, ash and other daily debris of the prehistoric inhabitants, and a burial mound are exciting visible evidence of the past.
The unique exhibition, "A Window to the Past", is located inside one of the middens. It is currently the only exhibition of its kind in the United States where visitors are surrounded on three sides by the 20 foot high prehistoric shell mound. View a recreated dwelling from 1,000 years ago. See artifacts from the past. The middens at Historic Spanish Point constitute one of the largest intact prehistoric villages in southwest Florida.
Step into a quiet oasis in the midst of Sarasota County where only the sounds of bird calls and breeze awaits you. The 30-acre site is bordered on the west by mangroves and Little Sarasota Bay and on the east by pine flatwoods. Live oaks and palms grow throughout the different hammock, along with red cedar, gumbo limbo and southern magnolia trees. A richly diverse native plant community, combined with exotic species introduced in the early 1900s by the Palmer family, create an impression of serenity and a sense of adventure.
Established in 1982, Historic Spanish Point is owned and operated by Gulf Coast Heritage Association, Inc., a private, not-for-profit organization. It was the first site in Sarasota County to be listed in the National Register of Historic Places, and is accredited by the American Association of Museums.
page information credit: Historic Spanish Point
photos from the sources listed above, as well as publicly posted online sites with thanks to the contributors