The preservation of human history and the environment that shaped it is a fascination to most people. Proof of that is found in the dedication of many volunteers and a few professionals to building and maintaining museums, even for the smallest of communities. Useppa is certainly one of the smallest, with our 100 acre, 1 ¼ mile long island occupied by just 115 homes, a club, and the Barbara Sumwalt Museum of the Useppa Island Historical Society.
Created by passionate residents and a supportive island management, the museum harbors 10,000 years of history. Open the door and enter a panoply of those years, from a dusty hill with a fresh water spring, miles from the Gulf of Mexico, to the founding of the modern day, water wrapped community in Pine Island Sound. Through the intervening millennia’s, Useppa was home to ancient animals and peoples, Calusa, Old World explorers, Cubans, Seminole, tax collectors, US infantry and Navy forces, CIA, real estate developers, fishing fanatics, benefactors and rogues.
History is a bonding compound for people of the present, and Useppa is no exception. Our museum is a gathering place: to celebrate, experience, learn and share. Every season we are treated to several up close and personal experiences, with authors, photographers, entertainers and artists.
Just a sample of recent events are authors Craig Pittman “Oh, Florida!”; Maritime author Robert Macomber, “The Honor Series,” Doc Anna, Swamp Doctor; “The Florida Grand Canyon,” a photo exhibit “Everglades: America’s Wetland,” with conservation photographer Mac Stone, co-sponsored with The Everglades Foundation.
Our Historical Society is able to bring the broad range of art forms to the residents and members of Useppa Island due to the efforts of director Rona Stage. She networks with similar small museum directors and taps the best venues from the artistry of the Florida Humanities Council. Never will you find so much to offer, in such a small and personal place. Except on Useppa Island.
Make your escape to Useppa Island.
Paradise Without A Passport!