Nature Coast Area History

Did you know that the first residents of Florida walked here from two areas of Indochina? Yes, that was a long time ago, but it’s true.

We have historical records and books that explain our State’s history, but it is a lot more memorable to visit and learn. Something about seeing, touching and feeling a historical place adds to its value in our minds. Try to imagine what things were like and broaden your perspective of time and space.

Explore  the Crystal River Archaeological Park, a ceremonial site that was occupied year-round from approximately 500 B.C. through 1,000 A.D., and visited by thousands of Native Americans from nearby regions. This amazing historical site is available to everyone, and to get a virtual feel for its value just click Pre Columbian site.

There are many important Civil War era locations, including Bayport, and Fort Dade.

One of the largest Civil War Re-enactments in the U.S. is held the third weekend in January every year – in Brooksville. The Booksville Raid was held for forty straight years until its cancellation in 2020, and was held at the Sand Hill Scout Reservation. The re-creation of a Civil War battle that happened in Hernando County in July of l864 was reenacted multiple times over two days and the public is invited to tour, at no additional charge, the authentic confederate and union camps to see how they lived during the Civil War.  A Sutler’s (vendors) Village is also on-site, so you can purchase Civil War items you might want.

Visit area history museums, including the May Stringer House (and maybe experience a ghost) and the 1880s Train Depot Museum in Brooksville, the Citrus County Historic Museum in Crystal River, the Citrus County Courthouse Museum in Inverness and the West Pasco Historical Society Museum in New Port Richey.

Schedule a river cruise on the Pithlachascotee River through Port Richey and New Port Richey to see some of the mansions constructed when the roaring 20s was in full swing and developers were calling this area the Hollywood of the East. Enjoy a play at the historic Richey Suncoast Theater.

If antiques are your preference, Dade City is chock full of tiny antique shops surrounding a historic courthouse. There are several nice dining choices also. The Pioneer Florida Museum is located in Dade City and offers insight to the life that Florida’s pioneers led. Several historic buildings, implements, and a train are on display.