As long as 12,000 years ago, native American tribes (Calusas) lived throughout Southwest Florida including Englewood. Human skeletons, animal bones, spears and Indian mounds have been found throughout the area.

With the discovery of this continent by the Europeans in the late 1400’s, exploration slowly brought more visitors. Many explorers were searching for gold. They were not successful, but they paved the way for others to come to the area.

Next Cuban, Bahamian and Spanish fisherman came to fish the fertile waters of the Gulf of Mexico, inlets and bays including Lemon Bay.

After two and a half centuries of Spanish rule, Florida became the 27th state in 1845. Modern day Englewood was founded on 2000 acres by the Nicholas brothers who intended to establish a city surrounded by lemon groves, but that did not work out. So, the strategy became to promote Englewood as a residential area with an abundance of hunting and fishing in a carefree environment.

Today, Manasota Key and Englewood’s climate inspire the description “Gem of the Suncoast”. With year-round events, multiple parks and public beach access and miles of beautiful beaches, Manasota Key is the perfect Florida vacation spot.

Manasota Key is known for finding many different varieties of shells and fossils

If you keep your eyes peeled, you can find nice fossil specimens. Manasota Key beaches are replenished daily with seashells, and fossil material, including land and marine animals. At one point the coast extended 70 miles further out than what it is today. Thus, accounting for the mix of land and marine animal fossilized remains getting washed up on the shore.

Florida’s Fabulous Treasures

By Jeffrey Kramer

Many researchers and historians claim that Florida contains more buried and sunken treasures than any other state. They have also put a price tag on these treasures, which amounts to a cool $165 million (1964). Florida, like all other states, has a fascinating and romantic history. Seven different flags have flown over her, not to mention the black flag of the pirates. Florida became the haven of many notorious pirates, including Blackbeard, Lafitte, Gasparilla, Kidd, Rackham, Bowlegs, Bonnett, and possible even Morgan himself. They roamed the waters of the Caribbean Sea, and captured every ship in sight. Often, they brought their loot back to Florida, and buried it on some lonely shore. When they finally died, the location of their hidden wealth died with them. The majority of all buried treasure in Florida is the work of pirates. Numerous wars have been fought in Florida and upon the waters around her. Men hastily buried their wealth when being pursued by the enemy. Valuables were lost or misplaced when the fighting stated and were never found again. Naval battles accounted for the sinking of many ships with valuable cargoes, their resting place to be forgotten in time. Some very valuable treasures were lost during the many wars in Florida.

Florida has survived through hundreds of hurricanes in the past 4 centuries, but many ships around her have not. From the year 1500 to 1960, hurricanes have sunk their quota of treasure laden ships. These wrecked ships represent all nations, but the majority of the are Spanish galleons.

They carried gold and silver from the New World to the Old, only to have their contents deposited on some jagged reef off Florida. Many gold doubloons and pieces of eight are awaiting a lucky finder on the Florida reefs.

Actually, there are two types of treasure hunting; buried reassure merely requires a shovel, but it is advisable to use a metal detector if success is to be achieved. Hunting sunken treasure becomes more expensive and complicated. Diving gear is needed and of course a boat is required. Only and experienced diver should go after sunken treasure. Luckily, Florida contains both types of treasure, thus enabling the prospective hunter to choose from a larger variety.