Archaeological research indicates that Florida had been inhabited for thousands of years before any European settlements. Of the many indigenous peoples, the largest known were the Ais, the Apalachee, the Calusa, the Timucua and the Tocobago tribes. Juan Ponce de León, a Spanish conquistador, named Florida in honor of his discovery of the land on April 2, 1513, during Pascua Florida, a Spanish term for the Easter season (Juan Ponce de León may not have been the first European to reach Florida; according to one report, at least one indigenous tribesman who he encountered in Florida in 1513 spoke Spanish.) From that date forward, the land became known as "La Florida" , although from 1630 until the 19th century Tegesta (after the Tequesta tribe) was the name of choice for the Florida peninsula following publication of a map by the Dutch cartographer Hessel Gerritsz in Joannes de Laet's History of the New World. Over the following century, both the Spanish and French established settlements in Florida, with varying degrees of success. In 1559, Spanish Pensacola was established by Don Tristán de Luna y Arellano as the first European settlement in the continental United States, but it had become abandoned by 1561 and would not be reinhabited until the 1690s. French Huguenots founded Fort Caroline in modern-day Jacksonville in 1564, but the fort was conquered by Spanish forces from St. Augustine the following year. Florida is considered the fishing capital of the world. One of the finest estuaries can be found in the Palm Coast and St Augustine areas. Guided fishing charters and sightseeing tours are very popular in this area because of its unrivaled beauty. Companies such as Palm Coast Fishing Trips are a great way to experience this part of Florida.
The United States acquired Florida from Spain via the Adams-Onís Treaty and took possession in 1821. Bands from various tribes in the southeastern United States had moved into the unoccupied lands in Florida in the preceding century. These included Alabamas, Choctaws, Yamasees, Yuchis and Creek people. The Creeks were the largest group, and included Lower Creeks and Upper Creeks, and both Hitchiti- and Muscogee-speakers. One group of Hitchiti-speakers, the Mikasuki, settled around what is now Lake Miccosukee near Tallahassee. Another group of Hitchiti-speakers settled around the Alachua Prairie in what is now Alachua County. The Spanish in St. Augustine began calling the Alachua Creeks Cimarrones, which roughly meant "wild ones" or "runaways", and which is the probable origin of "Seminole". This name was eventually also applied to the other groups in Florida, although the Indians still regarded themselves as members of different tribes.
The St. Petersburg Pier, simply called "The Pier" by locals, is a major tourist destination in downtown St. Petersburg, Florida. Some of the activities and sights it encompasses include: fishing, boat rentals, weekly festivals, and the pier aquarium. Shopping, dining and nightlife are other amenities.
...that the Miami Seaquarium was the first major marine park to open in Florida at its grand opening in 1955?
...that the Florida Cabinet was created following reconstruction, when there had been distrust of the military governors appointed by the federal government, it was designed to decentralize authority from the Governor?
Florida is a place of unparalleled diversity of backgrounds, experiences and vision. It makes our culture unique, but it can also make it difficult to define a common identity and create a sense of community that reaches beyond our neighborhoods to all corners of our state