Historical Markers in
Sarasota County, Florida

1926 Article From "Venice News" 337th Army Air Field Base A Resting Place of Pioneer Families and Hidden Histories Albert Rix Alberto Zoppe Alfredo Codona Allan C. Hill Allen Bloom American National Bank Antoinette Concello Atlantic Coast Line Railroad Station Avondale Barry Lubin Bay Haven School Beach Segregation Bee Ridge Woman's Club Bello Nock Bidwell-Wood House Bispham Dairy Captain William Heyer Casey's Pass Ca’D’Zan: House of John Cecil B. DeMille Cedar Point / Sunset Park - Cedar Point / Golden Gate Point Cedric Walker Charles and Mathias Coronas Charles Ringling Building Charles Robert Sidlow Charles Schlarbaum Charly Baumann City of Sarasota Cliff Vargas Clyde Beatty Clyde E. Lassen Colonel George Kumpe Bridge Con Colleano Corey's Landing and Farming Community Count Nicholas Count Roberto de Vasconcellos Crocker Memorial Church Cucciolo Curry Family / Wading Birds D.R. and Isla Miller Dan Rice De Sota Park / Logan and Currin, Inc. De Sota Park / Logan and Currin, Inc. Dieter Tasso Dime Wilson Family Dolly Jacobs Dr. J.Y. Henderson Eagle Point Bell Edgewood Edwards Theatre 1926 Elly Ardelty Emmett Kelly Ennes Arcade and Hotel Valencia 1926 Fay Alexander Felix Adler First Black Community First Municipal Airport Lowe Field Floyd R. King Francis Brunn Lottie Brunn Franz Czeisler Tihany Franz Unus Fred Albee Municipal Airport Fred and Ella Bradna Fred D. Pfening, Jr. Friendship Baptist Church Fruitville Elementary School Gee Gee Engesser George Scott Gulf Beach Motel Gunther Gebel-Williams Gunther Gebel-Williams Guy Laliberte H.S.H. Prince Rainier III of Monaco Hamid Family Hans Winn Harding Circle Historic District Harold Alzana Henry Ringling North Historic Palm Tower Historic Spanish Point History of Nokomis / Fred Albee Hubert Castle Ian Garden Indian Beach Irvin Feld and Kenneth Feld Italo Fornasari Family Jacqueline Zerbini James A. Bailey Jean “Tarzan” Zerbini Jenny Wallenda John D. MacDonald 1916-1986/John D. and the Friday Liars John Hamilton Gillespie John Pugh John Ringling North Johnson Chapel / Albee Quarters Johnson-Schoolcraft Building 1926 Joseph Bauer Joseph Daniel Anderson Josephine Berosini Jumbo Karl L. King Kenny Dodd Kensington Park Kentucky Military Institute Kentucky Military Institute Knight Memorial/Area First Cemetery La Norma La Tosca Lalage Landing of the Scots Laurel Turpentine and Lumber Industry Laurel Turpentine Company / Blackburn Sawmill Quarters Lemon Bay Cemetery Lido Beach Casino/Ralph Spencer Twitchell Lillian Leitzel Little Salt Spring Lord - Higel House Restoration Project Loring Lovell Los Quiros Lou Jacobs Mabel Stark Mable Ringling Memorial Fountain / Luke Wood Park Manuel “Junior” Ruffin Mary Wyatt Whitaker May Wirth Merle Evans Methodist Church Miakka Miguel Vazquez New Edzell Castle: 1914-1959/Bird Key Newtown Community Center/Robert L. Taylor Community Complex Newtown/Helen R. Payne Day Nursery Nokomis School Norma and Ben and Eva Davenport Oaklands/Woodlawn Cemetery Old Miakka School Oscar Scherer State Park Osprey School Otto Griebling P.T. Barnum Pablo Rodriguez and Family Palmer Ranch Paul Binder Paul N. Thorpe Jr. Park Payne Park Pedro Reis Pinito del Oro Pioneer Court Prehistoric Man Lived Here/Spring Was Once a Cave Railroad History Reggie Armor Riverview High School Rosemary Cemetery Rudi and Sue Lenz San Marco Hotel San Remo Estates Sarasota Bradenton International Airport/Sarasota Army Air Field Sarasota County Courthouse Sarasota Terrace Hotel Sarasota War Memorial/The Doughboy Sarasota's Bayfront Sarasota's First Post Office Seaboard Railway Depot Shakett Creek / Estuary "the cradle of the ocean" Siesta / Harry L. Higel Siesta Public Beach Smally, Donald J. P.E. South Creek Trestle / Oscar Scherer History South Lido Park St. Martha Mission Church Starless Night Struppi Hanneford Sylvia Zerbini Terry Cavaretta & The Flying Cavarettas The Bertinis The Bobby Jones Legend The Booker Schools The Calusa and Seminole Peoples The Carrillos The Circle at St. Armands The Circus in Venice The Circus Ring of Fame The Clarke Family The Cristiani Family The Del Moral Perch Act Troupe The Derrick Rosaire Family The Edson Keith Estate The Five Ringling Brothers The Flying Espanas The Flying Palacios The Fredonias The Hanneford Family The Hotel Venice The King Charles Troupe The Little White Church at Bee Ridge The Loyal-Repensky Troupe The Nelson Family The Nerveless Nocks The Pedrolas The Stephenson Family The Supreme Sacrifice The Therons The Three Atayde Brothers The Twin Motel and Tourism The Venice-Nokomis Bank The Wallenda Troupe The Wallendas The Yong Brothers The Zacchinis Tim Holst Tino Wallenda-Zoppe Tito Gaona and Family Tony Steele Triangle Inn Turpentine / Venice Ice House Unconditional Surrender Ursula Boettcher and Alaska Venezia Park Venice Venice Apartment District Venice Army Air Base Venice Army Air Base Venice Beach Pavilion Venice Beach War Memorial Venice Post Office Venice Railroad and Depot Venice Storm History Victoria Unus "La Toria" Ward Hall Ward-Bell Flyers Welcome to Heritage Court / Fred H. Albee, M.D. Whitaker Cemetery Whitaker Family/Gateway 2000 Executive Committee William (“Cap”) Curtis William and Barbara Woodcock Wilson Family and Home Wilson Storey Winter Quarters Woodmere Worth's Block Yellow Bluffs “Rogana” – Dora Foster
During World War II, the United States established many military bases in Florida, including the famous MacDill Air Force Base near Tampa. These bases played a crucial role in the war effort and helped to establish Florida as a major military state.
Sarasota County, located on the southwestern coast of Florida, has a rich history that spans thousands of years. The area was originally inhabited by indigenous people, including the Calusa and Timucua tribes. These tribes thrived on the abundant natural resources of the region, including fish, shellfish, and other wildlife.

In the early 16th century, Spanish explorers arrived in the area, led by Juan Ponce de León. They claimed the land for Spain, but did not establish any permanent settlements. It was not until the 19th century, during the period of American westward expansion, that pioneers began to settle in the region. The first pioneer, William Whitaker, arrived in 1842, and other settlers followed in the subsequent years.

The region's growth was significantly boosted with the arrival of the railroad in the late 19th century. The Florida Mortgage and Investment Company, led by Bertha Palmer, purchased a large portion of land in the area, promoting the development of the city of Sarasota. The area quickly established itself as a popular destination for tourism and winter residences for wealthy Americans.

In the years that followed, Sarasota County continued to grow and evolve. It experienced a real estate boom in the 1920s, which was followed by the devastating effects of the Great Depression. However, the area gradually recovered and emerged as a major cultural and economic hub. Today, Sarasota County is known for its beautiful beaches, vibrant arts scene, and thriving tourism industry, which continues to contribute to its growth and prosperity.

This timeline provides a concise overview of the key events in the history of Sarasota County, Florida.

  • 1842 - The United States Army establishes a fort in present-day Sarasota County, known as Fort Armistead.
  • 1855 - The first permanent settler, William Whitaker, establishes a homestead in the area.
  • 1867 - The 14th President of the United States, Abraham Lincoln's son, Robert Todd Lincoln, purchases land in present-day Sarasota County.
  • 1878 - The town of Sarasota is established, named after the Sarasota Bay.
  • 1885 - The Florida Mortgage and Investment Company purchases land in Sarasota and initiates development in the area.
  • 1913 - Sarasota County is created from portions of Manatee County, with the town of Sarasota as its county seat.
  • 1921 - John and Charles Ringling of Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus purchase land in Sarasota and develop the area, attracting tourism and establishing a winter quarters for the circus.
  • 1967 - Construction of the John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art is completed, showcasing the Ringling family's art collection and becoming a cultural landmark in the county.
  • 1991 - The Great Recession impacts Sarasota County, causing an economic downturn and a decline in the real estate market.
  • 2017 - Sarasota County celebrates its centennial anniversary.