About Marco Island
Marco Island History
Marco Island is the largest Barrier Island within Southwest Florida's Ten Thousand Island chain. The Ten Thousand Islands stretch south to the Florida peninsula at Cape Sabal with the Gulf of Mexico bordering to the West. This paradise features 6 miles of pristine white sandy beaches littered with shells, fish, dolphin and birds. Marco Island is 24 square miles with a population of 15,000 year round residence swelling to 35,000 in the winter season.
Marco Island was first inhabited by the Calusa Indians somewhere around 4000 years ago to the time when Christopher Columbus set sail to explore the New World. The Calusa are thought to be ancestors of the early Mayans. They were accomplished fisherman and hunters. But by the 1700's the Calusa were wiped out due to disease spread by Spanish explorers and slave hunters of Europe. Juan Ponce de Leon, a companion of Columbus led the first European exploration of South West Florida in 1513. He is said to of landed on the south end of Marco Island, now called Caxambas where he was said to of discovered 2 artesian springs. The island became known as La Isla de San Marco and over the years became known as San Marco Island and eventually Marco Island.