This weekend the Southeast Florida Archaeological Society had a display booth at the Environmental Studies Center. After the River Kidz painted my face in honor of Earth Day, I visited the SEFAS table of old maps, ancient mastodon fossils and Native American artifacts.
I started talking with Will Ghioto, the president of SEFAS; he and his wife Charlotte are Sewall’s Point residents. We talked about the FEMA house raising project of the town in light of 14,000 years of Florida history….
According to what I was told, “Florida” was once much larger as one can see by the map above. During this time the climate was more African or desert like and there we NO RIVERS, only a handful of springs. (One can see these named in red above.) These springs of course were the center of life for the people, giant, and smaller animals that lived during that time.
Only later, when the seas rose once again, did the St Lucie River and Indian River Lagoon form as giant rivers of water flowed south from the eastern North America and up through the earth onto and through the slowly shrinking peninsula.
The climate changed, the Everglades eventually were formed, the giant mammals disappeared, and the native people adapted to hunting smaller animals and a different lifestyle.
I stared with mouth open. I had heard this in some form before but I am always fascinated…
As I slowly walked back to the River Kidz table, I heard Charlotte say, “People are successful through adaptation Jacqui, that is one thing that never changes….”
1982 Coastal Zone Management Study by Mark Perry: (http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/CZIC-ht393-f6-f6-1982/html/CZIC-ht393-f6-f6-1982.htm)
Clewiston’s incredible fossils/museum: (http://www.fossilexpeditions.com/ClewistonMuseumText.htm)
Vero’s famous fossils: (http://www.npr.org/2011/07/25/137549198/florida-fossil-hunter-gets-credit-for-big-find)
SEFAS: Martin Count/St Lucie County Archaeological Society- you can join!(http://www.sefas.org/)