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A Place We Call Home: Indian Beach Sapphire Shores

Native Americans lived in the area that is now Indian Beach Sapphire Shores some five-thousand years ago. They left behind traces that can still be seen today.

"There are Indian mounds that are near here on a place called Indian beach."

Fort Armistead was built in this area in 1840. No images remain but records show it housed 600 troops, plus civilians and captive Seminoles. It was abandoned after seven months because of sickness and disease. Sharon Carr heard the story from her family who were early settlers in the area.

"Part of my family on the low side settled here in the late 1800s and one of my uncles owned a piece down on the bay where the fort was originally."

Sapphire Shores was originally platted by C.N. Thompson in 1854. He sold Shell Beach to John Ringling and that's where Ringling built C.A D Zon and the Ringling Museum.

Ringling also developed the Sapphire Shores subdivision on the land adjoining his home. And his friends were the first to buy land and build there.

"It was a nice sleepy community really there were a lot of wealthy families that came down. There were more bungalow type and enjoyed the national amenities of Sarasota."

Ringling's friends brought their boats.

"The basin that is part of Sapphire Shores was dug for Ringling's friends to have their boats."

Today it's bordered by Sun Circle Park, a great place to walk your dog, greet your neighbors watch the sunset, and hold an art show.

Homes today range from bungalows to mansions.

"Because it's not deed restricted you are allowed a lot more leeway doing architecture the way you like to see it."

And it has a very diverse population' millionaires live next door to college students.

"Its a wonderful friendly place. There are people of all different economic circumstances, education and every body just seems to pile together and when there are projects everybody helps every body."

"There is also very strong volunteerism. People get engaged with everything in the neighborhood."

Indian Beach Sapphire Shores is a wonderful place to call home, that's what the native Americans thought thousands of years ago.