Daytona Beach Historical Sites

Birthplace of Speed Park

S.R. A1A and Granada Blvd.
Ormond Beach
(386) 676-3216
This oceanfront park commemorates the first automobile race held on the adjacent beach in 1903. Picnic area. Restrooms. Dune walkover. Open daily runrise to sunset. Admission: free.

Bulow Plantation Ruins State Historic Site
Old Dixie Highway, north of Ormond Beach
(386) 517-2084
Founded in 1821, "Bulow Ville" plantation was destroyed in the Seminole Indian War. Ruins and open-air museum. Picnic facilities and canoe rentals. Hours are 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. daily.

The Casements
25 Riverside Drive
Ormond Beach
(386) 676-3216
Former winter home of John D. Rockefeller. Contains Rockefeller period room and other exhibits. Tours are offered 10 a.m. - 2:30 p.m. Monday through Friday; and 10 a.m. - 11:30 a.m. on Saturday.

Debary Hall Historic Site
210 Sunrise Blvd.
Debary, FL 32713
(386) 688-3840
Once the retreat of the rich and famous, this public site now offers a window on the history of the St. Johns River.

Dummett Sugar Mill Ruins
Bulow Creek State Park
Old Dixie Highway north of Ormond Beach
(386) 676-4050
Located on what was known as the Dummett Plantation, these ruins are of what is believed to be the first steam-powered sugar mill in Florida. Admission: free.

Fairchild Oak
Bulow Creek State Park
Old Dixie Hightway north of Ormond Beach
(386) 676-4050
This centuries-old tree is one of the largest Live Oaks in the southern U.S. Admission: free.

Freemanville Historic Site
3431 Ridgewood Ave.
Port Orange
(386) 756-5201
A state historic marker was unveiled in February 2003 recognizing this historic community settled by free slaves after the Civil War in 1867. Two of the community's original buildings remain.

Howard Thurman Home
614 Whitehall Street
Daytona Beach
(386) 258-7514
Childhood home of Dr. Howard Thurman, mentor of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Included on the Florida Black Heritage Trail.

Jackie Robinson Ballpark and Statue
105 E. Orange Ave.
Daytona Beach
(386) 257-3172
This active Class A affiliate ballpark remains much the same as it was on March 17, 1946 when Jackie Robinson played in the first integrated Major League Baseball spring training game.

Mary McLeod Bethune Home & Gravesite
Bethune-Cookman College, Bethune Foundation
640 Mary McLeod Bethune Blvd., Daytona Beach
(386) 481-2200
Former home of Dr. Mary McLeod Bethune, civil rights leader, educator, and founder of Bethune-Cookman College. National Historic Landmark. Hours: 9 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. Monday - Friday. Weekend tours by appointment. Admission: free.

Daytona Ghost Walk
Main Street & Peninsula Drive
Daytona Beach
(386) 253.6034
An entertaining journey blending history, scientific data and haunting tales.
Tours begin at 7:30pm on Fridays and Saturdays. Tickets are $8. Children
under 6 are free. Reservations required.

"New Deal" Permanent Exhibit
Bethune-Cookman College, Carl S. Swisher Library
640 Mary McLeod Bethune Blvd., Daytona Beach
(386) 481-2200
Established by Smithsonian Institute. Showcases contributions of FDR's "Black Cabinet." Hours are subject to the academic calendar, including holidays, and semester breaks.

Old Daytona
Beach Street and surrounding area
Daytona Beach
Sleepy tree-lined streets where the town began in the early 1870s. Downtown Halifax Historic Museum. Live Oak Inn. Riverfront park contains Burgoyne and Brownie the town dog memorials.

Ormond Tomb Park
3268 Old Dixie Hwy, Ormond Beach
(386) 257-6000, ext. 5953
13 acres with nature trails and historic markers. Picnic Area. Playground. Restrooms. Volleyball. Open daily sunrise to sunset. Admission: free.

Pioneer Settlement for the Creative Arts
Two blocks west of the intersection of U.S. Highway 17 and State Road 40
(386) 749-2959
Ten-acre area contains exhibits depicting lifestyle of early settlers. Folk crafts. Open Monday - Friday, 9 a.m. - 4 p.m. Saturday, 9 a.m. - 2 p.m. Adult admission: $2.50. Children 5 - 12: $1.50

Ponce de Leon Inlet Lighthouse
4931 S. Peninsula Drive
Ponce Inlet
(386) 761-1821
More than 100 years old, the 175-foot lighthouse is the second tallest lighthouse in the United States. Museum displays. Rare Fresnel Lens exhibit. Gift shop. 203-step climb to the top. Open daily 10 am - 5 p.m. (fall/winer), 10am-9pm (Memorial Day till Labor Day). Adult admission: $5. Children: $1.50

Rosewood Exhibit
Bethune-Cookman College, Carl S. Swisher Library
640 Mary McLeod Bethune Blvd., Daytona Beach
(386) 255-1401, ext. 321
Depicts life in the community of Rosewood, Florida from 1845 to the infamous Rosewood Massacre of January 1, 1923. Open Tuesdays and Thursdays, 11 a.m. - 1 p.m.

Speeding Through Time
Daytona Beach Boardwalk, Daytona Beach
Granite blocks built into the boardwalk chronicle the history of racing in the Daytona Beach area up to 1959 when the Daytona International Speedway opened.

Sugar Mill Botanical Gardens
950 Old Sugar Mill Road
Port Orange
(386) 767-1735
English sugar mill ruin. Botanical gardens. Life-size concrete dinosaur statues. Human sundial. Open daily from dawn to dusk. Admission: free.

Tomoka Mounds and Middens
Tomoka State Park
2099 N. Beach St.
Ormond Beach
(386) 676-4050
This archaelological site is a large complex of burial mounds and shell middens that comprise one of the earliest Native American settlements on the Central East Coast of Florida. Admission.

New Smyrna History

New Smyrna is the second oldest settled city in Florida offering visitors several historical sites and museums.You can visit the Eldora House, New Smyrna Museum of History, Sugar Mill Ruins, Turnbull Ruins and the Turtle Mounds .

Long before Juan Ponce de Leon sailed Florida's east coast in 1513 searching for a "Fountain of Youth," Timucuan Indians lived in the New Smyrna Beach area. Nomadic hunters and gatherers, they inhabited this area 10,000 year ago. But Timucuans disappeared within 200 years of Ponce de Leon's landing, victims of European infections and slavery. Only their shell mounds survived. Dr. Amos W. Butler, an Indian archaeologist, identified 22 mounds between Port Orange and Oak Hill in his "Observations on Some Shell Mounds on the Eastern Coast of Florida," published in 1917. Nearly all 22 were destroyed for use as road material.

The Florida State Historical Society saved Turtle Mound in 1924, purchasing Canaveral National Seashore for $8,000. Today it is a designated State Historic Memorial. Visible seven miles out to sea, Turtle Mound has been a navigational aid since the 1500s.

Preparations had been made for about 500 colonists, not 1,200 plus. This made New Smyrna the largest British attempt at colonization in the New World, nearly three times larger than Jamestown, Virginia. As an economic enterprise, New Smyrna succeeded, perhaps the most lucrative of all New World colonies.

The rich history of Southeast Volusia, especially New Smyrna, makes it Florida's third most important historical area. The New Smyrna Beach area provides a union of history and nature. Visitors can explore a mix of historic ruins, waterways, a national park and landmarks serving as bridges to the past.



15,000 - 500 Pre-Columbian Period - first
evidence of man in the New
Smyrna area


1492 Columbus discovers the New

1513 Ponce de Leon discovers "La

1565 - 1763 First Spanish Period

1763 Timucuan Indian Period ends

1764 - 1783 British Colonial Period

1768 New Smyrna Founded

1776 The Revolutionary War begins

1777 Turnbull's New Smyrna colony

1784 - 1821 Second Spanish Period

1821 - 1845 Territorial Period

1835 - 1842 Seminole Indian War - New
Smyrna burned by Indians

1845 Florida becomes a state

1861 - 1865 The War Between the States


New Smyrna Museum of History
120 Sams Ave. New Smyrna Beach, FL 32168 Local Phone: 386-478-0052 New Smyrna Beach the Museum's main exhibit features the Turnbull Colony with additional exhibits from the Pre-Columbian era, Spanish Periods, British Period, Seminole Wars, Civil War, Railroad Era and the 20th Century. Built in 1901, The Connor Library originally served as the area's local library and was donated to the city in 1924. Today, The Connor Library Museum, the oldest municipal building in New Smyrna Beach, serves as a museum of local history.

Turtle Mound
Dating back to 2000 BC, the Timucuan Indian civilization created Turtle Mound over a period of several hundred years. A kitchen midden made up of oyster and shellfish remains, Turtle Mound is seen seven miles out at sea and resembles the shape of a turtle. The highest point of elevation in the New Smyrna Beach area, Turtle Mound stands 50 feet tall and covers two acres. Located in Canaveral National Seashore Park, a trail to its peak leads to a spectacular panoramic view of the Intracoastal Waterway and the Atlantic Ocean. Directions: Located south on A1A in Canaveral National Seashore.

Turnbull Ruins
This coquina block foundation represents the colonization by Dr. Andrew Turnbull from 1766-1777. It's believed that he attempted to build his personal mansion on these coquina remains. Although the origination of the ruins is unknown, it's theorized that they may be the remnants of a pre-colonial fort or a colonial church.

Sugar Mill Ruins
This once highly functional sugar mill was built during the uprisings of the Native Americans in the early 1800s. The mill, the sugar plantations and all the buildings in New Smyrna were destroyed during the war between the Seminole Indians and the United States.

Eldora House

In 1877 property was purchased for the creation of Eldora, a small community situated on the southern inland waterway. The exact population of early Eldora was not known, deeds and tax records indicate 50-75 people. The agricultural community thrived since travel along the waterway was faster and safer than the ocean. Their Eldora's decline began after three freezes during the late 1880's and 1890's destroying the citrus crops. After 1900 - After 1910, the Eldora "State" House, a large home on the water's edge was built. It has a Dutch Colonial design with plain, yet graceful features such as a gambrel roof and columns surrounding the front porch. The style is open and airy; they have full use of the attic and a widow's walk. Today, two buildings remain: the Eldora "State" House and a post office/citrus packinghouse. Directions: It is located in the North District of Canaveral National Seashore, south of New Smyrna Beach on A-1A. From the district's Parking #8, a short walk will take park visitors to the edge of Mosquito Lagoon and remains on the Eldora Community.

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