Stalk prehistoric mastodons with Florida's first big-game hunters, or travel even further back in time, when colossal sharks cruised the warm tropical seas that once covered Southwest Florida.

 

See ancient shell tools and ceremonial masks and dig up the facts about the Calusa Indian civilization that flourished here centuries before European explorers first set foot on the Gulf coast.

 

Trace America's little-known wars in South Florida, the heroic journey of the Seminole people, and the origins behind traditional crafts like patchwork, once laboriously stitched together on hand-cranked sewing machines.

 

Experience the daily lives - and utter isolation - of the first settlers and their families as they arrived on this watery frontier a hundred years ago, and share in the vision of a self-made multi-millionaire who dreamed of taming a wilderness swampland the size of Delaware. Along the way, we'll introduce you to the hardy and colorful folk - the cattlemen, clam diggers, trail blazers, plume hunters, hermits, loggers, railroaders, rum runners, Crackers and Indian traders - who wrote the pioneer history of Collier County.

 

Nestled on five acres of native Florida landscaping, our flagship museum at the County Government center in Naples offers newly created exhibits and galleries that capture the full panorama of local history. Pack a picnic and linger a while in the museum's shady backyard. Then do a little exploring on your own in our native gardens, restored Naples cottages, the archaeology lab, Seminole village or Calusa Indian camp.

 

Enlarged twice, the museum's main gallery offers over 10,000 square feet of new displays, plus a traveling exhibit room, lecture hall, and gift shop.

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Collier Museum at Government Center

3331 Tamiami Trail East
Naples, FL 34112
(239) 252-8476
Mon-Sat 9am-4pm

Happy National Day of the Cowboy!

The era of the cowboy, or more appropriately in Florida, the era of cow hunters, began in the 16th century. Numerous Spanish expeditions brought cattle to Florida, from 1521 on. By 1600, some 20,000 head of now wild cattle grazed in Florida’s interior. By the mid-1800s, especially after the Armed Occupation Act of 1842, cattle ranching was a way of life. And it still is.

Immokalee, FL became a booming area of cattle herding in the form of the Red Cattle Company and other family operations. Today, you can still experience the adventure of cattle ranching at the Immokalee Pioneer Museum at Roberts Ranch. With over 13 acres of ranch, 15 original buildings, and a wealth of history, the cattleman’s story is alive and well in Immokalee.

Check out this video from this year’s Cattle Drive event and don’t miss next year’s Cattle Drive on March 10, 2018! ... See MoreSee Less

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Atlantic Coast Line Railroad map, July 15, 1947. ... See MoreSee Less

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Bank of the Everglades opened on July 9, 1923 and was the only bank in Collier County until 1949. It would eventually move two more times. ... See MoreSee Less

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