Historic Markers Across Florida

First Street, Fort Myers

Marker ID: FLHM F-280
Location: First Street,1/2 block west of Federal Building
County: Lee
Coordinates: N 26° 38.677    W 081° 52.149
  26.64461666    -81.86915
Style: Free Standing **
Waymark: WM40JV


The post-Civil War era brought South Florida its first wave of settlers. In 1866, Manual A. Gonzalez and Joseph Vivas took up residence at recently abandoned Fort Myers. Arrival of other settlers led to the establishment in 1876 of a post office. First Street, delineated in the original 1876 town plan occupied a central position in community development. By 1901, frame buildings housing stores and offices lined downtown First Street. Banks, a theatre, a church, a school, and the Keystone Hotel, which first welcomed Thomas Edison in 1886, occupied locations along its route. Railroad construction and tourism, twin forces for growth in late 19th century Florida, contributed to community expansion. The paving of First Street to ease the way for tourists and automobiles and the construction of "modern" buildings replacing many frame structures reflected early 20th century attitudes among many Floridians. Electrification of the city street lights in the early 1920s symbolized the onset of Florida´s Boom Period, an era of rapid growth especially significant in South Florida history. Fort Myers´ palm-lined First Street has continued to embody the appeal of sub-tropical Florida.

Sponsors: sponsored by Nicholas Meriwether Chapter, National Society Colonial Dames XVII Century in cooperation with Department of State


City: Fort Myers, FL

More Information:
Wikipedia - Koreshan State Historic Site
Wikipedia - Koreshan Unity