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Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Who Were the Calusa People?

During the 1500's, the Europeans had already assimilated many tribes and peoples into their own regional culture. However, there was groups living along the Caloosahatchie River and the coast, south of Tampa Bay, that became known as the Calusa, or Caloosa.

Interestingly enough, if we travel to Marco Island, you can see a long chain of shell islands built up and connected by canals. This was the site of a typical Calusa village. When the site was originally discovered, intricately decorated wooden masks were found along the water and in the village.

So what do we know about the Caloosa?

The Calusa had an established religion and practiced human sacrifice, and many temples were found built upon mounds. They believed that people had three souls-in a person's eye, shadow, and their reflection in the water.

The Legend of the Calusa

Many people believe that the Calusa made a trip to Cuba in their canoes and traded with the Mayans. In addition, it was evident that they had experience with the Europeans before Ponce De Leon arrived in  1513. In fact, the Spanish were never able to missionize them as they done with the other Florida Natives.

Could it be that the Europeans had reached Florida before this? Is it possible that the Knights Templar came to America to hide certain artifacts as some believe and they had some connection with the Calusa?

Also check out:

What do you make of all this?

Picture Sources


Ratty said...

A very interesting story about the Calusa. I knew there were native tribes in that area, but I didn't know much about them.

Anonymous said...

I have lived on Marco Island now for over 20 years and have studied the Calusa villages for several years. I know of several old villages to which pottery shards are still abundant, some of which have markings and color. The configuration of the middens, canals and elevations is the focus of most of my studies, as to figure out the reason for the similarity to each village and its purpose of the "lay out", perhaps could cast a light upon the past of my favorite Indians that lived in my back yard from the days Jesus walked up until "civilized" man brought his body spam and decimated these beautiful people. sungraphics@aol.com

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