"Okefenokee's River of Grass" Top 5 Page for this destination Everglades National Park by grandmaR

Everglades National Park Travel Guide: 378 reviews and 932 photos

Thanks to.Ernest F. Coe (for whom the Homestead Visitor's Center is named), Congress passed a park bill in 1934. Dubbed by opponents as the "alligator and snake swamp bill," the legislation stalled during the Great Depression and World War II. Finally, on December 6, 1947, President Harry S Truman dedicated the Everglades National Park.

In that same year, Marjory Stoneman Douglas first published "The Everglades: River of Grass."

Today, Everglades National Park is a World Heritage Site and International Biosphere Reserve.

The original "people of the Glades" (Tequestas and Calusas) established villages at the mouths of rivers, on offshore islands and on hammocks marked by huge shell mounds. But by 1800, slave raids and European diseases had reduced the people of the Glades to a handful of survivors.

At the end of the Seven Years' War in 1763 and the Spanish missionaries and soldiers departed and left South Florida to native bands of Creek and Muskogee Creek people who moved here after the Creek War of 1813-1814. Collectively, they became known by non-natives as Seminoles. They provided a haven for escaped slaves. In 1830, Congress decreed that all natives be relocated west of the Mississippi.

A number of Seminoles refused to leave and declared war on the U.S. Army. The Seminole Wars of 1835-1842 and 1855-1859 inflicted heavy losses on both sides, finally ending with an 1859 truce. After the battles ended, the 150 Seminoles that remained hid deep in the cypress stands and saw grass prairies. Today, descendants of that small band, now recognized as the Miccosukee Tribe of Indians of Florida, still live within Everglades

We first visited the Everglades when we lived in Key West in the late 60s. At that time, best section of the Everglades for seeing animals is the Anhinga Trail in the dry season (winter). It is still one of the best areas to see all the birds and animals in one small accessible place (the trail is paved and OK for wheelchairs)

Most people who come to the park want to see the animals, so I've listed the birds and animals that might be seen in the park with their bios under General Tips, and the Narrative of the 2005 trip is here with an addendum under Shark River .

I also have some information under Flamingo and I have a page for Mahogany Hammock.

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Up close and personal with the animals
  • Cons:Mosquitoes
  • In a nutshell:Unique ecosystem
  • Last visit to Everglades National Park: Jan 2005
  • Intro Updated Jun 29, 2012
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Reviews (51)

Comments (4)

  • Apr 22, 2009 at 6:07 PM

    These signs are to warn against Alligators who may be laying in wait for Prey. If a Tourist were to walk to the water Unaware then they would become Prey.

  • mikelisaanna's Profile Photo
    Aug 1, 2006 at 2:34 PM

    We enjoyed your Everglades pages. It is one national park that we still haven't made it to yet, but hope to visit some day.

  • mrclay2000's Profile Photo
    Apr 26, 2005 at 7:17 AM

    Nice work Rosalie.

  • annk's Profile Photo
    Feb 28, 2005 at 6:05 AM

    I didn't realize lightning is such a serious threat in the Everglades. Good descriptions & photos of the birds. A park I've been wanting to visit for a long time.


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