Native Americans: The First People of The Palm Beaches

The impact of our first people is present here in The Palm Beaches.

Okeechobee, Pahokee, Loxahatchee . . . Native American names are all over The Palm Beaches, where their culture made a lasting impact. Step back into history with archaeological remains more than a thousand years old, or walk on hallowed grounds of Seminole War battle sites.

Riverbend Park, Jupiter

Riverbend Park

Back in 1838, two battles between the native Seminoles and U.S. troops took place here during the Second Seminole War. (The Seminole tribe stood its ground and was victorious, despite being outnumbered and outgunned.) 

Today, explore the historic battlefields by walking or biking the Riverbend Park trails—dogs are allowed, too—or canoe or kayak the calm inlets. The brackish waters are teeming with wildlife; keep an eye out for freshwater turtles, gators (if you’re lucky), wood storks, wild turkeys and even a resident peacock.

DuBois Pioneer Home, Jupiter

DuBois Pioneer Home

Tour the DuBois Pioneer Home for a step back into The Palm Beaches’ Native American history. A thousand years ago, the Jobe tribe thrived in an ancient village here on the Jupiter Inlet, and today one of the last coastal shell mounds around provides clues about how the tribe lived.

Built on this shell midden is the DuBois Pioneer Home. Belonging to the DuBois family, one of Jupiter’s most notable pioneer families, this “house on the hill” offers guided tours 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays.

While at DuBois Park, don’t forget to explore the area where tribes of Native Americans once hunted, built and lived. Outdoor activities popular here today include Jet Skiing, boating, canoeing, kayaking, or simply relaxing on the sand or in the lagoon.

Jupiter Inlet

Jupiter Inlet

This natural inlet is a nature preserve featuring Jupiter Inlet Lighthouse & Museum. From the top of the lighthouse, take in the stunning views of the Loxahatchee River and the protected natural area that surrounds it.

The museum details the local Native American tribes that lived on Jupiter Inlet and the Spanish explorers that sailed through this strategic point. In the early 1500s, the Jeaga tribe fought off Spanish explorer Juan Ponce de Leon with arrows tipped in bone and fish spines.