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Anna Maria Island

Anna Maria Island

Anna Maria Island was once inhabited by Native Americans, but as the beauty became known to its first homesteader, George L. Bean, the island's destiny was to be a beacon to paradise.

In spite of mangrove forests and throngs of mosquitoes, people came by boat to enjoy the white sand beaches and the turquoise waters of the Gulf of Mexico, with their cool onshore breezes and blazing sunsets. The Islander newspaper of the 1950s heralded, "Where life is good and the fishing is great." Anglers came from afar to test their skills against tarpon, the world's greatest game fish, and to hunt goliath grouper in the depths of Tampa Bay. Two modern bridges connected the island to the mainland in 1957, and with that the seven-mile-long island was on its way to becoming the jewel of Manatee County.

Publication Date: 
January 11, 2016