Historic Apalachicola

An Important History

This beautiful location, where the Apalachicola River meets the Gulf of Mexico, has long been a place where people have gathered to enjoy the bounty of Mother Nature. Before the Spanish settlers, native Indians flourished. The name "Apalachicola" comes from the Apalachicola Tribe and is a combination of Hitchoti Indian words "apalahchi," meaning "on the other side," and "okli," meaning "people". In the original reference to the settlement, it most likely meant "people on the other side of the river." Locals today deduce the meaning to "land of the friendly people" and often refer to their home affectionately as "Apalach."

Recognized when President Monroe appointed the first port collector in 1822, Apalachicola has long been a center for commerce, creativity and independent thinkers. A trading post called Cottonton was located on the current site of Apalachicola. In 1827, the town was incorporated as West Point. Apalachicola received its current name in 1831, by an Act of the Legislative Council of the Territory of Florida.

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A Rich Culture

It does not take long for you to know that you are not in another typical Florida town. It is a non-pretentious sensibility that is blended from strong New England roots, charming southern traditions and an authentic "Old Florida" laid-back attitude.The maritime influence is apparent throughout the community and the ties to the river, bay and Gulf are evident. It is a seafood town, more than 90% of Florida's oyster production is harvested from Apalachicola Bay. Many refer to Apalachicola as "Oystertown."

Although a rural area, the history as a major port has led to Apalachicola's rich cultural heritage. Historically progressive in diversity and well exposed to the world's influence, the community has been able to embrace a quality of life on its own terms. It just seems like the troubles of the world slip away in Apalachicola.

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The Arts Thrive

Apalachicola has long been a haven for creative talent.  Whether folk artist, or highly trained actor; refined painter, writer, singer or dancer; the arts community thrives here! Artist studios are tucked behind houses and located in the second floors of the commercial spaces downtown. Shops and galleries specialize in the work produced by local artisans and most restaurants hang local art as part of the dining experience.

Most people know Apalachicola for its oysters, fresh shrimp and blue crab. But this little fishing town has long been a haven for creative folk. Today, the wonderful old commercial buildings, warehouses and historic homes are bustling with art galleries and artisan studios. Artists have found this place inspirational for quite some time.

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