Human history at Silver Springs began in the 1500's when the Timucuan Indians settled in the area, which they referred to as Ocali. In 1539, the Spanish arrived, but the Indians fought them and won. Other Native American tribes entered the area, including the Seminoles.

In 1835, the U.S. government attempted to ship the Seminoles to the western U.S., but they revolted and settled into the swamps where they were able to remain.

In the 1850's, commerce came to the area with barges carrying cotton, lumber, and other items. Hubbard H. Hart founded the Hart Stagecoach Line, which ran between Palatka, Silver Springs, Ocala, and Tampa. In 1860, he hired James Burt who brought steamboats to Silver Springs.

In 1878, Hullam Jones invented the glass bottom boats and tourists flocked to the area to see the underwater world of Silver Springs.

In the 1900's, Hollywood arrived.

Tarzan and Boy
Tarzan (Johnny Weissmuller) holding Boy (Johnny Sheffield) at the rear of the boat


"Tarzan Finds a Son!" (MGM 1939) Directed by: Richard Thorpe. Cast: Johnny Weissmuller, Maureen O'Sullivan, Johnny Sheffield.