The Indian Pond site was found in 1987 by Ken Johnson and Cliff Nelson. The site was identified during field reseach to locate villages that may have been encountered by Hernando de Soto and sites of seventeenth century Spanish missions.
In 1988 a controlled surface collection of two fields was conducted. Later in 1988 there was limited subsurface testing and a metal detector survey. These initial surveys were undertaken in order to determine the boundaries of the site, determine the time period that it was inhabited, and locate possible structure and activity areas.
In the fall of 1990 and summer of 1991 an auger survey was conducted under the direction of Sam Chapman over parts of the site. The survey attempted to delineate activity and structure areas based on the recovery of Spanish artifacts and architectural hardware.
In 1992 Chapman and Nelson excavated part of a structure in Indian Pond West. This structure, designated Structure 3, shows evidence of both Spanish and native construction techniques.
In the summer of 1997, Ken Johnson and Cliff Nelson began the excavations that continued through 2001. These excavations concentrated on an area in the western part of the site that was previously identified as being the most probable location of the Spanish church.
Excavations were conducted with a small group of field school students from Thomas University and volunteers for approximately 12 days each summer.
Several potential structure areas have been identified in the excavations. Although the church has yet to be pinpointed, each year adds to our knowledge of the site.
Artifacts from the excavations are processed and analyzed by volunteers under the supervision of Diane Kloetzer at the Florida Museum of Natural History.