The Calusa were once the most powerful people in all of South Florida. For many centuries they accumulated huge shell mounds, engineered canals, and sustained tens of thousands of people from the fish and shellfish found in the rich estuaries west and south of Fort Myers. All that is left of their culture today is a dwindling number of shell mound sites dotting the estuarine landscape between Charlotte Harbor and the Ten Thousand Islands region of the Everglades.
The Randell Research Center (RRC) is a permanent facility dedicated to learning and teaching the archaeology, history, and ecology of Southwest Florida. Situated in the scenic community of Pineland on the western shore of historic Pine Island, the RRC encompasses more than 60 acres at the heart of the Pineland archaeological site, a massive shell mound site extending across more than 100 acres from the mangrove coastline.
Calusa Heritage Trail, visitors can tour this internationally significant
site and learn about Calusa culture and their environment. The RRC book store is
now open 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday - Saturday (call 239-283-2157). In addition, volunteers
and students are able to participate in the ongoing research programs of the RRC,
and members can follow this progress as they support the RRC.
We invite you to explore our website and learn more about the Randell Research Center.
Click on a link below to watch a short orientation movie. High-speed connection required.
Quicktime Format (27 MB)
Windows Media Format (31 MB)