Just north of Daytona, the Volusia county city of Ormond Beach is home to Tomoka State park. It rests upon the site of a former Timucuan Indian settlement, and is close to Marineland, the Ponce de Leon Lighthouse and historic Main Street.
First People in Florida
12,000 years ago the first man came to Florida. These descendants of primitive Asians who migrated over the land bridge came to be called Indians. They hunted the animals along the Halifax and Tomoka Rivers, leaving mounds behind. These mounds indicate that their makers ate, among other things, oysters and clams. Broken pottery, arrowheads, spear points, and other artifacts have been found. At the time these people inhabited the area, the Halifax River would have been a shallow, fresh-water stream.Timucuan Tribe
The Timucuan Indians made this area their home in the early 1500s. The Timucuan Tribe was one of six main tribes occupying Florida when the Spaniards made their first visit. The local tribes lived in fortified villages along the Tomoka and Halifax Rivers. What we know of them comes, in part, from the detailed diaries and drawings of the French explorer Jacques LeMoyne. He wrote of tawny, muscular people who were accomplished craftsmen in many ways.They were experts in weaponry, clay pottery, jewelry, and clothing, which was made mostly of deerskin and moss. Physical fitness was a prized attribute of the Timucuan people. Training sessions in the form of games were common tribal activities. They were also excellent fishermen, hunters, and warriors.
Liberia (“LIBERI”) and Sudan
In the period between the 1880’s and 1900’s, the African-American community in Ormond Beach, Florida, located in the vicinity of Tomoka Road and White Street, was called Liberia, after the first independent country established in Africa in 1821 by freed American slaves. After The Civil War, a group from the country of Liberia settled there. Another area reaching north to now Dix Avenue, west to Seldon Avenue and east to Lincoln Ave, was granted the name of Sudan, after the African country. Both countries are strong u.s. allies, and today, Granada Blvd marks the border-line between those founding communities. Since that early period, African-American residents continue the tradition to affectionately refer to their communities with the historical, Liberia and Sudan namesakes, often without knowledge of the true meaning behind those names until recent day.
We are honored to add to the rich culture and diversity of our hometown of Ormond Beach. Today and forever, these signs will help mark our long history and commitment to this beloved city on the river, thus giving honor and recognition to a significant part of our proud heritage. An African proverb says: People who lack the knowledge of their pasts, is like a tree without roots. (The Professional Connection/Year 2002 Minority Directory) source.