The Mound House, damaged by Ian, is back in business

Reporter: Taylor Wirtz
Published: Updated:

An engineering marvel, built on the ancient sands of Fort Myers Beach, is back in business.

The Mound House has been around since 1898, and not even Hurricane Ian could end its tenure on the island.

The Mound House on Fort Myers Beach has carried on through all major parts of the island’s history.

“This site was Calusa Village for about 1,600 years,” Adam Knight, museum manager of the Mound House. “We were a Latino and Seminole rancho for about 100 years and then an Anglo-American homestead for about 100 years.”

And Wednesday, it’s checking another hurdle off the list with the completion of a new roof, something that has been long overdue since Hurricane Ian.

“We don’t have to worry about leaks or water damage on the town’s artifacts or the island’s history, so it’s a huge step forward in terms of not just the museum but also the island’s recovery,” Knight said.

This week celebrates the one-year anniversary of the museum reopening its doors after the storm, something Knight doesn’t take lightly.

“Fort Myers Beach lost so much of its history, so many historic buildings, so many landmarks, where people had fond memories and fond experiences. Saving this last major piece of Fort Myers Beach’s history is really a thing that we all look forward to every day,” Knight said.

And while the storm hit here as hard as anywhere on the island…

“We’re actually in the middle of Fort Myers Beach where the storm surge was at its highest,” Knight said.

Thanks to ingenious planning and engineering by the property’s ancient inhabitants, the Mound House somehow fared better than most.

There’s still work to be done. The underground museum was flooded by storm surge.

However, Knight said the Mound House and its thousands of years’ worth of Fort Myers Beach history is not going anywhere.

For more information on The Mound House, click here.

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