Weeki Wachee Mermaids Sitting in Front of Hercules Beetle Statue


Dublin Core


Weeki Wachee Mermaids Sitting in Front of Hercules Beetle Statue

Alternative Title

Color Postcard: Weeki Wachee Springs Mermaids Sitting in Front of The May Museum of the Tropics' Hercules Beetle Statue c.1950s


Weeki Wachee Springs (Fla.)
Photograph albums--1960-1970
tourism & museum
Mermaids--Florida--Weeki Wachee--History
Theater--20th century


Color postcard of Weeki Wachee Springs mermaids sitting in front of a Hercules Beetle Statue and the May Museum of the Tropics. For a little over a decade, the May family of Colorado displayed some of their family's private collection of tropical bugs and animals in a museum on Weeki Wachee Springs property. Photograph taken sometime in the 1950s.

Along with a group of investors, Newton Perry opened Weeki Wachee Springs to the public in October of 1947. At the time, roadside attractions were becoming popular stops along Florida roadways. The attraction consisted of an amalgamation of vendors, an orchid garden, a river boat tour, as well as the star attraction: a mermaid show that took place in an underwater theater. Eventually, the May Museum of the Tropics, an "abandoned Seminole village", a show called “Birds of Prey”, and a petting zoo were added. After peaking in the 1950s and 1960s, attendance began to decline as theme parks and highways changed the dynamics of Florida's tourism. The State of Florida took over the attraction as a state park in 2008. Since then, the park has focused on appealing to a modern audience while preserving its history.


Color Postcard of May Museum of the Tropics Entrance


Weeki Wachee Spring State Park


Original color photograph of May Museum of the Tropics, c.1950s: May Natural History Museum Collection.


Date Created

c. 1950s

Is Format Of

Digital reproduction of original postcard: c. 1950s. Scanned by RICHES team. RICHES, Colorado Springs, Colorado.

Is Part Of




3.60 MB


Color Postcard


Still Image


Weeki Wachee Springs State Park, Spring Hill, Florida

Accrual Method



History Teacher
Humanitites Teacher
Visual Arts Teacher
Theater Teacher


Originally created by Weeki Wachee Springs, owned by May Natural History Museum, and published by RICHES.

Rights Holder

Copyright to this resource is held by May Natural History Museum and is provided here by RICHES for educational purposes only.

Contributing Project

Florida Humanities Council Community Grant Program and Friends of Weeki Wachee Springs State Park


Schwandt, Rebecca

Digital Collection

Source Repository

May Natural History Museum Collection.

External Reference

Allman, T.D. Finding Florida: The True History of the Sunshine State. New York: Atlantic Monthly Press, 2013.
Ammidown, Margot. “Edens, Underworlds, and Shrines: Florida’s Small Tourist Attractions.” The Journal of Decorative and Propaganda Arts 23, (1998): 238-259.
Georgiadis, Bonnie and Lu Vickers. Weeki Wachee Mermaids. Gainesville: University Press of Florida, 2012.
Hollis, Tim. Glass Bottom Boats and Mermaid Tails: Florida’s Tourist Springs. Mechanicsburg: Stackpole Books, 2006.
Pelland, Dan and Maryan Pelland. Images of America: Weeki Wachee. Mount Pleasant: Arcadia Publishing, 2006.
Revels, Tracy J. Sunshine Paradise: A History of Florida Tourism. Gainesville: University Press of Florida, 2011.
Vickers, Lu. Weeki Wachee City of Mermaids: A History of One of Florida’s Oldest Roadside Attractions. Gainesville: University Press of Florida, 2007.


Weeki Wachee Spring State Park, “Weeki Wachee Mermaids Sitting in Front of Hercules Beetle Statue,” RICHES, accessed February 29, 2024, https://richesmi.cah.ucf.edu/omeka/items/show/11186.