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Dr. Beal's Shell Museum
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member hummerstation
N 30° 24.646 W 086° 46.568
16R E 521502 N 3364324
Quick Description: Dr. Beal's Shell Museum is a Florida Heritage Site. The 1920s era house was moved to this position in 2004 to save it from demolition. A planned restaurant was nixed by the county so the historic building sits for sale, basically abandoned.
Location: Florida, United States
Date Posted: 4/9/2013 10:49:03 AM
Waymark Code: WMGTPF
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member Marine Biologist
Views: 26

Long Description:
Marker Text:
Dr. James Hartley Beal (1861-1945) was an influential pharmacist, chemist, lawyer, educator, and scientist. Despite his busy life, he began collecting land and marine shells, purchased his first specimen, in 1888. The Fort Walton Beach resident bought this house in early 1928. The building was used by Dr. Beal as his office and housed his extensive shell collection. By 1940, his collection had grown to be one of the largest shell collections in the world. The nearly two million shells were donated to Rollins College, where they remained on display until 1988. They were then transferred to the Florida Museum of Natural History at the University of Florida, Gainesville. The house was extensively remodeled and converted into the Summerhouse Restaurant, which operated there from the 1980s until 2004. It was originally located at 2 Miracle Strip Parkway in Fort Walton Beach. The building was slated for demolition in the fall of 2004. In order to save the building, Dr. Beal’s Shell Museum was purchased and moved by barge to its present location.
Marker Number: F-616

Date: 2007

County: Santa Rosa

Marker Type: Roadside

Sponsored or placed by: Hubert Alan Laird and the Florida Department of State

Website: Not listed

Visit Instructions:
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Recent Visits/Logs:
Date Logged Log User Rating  
dbrockhouse visited Dr. Beal's Shell Museum 2/10/2018 dbrockhouse visited it
Markerman62 visited Dr. Beal's Shell Museum 11/18/2017 Markerman62 visited it
gpsblake visited Dr. Beal's Shell Museum 3/22/2016 gpsblake visited it

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