History Happened Here

A campaign commemorating Florida's diverse cities.
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Indian Harbour Beach

Brevard County

Year Founded: 1955


On June 6, 1955, the town was established when Mr. W. Lansing Gleason, Mr. John H. Neafie and Mr. Louis S. Henry held a meeting and formed the first City Commission. Mr. Neafie agreed to serve as the first mayor/commissioner and the early organizational meetings were held alternately in private homes. The very first City Hall was rented office space in the professional building on Pinetree Drive, just north of the present City Hall. Mr. Gleason loaned the city money to begin operating, then later forgave the debt. The original police chief was the town’s only police officer and used his own personal car for patrols by putting a red light on it. The first fire truck was purchased for only $750 and had to be towed in by a wrecker! In 1963, the charter was amended to rename Indian Harbour Beach a city, rather than a town. By 1974, the population and city budget had increased significantly to require full-time professional administration. The citizens voted to change the city’s form of government from a council-weak mayor to a council-manager form. It is believed the name was chosen because it was known that Indians lived in this area many years ago and, with the river and ocean on both west and east respectively, the idea of a harbor evolved.

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