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Calusa Indians

The Calusas Indians (ca-lu-sa) were known as “a fierce people”. They were also Floridians and they lived in Sanibel Island (southern Florida). They built their houses on stilts, and ate fish and shellfish. They wore animal skin, and used fish bones and spears for weapons and tools.

They became great sailors and their main waterway was the Calooshahatchee River. They used dugouts as canoes to trade as far as Cuba. They also used the canoes to salvage goods from shipwrecks, and to attack ships anchored close to the shore.

An explorer named Pedro Mendez found the tribe and meet up with them. Indians from Georgia and South Carolina raided the Calusa territory and they were captured and sold as slaves. The tribe died out in the 1700s.