Change is inevitable. As an example, the Marriott used to have a restaurant called the Voyager, on Collier Boulevard, now replaced by new construction. The beautiful mural tiles on one of the main building in the complex have deteriorated badly and now must come down off the wall. The names of restaurants at the back of the hotel and on the lower level have come and gone, but some things remain constant: the lovely mermaid named Margo and winsome bronze sculpture in the pool court.
Test your memory: do you recall a comic strip called Brenda Starr from past decades? Creator of the strip, Dale Messick, is shown posing with the mermaid, based on one from the funnies. Our mermaid is an original work by an award-winning sculptor Tony Lopez of Miami – he’s the fourth generation of his family to take up this art.
Margo is firmly fixed to a coral pedestal, unearthed on the island, and the whole assemblage is designed “to withstand the ravages of wind, sand and sea.” That quote is from Bryan Donaldson. of the Deltona Corporation, which developed the island in the 1960s. Ed Foster was the engineer who managed the placement and erection—Margo was moved once, but has endured wonderfully well. (Information for this article is from the Tamplin Collection and Herb Savage, Deltona architect)
If you think you have something significant that tells a piece of Marco Island history and you think might be worthy of exhibition, please contact us. We are looking for shell tools, old bottles, pieces of the clam factory, Tommie Barfield’s Victrola, items from old hotels and rare documents from pioneer times.
The Exhibit Committee would like to see your item and discuss it with you. Please contact Hildegard and Helmut Nickel at 642-7468 or Kathy Miracco at 389-1488.
Marion Nicolay and Betsy Perdichizzi, of the Marco Island Historical Society, compile this report on a weekly basis for the Eagle. Shirley Beckwith oversees the archiving of photos for MIHS.