Smallwood Store Museum access road topic of news conference today

Ted Smallwood's Store, established in 1906, serves as a time capsule of Florida pioneer history in Chokoloskee..

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Ted Smallwood's Store, established in 1906, serves as a time capsule of Florida pioneer history in Chokoloskee..

— Collier County Commissioner Jim Coletta and the granddaughter of the Smallwood Store Museum founder will be holding a news conference today at 1 p.m. to discuss an uncertain fate of the more than 100-year-old museum because of the potential loss of its access road.

The press conference will be held at the museum, located at 360 Mamie St. in Chokoloskee. Lynn McMillin is the granddaughter of Ted Smallwood, who established the Smallwood Store in 1906, which was used at the original trading post for farmers, fisherman and Seminoles in a 200-mile radius, according to McMillin.

Earlier this week, the contractor for the owners of Blue Heron dug up part of Mamie Drive and installed a chain-link fence over the road and closed off the only access to the museum.

Ted Smallwood's Store, open and active until 1982, was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1974. In 1991, Smallwood's granddaughter reopened the store as a museum, and today it serves as a time capsule of Florida pioneer history.

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