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Exploring Brevard County, Florida History: Fun Facts, Famous People, and Films

Exploring Brevard County, Florida History: Fun Facts, Famous People, and Films

Welcome to Brevard County, Home of Quality Comfort Air Conditioning And Heating Inc.

Brevard County is a Florida gem rich in history, diverse in culture, and abundant in natural beauty. In this journey, we will uncover fascinating facts about the Brevard County Florida history, including the county's Native American heritage, its unique geography, and the people who have shaped it. Let's dive into the captivating story of Brevard County, Florida!

Short Summary

  • Explore Brevard County, Florida's rich history of famous people, films, and its commitment to protecting natural resources.
  • Discover the county's diverse ecosystems with a humid subtropical climate and cultural diversity in population & interracial marriages.
  • Enjoy activities such as sports teams, leagues & recreational attractions like the Zoo or kayak tours while admiring iconic space landmarks used for film locations.

A Journey Through Time: Brevard County's Rich History

Nestled along Florida's east central coast, Brevard County has a history that dates back to the prehistoric times of native cultures. The county is named after an early Florida settler, Judge Theodore W. Brevard, who played a significant role in shaping the factors that affect Brevard County today. Brevard County comprises various cities and towns, with its county administrative offices located in the Palm Bay-Melbourne-Titusville, FL Metropolitan Statistical Area.

Brevard County's rich history is evident in its dedication to preserving its natural resources, such as the conservation efforts for the North Atlantic right whales, a safeguarded species in designated Brevard County areas. The Florida Butterfly Monitoring Network, an organization that collects data on butterfly species, conducts monthly counts to help protect these delicate creatures.

Native American Heritage

Before the arrival of European settlers, the land of Brevard County was inhabited by various Native American tribes. The Ais, Timucua, and Seminole tribes were the original inhabitants of the area. These tribes had their own unique cultures and traditions, which have left an indelible mark on the region's history.

Today, Brevard County honors its Native American heritage through educational programs and community events. Brevard County teachers educate students about local wildlife, such as the approximately 3,500 gopher tortoises that call the county home. Annual events like the February Greek Festival and Martin Luther King Jr. celebrations showcase the county's rich cultural tapestry.

Early Settlers and Theodore W. Brevard

As European settlers arrived in Florida, pioneers like Judge Theodore W. Brevard helped shape the region that would become Brevard County. Today, Brevard County is home to the Kennedy Space Center, Patrick Space Force Base, and the U.S. Air Force Malabar Test Facility, all of which contribute to the local economy and the county's reputation as the "Space Coast".

The legacy of these early settlers can be seen in the thriving cities and towns that make up Brevard County, such as Satellite Beach, Cocoa Beach, and Cape Canaveral. The county's residents continue to honor their history through civic engagement, with Brevard County voter registration playing a vital role in the community.

Discovering Brevard County's Unique Geography

Brevard County boasts a unique geographical landscape, encompassing 1,557 square miles, of which 1,016 square miles are land and 541 square miles are water. The county is located on the east-central portion of Florida's peninsula and is divided into three distinct sections: North Brevard County, Central Brevard, and South Brevard County. Each section has its own unique features and ecosystems, ranging from coastal scrub and pine flatwoods to hardwood hammocks.

In addition to its diverse ecosystems, Brevard County has a humid subtropical climate, characterized by hot and humid summers, mild and dry winters, and a persistent high wildland fire threat. This climate supports a variety of plant and animal life, making Brevard County a haven for nature enthusiasts and conservationists alike.

Waterways and Coastal Features

Brevard County is home to some of Florida's most beautiful waterways and coastal features, including the Atlantic Ocean, and the St. Johns River is one of the most popular water bodies in the region. The Indian River Lagoon is renowned for its biodiversity and conservation efforts. These waterways play a crucial role in the county's geography, providing essential resources to both the local ecosystem and human communities.

For example, Cocoa, the largest seller of water in the county, supplies 22 million gallons of water per day to residents and businesses. Additionally, roughly half of the water utilized in Brevard County is for landscape irrigation, highlighting the importance of water conservation efforts in the region.

Geology and Soil Composition

The geology of Brevard County is characterized by Holocene sediments at the surface, occupying 36% of the area, as well as shelly sediments of the Plio-Pleistocene age. The Vicksburg limestone is the oldest formation known to occur under Brevard County.

The soil composition of south Brevard County is mainly composed of sandy loam, with some areas exhibiting clay loam and sandy clay loam. High levels of phosphorus have been found in the county's soil, which is advantageous for plant growth and supports the diverse ecosystems found throughout the region.

Climate and Ecosystems

Brevard County's climate is classified as humid subtropical, featuring hot and humid summers, distinct wet and dry seasons, and a persistent high wildland fire threat. This climate supports a diversity of ecosystems, such as coastal scrub, pine flatwoods, and hardwood hammocks, which are home to a wide array of plant and animal species.

In addition to its diverse ecosystems, Brevard County is dedicated to conservation and wildlife protection efforts. For instance, the county is home to several safeguarded North Atlantic right whale habitats, and the Florida Butterfly Monitoring Network conducts monthly butterfly counts to help protect these delicate creatures.

Brevard County Demographics and Cultural Diversity

Brevard County is a melting pot of cultural diversity, boasting a population of 601,942 residents and a median household income of $56,775. The county's population has grown significantly since the 1950s when it was home to just under 24,000 residents. By 1969, at the peak of the space program, the population had risen to 234,000.

This diversity is also evident in the county's marriage statistics, with interracial marriages comprising 29% of all marriages in 2015, the fourth highest in the nation, which averaged 17%. Brevard County's residents take pride in their diverse cultural background and celebrate it through various community events and initiatives.

Brevard County's Economy: Past and Present

Brevard County's economy has experienced both struggles and growth over the years. In 2010-2011, the county faced high unemployment rates and a large number of foreclosed properties. However, by 2019, Brevard County's Gross Domestic Product had improved to $24.6 billion, with purchasing contributing 12-15% of the county's GDP.

The space industry has played a significant role in Brevard County's economy, with the Kennedy Space Center, Patrick Space Force Base, and the U.S. Air Force Malabar Test Facility all situated within the county. In 2014, the county was home to 495 aerospace companies, with sales and revenue from this industry totaling $3.4 billion.

Libraries, Arts, and Culture in Brevard County

Libraries have played an important role in Brevard County's history since the late 1800s when they were established as community efforts. By the 1960s, the county had nine libraries, which nearly doubled over the next 50 years of growth, and now has 17 branches, with Merritt Island Public Library being a special library district.

In addition to its libraries, Brevard County is home to a thriving arts and cultural scene, with organizations like the Brevard Cultural Alliance supporting local artists and events. From the annual Greek Festival to the Martin Luther King Jr. celebrations, Brevard County's residents take pride in their rich cultural heritage and diverse community.

Education and Transportation in Brevard County

Brevard County offers its residents a variety of higher education options, including Eastern Florida State College, Florida Institute of Technology, and satellite campuses for several other universities. The county's public school system, Brevard Public Schools, is the 49th largest district in the United States and the 10th largest in Florida, with 114 schools and over 70,000 students.

When it comes to transportation, Brevard County is well connected, with public transportation services provided by Space Coast Area Transit. Additionally, the county has around 300 gasoline retail outlets, ensuring that residents have easy access to fuel for their vehicles.

Famous People from Brevard County

Brevard County has been home to many notable individuals, including astronauts Alan Shepard, John Young, and Neil Armstrong, who contributed to the county's reputation as the "Space Coast". Famous actors and musicians like Carrot Top, Kate Upton, Jim Morrison, and Kelly Slater also hail from Brevard County, showcasing the county's diverse talents.

In addition to its famous residents, Brevard County has also been a popular filming location for movies and television productions. The Kennedy Space Center has been featured prominently in several productions, highlighting the region's significant contributions to the space program.

Film and Television Productions in Brevard County

Brevard County has served as the backdrop for numerous movies and television shows, including 'Moonraker', 'The Right Stuff', and various Halloween films, all of which were filmed on the Space Coast and prominently featured the Kennedy Space Center. The region's unique geography and iconic space landmarks make it an ideal location for productions centered around space exploration and adventure.

In addition to blockbuster movies, Brevard County has also been the filming location for television series and miniseries such as 'The Cape', 'From the Earth to the Moon', 'Things Behind the Sun', 'Race to Space', 'I'll Believe You', and 'The Number 23'. These productions have helped to showcase the county's beautiful landscapes, diverse ecosystems, and cultural heritage to audiences around the world.

Blockbuster Movies

Some of the most memorable blockbuster movies filmed in Brevard County include 'Moonraker' (1979), 'Jaws 3-D' (1983), 'SpaceCamp' (1986), 'Apollo 13' (1995), 'Armageddon' (1998), 'Space Cowboys' (2000), and 'First Man' (2018). These films have brought the excitement and wonder of space exploration to the big screen, capturing the imagination of audiences worldwide.

Many of these productions feature the Kennedy Space Center, an iconic landmark in Brevard County, as well as other local attractions such as Cocoa Beach and Cape Canaveral. The county's unique landscapes and historical significance in the space program make it a sought-after filming location for movies centered around space adventures.

Television Series and Miniseries

In addition to blockbuster movies, Brevard County has also been the backdrop for several television series and miniseries. Productions such as 'The Cape', 'From the Earth to the Moon', 'Things Behind the Sun', 'Race to Space', 'I'll Believe You', and 'The Number 23' have been filmed in the county, highlighting its diverse landscapes and cultural heritage.

These productions often feature the Kennedy Space Center, showcasing the county's significant contributions to the space program and its rich history of space exploration. Brevard County's unique geography and iconic landmarks make it a popular location for television productions, bringing the region's story to life on the small screen.

Sports and Recreation in Brevard County

Brevard County has a rich sports and recreation scene, with several sports teams and training facilities located within the county. The region hosted the Washington Nationals' spring training until 2016 and is home to numerous school-sponsored and youth leagues for various sports.

In addition to sports, Brevard County offers a wide range of recreational activities for its residents and visitors. The Brevard Zoo is known for its unique animal experiences. It offers giraffe and lorikeet feedings, African kayak tours, and paddle boats in the wetlands.

The county's diverse landscapes and ecosystems also provide ample opportunities for outdoor enthusiasts to explore and enjoy nature.


Brevard County, Florida, is a fascinating region with a rich history, diverse cultural heritage, and unique geography. From its early Native American inhabitants to the pioneers who shaped its development, Brevard County has grown into a thriving community that celebrates its past while looking to the future.

With its stunning landscapes, iconic space landmarks, and diverse array of recreational activities, there's something for everyone in Brevard County. Whether you're exploring the Kennedy Space Center, attending a cultural event, or simply enjoying the natural beauty of the region, Brevard County is a destination that will inspire and captivate your imagination.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the history of Brevard County Florida?

Brevard County, Florida, has a rich history dating back to the mid-1800s. The area was first settled in 1848 near Cape Canaveral before developing into a new settlement at Sand Point in the 1850s, which was later renamed Titusville.

In 1854, the was officially recognized and named after Theodore Washington Brevard, Florida's Comptroller from 1854 to 1860.

What is Brevard County Florida known for?

As home to the Kennedy Space Center, a world-renowned cruise port at Port Canaveral, 72 miles of pristine beaches, and iconic businesses such as GE and Harris, Brevard County, Florida is well known for its exciting recreational opportunities, scientific research, and innovative business ventures.

From fishing and boating to surfing and swimming, Brevard County offers a variety of outdoor activities for visitors and locals alike. The county is also home to a number of museums, galleries, and other attractions, making it a great destination for families and those looking for a unique experience.

The is also a hub for scientific research and development.

What is the oldest city in Brevard County?

With its history dating back to 1887, Rockledge is the oldest city in Brevard County. Its name was coined by Gardner S. Hardee, an early settler, referring to the many ledges of coquina rock that line the Indian River.

Thus, Rockledge stands as an important part of Brevard County's past and continues to be a strong presence today.

What is historic about Melbourne Florida?

Melbourne, Florida, is steeped in history, as it was founded in 1870 and named after Cornthwaite John Hector, a former resident of Melbourne, Australia. The town grew significantly in the 1880s due to the opening of the first school and church in the area.

Thus, it is an important part of Florida's history.