History Center Board

The Town of Melbourne Beach website is undergoing modifications to provide enhanced access to documents for disabled individuals who are visually impaired and to comply with the requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) to make reasonable accommodations.  While these modifications are being made many documents have been removed.  If you would like to obtain a document not currently provided on the website, please contact our Town Clerk, Nancy Wilson at (321) 724-5860 or townclerk@melbournebeachfl.org. Thank you for your patience and understanding as we implement these changes.

The Town of Melbourne Beach History Center Board meets on the 1st Thursday of each month at 5:30 pm at the Old Town Hall at 2373 Oak Street (near A1A), Melbourne Beach, FL 32951. Residents and public are welcome.  The Old Town Hall History Center is open Saturdays from 11 am - 3 pm. Find directions HERE.

Old Town HallAbout the Board

This is a unique 100 year old building that has been rehabilitated to be used for history exhibits and also for art, education, community functions, and other subjects of interest.

It is our mission to educate the public about the history of Melbourne Beach and the South Beaches.

The History Center is open to everyone and we enjoy all comments, stories, interest and support.

Exhibits

The most recent exhibit has been OAK LODGE, AIS INDIANS & RODEAVER COLONY.

There is always a permanent display of information, history and artifacts relating to Ais Indians, Ponce de Leon, shipwrecks, and photos of the early years, interesting people and places.

Some of our past exhibits include:

  • Ryckman House
  • Historic Foods
  • Old Oak Lodge
  • The Melbourne Beach Chapel
  • Town of Indialantic
  • Student Art Exhibit- Railroad
  • The Smith Homestead
  • Honest John’s Fish Camp
  • Historic Christmas Ornaments
  • Interviews of longtime local residents
  • Founders Day T-Shirts
  • Art Show – Facets of Florida

There have also been exhibits pertaining to pineapples, shipwrecks, Ais Indians, Juan Pone de Leon, a Casino, and the railroad and tram.

We welcome suggestions for subjects of interest and if you know of a topic please contact us.  Also we suggest that you call ahead to see which exhibit is presently showing or to find the month for a certain topic.

History of Old Town Hall

The Old Town Hall History Center is located in a building that was built in 1908 by the Melbourne Beach Improvement Company. That company was organized to develop the area into a town with streets, buildings, facilities, etc.

The officers were Capt. Rufus Beaujean, his son Don Beaujean, and Lawrence Ryckman. It may be that in this building, they each had an office with an entry door and the fourth door could have been the Post Office. It was located by the pier in the area now called Ryckman Park.

In the mid 50s, a new town hall was built so this building was floated down the river and set on land in the area of the present golf course. It was moved again in 1976 to its present location.

About the Rehabilitation

In 2001, some members of the present Board learned that the County was going to demolish the run-down building. A letter/petition campaign was started to “Save the Building”. County and Town governments co-operated. Many volunteers and craftsmen donated their time and materials like wiring, roofing, plumbing. It took six years of community effort until the building was finally re-opened in May of 2007.

You can also get information by searching Google for Town of Melbourne Beach Old Town History Center ( GOOGLE here )

Facility Rental

The Meeting Room has conference tables and 16 chairs.  It can be converted to schoolroom seating for lectures and similar events.

The Exhibit Hall is perfect for seminars and programs. It can hold a maximum of 45 people.

The building is handicap accessible from the north side of the building.

Rental Applications can be downloaded or are available at both Town Hall and the History Center.

Old Town Hall Facility Rental Rate: $25 per hour, plus sales tax

Additional Fees:

A $100.00 Damage and Clean-up deposit is due at the time of booking and will be refunded provided that 1) no damage occurs and 2) no clean up by the Town is necessary.

A $100.00 Key deposit is also due at the time of booking and will be refunded ONLY if the key is returned to Town Hall between 8:30am and 4:30pm, on the first business day following the event.

PLEASE NOTE: If the key is not returned as indicated, NO part of the key deposit will be refunded.

 

Members of the History Center Board

MemberPositionTerm

Laurie Simmons

Chairwoman

02/15/2019

Betsy Baird

Secretary

04/19/2019

Frank Thomas

Member

05/17/2019

Crystal Cain

Member

02/21/2020

Steve Doles

Member

02/21/2020

Genie Gold

Member

09/17/2018

Bruce Morgan

Member

01/17/2020

Vacant

Alternate #1

Vacant

Alternate #2