Lost Cub
  • Lake Placid was once the best bear hunting territory in the country
  • The bears had plenty of berries, acorns, yellow jacket and bee nests and they grew fat
  • The first hunters killed 34 bear and some people in our history have killed over 200 bear

Lake Placid was once one of the best bear hunting grounds in Southern Florida. The territory around Lake Istokpoga and south along the western edge of the sand hills was almost too thick to penetrate by man or dog. This presented a perfect haven for bears to raise their young. The area was rich in palmetto berries and acorns; everywhere there were yellow jacket and bumblebee nests along the bay gall; acres of huckleberries and blueberries. There was always plenty to eat and bears grew fat.

When settlers moved into the area they brought cattle and razorback hogs. Unfortunately, the bears liked fresh pork and beef, and, out of necessity the pioneers became bear hunters. During the first hunt 34 bear were killed: and some of the old timers boasted of killing over 200 bears during their lifetime. The meat was excellent eaten fresh, salted, jerked or dried and bear grease far surpassed hog lard for cooking. It took a great deal of nerve to stand directly in front of a large black bear running through the dense woods directly at you and take a shot.

Occasionally a mother bear was killed and left several unattended cubs. The cubs were sometimes taken and kept for pets and they became very friendly.

Artist Location Size Sponsor Note Audio
Terry Smith Tony's Barber Shop 13 1/2 feet high by 46 feet wide Tropical Harbor Home Owners Association Find two bear paws and an Indian

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