June 2021
"For the Love of History"
The Southeast Volusia Historical Society (SVHS) has been engaged with historic preservation efforts here in New Smyrna Beach and Southeast Volusia since the organization was formed back in 1982. One of our first projects was to work with the city of New Smyrna Beach to save the old Connor Library building that is now sitting in Old Fort Park. It provided what became our first museum space back in the early 1990s . Here is a link to a video on the history of the Connor Library and our interaction to help save it. View Video

These efforts, along with interaction with the New Smyrna Beach Historic Preservation Commission and city of New Smyrna Beach, led to the eventual creation of the city of New Smyrna Beach's Donnadine Miller Historic Preservation Award program.
Each year city staff, along with the members of the Historic Preservation Commission, work to award one residential and one commercial building with this award based on historic significance, charm, and landscaping. These awards have served the community well over these last 20 or so years and we applaud the city staff along with past and present members of the historic preservation commission who have encouraged and supported these activities.

For several months now we have been in discussions and development meetings to envision a new historic preservation award program.

These efforts originated from the realization that there were many more people who were falling in love with the historic character of New Smyrna Beach and Southeast Volusia County than could be recognized by the limited scope of the current award program. We also felt that it was important to create the ability to award individuals and organizations for historic preservation efforts that don't relate directly to structures such as homes or commercial facilities.

As a result of these efforts we are very excited to begin promoting

The New Smyrna Museum of History's
Historic Preservation Award Program.

The nomination window is now open for you to submit nominations for this inaugural round of awards.

To make things easy, we don't expect you to decide which award category best suits your nominee, simply fill out the form to the best of your ability, upload any applicable photos, and we will do the rest.

Click Here to link directly to the submission form.

We will share an update to this newsletter and our Facebook page from time to time to share our progress on gathering nominations. These nominations will culminate in our inaugural awards gala which is slated to take place in early 2022.

Museum Returns To General Admission Access!

On June 1st, the New Smyrna Museum of History transitioned back to general admission access. At that point in time our members will continue to enjoy free access to the museum facility and programming that is held in the museum.

Admission for non-member guests will be as follows:

Adults 18+ $8
Young Adults 11-17 $5
10 & Under Free
Members Free

President's Pen

By Gary Swanson
Southeast Volusia Historical Society

I am so glad to report that our museum is finally open again with our regular hours! It is nice to once more start seeing our front desk volunteers, many of whom I haven’t seen in over a year. Welcome back! Some people weren’t able to return for various reasons, so we are still looking for new volunteers to greet our visitors. 

If you would like to donate a few hours on a weekly or bi-weekly basis, please contact our volunteer coordinator, Jane Siebel, at 920-251-6357 or nsmofhistoryvolunteers@gmail.com.
One of the changes the board of directors has deemed necessary to make at this time is the institution of an admission fee, as opposed to admission by donation. This is something we have wrestled with for a couple of years. With costs of running the museum rising in all areas, for the continued viability of operations we have decided on an $8 per person admission, with those 11 to 17 years of age paying $5, and those 10 and under being free. This fee schedule falls in line with most other museums we have researched that are of similar size and scope as ours. We hope everyone understands the reasoning behind this, and of course, MUSEUM MEMBERS ARE ALWAYS FREE.
If you haven’t walked or driven by the museum lately, you will be very pleasantly surprised at the improvements to the exterior. The elevator shaft has been completed, the north wall has new windows and has been stuccoed, and the whole building has a fresh coat of paint. Please stop by to look over the improvements, inside and out, and to say hello!
See you soon,
Veterans History Project Continues

Thanks to continued efforts of our member / volunteers we continue to add content to our YouTube channel that is being generated for this important archival project.

Click the photo below to view the interview.
Do you know a local area veteran that would be a good candidate for this project?

Here is what we and the Library of Congress are looking for.

Conflict era veterans of WW2 or later who have a direct connection to Southeast Volusia County in some manner. Many of these individuals will have been born and raised in Southeast Volusia County, others, such as Lt. Col Phil Love, have a strong family connection to SE Volusia and continue to live here for a portion of each year.

If you know of a good candidate please contact us at the museum and share their name and contact info so someone from our team can reach out to them.

Subscribe to our YouTube channel for the latest updates on all of video uploads.

Keep an eye out for our two-part series on the history of the Florida East Coast Railway in New Smyrna Beach which is currently in production now.
Local Area Literature
Available at the
Museum of History Giftshop Online
"Images of America, New Smyrna Beach"
By Lawrence J. Sweett

The author's ancestors arrived in New Smyrna Beach in 1803, this book offers a wide view of local area history mostly through images from the family archives of Zelia Mary Wilson Sweett.

"Postcard History Series, New Smyrna Beach"
by Robert Redd

Explore our charming local area through historic postcard images of what it looked like prior to modern day development.

"Historic Sites and Landmarks of New Smyrna Beach"
By Robert Redd

Explore landmarks, historic cemeteries as well as iconic structures that no longer exist in this fascinating book.

"Then and Now, New Smyrna Beach"
by Zelia V. Sweett

A fascinating comparison of historic photos paired with modern day images of New Smyrna Beach, Florida's most charming small town.

"Images of America, Oak Hill"
By Dana Thompson

Author Dana Thompson was inspired to preserve the photographs and stories of Oak Hill's past by her grandmother Mary Mosby Baldwin, who settled in the community at the turn of the 20th century.

"Images of America, Edgewater"
By Sandra Wallus Sammons and Jo Anne Sikes

Founded in 1871 by Dr. John Milton Hawks as the community of Hawks Park, Edgewater stands today as a community of over 20,000. Explore the fascinating history of this fast growing communities beginnings.
"Images of America, Surfing in New Smyrna Beach"
By Kate Cumiskey

Explore the surf culture history of New Smyrna Beach, a town that has fostered more world-class surfers than any other on earth.

"Surf Trip"
By Mike Clancy

A legendary road trip to chase waves on the West coast inspired this book that tells the story of that trip made back in 1967 by some of New Smyrna Beach's well known surf icons.

Museum Work Continues
We are getting close to completion on our North side improvement project that we have been sharing updates on for the last several months.

As mentioned in the article above painting and most of the exterior work is complete and the museum is looking fresh from the recent updates.
Pictured above left, Linda Hulvershorn our volunteer archival specialist and librarian takes on the task of applying some new colors to our museum sign.

Above right, Jose Ortiz, our painting contractor, seemed gravity proof as he precariously attended to the nooks, crannies, and details of getting a fresh coat of paint on all those hard to reach places.
Your Membership and Support Matters!

To become a member, Click Here

New Members:
Todd Cowan
Tyson Cowles
James Derario
Patricia Galbreath
William & Nancy Greenlee
Teresa Medaglia
Robert Sanchez
Lorraine Sharp
Robert J. Stearns
Ka Vue
Elizabeth Simpson

In Memoriam:

The New Smyrna Museum of History
120 Sams Ave., New Smyrna Beach Fl. 32168
Phone: 386.478.0052
PO Box 968, NSB, Fl. 32168