Crane Point Hammock

Marathon, Monroe County

Large Orange Sulphur Butterfly
5550 Overseas Highway


Overview: Consider Crane Point Hammock a two-fer, since it presents both the natural and human histories of the Middle Florida Keys. The property is owned by the Florida Keys Land Trust.

The site includes a ‘50s art deco style "Pink House" that Francis and Mary Cranes built near the water and the early 1900s home built upland amid a coastal hardwood hammock by Keys pioneers George and Olivia Adderly. Both give a glimpse of what life in the Keys might have been like during their respective eras. There is also a bird rehabilitation center and a museum that provides an overview of the natural and human history of the area.

Most of the property, however, is coastal hardwood hammock and mangrove forest that preserve native trees and shrubs and provide habitat for native animals. There are extensive hiking trails and a butterfly garden.

History: Crane Point is the site of the oldest house in the Keys outside of Key West. George Adderley moved to Key Vaca from the Bahamas and, with his wife, Olivia, built the house in 1906 on 32 acres of land he bought for the grand sub of $100. Five more homes were built, and a small community of Black residents called Adderley Town sprung up. The Adderleys lived there until 1949. Francis and Mary Crane bought the land in 1949, and built an art deco style waterfront home in 1954. Crane Point had been slated for commercial development when the Keys Land Trust, a preservation group, bought the site in 1989. Both the Adderley House and the Crane House are on the National Register of Historic Places.

What You'll See: Crane Point Hammock's 63 acres offers a little of everything the Keys has to offer, including stunning views of the Gulf. There are tropical and subtropical Florida native plants; like all sites within the Keys, it's great for bird watching particularly in the fall. And if you don't spot any of our feathered friends, you can find a few at the bird rehabilitation center.

Amenities: There are hiking trails with interpretive signs, sitting areas near the Crane House, restrooms and drinking water at the museum

Nearby: Curry Hammock State Park is about seven miles north along U.S. 1. Bahia Honda State Park is 22 miles to the south along the highway.

Of Note: Check the website, link above, for details on hours and fees.

Links: The Great Florida Birding Trail's take on Crane Point Hammock is here.

Virtual Tour

Cover Photo: We chased and chased and chased this large orange sulphur butterfly and managed to capture this one photograph. Lesson we eventually learned: never chase butterflies!
Getting There ...
Crane Point Hammock sits along the south bound side of U.S. 1 in Marathon's commercial district.

Photo Gallery for Crane Point Hammock

Click on the photograph to see an enlarged image. Click on the name to read more about the species.

Published by Wild South Florida, PO Box 7241, Delray Beach, FL 33482.
Photographs by David Sedore. Photographs are property of the publishers and may not be used without permission.