Monday, June 14, 2021

Caxambas Kid



“Caxambas Kid” by Maria Stone is a real picture of early life in Southwest Florida, some of it before the roads were built and families struggled to keep alive in the wilderness.

Preston Sawyer was born in 1901 in Caxambas on Marco Island and spent most of his life on the water around the Ten Thousand Islands, fishing or digging clams. He later moved to Naples, which was only a village, and guided anglers. He tells his story in his own words, recalling the hardships and the characters he knew in the area.

Maria Stone recorded interviews with hundreds of local folk and then meticulously transcribed them for publication into a series of books. After retiring as a teacher in 1989, she devoted her time to local history until her death in 2009. She was given the key to the City of Naples and a day in her memory was proclaimed by the Collier County Board of Commissioners. Maria’s works have been curated by Lila Zuck, founder of the Collier County Historical Research Center, who has generously donated copies of this book to benefit the Everglades Society for Historic Preservation.

“Caxambas Kid” can be ordered from the Everglades Society for Historic Preservation, online at, by calling 239-695-2905 or by email

One response to “Caxambas Kid”

  1. Richard W Caperton says:

    Naples was a paradise when my family moved there in 1955. I could ride my Red Schwinn bike from end to end gathering pop bottles to make my bike payments to Sunshine hardware every week. We caught so many King mackerel from the pier that they were used for fertilizer on our citrus trees. Five boys aged 1 to 8. What memories we made.

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