Bridge Road, Hobe Sound, Florida

The Rich History of Hobe Sound, Florida

Lovely Hobe Sound, Florida sits within Martin County, on the outskirts of Jupiter, Florida. The community lies due south of Stuart and the Hobe Sound National Wildlife Reserve along the Atlantic coast of Florida about a thirty-minute drive south of the agricultural center of Port St. Lucie.

A Fascinating History

The rich history of the local area contributes to its appeal. Hobe Sound developed as a community comparatively recently.

Sparsely Populated For Many Years

The Florida Legislature passed legislation creating Martin County in 1925. Although the Hobe Sound area likely provided hunting and camping grounds for Native American peoples for hundreds of years, this tropical southeastern region of Martin County did not attract significant permanent population numbers until the land boom of 1923 to 1926.

This region of Florida did witness a gradual increase in population numbers in the late 1800s, following the completion of the important Florida East Coast Railroad Line in 1896. The new railroad connected the recently incorporated City of Miami with other locations along the Eastern Seaboard.

Old Photos of Hobe Sound, Florida

The Land Boom

The railroad soon drew land developers to South Florida. A businessman from New Jersey named John Collins helped establish Miami Beach and Key Biscayne during the early 1900s. More people moved to the southern region of the state, and by the 1920s, the low-lying terrain outside Port St. Lucie attracted land speculation.

Old Photos of Hobe Sound, Florida

Unfortunately for early Florida developers, a severe hurricane season struck South Florida in 1926, dampening the overheated real estate market. On September 26, 1928, a Category 4 Hurricane hit Lake Okeechobee, causing an estimated 2500 deaths as it stormed inland. The natural disaster, followed by the onset of the Great Depression in 1929, chilled the real estate market in Martin County for many years.

Arial View of Hobe Sound, Florida

Modern Development

Florida became a manufacturing center during the Second World War. By the end of the conflict, a new population influx occurred in the State. As Miami developed, both Port St. Lucie and Jupiter and their environs grew in size.

The Martin County area benefited from gradual population growth during the post-war period and the prosperous 1950s and 1960s. Today, Hobe Sound boasts a population of over 11,000 people. The community continues to attract both tourists and new permanent residents.

Hobe Sound Natural Wildlife Refuge

Nearby Scenic Locations

The rich history of this area contributes to the scenic locale. In 1969, the federal government established an outstanding natural preserve, the Hobe Sound Natural Wildlife Refuge, on over 1,000 acres along the coast just to the north of Hobe Sound. Part of this tract has become an endangered sea turtle nesting area. The pristine site also shelters rare native plants and seabirds. The preserve has assumed increasing significance as development has changed many other coastal sections of Florida.

Visitors enjoy easy access to two state parks outside Hobe Sound: St. Lucie Inlet Preserve State Park to the North and Jonathan Dickinson State Park to the South. These sites reflect the beauty of Florida’s Atlantic coast and the diversity of its wildlife. They offer panoramic oceanfront vistas and spectacular outdoor recreational activities, including kayaking and swimming, snorkeling, scuba diving, sunbathing, fishing, picnicking, camping and hiking opportunities.

In addition to coastal boating and swimming along beaches in Hobe Sound, residents travel due west to the opposite end of Martin County to enjoy recreational and scenic opportunities. Lake Okeechobee, a huge interior lake surrounded by low-lying swampland, provides access to unique Florida boating and wildlife-watching opportunities.

Elliott Museum and House of Refuge

Cultural Attractions

Other attractions in Hobe Sound include the Elliott Museum and House of Refuge outside Jensen Beach. The Museum, named in honor of inventor Sterling Elliott, contains technology exhibits, including models of vintage automobiles and baseball memorabilia. It holds the distinction of being one of the few museums in the world closely associated with paranormal phenomena.

Hobe Sound, Florida offers numerous opportunities for shopping and dining along the Treasure Coast.
Visitors also enjoy touring the Fish House Art Center and Gallery in nearby Port Salerno. This commercial center includes ten studios where some artists work with paint, glass, and ceramics.

Outdoor Recreational Attractions

Within Hobe Sound, new residents and visitors enjoy numerous opportunities for leisure pursuits. Some favorite locations for outdoor recreation include:

  • Heritage Ridge Golf Club: A celebrated golf course with 18 holes, suitable for golf players at every level;
  • William G. “Doc” Myers Park: A 25-acre local park with facilities for softball, baseball, tennis, football and soccer, named in honor of the first physician to practice in the local area;
  • Lost Lake Golf Club; Establish in 1993, this golf course offers links, golf lessons, a pro shop and grille.

The Community

Hobe Sound appeals to an educated, working class population. The United States Census Bureau reported that the median household income in Martin County between 2010 and 2014 stood at $51,703.

Hobe Sound Schools

Children enrolled in the Martin County School District attend Middle School and High School at facilities located in nearby communities, including Stuart and Jensen Beach. Hobe Sound boasts three schools, plus easy access to educational facilities in Jupiter, Florida. Local educational institutions include:

  • Hobe Sound Elementary School, a public elementary school, located at 11555 S.E. Gomez Avenue in Hobe Sound, FL 33455;
  • Hobe Sound Christian Academy, a private Christian school for grades kindergarten through 12th located at 11460 S. E. Gomez Avenue in Hobe Sound, FL 33455;
  • Hobe Sound Bible College, a small private college located at 11298 S. E. Gomez Avenue in Hobe Sound, FL 33455.
  • The Pine School, The Pine School is an independent, college preparatory day school that serves students from Kindergarten through Grade 12. The campus is located in Hobe Sound, Florida.

A Growing Area

The friendly enclave currently attracts many relocating households. The sunny climate, warm sand beaches and spectacular seaside views in this coastal community enhance the lives of people seeking a relaxed rural lifestyle. Hobe Sound enjoys easy commuting distance to Jupiter, Florida, a growing population center of nearly 60,000 full-time residents located just 10 miles to the south. Its prospects for growth appear bright.