Philip and Thomas Farrell, authors of the highly anticipated “An Illustrated History of Siesta Key” signed their book at a wine tasting at the Crescent Beach Grocery on Wednesday, March 20. The Farrells combined two years of archival research and personal interviews into the definitive work on America’s best beach. The book covers a time span of over 3,000 years from the Island’s geological past through the occupation of American Indians, the intermittent occupation by the Spanish and Cubans followed by pioneer settlers and developers.
Philip Farrell’s earliest memories of the Key begin in the 1950s. His grandson, Thomas, experienced a much more developed Key, but is equally smitten with the beauty and unique history of the island.
Philip Farrell is Emeritus Dean and Professor of Pediatrics and Population Health Sciences at the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Medicine and Public Health. He and his wife, Alice, have vacationed on the Key for the past 13 years.
Thomas Farrell graduated in 2017 from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee with a double major in history and anthropology. He is especially interested in Native American history and cultures.
The wine tasting benefited the Friends of the Sarasota County History Center. Many of the descendants of Harry Lee Higel, Mayor of Sarasota and original developer of Siesta Key, were in attendance.