Vintage Postcards Showing Underwater Mermaids From Weeki Wachee, Florida - LetterPile - Writing and Literature
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Vintage Postcards Showing Underwater Mermaids From Weeki Wachee, Florida

The southern states have a charm all their own. From beaches to deserts, there is a wide array of landscapes to please almost anyone!

Vintage Postcard of Mermaid from Weeki Wachee, Florida

Vintage Postcard of Mermaid from Weeki Wachee, Florida

Weeki Wachee Springs

This article will portray some of the vintage postcards of underwater mermaids that my grandparents would have acquired many years ago on their vacations before they gained vintage status. My guess would place these as being anywhere from 50 to 60 years of age and perhaps even older.

Weeki Wachee Springs is in the central part of the State of Florida near the west coast. This aquatic attraction is at the intersection of State Road 50 and Highway 19 which is just north of Spring Hill and south of Homosassa Springs.

None of these postcards show copyrights.

Written on the back of the one at the top of this page is the following:

One of the thrilling scenes to be witnessed at amazing Weeki Wachee Springs, Florida.

Color Photo by Ted Lagerberg

Weeki Wachee spring-fed pool measures 165 feet by 210 feet in circumference. At its center, the depth is 45 feet. Algae and grasses grow on the bottom. Like so many other springs in Florida, Weeki Wachee provides crystal clear water giving unlimited visibility for this attraction which began its life in 1947.

Becoming A Mermaid

An ex-Navy frogman by the name of Newton Perry decided to teach interested young females to learn breathing techniques getting their oxygen from an air hose enabling them to perform underwater activities for an audience. Thus, the idea of the Weeki Wachee Mermaids was born and evolved into what tourists can still see today.

An underwater theater that currently seats 400 people was built, and tourists can look through the clear glass and watch the orchestrated performances of these bathing beauties who perform.

Becoming a mermaid takes a significant amount of training to be able to gain sufficient air from the hose and then do their tricks like drinking soda from a bottle for minutes at a time before taking in more air. The mermaids swim and do acrobatic skills all while holding their breath underwater.

Back in the late nineteen forties and early 1950s, this became quite an attraction.

Vintage Postcard of Beautiful Weeki Wachee Springs, Florida

Vintage Postcard of Beautiful Weeki Wachee Springs, Florida

World's Original Underwater Show

On the back of the postcard above is the following:

Beautiful Weeki Wachee Springs, Florida, famous attraction, where thrilling performances underwater of the lovely swimmers constantly amaze the onlookers.

Color Photo by Ted Lagerberg

Weeki Wachee Springs is part of a 538-acre Florida State Park. A portion of the land is leased to a private firm to operate these mermaid shows.

Vintage Postcard of Mermaids from Weeki Wachee, Florida

Vintage Postcard of Mermaids from Weeki Wachee, Florida

Bevy of Beauties

This card above has the following on the back:

The underwater ballet troupe of shapely maidens who perform feats of grace and endurance in the crystal clear waters of Weeki Wachee Springs, Florida.

Color Photo by Ted Lagerberg

The Weeki Wachee River flows west and meets the Gulf of Mexico a mere five miles away. Fish and turtles exist in the water and even an occasional manatee might be sighted.

Vintage Postcard of Beautiful Weeki Wachee Springs, Florida

Vintage Postcard of Beautiful Weeki Wachee Springs, Florida

Vintage Postcard

On the flip side of this vintage postcard above is the following:

WEEKI WACHEE "SPRING OF THE MERMAIDS"

World's original and only all underwater theatre. Florida's most exciting and amazing attraction. The Mermaids perform underwater for thirty long minutes! "You must see it to believe it." Located on U.S. 19 at Florida 50; sixty miles north of St. Petersburg.

Photo by Ted Lagerberg

Today, in addition to viewing the underwater performers in the submerged theater, there are riverboat cruises as well as other boating activities available on the Weeki Wachee River. There are also animal shows, and a water park (by the name of Buccaneer Bay) operates during the season.

Vintage Postcard of Mermaids from Weeki Wachee, Florida

Vintage Postcard of Mermaids from Weeki Wachee, Florida

Poetry in Motion

On the back of this vintage postcard above reads the following:

Poetry in Motion. The beautiful underwater ballet troupe of shapely mermaids who perform amazing feats of grace and endurance at The Spring of the Mermaids, world-famous Weeki Wachee Springs, Florida.

Color Photo by Ted Lagerberg

Vintage Postcard of Underwater Theater at Weeki Wachee Spring, Florida

Vintage Postcard of Underwater Theater at Weeki Wachee Spring, Florida

Giant Postcard

The flipside of the postcard above reads as follows:

The famous Underwater Theater at Weeki Wachee Spring, Florida.

Color photo by Ted Lagerberg

This oversized "GIANT POSTCARD" measuring 6 1/2 inches by 9 inches would have called for a 3 cent stamp. My how times have changed!

Map showing location of Weeki Wachee Springs

© 2009 Peggy Woods

Comments are welcomed!

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on September 20, 2020:

Hi Sally,

Perhaps on a future trip, you will be able to take in this attraction. At least you now know about it.

Sally on September 19, 2020:

Sorry I missed seeing this attraction on my infrequent trips to Florida.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on August 28, 2019:

I can just imagine how you enjoyed the fantasy, Randy. Haha!

Randy Godwin from Southern Georgia on August 28, 2019:

Yes indeed, Peggy. A 16 year old boys fantasy! :P

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on August 28, 2019:

Hi Randy,

That must have been thrilling for you particularly at that age. (Smile)

Randy Godwin from Southern Georgia on August 27, 2019:

Got a photo of myself at age 16 posing with some of the WW mermaids, Peggy. Needless to say I was impressed...

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on August 27, 2019:

Hi Dale,

Yes, the holding of their breaths is an essential part of what they do. Leave it to an ex-Navy frogman to initially teach the young potential mermaids how to do that. Looking at the old postcards, I am assuming that the costuming has gotten more elaborate over the years.

Dale Anderson from The High Seas on August 27, 2019:

Peggy the whole spectacle is captivating. The environment that they are floating around in and their costumes. Plus you are constantly amazed that anyone can hold their breath that long and put on a show at the same time. Under appreciated art.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on August 26, 2019:

Hi Dale,

The beautiful part of where these mermaid shows take place is the crystal clear water. The mermaids who perform as well as the viewers watching them can see everything clearly as they do their acts in the water.

Dale Anderson from The High Seas on August 26, 2019:

LOVE IT! I admit that, even before I started living aboard my sailboat, I was enchanted by the idea of women putting on mermaid shows. Why? No idea to be honest but I can think of few shows that are more unique and memorable.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on August 24, 2019:

Hi Sherry,

That must have been a fun family experience for you when you were a child getting to see the mermaids.

Sherry Hewins from Sierra Foothills, CA on August 22, 2019:

My family lived in Florida when I was a small child, and I remember going to see the mermaids. That must have been around 1962.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on July 19, 2019:

Hi Peg,

It sounds like you have some excellent memories of visiting places like this in Florida and having a lot of fun in days past. Nice!

Peg Cole from Northeast of Dallas, Texas on July 18, 2019:

What a lovely blast from the past. As a Florida resident during the heyday of these underwater shows, our family visited several of these places. We loved Rainbow Springs, Silver Springs and the Cypress Gardens Ski Shows near us. We also lived in Florida when Disney World first opened in Orlando.

These postcards are keen reminders of those times with family.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on July 25, 2018:

Hi Patricia,

It is nice that you have been able to see this mermaid performance in person at Weeki Wachee, Florida. Florida has so many amazing tourist attractions! Sending good wishes your way today!

Patricia Scott from North Central Florida on July 24, 2018:

I am sure I read this before. But Weeki Wachee was such a fascination for me. It was so amazing to watch the performance take place...a beautiful underwater ballet. Angels once again are headed your way ps

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on May 02, 2016:

Hi Robert,

I have no idea. It has been a long time since I have visited that part of Texas.

Robert Sacchi on April 27, 2016:

Yes, I took the glass bottom boat ride as well. I was there about 1980. I wonder if it has gotten bigger or smaller over the years.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on April 27, 2016:

Hi Robert,

I remember taking a glass bottomed boat ride at Aquamarina Springs in San Marcos, Texas many decades ago. I did not see the Aquamaids perform however. In reading about it, that underwater theater has been removed but the glass bottomed boat rides are still there.

Robert Sacchi on April 25, 2016:

An interesting look back at the post cards. I remember seeing this place advertised on television once. They had an underwater show at Aquamarina Spring in Texas. I wonder how it compares.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on August 22, 2014:

Hi Lisa,

This is definitely a different type of site from the norm. Glad you liked learning about it and thanks for the pin.

LisaKeating on August 19, 2014:

I have recently become interested in old postcards and the many stories they tell. I had never heard of this site, but can definitely see the attraction. It is not unlike the circus or a carnival attraction. Following WWII, Americans began to embrace the idea of leisure time, and all types of attractions began to pop up. Thanks for sharing this interesting collection. Pinned.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on August 03, 2012:

Hello kittythedreamer,

Nice that you liked this hub about the vintage postcards showing the underwater mermaids in Florida at Weeki Wachee Springs. I do not see an earlier comment from you...so thanks for leaving one now. Come back as often as you wish! :))

Kitty Fields from Summerland on August 03, 2012:

This was really interesting! I feel like I might've commented before so if I did sorry but too cool!

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on July 02, 2012:

Hi QudsiaP1,

The idea of girls posing as mermaids and swimming underwater performing beautiful ballet like feats is unusual and especially so when this was first presented as a show back in my grandparent's time. Weeki Wachee Springs in Florida still attracts tourists today. Thanks for your comment.

QudsiaP1 on July 02, 2012:

How incredibly amazing! I have never heard of such a thing before. Yet I have to admit I love the idea of mermaids o underwater theatre.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on April 03, 2012:

Hi Charlu,

You certainly DO live in an amazing state. Florida has so many attractions including this one of the underwater mermaids at Weeki Wachee Springs. Thanks for your comment and votes.

Charlu from Florida on April 03, 2012:

Unbelievable finally somewhere I've been before. It was awhile ago but the place was great as you can tell by your wonderful postcards and videos. It's amazing the shows they do especially underwater. Thanks for reminding about what a great state I live in with tons of entertainment old and mew. All the ups except funny.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on January 23, 2012:

Hi SanneL,

You saw more of the U.S. east coast than I have since you have driven all the way from New York to Florida. Nice! I agree that the old swimsuits were much sexier than the ones today which leave not much to the imagination. Glad to know that you enjoyed seeing these vintage postcards and learning about the mermaids at Weeki Wachee Springs. Thanks for your comment.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on January 23, 2012:

Hi Ben,

Those Little Mermaid videos are beautiful if you have the time to view them in this hub. Glad that you liked this. Thanks for your comment.

SanneL from Sweden on January 23, 2012:

I have visited Florida. I have been driving all the way from New York to the southern tip of Key West and I loved it. However, I never got to see any mermaids.

I think the swimsuits from the 50th are so sexy. Like the red one in the first picture.

I loved this vintage hub. Voted up and shared!

Ben Zoltak from Lake Mills, Jefferson County, Wisconsin USA on January 23, 2012:

WOW Peggy what can I say? I am in love! You offer a lot here I'll have to come back to finish reading, great images and writing.

Ben

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on January 23, 2012:

Hi Rachel,

Florida is literally filled to the brim with great attractions. This one of the mermaids at Weeki Wachee is one of the older ones that has recently been made into a state park. Glad you enjoyed this. Thanks for your comment.

Rachel Richmond from California on January 23, 2012:

What a great hub! I love learning about new places -- Woo hoo!

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on December 01, 2011:

Hello Lucas,

Sorry for the late response. Somehow this got labeled as spam and I just now saw it. I'm not a scuba diver and haven't been to Bonaire. The crystal clear water in Weeki Wachee, Florida would be great for diving and snorkeling as well as seeing shows like those showing the underwater mermaids. Thanks for your comment.

Lucas on July 14, 2011:

Looking at all these postcards makes me want to go there again! I haven't been since I was probably four and I really don't remember very much. Oh, and I totally love scuba diving bonaire! have you ever been to Bonaire and is it as good as there?

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on May 15, 2011:

Hello countrygirl84,

Glad that you liked these vintage postcards and thanks for adding that useful information for people wanting to visit Weeki Wachee in Florida. Appreciate it!

countrygirl84 on May 15, 2011:

This place is really amazing, they have recently ( being in the past few decades) added a new water park what is fabulous for kids and families. And the mermaid shows still happen every day! Thanks for sharing these great cards!

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on March 05, 2011:

Hi Mrs. J.B.,

These vintage postcards from the past are fun, aren't they! Glad that you enjoyed these showing the underwater mermaids in Florida. If you ever travel to Florida, there is one great attraction after another...just around almost every bend in the road. Thanks for the comment.

Mrs. J. B. from Southern California on March 05, 2011:

I just love the postcards. I loved reading this hub too. Florida is one place I have not been.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on January 02, 2011:

Hi Tony,

I agree...old postcards / vintage postcards are fun to see. Glad you liked these showing the underwater mermaids in Florida. That would have been quite something when they first started! Thanks!

Tony McGregor from South Africa on January 02, 2011:

Great Hub, Peggy. I really enjoyed the read and the postcards. As you might have noticed I am a big fan of old postcards myself!

Love and peace

Tony

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on December 02, 2010:

Hello Steph,

Glad you liked seeing these vintage postcards of the mermaids who perform underwater at Weeki Wachee Springs in Florida as well as some others. Thanks for the up vote and tweet.

Stephanie Marshall from Bend, Oregon on December 02, 2010:

Really amazing photographs/postcards and I love all the history. What a unique, interesting hub! I'd love to visit Florida someday (outside of the theme parks). Thumbs up and off to share on Twitter now!

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on August 18, 2010:

Thanks cheap postcard printing for your interest in these vintage postcards showing the underwater mermaids in Florida from many years ago.

cheap postcard printing on August 18, 2010:

Excellent Creative work I have never seen it before. Thanks for sharing Lovely Postcard Design Portfolio. waiting for future Designs.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on July 03, 2010:

Hi billyaustindillon,

This was certainly a very early and unique Florida attraction...that of lovely "mermaids" performing their underwater ballet type movements. I'm glad that my grandparents initially purchased and later my parents kept these vintage postcards for me now to peruse and share with others.

billyaustindillon on July 03, 2010:

These postcard are precious - now I know where synchronized swimming came from.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on May 11, 2010:

Greetings oscillationatend,

Glad you found and liked this vintage postcards hub showing the underwater mermaids in Florida. I also enjoy looking at vintage postcards and photos. Thanks for the visit.

oscillationatend from a recovering narcissist. on May 11, 2010:

Thanks for sharing, I'm a sucker for vintage. Also, love the way the colors come out on older cameras...even if they aren't exactly true-to-life, they have a warm appearance.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on April 17, 2010:

Hi Peter,

Sounds as though you have had some wonderful snorkeling experiences in beautiful places around the globe. Thanks for sharing this information.

Peter on April 17, 2010:

Hi Peggy,

Places we have been snorkeling are Jamaica, St. Thomas, FL-Keys. From Europe, we mostly travel east, like going to the Red Sea, Maldives or Thailand. Some famous snorkeling spots in your area are said to be Bonaire, Belize and Cuba, but all depends on the actual location and your personal preference.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on April 16, 2010:

Hi Peter,

I'm neither a mermaid nor diver. Will stick to admiring the mermaids at that underwater show in Florida as shown on those vintage postcards and also the videos. Snorkeling would be a fun way to see beautiful underwater sites. Where do you like to go snorkeling?

Peter on April 16, 2010:

Hi Peggy

Are you a mermaid or a diver? I love to go snorkeling!

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on April 14, 2010:

Hi Peter,

I looked at your link and there are some nice videos of the underwater performing mermaids in Florida as well as some other old time videos. Thanks for pointing me and others in that direction.

Peter on April 14, 2010:

Hi Peggy W

I found some vintage movies here:

http://www.youtube.com/user/TomWills#p/u/24/-Sp4WhKfe80

Maybe you want to publish one.

Best regards

Peter

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on October 09, 2009:

Hi Pachuca213,

Since these are vintage postcards, and that movie is certainly vintage, it fits. Will have to look for that movie and watch it sometime. Thanks for commenting on this Florida, Underwater Mermaid hub.

Pachuca213 on October 09, 2009:

thats really cool and made me think of the movie " Mr Peabody and the Mermaid" (1948) for some reason! lol

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on September 16, 2009:

Hi Dolores,

Yes...the mermaid show in Florida is certainly "campy and unique" and also a throwback to earlier times when it was first originated. Hope you get to see it someday. Thanks for the comment.

Dolores Monet from East Coast, United States on September 16, 2009:

Peggy, I am listening to the song now. I love it and am very fond of Judy Garland's version as well. Those mermaids are just so lovely and campy and unique. I'd love to see that show.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on September 12, 2009:

Hello travel_man1971,

Welcoming another new face here! So happy that you enjoyed these vintage postcards from days past in Florida. Of course the mermaids are still current although the outfits are undoubtedly quite different. LOL

So...you are a seaman. One of my brothers was in the Navy years ago and had interesting tales to tell of his travels.

Thanks for reading and commenting on this hub.

Ireno Alcala from Bicol, Philippines on September 12, 2009:

Your vintage hub reconnected me to the past of Florida. As a seaman, I was lucky to be in Miami and Tampa, but I never enjoyed the cities's attraction like this because our time are limited. Discovering your hubpage is a great find. Thank you, Peggy W.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on September 12, 2009:

Hello Dink96,

Great to see a new face here! Actually the postcards were from my grandmother...but you are correct. If my mother had not saved them, I would not have them today.

Thanks for the tip about checking out the other hub regarding Weeki Wachee Springs in Florida.

Yes, both Florida AND Arizona are beautiful. Have visited and done a number of hubs originating from both states. Thanks for the comment.

Dink96 from Phoenix, AZ on September 12, 2009:

Such a special window into the past and even moreso that your mom saved these postcards. You might also want to check out St. James' hub on Weeki Wachee Springs. Florida certainly has its share of beautiful spots...not unlike my own state of Arizona.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on September 12, 2009:

Hi Duchess OBlunt,

Silver Springs used that mermaid idea to great advantage. In a completely different way...so did Walt Disney. Guess every little girl of a certain "vintage" grew up thinking what it would have been like to be a mermaid. LOL Thanks for reading and leaving a comment.

Duchess OBlunt on September 12, 2009:

Nice vintage hub.

I remember when mermaids were popular too. In fact as a young girl, I read about them a lot. The stuff dreams are made of . . .

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on September 11, 2009:

Hi Ethel,

My grandparents did quite a bit of traveling to the south to escape the cold Wisconsin winters. Florida was one of the states that they explored quite a bit evaluating it for retirement possibilities. They also took in many sites such as this one with the Mermaids at Weeki Wachee Springs of which I ended up with these now vintage postcards. They eventually retired in Texas.

Thanks for your comment. I agree with you as to the stylishness of the girl in the red swimsuit.

Ethel Smith from Kingston-Upon-Hull on September 11, 2009:

The girl in the red swimsuit is so stylish. Thanks for this glimpse into the past.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on September 11, 2009:

Hello loveroflife,

Guess we can guess at your age from your remark about remembering vintage postcards as being current ones. My memory goes back a loooooonnng waaaay tooooo! LOL

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on September 11, 2009:

Hi Pete,

Guess they will operate the underwater mermaid show in Florida as long as they still have people who can manage learning how to breathe with the air hose...and as long as tourists still are attracted to this unusual show. It is one of Florida's oldest attractions.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on September 11, 2009:

Hi Mardi,

Yes...things "sure have changed." The bathing suits worn by the mermaids on those vintage postcards tell the tale if nothing else. Hope this Florida attraction is able to keep operating long into the future. So different from the norm! Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment.

loveroflife on September 11, 2009:

I remember when Vintage Postcards were just the current postcards. Great memories.

Pete Maida on September 11, 2009:

That's definitely some old stuff. I remember when the mermaid thing was big.

Mardi Winder-Adams from Western Canada and Texas on September 11, 2009:

Peggy, another great hub. Things sure have changed, haven't they? I had never heard of the underwater performances but would be a great thing to see.