The Beginning

In 1925, the first meeting of the chapter was held on February 27 at the residence of Mrs. J. O. Gardner, the Organizing Regent; a charter was received in April for The Sara De Soto Chapter, NSDAR.

In 1939,  Dr. Whitaker deeded three lots of land to the Sara De Soto Chapter, NSDAR in return for providing perpetual maintenance of the Pioneer Whitaker Cemetery.

In 1959, the chapter obtained an office building and moved it onto their property.  Dedication of chapter house was made, November 4.

Our Chapter Name

The chapter was named after Sara De Soto, daughter of the Spanish explorer, Hernando De Soto.  He had explored this part of Florida in 1539 and, according to legend, he had his daughter Sara with him.  Sara met and fell in love with a native warrior by the name of Chi Chi Okobe (pronounced Chee Chee Okobee).  He was a member of the Calusa tribe which inhabited this region at that time.

Unfortunately, he contracted some kind of fever and became gravely ill.  Sara decided to remain with him and nurse him back to health, but she contracted the fever and she died.  Chi Chi Okobe was grief-stricken at the loss of his love.  He had her body buried out in the bay.  He then sent 100 of his best warriors out to the spot where they chopped holes in the bottoms of their canoes and drowned themselves to protect her final resting place.  According to the legend, when you see whitecaps on the waves in the bay, they are actually the feather headdresses of those native warriors still guarding her grave.

First Sara De Soto Pageant, 1916 Sarasota, FL
Image courtesy of Sarasota History Center