Treasure Island is a city in Pinellas County, Florida, United States. It is situated on a barrier island in the Gulf of Mexico.
The area of Treasure Island was originally settled in small communities by the Tocobaga around 300 CE. The Timucua traded with other Native American tribes in the area until the arrival of Pánfilo de Narváez in 1528. De Narváez decimated the indigenous people before leaving the area in search of gold.
Treasure Island got its name early in the 20th century, after several property owners attempted to boost sales of the properties being developed on the island by first burying and then pretending to discover a couple of wooden chests on the beach around 1915. After claiming the chests were filled with treasure, the news of the discovery quickly spread and people began calling the island Treasure Island.
With an elevation of only three feet, the Great Gale of 1848 carved out John's Pass on the island's north end and split off two smaller islands, called the Isle of Palms and Isle of Capri.
Treasure Island saw a surge in residential and hotel construction following World War II through the 1950s. The real estate used in these ventures often consisted of fill from dredged material; that is, artificial extensions of the land were created, which were usually designed for convenient access to navigable waterways.
Legendary baseball slugger Babe Ruth had a winter beachfront home on Treasure Island after his retirement.
Treasure Island today has a thriving bar and restaurant scene in its downtown.
As of the census of 2000, there were 7,450 people, 4,128 households, and 2,059 families residing in the city. The population density was 4,679.0 inhabitants per square mile (1,809.1/km²). There were 5,694 housing units at an average density of 3,576.2 per square mile (1,382.7/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 97.69% White, 0.28% African American, 0.28% Native American, 0.59% Asian, 0.03% Pacific Islander, 0.43% from other races, and 0.70% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 2.23% of the population.
There were 4,128 households out of which 10.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 43.8% were married couples living together, 4.2% had a female householder with no husband present, and 50.1% were non-families. 41.5% of all households were made up of individuals and 14.3% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 1.80 and the average family size was 2.38.
In the city, the population was spread out with 9.2% under the age of 18, 2.7% from 18 to 24, 23.4% from 25 to 44, 38.5% from 45 to 64, and 26.3% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 52 years. For every 100 females there were 95.8 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 95.0 males.
The median income for a household in the city was $42,150, and the median income for a family was $64,158. Males had a median income of $38,903 versus $32,586 for females. The per capita income for the city was $34,965. About 3.9% of families and 5.6% of the population were below the poverty line, including 0.4% of those under age 18 and 6.9% of those age 65 or over. Wiki