Cape Coral veteran dedicates decades of his life to the history of SWFL

A Cape Coral veteran is bringing history to life, so everyone can celebrate the people and events that paved the way for the Southwest Florida we know, today.

Jim Powers is a Vietnam War veteran and former police chief. He also enjoys history and wants to inspire the future by bringing the past to life.

“I specialize in Southwest Florida history, working with its myths and its little-known facts,” Powers said. “And learning as much as possible for the sole purpose of being able to transfer that knowledge.”

The research historian loves to lead people around the IMAG History & Science Center of Fort Myers on a physical or virtual tour that transports you to another century.

“It’s amazing that someone would pay me to do something that was fun and very beneficial to the community,” Powers said.

Behind the scenes in his office, Powers has thousands of archives and other records he uses to teach the story of how Southwest Florida reached its present.

Veteran and historian Jim Powers in his office filled with rich historical records of Southwest Florida. Credit: WINK News.

“There’s several thousand photographs, some dating from the late 1800s,” Powers said. “And we go to this and pull a volume. We open it up, and we’re able to go through these photographs.”

As powers turns off his office lights for the last time, he hopes others will open their minds to Southwest Florida’s rich history. And with that flip of the light switch, Powers is officially retired.

But his voice can still be heard narrating exhibits at the IMAG.

Reporter:Melinda Lee
Writer:Jack Lowenstein
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