Episode 41 Trapper Nelson Wild Man of Loxahatchee

Trapper Nelson

A panther trapping, gator wrestling Florida man once called an area along the Loxahatchee River home. He lived as a recluse in the 1930s. But by the 1940s he was hosting wealthy tourists from Jupiter Island. They visited his river jungle zoo that became one of the top attractions in the area.

On July 30,1968, Trapper Nelson was found dead on the land that was about to make him a millionaire. Some swear to this day that he was murdered. This is the mystery of the legendary life of Trapper Nelson, the Wildman of Loxahatchee

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Trapper with a sailfish in 1952 (Photo: Nelson family collection)

Read Learn more about the life of Trapper Nelson in James Snyder’s Life and Death on the Loxahatchee

Tour
You can take a tour of Trapper Nelson’s home and learn more about his life. Learn more about the Jonathan Dickinson State Park.

Trapper Nelson Historic Marker at Jonathan Dickinson State Park.
Bob Hastings, a guide at Jonathan Dickinson State Park, talks about Trapper Nelson.
Trapper Nelson’s Cabin Still Stands
Dock at Trapper Nelson
Tourists at Trapper Nelson’s Jungle Zoo (c. 1938)
Old zoo enclosures at Trapper’s Zoo
Area where Trapper’s body was found in 1968
Trapper and his dog, Bozo (Photo: Florida State Parks Department)

Music
Theme Song “Dark & Troubled” by Panthernburn. Special thanks to Phillip St Ours for permission for use. 

Additional Music: “I Am a Man Who Will Fight for Your Honor” by Chris Zabriskie. “Almost in F Tranquility”, “Long Note Two”, “Long Note Four” and “Reawakening” by Kevin MacLeod. “Surrender” by Dan Lebowitz. “Alyssa”, “Slow Hammers” and Under the Wire” by The Mini Vandals. Licensed under Creative Commons 

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  2 comments for “Episode 41 Trapper Nelson Wild Man of Loxahatchee

  1. Andrew Fraley
    March 19, 2019 at 7:44 am

    I think the judge in Trapper Nelson’s brother’s trail was murdered, along with his wife.

    Like

    • March 19, 2019 at 10:36 am

      Yes, the judge and his wife were murdered which is a whole other episode in and of itself. The list of suspect was long after the couple disappeared in 1955 and were declared dead by 1957. There was a confession years later but questions still surround that old case that had a lot of twists and turns.

      Like

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