The J.N. Ding Darling National Wildlife Refuge was created as the Sanibel National Wildlife Refuge on December 1, 1945, during the administration of Pres. Harry S. Truman. The refuge was renamed in 1967 to honor J.N. Ding Darling, a syndicated editorial cartoonist. He wintered on Captiva Island and advocated the establishment of the refuge. Situated on a barrier island in Southwest Florida, the refuge is a jewel among the 553 units of the National Wildlife Refuge System. Sanibel, once cherished by the conquistadors, is renowned as one of the best places on the planet to collect seashells and watch birds. Now an island-city, incorporated in 1974, Sanibel is famous for its land development code, which helps make the city a special place. Ding Darling would not completely approve of what has happened to the island he once loved, but he would applaud the human effort that has saved the islands wetlands and nurtured his wildlife refuge.