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Manatee Village Historical Park – Top 12

This Good News Story written by Jamey Hitchcock is a Realize Bradenton production funded by the Knight Donor Advised Fund at the Manatee Community Foundation.

Manatee Village Historical Park, 1404 Manatee Avenue East, Bradenton

After a walking tour of all the attributes of downtown area, take a short drive and wonder upon the “Old Cabbage Head.” This should be enough to draw you into to visit the Manatee Village Historical Park. As you drive up, you will see the large 1913 Baldwin Locomotive and the uniqueness of this park only begins here. 

More than a century ago, Manatee County thrived on the Wiggins General Store, a blacksmith shop, a boat shop and so much more. To take a step back into the past, take a stroll through this park and visit all 14 points of interest. You’ll be able to envision what it was like to go to school in a 1908 schoolhouse and even attend church in a beautiful, wooden pew sanctuary from 1887. 

“We help foster a connection to our community,” said Phaedra Dolan, Director of Historical Resources for the Manatee County Clerk of Circuit Court and Comptroller. “They are able to see it through different eyes and to understand the struggles of those who worked to make our home the unique and wonderful place that it is today. The history we present helps them to appreciate the commitment it takes from all of us to maintain the community we enjoy.”

Discover history older than Walt Disney and learn how Bradenton’s settlement was deeply rooted in agriculture, aquaculture and maritime. So much of these roots is what makes Bradenton so unique. The lifestyle of Bradenton has been shaped by the historical growth and developments, and to truly see how, Manatee Village Historical Park displays the historical structures that can transport you back in time.

“For me, there is nothing like sitting and rocking or swinging on the porch of one of the historic structures at Manatee Village, particularly on a quiet morning before the traffic starts whirring by,” Dolan said. “You can truly be transported to another time. I love to see that moment of understanding when visitors are transported and make the connection between those who lived one hundred or more years ago and their own personal experience.”

Here is a digital exhibit to get you started.

This post is part of the Top 12 Reasons We Love This City series. Read more here.

This post is part of the Top 12 Reasons We Love This City series. Read more here.

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