History

Historic Spanish Point Four PsA multi-faceted history awaits you at Historic Spanish Point.

While Historic Spanish Point is a complex museum with many layers and facets, there are four main elements to the overall story. To help our visitors understand them, we refer to them as the “4 Ps of Historic Spanish Point.” Prehistory, Pioneer, Palmer and Plants. Take time to explore these elements.

 

The museum’s “A Window to the Past” exhibition was renovated in 2005 with funding provided by the Selby Foundation, and it is the only place in the country where visitors go inside a prehistoric shell midden and are surrounded on three sides by evidence of the past.

To experience the 140 year old pioneer heritage preserved and interpreted at Historic Spanish Point, visitors tour the carefully maintained 1901 Guptill House, the reconstructed Mary’s Chapel, which recently received a new wooden shingle roof and fresh paint, and a reconstruction of the Webb Citrus Packing House.

Three of the gardens of Mrs. Potter Palmer – the Sunken Garden, Duchene Lawn, and Jungle Walk, are enjoyed by visitors today. The classical styled Pergola overlooking Little Sarasota Bay was restored in the 1980s and is the site of wedding ceremonies and living history drama performances.

Historic Spanish Point is a significant environmental site, and the museum has worked diligently to remove invasive exotics and restore native habitats. A professional horticulturist, supported by trained volunteers, cares for the museum’s nature trails and gardens. A native Florida wetland area was completed in 2006.