May 2024 Recap & Upcoming News

In May our evening talk at the South Manatee Library was Rough and Tumble Women of Manatee County, which was a discussion of the local women who shaped agriculture, cattle ranching, and rodeo. The talk was led by Manatee County Historical Society board member and librarian Katie Fleck and we had about 25 attendees.

We also awarded our annual Roger Williams Memorial Scholarship to a promising young student. Jack Love is a senior at Manatee High School who will be pursuing his Bachelors in History at the University of Central Florida in the Fall. Jack is a volunteer at the De Soto National Memorial, and hopes to pursue a career as a National Park Ranger providing the same hands-on historical interpretation that he has learned from De Soto Memorial. In addition to his passion for history, Jack is also a talented musician, participating in Manatee High School’s Marching Band. We are excited to see Jack’s positive impact on the public history field in the future!

Don’t forget we will still be hosting Evening History Talks all summer! This month Matt Woodside, curator of the Manatee Village Historical Park, will host a discussion of the archives and artifacts at the Park. This event will be at 5:30pm, Tuesday June 11th at the South Manatee Library. More details can be found here: See you there!

April 2024 Recap & Upcoming News

The month of April brought us two speakers that we haven’t had the opportunity to learn from recently. At the South Manatee Library during our evening session, David Breakfield spoke about the history of Manatee County’s theaters. This talk really brought out the nostalgia for many folks as they thought back on some of the great theaters that are no longer standing locally, like the Trail Drive In.

Postcard of the Trail Drive In from 1952, courtesy of Manatee County Public Library System’s Historical Digital Collections

At our luncheon, Emily Lane from Habitat for Humanity presented a history of the organization and all the good that they do today. This is our last luncheon for the Spring as we take a short break.

This week we present our Roger Williams Memorial Scholarship to a talented history-loving Manatee County high school student! We will provide more information about our recipient next month.

This Saturday, May 11th, is our annual picnic at the Manatee Village Historical Park. Bring a snack and catch up, enjoy a tour around the village, and learn more about what the society does. Please reach out to Peggy Veeder ([email protected]) with any questions.

Looking for more local history this summer? Our evening talks will continue with new speakers and topics. This month, Katie Fleck will be presenting about the Rough and Tumble Women of Manatee County on May 14th at 5:30pm at the South Manatee Library.

March 2024 Recap & Upcoming News

You may have noticed there was no update for February. Unfortunately part of last month’s recap was running into several website issues which have fortunately been resolved!

In February we had the pleasure of hearing from a young, new historian, Madi Frick, a student at USF who has a passion for the history of Rye Preserve. Even avid visitors to the park learned a new bit about its past. At our Lunch and Learn, longtime historian Cathy Slusser highlighted the interesting history of the County.

In March, local authors and society members Peggy Donoho and Ron Prouty gave us insight on researching for their book, Miguel’s Bay, and gave us a hint at their future writing endeavors.

This month on April 9th at 5:30pm, join us at the South Manatee Library for a talk with David Breakfield on the history of Manatee County’s movie theaters. 

On April 17th we will have our Lunch and Learn at the Red Lobster at 11am. The speaker is still to-be-announced. 

In March we also awarded our annual Roger Williams Memorial Scholarship! Stay tuned to learn more about the promising young student receiving this award.

January 2024 Recap & Upcoming News

This year started with a special event that we hope to recreate in the future. On January 20th, the Society held a member’s only social at the historic Bartholomew “Tole” Fogarty House. Thank you so much to Dr. Ott for your hospitality!

Tole Fogarty House, 1890s
Tole Fogarty House after restoration, 2023

Bartholomew Fogarty, better known as Tole, is one of the Fogarty brothers who made Bradenton home. The area of West Bradenton where they lived was better known as Fogartyville for a long time, and the residents of this community have a strong connection to that history.

In 2022, David Windham, lead on the project, spoke to the Society about this amazing restoration. Check out a transcript of that speech on the Manatee County Public Library System’s Historic Digital Collection. A highlight of our visit to the home was speaking with the many people who worked on the home and learning more about their craft and the most interesting aspects of this restoration.

Check out some images below (thank you to our photographer Peggy V.) of our members and the incredible craftspeople who worked on the Tole Fogarty home.

Stay tuned for more on this beautiful historic home. The Society is working with Dr. Ott to install a historical marker celebrating the home. If you weren’t able to make it, you can check out the home here.

Coming Up in February

Don’t forget to join us in February for our evening talk on Tuesday, Feb 13th @ 5:30pm at South Manatee Library for a talk on the community of Rye led by University of South Florida student Madilyn Frick. Madilyn worked with a Society member and Manatee County Public Librarians to do her research. We will also be meeting on Wednesday, February 21st @ 11am at Red Lobster for our lunch-and-learn with local historian and author Cathy Slusser. For more details, be sure to check the calendar on our Events page.

Coming up soon is the due date for our scholarship. The Roger Williams Memorial Scholarship application is due March 1. If you know a Manatee County high school senior interested in history, please direct them to our website, where they can find the application under the College Scholarships page.